Our Instructors

Inlet Yoga Instructors

Our amazing teachers are the core of our yoga community. Each of our highly experienced and caring NJ Shore instructors is committed to helping their students to grow their yoga practice and inspire their self discovery. All our instructors teach from the roots of their own practice, and inspire their students growth, nurturing and caring for them during classes, workshops, and trainings at Inlet Yoga.

Our Instructors

Jennifer Vafakos

Managing Director and Owner

Welcome!  Jennifer Vafakos began practicing yoga regularly in 2008 in NYC. Though Jennifer started years earlier it wasn’t until she met a a group of yoga instructors that changed her life and where she become a serious yoga practitioner and student. Registered with Yoga Alliance at the ERYT500 level and YACEP, Jennifer currently runs a yoga studio, leads weekly classes, yoga teacher trainings, workshops and international retreats. In 2016 Jennifer left a 20 year career in Fashion Design and purchased Inlet Yoga from Emma Clagett in Manasquan, NJ. In 2019 Jennifer founded a podcast with New Jersey Yoga Collective’s Bridget Riepl called “Here for Savasana.”

In her weekly classes you will notice a strong influence of Jennifer’s Laughing Lotus training (Dana Trixie Flynn), with layers and influence of Katonah Yoga (as taught by Nevine Michaan) and Seasonal Yoga. Jennifer will reference and inform on alignment, healthy transitioning between shapes, themes of seasons, cycles discovering and uncovering human existence and of layering in music, poetry and laughter in her classes, trainings, and workshops.

She believes yoga is for everyone, and gives you the ultimate tools to engage life fully to recreate and work towards your potential to heal and live well as we age.

Jennifer’s Training Background includes over 1,000 plus hours of formal Yoga Teacher Training, and more:

  • Baron Baptiste 100hr
  • Laughing Lotus™️ 200 hr, 300 hr (twice)
  • Laughing Lotus™️ India - study of Bhakti and advanced asana- 100hr
  • Katonah Yoga™️ - currently working towards 200 hr certification
  • Ayurveda Foundations- Dr Claudia Welch (current)

What Jennifer is working on now for you and launching soon!

 

  • Lead trainer for Inlet Yoga's 200 RYT Teacher Training 2016, 2017, Year Long Seasonal Yoga™️ 200 Hour 2018 to 2019 and launching again in 2020 (student signups currently being accepted)
  • Lead Trainer for the 300 RYT Inlet Seasonal Yoga™️ Teacher Training launching in 2020
  • Seasonal Yoga™️ Retreat 2019 and launching again in 2020 in Costa Rica
  • Here for Savasana Podcast founded in 2019
  • Regular Blog contributor New Jersey Yoga Collective
  • Beginner Video Online series Inlet Yoga launching late 2019
Teal Godesky

Yoga and Pilates Instructor, Owner of Body Knowledge Pilates

Teal Godesky is a movement specialist and the owner of BodyKnowledge Pilates, located in Manasquan, NJ. With an integrative background in both Pilates and yoga, Teal believes that movement is key to total body health. Teal’s classes are rooted in Traditional Chinese Medicine with a seasonal theme to teach her students to live harmoniously with the natural adjustments of the body throughout the year. Focusing on neuromuscular re-patterning and body awareness, Teal teaches how to move with ease, take ownership of the physical body, and embrace your full energetic potential.

Teal received her Bachelor of Science from Rutgers University, 500 hour comprehensive training with BASI Pilates, 500 hour rehabilitation certification with Polestar Pilates, 200 hour training with Katonah Yoga, and has completed multiple specialized movement trainings for spinal injuries, joint replacement, osteoporosis, pre- and post-natal, aging actively, and women’s health. Teal is also an educator on Inlet Yoga’s Seasonal YTT 200 Hr certification program and is mentored by Katonah Yoga senior teacher, Ivy Ray.

Marije Paternotte

Yoga Instructor

Marije E. Paternotte offers a unique approach to yoga; balancing movement and breathing practices of traditional Hatha and Tibetan Yoga with the stillness of the Taoist Yin Yoga, awareness of Chi flow, and an emphasis on mindfulness and the Buddha Dharma. Her teaching style is understated and compassionate. She has the ability to present complex concepts, and an in-depth knowledge of yogic anatomy and philosophy, in a simple and approachable way.

Marije was born and raised in Amsterdam where, after her training to be a professional ballet dancer, she studied law and worked as a corporate lawyer. A yoga retreat in Bali led her to the United States where she took her first yoga teacher training. She currently lives in a small beach town in New Jersey with her husband and teaches yoga locally as well as workshops, retreats, and teacher trainings around the world. Marije is also a guest teacher at the renowned Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Massachusetts.

Marije (E-RYT 500) received both her foundational and professional level yoga teacher certification at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Massachusetts and is certified to teach Yin Yoga and Mindfulness by Sarah Powers’ Insight Yoga Institute, as well as by Bernie Clark.

Carrie Godesky

Seasonal Yoga™️ Instructor

Carrie is a prominent yoga teacher located in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey. She has been guiding studio classes for almost twenty years and has led thousands of beach yogis during the summer at Jenkinson’s Inlet Beach for the past decade. Carrie is also the owner of Twisted Guru, a textile company located in India that created one of the the first ever, Beach Yoga Mat. Her mat has been featured in Yoga Journal, Caribbean Living, NY Yoga + Life, INC. and Vogue (on line).

Carrie’s love for nature, the cycles of the seasons and the power of the great elements plays an important role in guiding her practice. Her classes are a combination of storytelling with reflective movement. Carrie believes that learning to live in harmony with nature and understanding the cycles of life is essential to nourishing the soul and feeling more balanced, connected and joyful in our lives. She encourages her students to bridge their inner and outer landscapes and to stay present to signs from the universe in everyday miracles, which are always there to help guide them on life’s path.

Carrie is a lead trainer in Inlet Yoga's 200 hour Seasonal Yoga™️ teacher training, and co-hosts intensive yoga retreats in Costa Rica, currently. She will be a presenter at this year’s Global Mala in Asbury Park. Her family runs a beach house café at the Jersey Shore and in the offseason they feed hundreds of children through their healthy school food service management company.

Brie Jacobs

Jivamukti and Yin Yoga Instructor

After 10 years in the hair and beauty industry as a colorist , Brie found herself in an increasing toxic world of chemicals, stressed out, creatively feeling stuck and feeling like her professional and personal life were not coexisting in her favor. This was having an affect on her mentally and physically. Needless to say, she was looking for relief. In 2010, this spark of awareness lead her by chance to a local yoga studio. Unbeknownst to her, the teachers she would find in that cozy little room would change the course of her path forever. Fast forward 5 years, Brie is a Jivamukti Yoga teacher living in Thailand for 2 months studying under Homprang Chaleekanha ,a Traditional Thai Medicine doctor and a Thai Yoga Bodywork master. She lived and studied closely with Homprang for over 300 hours during those 2 months covering subjects such as Thai Yoga Bodywork, food as medicine , Thai foot reflexology, womb lifting , how to make and apply hot herbal compresses and how to make products , such as tiger balm , from plants found in Homprang's garden. The life experience and knowledge she obtained in Thailand is indescribable and life changing. Brie is eternally grateful for Homprang and the many teachers that she has stumbled upon so far in her life.

In 2013, Brie spent a month at the Omega Institute in upstate N.Y. and completed the 300 hour Jivamukti Yoga teacher training. She studied under Sharon Gannon and David Life, who are the founders of Jivamukti Yoga, and Lady Ruth, who was a student of Sri K. Pattabhi Jois for over 20 years. Brie teaches and practices yoga weekly in Ocean and Monmouth County, N.J.,USA. Forever a student , Brie hopes to be lucky enough to continue to travel and learn from the teachers, people and animals she meets from all over the world. The knowledge, experience and connections she makes on these travels are held near and dear to her heart.

Allison Kane, E-RYT 500, YACEP

Yoga Instructor

Allison’s goal in teaching is for people to have a better understanding and awareness of their bodies and to joyfully accept and celebrate who they are. Through a blended approach of learning and playing, she strives to balance information and fun in all of her classes – inviting folks to enjoy their yoga practice and transform their lives.

A yoga practitioner since the mid 90s, Allison began teaching in 2009. She completed both her 200 & 500-hour Teacher Trainings at DIG Yoga in Lambertville, NJ, and is registered with The Yoga Alliance as both an E-RYT 200 & 500-hour instructor and as a Continuing Education Provider. While Allison began teaching from an Alignment-based perspective (within the Anusara school) her approach has shifted to a focus on embodied movement. Her emphasis tends to be one that combines a balance of both stretching and strengthening – with a passion for anatomy and therapeutics. Allison is also a certified instructor in Yoga Tune Up®, The Roll Model Method®, and Yoga For All®. In addition to her teacher trainings Allison has studied with notable movement educators such as Tom Myers, Jules Mitchell, Jillian Pranksy, Leslie Kaminoff and Jenny Otto.

Offerings by Allison include a range of Hatha Yoga classes in addition to classes and workshops that focus on self-massage and myofascial release. She has demonstrated her teaching capabilities at a variety of studios on the Jersey Shore.

Brett Lehr

Yoga Instructor

Brett Lehr is a devoted Yogi, Thai Massage Therapist, Music Lover and seeker of Perfect Waves. Yoga is his life’s passion and he is honored to be able to share the gift of this practice with others.

Brett brings to his teaching a love for the history and philosophy of yoga and a powerful belief in the transformative capabilities of asana practice for emotional and spiritual growth. Brett’s yoga classes, which combine elements of the Hatha Raja traditions, are infused with beautiful music, warmth and humor, his profound knowledge of asana, and a strong emphasis on pranayama and meditation.

April Puciata

ISHTA Yoga Instructor

April is honored to be a Senior ISHTA Yoga teacher and trainer of ISHTA yoga. Through this lineage, her studies, and teaching she hopes to inspire students to find what resonates with their individual spirit and tap into their unbound potential.

Dedicated to the yoga practice for 15 years, April Puciata's initial desire to participate in a teacher training was not to be a teacher, but a student. The day after she finished the final practicum, April was laid off from her job as a manager at Random House after working in publishing for almost 6 years. As her reality reformed, April completed her 500 hour teacher training under the guidance of Kavi Yogiraj Alan Finger, the co-founder of ISHTA Yoga with Mani Finger. She taught classes at ISHTA Yoga and YogaWorks in New York City for nearly a decade, as well as offering private sessions to a wide base of clients including The Museum of Natural History, Citibank, and a collection of actors, attorneys, Wall Street businessmen/women and movie directors. For the past 6 years, April has also been teaching teachers.

Serena Soffer

Sr. Yoga Instructor

Meet Serena! She's a whirling dervish with glitter on her fingertips and just enough magic running through her veins to be the human embodiment of a unicorn. You'll find her twirling around Monmouth County, creating a sweaty and soulful flow for people to open up, let go of inhibitions and challenge themselves to step into their own power with grace. Serena's love and passion for the practice began long before she even knew to call it "yoga." Her first teacher was her mother, a famous contortionist in the German Circus. As a child, Serena began intensive classical dance training, which led to an incredible education and career as a dancer, performer and choreographer. In 1989 Serena found mantra, chanting, meditation and pranayama while touring with the Phantom of the Opera and, as she says, "the spiritual rollercoaster ride began!"

After the death of her mother in 1998, someone told Serena to "try yoga." Lost and looking, she stepped through the doors of Jivamukti NYC. Her first class was a transformational, love-at-first-flow moment. Serena practiced with unwavering devotion for years before developing her own spin and soundtrack for the practice at Laughing Lotus NYC with her soulmates and teachers, Dana Flynn and Jasmine Tarkeshi. Serena studied hundreds of hours, to RYT and beyond, at Lotus and returns there as often as she can as a guest teacher, student, innovator, creator and lover of love. Serena is honored to study with and be influenced by many great teachers including Dana, Jasmine, Joan Suval, the late and great MA Bha, Manorama, Bharati, Sharon Gannon and David Life. She is also deeply inspired by her love of dance, poetry, the chakras, mantra, aryuveda, magic and unicorns. Her greatest advice to her students is simple this: "Smile and LIVE YOUR LIFE"

Gerald Saluti

Vinyasa Yoga Instructor

Gerald Saluti is first and foremost a student of the movement of the human body. With a background steeped in athletics, Gerald molded his passion for movement and his study of anatomy into a dedicated yoga practice.

He took his first yoga class over 10 years ago and was drawn both to the physical and spiritual aspects of yoga. Intrigued by how yoga made him feel and in order to deepen his own practice, Gerald completed his first teacher training. He attended numerous yoga workshops, festivals, and events and eventually could not ignore his burning desire to teach yoga.

Sandy Hall

Yoga Instructor

Sandy's love for yoga started when she was in transition back to New Jersey from living abroad in Costa Rica, when seeking for answers to guide her along her path, yoga helped her find like - minded people, and much needed inner work. Combining movement, breath, and spirituality was the perfect recipe that eventually became a career. She studied with Angela Boltz in Costa Rica, for her first 200 hour YTT, and has over 300 hours of certifications and further education in AcroYoga, Children's Yoga, Restorative Yoga, S.U.P. Yoga, Anatomy / Postural Adjustments, strength training and conditioning, and Reiki. She enjoys teaching in schools, studios, facilities, and festivals.  Sandy is a part of the Wanderlust AcroYoga teaching team, which she attends each year building community and connection through the practice.  Sandy’s passion for music shows up in her classes.  On Sunday mornings she typically leads an uplifting vinyasa flow class at Inlet Yoga.  She is constantly inspired by many of the different yoga styles, which find a way in to her sequences. Her main focus when leading a class is to make sure everyone is benefiting from the practice in their own way, and enjoying their time on the mat, regardless of their age or experience.

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