Deb Sommerhalder, Founder of Inner Sun Yoga Studio, Llc
E-RYT (Experienced Yoga Teacher/Teacher Trainer), CYT, CPT, Certified Peter Hess Sound Massage Practitioner
Deb took her first yoga class with her daughter and soon discovered that yoga was what she was looking for in her personal and professional life. With a 20 year background in the fitness industry teaching aerobics and prenatal classes Deb went on to become certified to teach yoga with her first training through Deborah Williamson, Midwest Power Yoga and is a member of the Yoga Alliance. In January 2004, Deb founded and opened Inner Sun Yoga in Oshkosh.
For Deb's soul and love of Bhakti Yoga she attended David Newman's (Durga Das) Kirtan college and Sean Johnson's Bhaktimmersion and Girish. For her love of adventure she learned to fly and teach aerial yoga and opened the first aerial yoga studio in the Fox Valley! Deb is certified in Level 1 Aerial Yoga though Cathy Gauch of Aircat. She has done more advanced training with Deena Marcum of MOTH (Movement of the Heart) Aerial Yoga and Rebecca Leigh of Flying Buddha Fitness. For Deb's long time passion of flow yoga infused with spirit she received teacher training in "Embodying the Flow", a Shiva Rae module with Aubee Saia. Deb is also certified in Roll Model® Method with Jill Miller, trained in Breath & Bliss, Thai Massage Bodywork and Christouch Energy Healing and is an international presenter at exotic retreats. She is excited to provide the first Aerial Yoga Teacher Training in the Fox Valley!
Deb enjoys teaching modalities from a variety of yoga styles that she practices. She acknowledges her students needs, providing them the space to explore their practice and advance at their own pace. Thru breath, movement and meditation Deb helps them learn to listen to their body so they open their heart or "inner sun" and discover the true connection to who they are. With patience, dedication and a regular yoga practice, Deb believes that everyone has the opportunity to find strength, healing, balance, and peace.
Soulful Flow Yoga
After Priscilla graduated from college in Brazil, where she studied as a psychologist, she had her first experience with Kundalini Yoga. These experiences inspired her to bring yoga into a project focused on bringing enrichment to underprivileged children. Since that time, she fell in love with yoga and felt the need to go deeper and explore her practice. After moving to the States, she continued practicing until deciding to become a teacher as she felt the need to share with others all the wonderful things yoga has brought to her life. Her training includes a 200-hour Hatha Yoga training from the Himalayan Institute. She has also participated in several yoga intensive workshops on topics such as Ayuarveda and Yoga Strength & Stamina. She has also taught some specialized workshops for JuJitsu and other martial arts students in Brazil. In essence, what started out as a hobby has become a way of life, a job, and a new life path. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her family and working on expanding her local Brazilian Cheese Bread business.
One time my yoga master told me, “If you are grounded, everything else will be fine.” I find those words very insightful and wise. The main goals of my teaching are to cleanse stress, ease tension, bring balance, and keep one grounded in order to deal with the day to day ups and downs of the world.
Kelly Ellington, RYT
Family has always been the most important thing to me. After 12 years of teaching special education, I took a step back from working in the schools to better focus on my health and family, mainly my beautiful daughters Mazie, age 9 and Emeline, age 7. Through this process, I learned how important a yoga practice and consistent running are in maintaining these priorities. I also discovered how it’s possible to fit these activities of self-preservation into a very busy life.
I am so lucky to be sharing in others growth through teaching yoga and coaching runners. It is truly the best job for me. I was born to be a mother, teacher and coach.
My hope is this site will guide you to find what I have found in yoga and running, by leading you to the places I am sharing yoga and how I can help you with your running goals. Be inspired to follow your heart and run with your true passion. I hope you reach out and connect with me today!
Christine Ellickson, RYT
My life had taken some major turns in 2000. My husband suffered serious health problems and our lives were turned upside down. While he was recovering I found myself in need of recovery too. I can't even remember why I decided to go to that first yoga class, but so glad I did. It was just what the doctor ordered, it felt amazing and I wanted more. Now 16 years later I still love yoga and am a RYT 200-hr certified instructor.
Deb Sommerhalder, Debbie Williamson, Suzy Weyenburg, Jill Gault, all of my fellow yogis at teacher training, my students, Rodney Yee, Steve Ross, many books, classes in Portland OR, and Baron Bapiste have all inspired me. There is so much still to learn.
I am a Christian and believe God led the way for me to become an instructor. When I took my training in 2012 I had no notion of actually teaching, but as part of the program I was encouraged to help with a class at the Y which had lost their teacher. My friend, Meg, had scouted out this invaluable on-site training and several of us would take turns leading the class. Inspired, I began to actually teach.
The last 3 years have been difficult with the losses of my parents and brother. This led to an arthritic flare-up. While this has been painful and changed my practice to a more gentle yoga, it has also given me more perspective.
Today I am so grateful for all of these openings in my life. Yoga has become a way for me to find calm in anxious moments, peace in times of sadness, and acceptance with that sleeplessness in the middle of the night. It also has become a way to awaken my inner self on a daily basis. This is my wish for others that they may too find their “inner sun”.
My body has changed since 2000. My back bends aren't as deep, my hips are not as flexible, and my triangle anywhere near perfection, but it doesn't matter because practicing yoga can be for everyone regardless of size, shape, condition, illness, flexibility, or spirituality. It too can be your connection of the body, mind and spirit.
I am always thankful for any peace I might impart along the way and any joy my teaching might bring.
Gloria Simon-Kozma, RYT
Gloria received her 200 hour level certification through the Himalayan Institute in Fond du Lac in 2003. From HI’s classical raja yoga teachings, she gained appreciation that yoga’s benefits extend far beyond the mat. It’s strength and beauty is that it’s a lifestyle, one that can be adapted to circumstances and abilities across the lifespan.
Her yoga practice has diverse flavorings from buddhist philosophy to middle eastern dance. Yoga and Buddhism have common threads of self knowledge through meditation, the development of equanimity, and compassion towards all beings.
Gloria’s teaching style incorporates classical and vinyasa yoga, and her instruction aims to bring clarity of alignment to release the breath and movement. She encourages a tolerant and playful class atmosphere, where yogis feel comfortable to practice and grow at their own pace.
She has been teaching at the Oshkosh YMCA since 2003, and more recently at the Inner Sun, and the YMCA of the Fox Cities. Gloria is a certified aerial yoga teacher through the auspices of the IS. She loves combining grounding yoga practice with aerial tricks and flips. She is also a certified Level I Essentrics instructor. Essentrics is a fitness practice that rebalances the body and helps prevent injury and pain.
Gloria has had a long career in human services, and lives with her husband and two rescue mutts of mayhem, Freckles and Max. In their spare time, they are renovating a barn and breathing life into the old farm. Gloria is an avid sustainable gardener, and hopes to weave her various passions into life on the farm.
More than 15 years ago Melissa attended her first yoga class and while it may not have been a life-changing moment at the time, the seed was planted that day. While studying fine art at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and working at the local food co-op, Melissa began practicing Iyengar yoga and Vipassana meditation, moving her toward a more mindful lifestyle. Upon graduation she moved to a tiny cabin in the woods and began a 3 year apprenticeship with a seasoned, unconventional farmer. Not only did she learn about growing nutrient-dense food and animals, she also learned the importance of living a life of contentment and self-study. Farming eventually led Melissa to the mountains of North Carolina and then back to the upper midwest in 2014.
Melissa completed 200-Hour Yoga Teacher Training at the Fond du Lac Center for Spirituality and Healing in Spring 2017, a certification and personal development program based on the Himalayan Tradition of Hatha and Raja Yoga. Melissa’s teaching style is traditional yet highly influenced by the places and people she has worked and studied with throughout the years. Her classes focus on mastering the roaming tendencies of the mind through breath awareness, practice, and non-attachment.
Tuesday & Friday 11:20am-12:20pm
Sara has been practicing yoga on a regular basis since 2010. While having been exposed to yoga and practicing on and off since 2008, it wasn't until she was attending college at University of Wisconsin-Stout that she really started practicing regularly. Yoga became an outlet for her during a stressful time in college when she was suffering from episodes of chronic depression and anxiety. Yoga gave her a feeling of support, comfort, and release; it truly helped her through the episodes. Her passion and interest in yoga continued to grow and blossom during her four years living in Southern California which then led her to search for a teacher training program as soon as she moved back home to Wisconsin. In May of 2017 she completed her 200-hour Integrative Yoga Therapy program at Inner Light Studio in Wauwatosa, WI.
Sara’s passion is in teaching Restorative Yoga, Gentle Flow, Yin, and Guided Meditation. She enjoys creating playlists to create a unique atmosphere for each of her classes. Her goal is to make her students feel welcomed and comfortable in addition to providing a space that allows them to deeply relax and honor their own divine light. While life may throw us for unexpected twists and turns we are always where we are supposed to be in our journeys, good or bad -it's an experience we are supposed to have; Sara wants her students to know this and feel supported in wherever they are on their individual journeys. Yoga is for anybody, there are no specifics on what a yogi should be like; we come in all shapes and sizes and have our own scars and battle wounds from our walks in life and that's something she honors and celebrates in her classes.