MARGOT

MARGOT

Co-Founder, Teacher, Board Member

Yoga is Margot’s first choice for integrating brain function and body action for the health and vitality of both. She teaches integrated, moving vinyasa flow yoga to all ages and experience levels. Her students often comment on the quality of her voice and how it helps them find a peaceful space for their yoga practice. Her gateway to yoga was recovery of whole body fitness after a significant ski accident and subsequent surgeries. Recovery is not linear and she had many stops and begin again moments on her path to having a regular yoga practice – this makes her very understanding of others with similar stops and starts to their exploration of yoga. Margot brings her scientist curiosity and knowledge with her to the yoga mat and uses brain research and trauma informed yoga practices to help her students find relief, confidence and calm in their practice. Margot is the daughter of a veteran and teaches to this population out of appreciation for their service. She is a co-Founder of Comeback Yoga, has been teaching since 2014 and is active on the Board of Comeback Yoga in every imaginable capacity.

NED

NED

Co-Founder, Teacher, Board Member

Ned is Co-founder of Comeback Yoga.  He started teaching yoga at the Denver VA Hospital and has loved his involvement there ever since.  Ned is also a student of yoga and is interested in the topics of trauma informed yoga, neuro-plasticity, brain research and imaging and attachment theory in early childhood development.  After becoming a Yoga Alliance certified teacher and completing more than 200 hours of additional yoga and related continuing education, Ned has taught more than 300 trauma informed yoga classes at the Denver VA Hospital facilities. Yoga classes taught by Ned are inviting, easily done by a variety of physical abilities, and fun.  He strives to provide a safe, relaxing and open environment in which to practice.  Students appreciate his emphasis on breath practices, body to mind connections and movement with breath poses.  His classes focus on the student’s attention to the present moment, becoming aware of one’s physical body, and practicing choice. 

KELLY

KELLY

Program Director, Teacher

Kelly is Comeback Yoga’s Program Director. Her job entails doing a lot of everything to keep a fledgling non-profit moving forward with focus, enthusiasm, energy and attention. Kelly is a Colorado native with deep attachment to the military derived from the service of her grandparents and husband. She has interviewed veterans for an award-winning film, has a Master’s Degree in Modern European History, has traveled widely and is always looking to learn something new. When Kelly is not keeping Comeback Yoga running smoothly, she is volunteering her time to animal rescues or spending time with her own pet family. Kelly teaches on Colorado military bases for Comeback Yoga.

GLENNA

GLENNA

Board Member

Glenna is a respected and long-time contributor in the Colorado community with a focus on education and not-for-profit service. Most recently, Glenna served as the President and CEO of the Colorado Education Initiative, whose mission is to accelerate educational improvement and innovation throughout Colorado. Glenna led the organization through strategic alignment and planning ensuring a strong foundation from which to continue the organization’s position as a leader in the Colorado education community. In addition, under her leadership, the organization secured a 3-year $9.75mm grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

DAN

DAN

Veteran, Teacher, Program Support Assistant

Dan is a Navy veteran who served in the Gulf War.  After active duty, and a short time in the private sector, he began a career in federal law enforcement.  If you told him at that time he would enjoy yoga, certainly his reaction would not have been positive.  However, one morning while lifting weights with a friend, they put a yoga program on in the background.  In between sets, he tried a few poses and couldn’t believe standing still could be so challenging. Due to chronic back pain, he decided to give yoga a try. Dan practiced yoga off and on, primarily on his own, for about fifteen years.  After moving to Denver two years ago, he joined VFW Post 1 and began practicing yoga there.  He discovered an inviting and fun atmosphere. Over time, he decided to become a teacher and serve his fellow vets. Dan’s spirit of yoga is enjoyment and celebration, so his classes are lighthearted and relaxed. He invites you to try yoga a few times like he did.  Perhaps you will experience the many benefits as well. You can find Dan at the Golden VA, Buckley AFB and other locations around Denver.

LAURIE K

LAURIE K

Teacher, Board Member

Somewhat new to Colorado by way of Alabama, Laurie came to yoga after years of being competitively athletic. She needed a place to nurture her body after having been so hard on it. Only after loss and the experience of grief did she find the therapeutic benefits of yoga. Her training through Integrative Yoga Therapy has been a way of combining her knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of yoga postures with her experience and wisdom of pranayama, meditation, mudras, and the body’s natural flow of energy. She is a 500-hour registered yoga teacher. Laurie also recently became certified in Trauma Informed Yoga Therapy. Laurie’s background includes work in behavioral health, chaplaincy, and a continued part-time work in education, with a B.A. in psychology and a Master’s in education. Her first book, Journal to the Center of the Soul, was published in 2009. She has written and published smaller pieces through various mediums. Laurie lives in Castle Rock with her recently retired husband, a Green Beret. Laurie teaches Comeback Yoga classes on Ft. Carson in Colorado Springs and for Lockheed Martin.

PHYLLIS

PHYLLIS

Teacher, Board Member

Phyllis has been practicing yoga since 2002. She has been teaching since 2011 and has been working specifically with veterans since 2015. Her father was a veteran and she grew up in the military community. Sharing yoga with veterans allows her to honor her father, his role in her life, and his legacy as a Naval officer. In her classes, Phyllis offers peaceful instrumental music and gentle breathing guidance to both begin and end class. During the more active parts of class, she provides a combination of posture demonstration and verbal cues. She offers modifications on poses, to allow for differences and variations in each of our bodies. The class atmosphere is generally relaxed and fun. She supports and encourages each student, whether brand new to yoga or experienced with his or her own practice. She understands and appreciates that yoga feels different in every body, every day! Phyllis teaches regularly at the Golden VA Clinic for Comeback Yoga.

JODI

JODI

Teacher

Jodi received her 200-Hour Yoga Alliance Certified YTT at Trimurti Yoga, Canacona, India in January 2017. There she received multi-style training, rooted in traditional Indian philosophy with an international perspective. She currently represents buyers and sellers in her Denver real estate practice.  Previously, she managed intellectual property through patenting, licensing and business development roles at start-up companies and universities. She is concerned with a sense of separation between the American public and military.  She believes civilians have become insulated from the consequences of war while military members and their families carry an extraordinary burden.  

She states, “As a civilian, what can I do?  Yoga is one of the most valuable, healing, strengthening parts of my life and so by sharing it with veterans, I'm simply showing up and offering my best. “

CHRISTIE

CHRISTIE

Teacher

My yoga started when I was a little girl with my grandmother rambling on about these things called chakras and taking me to classes with a bunch of people in spandex. Little did I know...

Fast forward to 2014 when I was teaching yoga in a studio where 95% of my clientele were active duty special operations soldiers along with their families. Yoga and the community that came with it had evolved into something so much more than funny words and spandex. It became home & family. And as the wife of a Special Forces Soldier, the daughter of a Sailor & an Air-woman, step-daughter of a Marine and the granddaughter of a pilot I can honestly say that this community of Warriors is family. 

I would like to say that as their teacher I have so much to offer them, but now I know that they have helped me in more ways than I can ever put into words. And I can’t thank each and every one of them them enough.

RACHEL

RACHEL

Veteran, Teacher

Rachel Lauderbaugh found yoga while stationed at Ramstein Air Base in Germany in 2000. At the time, she worked as an Airman in the United States Air Force. The yoga class offered at her local gym gave her an escape from her male co-workers who thought yoga was “too easy” to be considered a workout. From 2000 on, she practiced yoga on and off base. Then, in 2013, a teacher in one of her classes suggested she complete teacher training. Rachel thought it would be fun to teach on base and help other service members find yoga — a practice that made a powerful impact on her life.

With this in mind, she signed up for teacher training in India. Upon arriving, however, she discovered she knew nothing about yoga. “Yoga” encompassed much more than the physical postures.

Yoga was her saving grace after the military as she battled with PTSD, depression, and anxiety. The more she practiced yoga, the more she learned how to grow from her trauma; she began to listen to herself and heal. Her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training program led her to many trauma-sensitive yoga trainings, including Warriors at Ease and iRest. Rachel completed all levels of Warriors at Ease training, becoming one of the first fully certified teachers. She’s also attends Warriors at Ease Veteran-Civilian retreats and is an active participant in the Warriors at Ease community in Colorado where she now lives. Rachel teaches for Comeback Yoga in Longmont, CO.

WHITNEY

WHITNEY

Teacher

Whitney-the-wild-child played one contact-sport after another, enduring the pounding and struggling through the aches and pains. If she wasn’t sweating, she wasn’t interested. It took her walking into a hot yoga class back in the cornfields of Indiana to have yoga peak her interest. Yoga became the treat she would give her body in between other training sessions. It took years of practice, but she discovered that yoga was more than a gift to her physical body. Being the only time each day she found her mind slowing down, the physical practice of yoga became her mental meditation.

Whitney wants to offer others fun through physical exhaustion as they discover what yoga isfor themselves.  Stay wild. Have fun

VANESSA

VANESSA

Veteran, Teacher

I took my first yoga class on leave from my Afghanistan deployment in 2010. I worked as a Medic overseas in a primarily male infantry unit with the Iowa National Guard and I was dealing with many of the difficulties that arise from that situation. I found that when I practiced yoga, it was the only time I could slow down my mind, something I desperately needed at the time. When I returned home and began college, yoga classes became a space I could surrender while I struggled to transition back into college life and the civilian world. I spent years working in several non-profit realms assisting veterans with transitions into higher education and bringing awareness and healing strategies to veterans who combat frequent suicidal ideations and PTS. Through it all yoga has been my constant, my mat has been my healing space. In 2018 with an incredibly generous scholarship from Comeback Yoga, I was able to deepen my practice and attend a 200hr YTT!  I wish to bring my love of the practice and the healing wonder of yoga to anyone who has a similar story to mine, because healing feels pretty great! You can find Vanessa teaching Comeback Yoga classes on Auraria Campus in Denver.

CHRIS

CHRIS

Veteran, Teacher

Christopher Jennings, Ed.D is a Yogi, RYT 200, who wants to help people become better learners, enhance the creative process and overcome trauma caused by stress. He is a Veteran of the US Army having served in Panama during Operation Just Cause and during Operation Desert Storm. He earned his terminal degree at the University of Wyoming for Instructional Technologies. Chris completed his Yoga Teacher Training certification and he practices regularly at Asana Yoga Studio in Olde Town Arvada, Colorado. Finally, Chris is an Associate Professor at the Metropolitan State University of Denver in the Department of Journalism and Technical Communication where he successfully integrates meditation practices into his course materials to help with his student's study practice, paper writing and creativity. Chris teaches Comeback Yoga classes on Auraria Campus in Denver.

DANIELLE

DANIELLE

Teacher

Danielle discovered yoga in college when she signed up for a hatha yoga series to fulfill a physical education requirement.  Danielle was hooked, and she welcomed the healing journey that yoga took her on.  In 2010, she committed to a daily, regular yoga practice.  By 2014 she was ready to take her journey to a new level, and signed up for teacher training with Meg Galazra, owner of YogaOne studio, located in Cedarburg, WI.  It was through teacher training that Danielle discovered a love for the flowing dynamic movements of vinyasa flow, and an appreciation of the relaxing benefits of restorative yin yoga. In 2017 Danielle completed her advanced yoga teacher training with the fearless Gina Caputo, director of The Colorado School of Yoga. Danielle currently resides in Colorado Springs, CO and teaches for Comeback Yoga in the VA System.

ALLISON

ALLISON

Veteran, Teacher

Allison is an Army National Guard Veteran that discovered yoga after a combat tour in Afghanistan in 2012. She was resistant to try yoga, until she found that yoga was more beneficial for pain management than her physical therapy appointments. Allison has been living with MST, PTSD and depression since her deployment, but has found healing and hope with her yoga practice. Allison graduated from the Front Range Community College 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certificate Program in 2015 and the Kindness Yoga 200 Hour YTT in the summer of 2018. Allison hopes to share yoga with fellow veterans who may be skeptical to the physical and emotional benefits of a regular yoga practice. Allison has been a student of Comeback Yoga for years, and is excited to teach with the organization that helped save her life. Allison teaches for Comeback Yoga at the Golden VA Clinic, Personal Best Fitness Center and other locations around Denver.

TERI

TERI

Teacher

I am a firm believer in movement and body intuition. By balancing our lives through yoga, I have discovered that worry, stress, anxiety and suffering become less powerful to the human spirit. My travels and education brought me to Denver/Boulder 20 years ago to study dance education. I taught physical education in the public schools for sixteen years. My new path is yoga and compassion for healing. With gratitude I am most happy to of landed at Comeback Yoga and to be able to serve veterans in their path of body awareness through yoga asana. You can find Teri teaching Comeback Yoga classes in the Denver VA.

VANESSA

VANESSA

Veteran, Teacher

Vanessa Mahoney, L.Ac joined the Marine Corps at 17, 17 days after Desert Storm ended. The Corps was a fast ticket out of her rural South Texas town and easy money for college. After her four year enlistment and college, she taught elementary and jr high before going to grad school for Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine. She had the good fortune of attending Sarah Plummer Taylor's Just Roll with It Retreat in Costa Rica in 2013 and moved to Denver in 2014 to be a part of the veteran yoga community. Comeback Yoga generously supported her yoga teacher training through Kindness Yoga in the summer of 2016, and she began teaching classes that fall. You'll find Vanessa's classes authentic, peaceful, and grounding. Don't be surprised if she sings you into relaxation (or to sleep) in your savasana with a beautiful mantra. She's passionate about helping people find their path to heal and navigate the craziness of life. Vanessa teaches Comeback Yoga classes at VFW Post 1 in Denver.

KAITLYN

KAITLYN

Teacher

Kaitlyn became a certified yoga teacher December of 2017. She loves teaching beginners yoga and implementing stress management as well as body awareness in her classes. She also strives to help others practice mindfulness and self-awareness while moving through their yoga practice. She joined the Comeback Yoga family to give back to the military community that has done so much for our country. Kaitlyn regularly teaches classes at Lockheed Martin for Comeback Yoga.