2023-2024 Hybrid 200 hour Schedule
October 4, 2023 - April 28, 2024
The program meets twice weekly, plus 3 Weekend Intensives. The training is primarily taught in-person, with some live virtual sessions as noted below on select Wednesdays. Trainees are also required to teach 3 Community Classes at Bloom as described below.
Wednesdays 6 - 9pm (Mostly Virtual, 1/month In-Person)
Sundays 2 - 5pm (In-Person)
Weekend Intensives (In-Person)
Fridays 6 - 9pm, Saturdays & Sundays from 11am - 5pm
October 6 - 8, 2023
March 8 - 10, 2024
April 26 - 28, 2024
Graduation day is April 28th!
Community Class Teaching (In-Person)
Trainees will also teach 3 Community Yoga Classes on select Saturdays from 1:45 - 3:00pm or 4:00 - 5:15 pm.
Teaching dates to be scheduled by trainee.
Lead Trainer Class Observations
The only other requirement outside of the times listed above is to observe 10 classes taught by any and/or all of your Lead Trainers. You may observe class virtually, in-person, or a combination of the two. You'll receive a comp for attending these classes, so there is no additional cost.
There will be no class on the following dates:
November 19 - 26
December 20 - January 3
March 24 - 31
About the Hybrid Program
Yoga is all about meeting the moment, and after almost 10 years of running teacher trainings we took a great leap into virtual learning in 2020. It was a huge success! Along the way, we learned there is a great deal to be gained from virtual instruction, and we also feel strongly that whenever possible, it's integral for teachers-in-training to have a substantial amount of in-person learning both to build community with their colleagues and also to have the trainer's expert eye on them for particular technique- and skill-oriented modules. We have therefore chosen a Hybrid model that retains all the best things about both virtual and in-person instruction.
Trainees are expected to attend all scheduled training sessions as detailed above. Trainees may miss one session without requiring a make-up, and will still be eligible to receive a certification.
Any additional sessions missed must be made up hour-for-hour by watching the session recording and submitting a written response. The trainee may also schedule a private make-up session to receive a condensed version of missed content at a rate of $100/hour. Should the trainee miss more than 4 scheduled sessions, he/she may not be eligible to receive a certificate. Additional required participation outside the times listed above (for group work and observation of yoga classes) will be scheduled at the trainee's convenience.
"Bloom's 200 Hour Teacher Training program had a profound impact on my conception and practice of yoga - as well as on me personally. Our Trainers were immensely knowledgeable and exceptional teachers, sharing their curiosity and passion with their students. My experience in the program was an empowering one, and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking to transform their personal practice or their general knowledge of yoga, as a means to embark on a path of sharing yoga with others."
—Teacher Training Graduate
200-Hour Teacher Trainers
Sharon Wentz, Lead Trainer
Sharon discovered her love of yoga from her parents’ basement in the apple orchards of Washington as a teen. A competitive tennis player at the time, she was drawn to its challenging yet tranquil nature, and has had a regular practice ever since. In addition to her love of yoga and meditation, Sharon’s studies in neuropsychology, medical anthropology and anatomy, inspire her to teach from a holistic lens. Sharon graduated from Chicago’s Eight Limbs Yoga Center in 2004 (200 hrs), and The Temple of Kriya Yoga in 2006 (500 hrs). She has been teaching yoga at Bloom since 2005, and co-created Bloom’s Yoga Teacher Training with Kerry Maiorca in 2010. A Hatha and Vinyasa Yoga Teacher, Sharon’s style gathers intelligence from many schools of yoga and is non-dogmatic, accessible, and delightfully challenging.
Lucy Coloccia, Lead Trainer
E-RYT 200, RPYT
Originally hailing from the mountains of Colorado, Lucy began her yoga journey in 2004 when her best friend started using her as a guinea pig to practice for her yoga teacher-training program and she has been hooked ever since. Her consistent yoga practice over the years has helped transform her stress-filled lifestyle for the better which inspired her to become a teacher to share the gift of yoga with others.
As a yoga teacher, Lucy is inspired by many different styles of yoga and seeks to give her students the tools to create their own mind/body connection on the mat as well as in everyday life. Her classes are a restorative balance of alignment and flow imbued with heart, sweat, and breath. She received both her 200 hr and Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training certifications through Bloom Yoga Studio.
Chelsea Brown, Lead Trainer
Chelsea Brown is an experienced student and teacher of yoga who never stops learning. Since completing her initial teacher training with Prairie Yoga in 2010, Chelsea has continued to explore yoga under the guidance of her beloved teachers including the incomparable Gabriel Halpern, Linda Troutman, and the whole wonderful team at Prairie, where she went on to complete 500 hour training in 2021.
She is immersed in and has studied energetics, meditation and yoga nidra extensively through Tricia Fiske and Rod Stryker of the Parayoga tradition. She has taken on additional study of restorative yoga with Judith Lasiter, as well as Somayoga and the SATYA practices as taught by Tias Little. Chelsea’s teaching style blends the deep innerwork of tantra with a strong alignment based asana practice rooted in the Iyengar yoga tradition and informed by therapeutics.
Chelsea is a registered Children’s Yoga teacher who’s experience with children spans well over a decade. She continues to share yoga with students of all ages, including yogis as young as 18 months old and is firm in her belief that the principles of yoga offer a beautiful system for living an integrated life for all people. She believes in yoga as a way of life and finds incredible joy in sharing it with her students. Her company, Good Seeds Yoga, provides children’s yoga programming to schools and community groups throughout the Chicago area, and offers training programs and workshops to adults who seek to share the practice of yoga with children.
Chelsea is firm in her belief that yoga can benefit everyone, and the key to teaching effectively is to meet students where they are and then give them a reason to want to go further.
Jessie Novak, Lead Trainer
E-RYT 200, RPYT
Jessie Novak received her teaching certification from Bloom Yoga Studio in 2013 and 2014 respectively after performing, teaching dance and Pilates, choreographing, and practicing yoga in Chicago since 2002. While rehabilitating several common and not-so-common dancers' injuries, Jessie discovered the benefits of integrating yoga and Pilates into an overall strength and conditioning program. After retiring from the professional dance world, she obtained Pilates certification in 2009 from the Pilates Method Alliance. She loves observing the human body in motion from an analytical and postural perspective. She continues to seek out teachers and opportunities to further her knowledge of anatomy, bio-mechanics, and healthy, functional movement for people of all ages. Whether working with groups or individuals, Jessie is a passionate, engaged teacher, applying a holistic and functional approach, while using creative imagery with a love for anatomy and physiology. She believes movement, music, and breath benefit every body, every age, in every stage.
DuShaun Branch Pollard
RYT 200, RCYT
DuShaun has been practicing for almost 13 years and fell in love with yoga because it allowed her to find peace of mind while moving her body. As a yoga student, DuShaun noticed that in the majority of her classes she was the only black and plus sized person in the room. This inspired her to become a practitioner to bring yoga to more people who looked like her.
DuShaun previously worked in higher education, and is currently a community organizer in North Lawndale, a community on the west side of Chicago. Because of her former and current work, DuShaun is focused on bringing yoga to historically marginalized communities, with a focus on black and brown youth, women, activists and organizers.. DuShaun is the Co-founder of a Black Brown and Breathing; an activation that happens monthly for Black and Brown women to come together, breathe, meditate and feel.
She believes people not only need rest and relaxation, but resistance; yoga is a powerful way to tap into the balance of ease and positive effort. DuShaun teaches through the lens of equity and trauma-informed, hosting classes in “non-traditional” settings all over the city. DuShaun is the founder of Sage Gawd Collective LLC, where she currently teaches classes via Zoom and also leads cultural competency workshops to Yoga students and studios.
LPC, SEP, and Yoga teacher
Francine was introduced to yoga as a pre-teen growing up in Jamaica (a most unusual occurrence in the early 1980s) and has been in love with yoga ever since. She was certified to teach yoga through the Temple of Kriya Yoga in 2004, and feels blessed to have studied with many wonderful teachers since then. In addition to teaching yoga, Francine also support clients and students in recovering from trauma and having a richer experience of life through the use of yoga, Somatic Experiencing® (body-centered psychotherapy), Reconnective Healing® and the Akashic Records. Francine’s classes encourage mindful, yet relaxed, self-awareness. It is her hope that while developing flexibility, strength and body awareness, students will also find the self-acceptance, peace and well-being that yoga can help us uncover. In addition to working with students and clients, Francine also enjoys reading, blogging, butterfly gardening and spending time with her most cherished spiritual teachers - her husband and two energetic children.
Victoria Doobay (she/her)
Ph.D; RYT 200
Victoria has practiced yoga from a young age, but her relationship to yoga has changed over the years. At first, Victoria was drawn to the physically challenging aspects of yoga. However, in the past 5 years, she has found meaning in the stillness and expansiveness of yoga philosophy and movement practices. As a licensed clinical psychologist, Victoria focuses on encouraging individuals and communities recovering from systemic trauma to discover physical, emotional, and spiritual connection within. While we are often taught that healing should look a certain way, she believes that healing can take many forms and look different from one person to the next. Healing isn’t linear and may change over time, as Victoria’s relationship to yoga has changed.
Victoria encourages folx to find what creates ease and roots them. This led Victoria to complete her 200hr Teacher Training at Bloom to further explore the intersection between yoga, equity, and wellness. Victoria prioritizes teaching from a trauma-informed and equity focused framework that emphasizes accessibility of yoga. Anyone and everyone can and should be able to practice yoga if they would like to. She strives to support individuals in creating connection, awareness, and balance in their practice. Off the mat, Victoria deeply enjoys spending time in nature, gardening/herbalism, biking, reading, and hanging out with her pup and loved ones.
Kerry Maiorca, Lead Trainer
E-RYT 500, RPYT, Advanced Relax & Renew Trainer
Kerry founded Bloom back in 2004 to make yoga more welcoming and accessible to all. She co-created Bloom's 200hr Teacher Training program to help dedicated students explore the beauty of yoga beyond the poses so they could learn to share the practice they love. Kerry enjoys exploring the individual nature of yoga and encourages students to make the practice their own. Her down-to-earth teaching style emphasizes healthy alignment, gentle strengthening, mindfulness, and an exploration of conscious breath and movement. Whether teaching an active or gentle practice, Kerry prioritizes time for reflection, stillness, and rest. As a recovering past- and future-thinking junkie, she loves the way consistent yoga practice teaches us to live in the now so we may enjoy all of life's richness. Kerry has been teaching since 1998 and considers it an honor to mentor and support budding instructors in their own journeys towards teaching.