Meet the LJY Crew

What we have in common? Yoga. But yoga is so many things. At LJ's we are all about community and encouraging one another to grow—isn't that what yoga is all about?? Don't be surprised if you see us around town at other gyms, studios, or events—we LOVE to meet people and try different things. Beyond the physical practice of yoga we all do so much more. Learn about the teachers' lives both in and out of the studio! 

 
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Lisa Jo Northouse

Founder of Lotus Jo's + Lead Instructor

Lisa@lotusjos.com

Lisa's yoga journey began when yoga was suggested to help balance the demands of her busy life. Trying to balance grad school, work, and family felt chaotic and overwhelming. Entering a yoga studio for the first time Lisa had no idea what to expect. Lisa fell in love with the dance of vinyasa style yoga and found herself moving from dragging through life off the mat to feeling the dance in her everyday life as well. Through breath technique, mindfulness, and practicing asanas, yoga went from a practice to a way of life.After 5 years of personal yoga practice, Lisa decided to take her love for yoga and bring it to the next level. Lisa completed her 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training through Mindful Vinyasa School of Yoga under the guidance of the owner and established Yogi, Amber Kilpatrick

Lisa started Lotus Jo's Yoga in 2017 to be able to share her love of the practice with others so they too may begin to dance through life with a little more ease. Lisa's goal in each class is to bring a lightness into each student's practice and to show them the way to lessen their burdens and feel empowered both physically and mentally. Lisa would love to meet you and guide you through your practice.

A few fun facts about Lisa:

Lisa is an undercover cocktail mixologist, LOVES to dance, has a weakness for live music, a passion for the outdoors and water, and is absolutely terrible at following directions. 

Abigail Schippers

Digital Marketing Manager + Instructor + Owner of Bad Marketing

Abigail@lotusjos.com

Abigail Schippers took her first class at 17 years old after getting sent there by her doctor. She was fed up with taking medicine to manage anxiety and depression and knew there had to be a better way. Abigail hated that first yoga class, but to her surprise it made her feel BETTER. 

A few years later she began to get serious about her yoga practice and fell in love with vinyasa style flow. She earned her Yoga Assistant Certification so that she could begin giving back to her yoga community. In 2015 she took the leap, completed her RYT 200 and began teaching vinyasa yoga! 

In addition to teaching yoga, Abigail owns and operates a web design and social media marketing firm, Bad Marketing Company. She also provides holistic life coaching for wellness retreats, helping attendees leave retreats feeling physically and emotionally restored. Yes, she is a busy person.

Abigail brings her whole self to everything she does - she uses her background in psychology, ministry and life coaching, as well as extensive yoga teacher training to empower her students to create a practice & life that feels good. 

Fun Facts: Abigail is an avid, but irreverent Instagram yogi - taking pictures of her practice, her coffee drinks and talking about emotional wellness. Abigail has a passion for good tequila and bibimbap. Abigail loves wearing all black, if you see her wearing colorful clothes, know that she is in distress. 

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Schuyler Schulz

Instructor + Goddess of hands-on assists

Schuyler began practicing yoga in 2010. After a knee injury that she was recovering from a yoga teach said “we were vessels and that coming to yoga and practicing helped keep our vessels filled”. Totally blown away, Schuyler began to use yoga to keep her cup full by finding people and practices that filled her vessel. Carrying on her yoga path Schuyler completed her yoga assistant training in 2013 and her advanced assistant training in 2015. During this time she worked at a yoga studio providing hands-on assistance to the yogis practicing there.

From assisting classes, Schuyler went on to complete her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training through Yoga Works in Detroit. Being a true child of the world, Schuyler took that show on the road, staying is hostels, she taught yoga to surfers in Costa Rica, backpackers across Europe, and divers in the Caribbean—she even used yoga to get a free drink in Budapest.

In addition to yoga, Schuyler is a huge fan of the great lakes and even resents the ocean for being salty. She loves green tea ice cream, making yoga playlists—even if they are all trap music, is a huge fan of reading, and lemon tea. Schuyler believes with all her heart that ice cream is not seasonal.

Schuyler is grounded, light spirited, and strong. Schuyler fills her classes with her passion, truly enjoys a booty-kicking power flow, and continues to grace her students with her incredible hands-on assisting skills. 

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Anna VanAgtmael

Instructor + Owner of Wandering Roots

Anna VanAgtmael is a yoga enthusiast and travel designer with a passion for connecting with others. She founded Wandering Roots to help others check in with themselves while checking out of work. She is a RYT 200 certified yoga instructor who believes in trying everything once and her values lie in collecting memories over things. Through traveling, she has found a happier and deeper connection to herself. Wandering Roots’ mission is to inspire you to grow in your own journey.

She first discovered yoga when she was trying to heal from a back injury. While she did find physical healing, she found the best part about practicing yoga was discovering her true self. She’s been practicing yoga since 2012 and believes yoga is mostly about showing up for yourself.

Her favorite things are her husband, two dogs, the water and the mountains. The quickest way to get her to do something is to tell her not to do it. She owns a landscape company but has never actually planted a plant in her life. She loves long drives but has no desire to ever be behind the wheel; she considers herself a professional passenger.

She believes in trying everything once. Her values lie in collecting memories over things. Though we desire adventure and authentic experiences, naturally our fear holds us back


 
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Kate LaFleur

Studio Manager + Instructor + Owner of Yoga Tavas

Kate@lotusjos.com

Kate is a mother, wife and 200-hour RYT. Kate began her yoga journey almost eight years ago after her son Emery Cobra was born. Looking to heal her body and ease her postpartum depression and anxiety symptoms, she found a home in yoga. Life took twists and turns, and finally Kate made the leap to change careers and to pursue teaching yoga. Kate received her teaching certification through Kula Yoga in Grand Rapids. 

Kate stands firm in her belief that yoga is inclusive. Yoga is for everyone. She strives to create that environment in her classes. Moving with intention and integrity in everything we do. 

Music, travel and time with her family are some of her favorite things. Being a former wedding floral designer, she has an eye for all things beautiful. She’s also a dog mom to little River Frances Bean.

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Kate Block

Instructor + Bodywork Goddess + Owner of Little Dipper

Kate is deeply passionate about yoga, health and wellness, and a well-marbled, medium-rare ribeye.  Although she practiced on and off throughout college and grad school, Kate's commitment to her yoga journey became real for her in 2013 when she started practicing vinyasa style yoga 4-5 times a week in-studio and, six months later, began assisting classes.  She completed her 200 hour teacher training with Amber Kilpatrick at Mindful Vinyasa School of Yoga in early 2017 and the rest is history! 

Her biology background and work as a licensed massage therapist fuel her love of all things anatomy and inform her teaching as well as the modifications and variations she offers her students. 

For Kate, yoga is all about learning how to show up, connect, and move from a place of alignment with your deepest, truest YOU.  Her classes will leave you feeling challenged, supported, and empowered to take ownership of your own practice.

In addition to teaching at Lotus Jo’s, Kate is the founder of Little Dipper — a therapeutic bodywork and private yoga practice located in the Eastown area of Grand Rapids (thisislittledipper.com).  Her work at Little Dipper is grounded in her belief that the most transformative massage therapy, bodywork, and yoga isn’t about “fixing” anything about you or your body, it's about fostering a deeper connection to your own body and heart.  Kate loves helping her clients address physical and emotional issues in a way that focuses on root causes so that they can move with greater ease and live in closer alignment with their own inner wisdom.

When she's not teaching yoga or working with her clients at Little Dipper, you can find Kate swimming in the nearest pool or body of water, at the farmer's market, or watching the latest Marvel Comics movie or TV show with her husband. 

A few fun facts about Kate:

(1) Her go-to karaoke song is “Shoop” by Salt-N-Pepa.  (2) She loves to read post-apocalyptic fiction and her current favorite book in the genre is “The Dog Stars” by Peter Heller. (3) She considers herself bit of an expert when it comes to GR’s best brunch spots and has never met a mimosa or a side of bacon she didn’t like.

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Laurel Mills

Instructor + Artist & Owner of L.A.M Jewelry

Raised in Michigan's Upper Peninsula Laurel was introduced to yoga while attending NMU , while there she began to take yoga classes through friends and later began practicing at two studios in Marquette. In 2017 Laurel moved to Grand Rapids to reach a wider audience &  seek more opportunities for her trade.  She was seeking a way to help others through more than just artistry, Yoga  & art for her go hand in hand so the next step was Mindful Vinyasa School of Yoga's 200hr yoga teacher training, which she completed in Summer 2018. 

Laurel's artwork and life reflect strongly on sustainability, which she has great passion for. Using only recycled metals and sources many of her stones and other materials from right here in our great lake state.

Ever striving for more local/sustainable options! Laurel can be found working from a collective in Grand Rapids, Michigan called The Hot Spot.

Laurel can be found gardening, cooking, exploring the lakeshore,  enjoying new restaurants or breweries & generally laughing through life with friends & family. She wants a dog... real bad.


Kelly Shomin

Nurse + RYT 200 Yoga Teacher

Kelly grew up with yoga, health, and well being as a daily practice in her home. She watched her father meditate and practice yoga as young as she could remember. Her mother started practicing yoga asanas in her more recent years but both of her parents taught her the values that most yogis live by, called Ahimsa. Ahimsa means to have respect for all living things and to practice a life of non-harming whether that be in action, thoughts and speech. As life evolved, Kelly was  naturally drawn to everything that yoga had to offer. The practice opened doors that made life just a little sweeter. The poses of yoga brought forth a sense of strength and physical change and the meditation  and lifestyle brought about more mental calmness and clarity.  

Kelly finished college with a Bachelors of Science in Nursing degree. She has 3 beautiful children and a devoted husband who have all opened up their lives to yoga in some way. Kelly discovered that the benefits of yoga went beyond herself and that her family, friends, and even her patients could benefit from her teaching. In 2014 she decided to get her 200 hour Yoga teaching certification through Prairie Yoga Institute.  After receiving her certificate in 2015, she enrolled in the mentor program at Cascade Yoga and spent the following year mentoring the next years class.  Kelly also was hired by Grand Rapids Christian High School to teach yoga to their Winterim Program for 4 years following her certification. She also enjoys teaching Vinyasa, power-flow yoga, and restorative yoga. She enjoys teaching to young children, teenagers, and adults. Her experience with adults ranges from athletes, to cancer patients and  those who have experienced trauma.  There isn’t a type of yoga she hasn’t enjoyed practicing or teaching. 

Along with Kelly’s passion for yoga, she enjoys running, spin class, kayaking, scuba diving and hiking.  Kelly loves to travel and finds that Costa Rica “feeds her soul”.  She also enjoys Oregon and the simplicity of being outdoors.   She feels that life slows down and sometimes being away from busy lives makes us appreciate the small things just a little more.