Liz Bernstein


Liz has been practicing yoga since June of 2005 and Pilates since 2010. It has helped teach her how to create space and cultivate compassion for herself and others. Although she loves to practice, yoga is more than physical shapes to her.  She draws on her knowledge of functional movement biomechanics, Ashtanga, Pilates and Prana Flow for her classes. She is also an active volunteer in the D.C. community; especially through N Street Village and loves to travel.


Erika Bolstad

Assistant Studio Manager, Instructor

Erika finds yoga is much like her career in journalism: Both are about spreading light and shifting perspective. Her influences are multidisciplinary, with an emphasis on movement, alignment and awareness. Erika, an RYT-500, has also trained in prenatal yoga, restorative yoga and in teaching yoga to students with larger bodies.


Edy Blu


Edy Blu started her yoga practice in 2011 to alleviate knee pain. She fell in love with the increased physical mobility and mental calm she began to feel. She graduated from Mimi Rieger's Power of Teaching 200hr RYS in January 2016. Expect strong transitions and deep stretching. Her musical taste is varied, but always soulful. As an accomplished singer and songwriter, Edy believes in healing mind, body, and spirit through music and yoga.


Chantelle Britton


Chantelle began her yoga journey from a desire for spiritual transformation, healing and mind-body balance. Chantelle, an E-RYT, teaches energetic, stimulating and motivational class that give people the opportunity to have both a learning and healing experience. While not on the mat, she commits to service and travels every chance she gets.


Dana Brown

Studio Assistant

Dana wasn’t sure yoga was for her until she found Past Tense. She has become an avid yoga student since settling in at Past Tense, where the studio feels like a community and a safe space for all body types and abilities. Yoga has now become a moving meditation for her, and a way to work out the kinks after a long day.


Dan Carter

Studio Manager, Instructor

Dan's friends call him Danimal and he hopes you do too! Danimal teaches a power and rocket inspired sequence that incorporates the breath, movement and noise of a specific animal each week to create a playful and primal flow. Expect fun music and space to workshop poses in his classes.


Mary Champeny

Studio Assistant

Mary is a West coast transplant who started practicing yoga after moving to DC and discovering that mid-Atlantic winters make outdoor exercise very uncomfortable. Since then she has come to rely on yoga as a way to find ease in both body and mind. Mary works for a public health NGO as an infant nutrition researcher and feels lucky to call Mt. Pleasant home.


Sara Curtin


Sara began practicing yoga in order to explore the ever-growing relationship between mind and body, and deepen the bond with her breath. As a professional singer and musician she searched for ways to strengthen (and relax) a body often challenged by physical fatigue. She quickly discovered the healing properties of the breath that yoga facilitates through movement and strength. In Sara’s class, you will increase strength, flexibility, and have fun!


Stef Claus

Studio Assistant

Stef took her first yoga class in 2009 and was instantly hooked.  She finds yoga is a great way to sweat, destress, re-center, and find community. Off the mat, Stef works in progressive politics and loves hiking, biking, and cooking for friends.


Margot Conover

Studio Assistant

After dabbling in yoga, Margot started practicing regularly while living in an Ecuadorian village. Physical and emotional balance from a consistent practice have since carried her through life’s challenges, on and off the mat. Off the mat, she works at a public health NGO, loves exploring DC on her bike, and cross-stitches cats wearing Star Trek uniforms.

Past Tense

Kelly DiNardo

Owner, Instructor

Kelly discovered yoga when she was procrastinating on a writing assignment. Parked on a yoga mat, she not only cleared her writer’s block but developed a new passion. Trained through YogaFit, she has been teaching yoga in the area for over ten years. She opened Past Tense with the hope of giving others the same strength, balance and flexibility in a place that is open and welcoming.


Renana Fox


Renana started practicing yoga because it balanced her hectic schedule and the physical stress of distance running. In 2015 she completed her RYT-200 hour training at the Studio DC and has since trained in Foam Rolling and Yoga for Kids. Off the mat, Renana works in theater and education, and thoroughly enjoys cuddling with her cat, Fiona Tuesday.


Christine Gallagher

Studio Assistant 

Christine turned to yoga after low-back pain began impeding her running and biking. On the mat, she discovered the practice not only helped strengthen her back but also provided a respite from busy city life. Beyond yoga, Christine helps manage scientific programs that support communities’ efforts to prepare for and recover from impacts of weather events.


Fiona Griffin


Fiona first tried yoga in college to fulfill a PE requirement and was amazed by its benefits. She received her 200-hour training at Yoga District in 2012 and has also trained in restorative, yin, and Insight Yoga.  She believes that these slow and quiet practices help balance out D.C.’s fast-paced lifestyle and her classes reflect that approach.


Joey Gottlieb


The son of two diplomats, Joey's first experience with yoga was as a depressed teenager nursing two sports injuries. He began studying yoga right here in DC, and after several years of practice, Joey took his first teacher training in vinyasa yoga with Ellen De Jonge. As a teacher, Joey aims to develop health, empowerment, and a sense of joyful curiosity in navigating the complex world around us. Joey is also a licensed massage therapist.


Jenna Grubman

Assistant Studio Manager

Jenna has played multiple sports all her life, but it wasn’t until moving to DC from Indiana that she realized yoga was the perfect balance for her active lifestyle.  Jenna was introduced to Past Tense by her sister, Sunny, a student assistant. Beyond yoga, Jenna works for Habitat for Humanity of Washington, D.C. and loves a good dinner party.


Lauren Hartel

Studio Assistant

Lauren was first drawn to yoga as a way to complement to her marathon training, but found the benefits extended much further. She loves the welcoming nature of the Past Tense community, and hopes others do too! Off the mat, Lauren works as an economist in global health and development.


Jennifer Hopkins

Pilates Manager, Instructor

Jennifer believes in the core power found in Pilates, but also in its life-changing, full-body benefits. Jennifer sought out the classical method of Joe Pilates by studying directly with the Power Pilates studio in New York City. She strives to make Pilates accessible, to see individual needs of students and to work the core with laughter.


Sonja Kubota Johansson


Sonja first encountered yoga and felt as if she were re-united with an old friend who reminded her of the true meaning of life. Since then, it has helped her work through pain and encouraged her to nurture compassion, gratitude, and peace. She emphasizes yoga as a physical, emotional and spiritually healing practice in a unifying, non-dogmatic way. Sonja is currently pursuing her doctorate in clinical psychology.


Jeanette Lee


Jeanette turned to yoga after dancing for many years. Yoga inspired her to find freedom and release in more subtle and deeper ways than she could before. Jeanette received her initial teacher training in 2007 and a 500-hour certification in Prana Flow. Jeanette enjoys creating yoga practices to connect us with the natural cycles of life – to the seasons, the weather, and the basic elements.


Reana Kovalcik

Studio Assistant

They say all real New Yorkers are in therapy, but this one has always preferred the mat to the couch. For Reana the mental and emotional practice of yoga is just as important as the physical, and she is grateful to have had truly inspirational teachers over the years who have helped her to stretch and expand all three. Reana works for the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, a DC-based policy organization that elevates the voices of diverse, sustainable, and organic farmers across the country and translates their wisdom and needs into meaningful, federal policies.


Sadie Leigh


Sadie is a firm believer in the inherent spirituality of a dedicated movement practice, especially when paired with mindfulness and meditation. As a lifelong student, performer and dancer, she finds her bliss in the heat, strength, and mobility that comes from focused physicality. She brings this purposeful playfulness to class and encourages students to move gracefully and joyfully.


Alicia Moyer

Director of Teacher Training, Instructor

Alicia has been practicing yoga since 1998 and teaching since 2009. She has studied in various traditions, and strives to bring them all together in her alignment-focused vinyasa classes and teacher training. Alicia is a native to Mt. Pleasant and still lives in her childhood home with her husband, daughter and rather large dog.


Mallory Newall

Assistant Studio Manager, Instructor

Mallory first joined the Past Tense community as a studio assistant, then later as a member of the studio's first Living Yoga Teacher Training class. Mallory teaches a power-inspired class set to upbeat music to give students the opportunity to find their edge in a lighthearted way. Off the mat, Mallory works in public opinion research and communications and loves to travel and explore D.C.'s many new restaurants.


Michael Peterson

Director of Mentorship, Instructor

Michael was dragged into his first yoga class against his will, but soon learned he had found a new home. It was the first time he had experienced quiet in the midst of spinning, hectic, New York City. Michael received his 200-hr certification from Yoga to the People and is a 500-hr Kripalu Yoga Teacher.


Bethany Shaffer


Bethany came to the mat after years of Buddhist study and meditation. She became serious about the practice at the Lotus Buddhist Center in Prague and was certified through Yoga District in 2010. She teaches a creative, alignment-based flow that emphasizes presence. Bethany is also a high school English teacher and believes in language, learning, and leaping off the well-worn road.


Mirtha Soto

Studio Assistant

After living in France for graduate school, where "too many baguettes, too little time" could have been her mantra, Mirtha re-discovered yoga as a complement to running. Mirtha's yoga practice has ebbed and flowed for nearly 10 years but since moving to D.C. in 2014 it's been a constant presence and grounding force. Outside the studio, Mirtha enjoys learning languages and playing with other people's dogs.


Emily Stock

Studio Assistant

After a lifetime struggle with being overweight Emily’s life changed when she moved to DC in 2011 and had numerous opportunities to create an active lifestyle. After losing over 100 pounds she still struggled with a weak core, a loud mind and back issues. She was urged to give yoga a try by a friend and regular Past Tense student. After her first class at Past Tense she was hooked and sore. Emily loves the welcoming community that Past Tense offers to everyone.


Sasa Tang

Studio Assistant

Sasa unexpectedly took her first yoga class in the high Atlas Mountains of Morocco during her Peace Corps service when she invited a lost yogi and her daughter to her village to stay for the night. Now in a Ph.D. program studying Middle Eastern politics, yoga gives Sasa time to find rest and to be fully present in her body on the mat.


Caitlin Van Hecke

Director of Kids and Family Programming, Instructor

Caitlin discovered her need for yoga while living on the creative chaos of NYC. She fell in love with the discipline it brought to her life, as well as the freedom that opened within. Caitlin received her 230-hour certification in 2008 from Asheville Yoga Center in North Carolina, her home state. Her fascination with the connection between what happens on and off the mat propels her to share yoga with others.


Lindsey Uhrig


Lindsey was introduced to yoga in 2006 as a form of emotional healing. She uses her classes as a platform for deeper meditation, both seated and moving. Lindsey enjoys both the physical and subtle aspects of the practice, and sees yoga as a conduit for divine energy and connection with all beings. Her classses include breathwork, physical movement and opportunities for silence. Outside the studio, Lindsey works as a  doula.


Sunny Widmann

Studio Assistant

Sunny fell in love with yoga while practicing on a beach in Thailand, after completing her Peace Corps service in Togo, West Africa. She realized yoga was exactly what she needed to help her transition into the next phase of her life with ease and intention. When not practicing, Sunny can be found working as an arts administrator, planning world travels, or baking cookies.


Karen Vargas

Studio Assistant

For Karen, coming to the mat represents an opportunity to check in with the internal self as well as the way to manifest the work (and growth) that the soul is craving. When she’s not at Past Tense, she can be found enjoying the outdoors, searching for the best cappuccinos and croissants, spending time with friends and family or adventuring to foreign lands.