Susan Mondi Bowen
Susan Mondi Bowen founded the studio in 2005 and has instructed yoga, stress reduction, and meditation for nearly 20 years and has lived a healthy lifestyle for more than 30 years. Susan became a boutique fitness and wellness entrepreneur by creating Thrive Yoga after several life events made it clear that her professional trajectory was successful, but her life was lacking freedom and vitality. Thrive Yoga received a lot of press and media attention in 2005 due to the uniqueness of a yoga center in the DMV. Susan was also given accolades for her business acumen and was awarded seed money for Thrive through the StartRight! Women’s Business Plan Competition.
Susan has received awards as a business leader in Maryland, including awards in leadership, entrepreneurship, and community giving by the City of Rockville, Rockville Economic Development (REDI). She has been awarded runner-up Entrepreneur of the Year in 2017 through the Maryland Women’s Business Center.
Susan’s personal story of creating Thrive Yoga has been featured in The Washington Post, The Gazette, WUSA News, and various local newspapers and TV news.
Susan (E-RYT500, YACEP, Certified Sound Healer; Certified Integrative Reflexologist) has created training curricula that integrate yoga with complementary science, philosophy, and spirituality techniques. Susan’s experience in teaching integrated methods for human change and transformation spans more than 17 years and 15,000 hours. Susan has studied and practiced more than 20 various yoga styles and physical healing modalities. Susan is a public speaker and corporate wellness trainer, specifically in stress reduction and shifting paradigms from stress to joyful living.
Susan’s broad experience, sense of humor, and natural charisma are represented in her classes via technical alignment instruction, creative sequence variations, and the latest research on being human and playful storytelling.
Marcy Braverman Goldstein
Marcy Braverman Goldstein, Ph.D. studied neuroscience and psychology as an undergraduate at the University of Rochester until a fascinating class about Indian traditions opened the door to more compelling ways to understand consciousness. After graduating Phi Beta Kappa as a Religion and Women’s Studies double major, Marcy entered the Religious Studies doctoral program at the University of California, Santa Barbara where she began her formal training in Sanskrit and was immediately riveted by its mellifluous sounds and intricate grammar. Her translation skills were refined during an immersive language study program with Dr. B.N. Pandit in New Delhi, India. In 2003 she completed her dissertation, a historical study of Sanskrit terms about possession, madness, and devotional experiences in Āyurvedic texts, Hindu poetry, and Tantric literature.
Marcy began teaching Sanskrit, and the history and philosophies of yoga in the 1990s. To design her courses, she draws from her training at UCSB and in India, and twenty years of yoga practice including a 100-hour Yoga Immersion. Previously at Davidson College and currently at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, she teaches courses such as “History of Yoga from 2500 B.C.E. to the Ever-Changing Modern Moment.” Since creating the Sanskrit Revolution in 2012, she has taught at more than three dozen yoga studios, teacher training programs, yoga fests, and conferences nationally.
Marcy’s passion and goal is to help people discover the fascinating linguistic foundation of yoga.
She also leads online courses on the History of Yoga. Options for courses can be accessed here.
Felicia Piacente, E-RYT 500, completed her 200-hour training in 2009 and 300-hour in 2012, both through ISHTA Yoga under the direction of Alan Finger, Sarah Platt Finger, and Susan Mondi. She received prenatal yoga and level 1 Thai Yoga Massage certifications in 2010. Felicia has been teaching weekly classes, master class progressives, and workshops at Thrive Yoga since June, 2009. Her high-energy style incorporates pranayama, grounding, power asana and relaxation to all student levels.
Jane Stelboum, E-RYT200 and RYT500, earned her 500-hour training here at Thrive Yoga through a collaboration with ISHTA Yoga, NYC from 2009-2012. She completed Duke University’s Integrative Yoga for Seniors training and is a member of the International Association of Yoga Therapists. Jane has been teaching at Thrive since 2010 and leads a weekly class for aging adults at the Ben Gaither Senior Community Center. She loves introducing our Rookies to the joys and benefits one can find from yoga and regularly teaches the Yoga for Healthy Backs 4-part series so people can learn to practice in a way that is safe for their own bodies and conditions. Through Sarasvate, a company whose mission is to prevent Alzheimer’s, Jane conducts Yoga Designed for the Brain workshops at senior living communities and centers, provides professional and personal caregiver training. She has shared her workshops at yoga studios and wellness centers at studios in our region, NY and Florida, and teaches Mindfulness for Clear and Creative Thinking to corporations and organizations. Her workshop is now part of the Thrive teacher-training curriculum. She has been a featured speaker and/or panelist at conferences and events including the Smithsonian’s Yoga as Lifestyle Medicine Symposium here in D.C., the Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center (ADRC) Annual Conference on Long Island, NY, the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America (AFA) Educating America Tour on Long Island, NY, and the Mid Atlantic Aging Life Care Association (ALCA) in Baltimore.
Adrian Amegashie is a breathing and yoga enthusiast with a purpose for contemplating the nature of his reality. He earned his 500-Hour certification in May of 2021 after more than a year of training online and in-person. He has been teaching since and has experience offering classes and workshops tailored to meditators and deep breathers. Adrian is deeply invested in continuing his training and is constantly looking to develop his own personal practice. Outside of teaching yoga, he designs shows for marching bands and drum corps and enjoys learning languages. He often uses meditation and yoga while teaching his band students to invite a mixture of mindfulness and music.