Gianna, aka "G", embodies a true passion for helping people and believes in sharing the beauty of mindful living. For seven years she has offered natural ways to relax, heal, and build strength through a mindful approach to yoga. She brings movement, fun, and stress reduction into the lives of her students with unique suggestions on how to embody yoga teachings into daily life.
She safely guides her students with kindness and joy offering suggestions on how to use yoga as a daily medicine, and as a tool for personal growth. Forever a student herself, Gianna is always learning and seeking out new methods to add to
her teaching practice to keep excitement.
In Gianna's Words
My love for movement bloomed the day I could walk. Moving to every rhythm that I heard. At the age of 3 I began shaping my passion for dance at my first ballet class. I danced for years to come until I found another passion, cheerleading. Growing up in the Southwest Suburbs of Chicago, I spent much of my childhood outdoors. Attending cheerleading practices, swimming in lakes, rolling around in the mud, and rescuing small animals from my backyard. My parents were not pleased when they would find injured birds, stray cats, or other helpless animals being nursed back to health in my bedroom. I was always looking to help those in need- a characteristic that guides my teaching practice today. My innate nature to be kind has shaped me into who I am today.
I was 14 when I discovered yoga. As a young teen I was very anxious, yet outgoing. I enjoyed every opportunity to make people laugh. Until my first yoga class at a cheerleading bootcamp. During my first minutes on the mat, something came over me that I could not describe in words. All my fears and anxiety left my body with the first yogic breaths that I ever took. My complete attention was focused on my mind, body, and breath. That day my life had completely changed for the better. I naturally experienced divine peace and relaxation. I thought to myself, how can I recreate this bliss?
I began discovering and embodying ancient teachings. Beginning with Patanjali's 8 Limbs of Yoga. Through svadhyaya (self study) I adopted a daily practices of asana (yoga sequences), dhyana (meditation), and pranayama (mindful breathing). In the beginning months of my personal practice I experienced astounding changes within myself. For the first time I as able to unconditionally love myself exactly as I was. My ability to think was clearer, breathing became more regulated, attention span doubled, grades improved, and I said goodbye to anxiety. I was beginning to understand how to manage stress in a healthy, constructive way. After a year of practice, I was able to control my reactions to stress, regulate spiraling emotions, show loving kindness for myself, and I was overall happier. I even started implementing teaching into daily life. Taking slow, deep breaths to combat my anxiety instead of needing to use my prescription.
In addition, I become physically stronger, more agile, flexible, and balanced, which allowed me to excel within other physical activities. I was even able to heal an ankle injury and prevent new injuries from arising during cheerleading gymnastics. I offered this injury preventing knowledge to a Children's cheer program with the Frankfort Youth Athletic Association. I coached several youth cheer teams in four years. I also mixed all cheer music and choreographed every move.
After a few months of taking classes at a local gym, I started embodying more than just the physical practices. Practicing ahimsa (kindness). A moral restraint of non-harming, as in only shedding kindness upon yourself and all other beings. So I became a vegan. Striving to do the least amount of harm possible among all species. It began with my diet, then my cosmetics, toiletries, cleaning supplies, and even my clothing. I completely changed my life in the course of a year. None the less, I believe wellness practices have widely benefited my life.
During my Senior year of High School I made the decision to attend a 200-hour teacher training before heading off to college. Even though I had no interest in becoming an instructor. At age 17 I began my true yoga journey, studying under David Duerkop, Per Erez, Lauren Massarella, and Lucia Cordeiro Drever at the Chicago School of Yoga. I learned techniques that shape my practice today. Heavily rooted in Patanjali's 8 Limbs of Yoga and The 9 Attitudes of Mindfulness. It was over those summer months that I discovered my purpose in life is to teach. To share with the world that no matter what life brings, we can achieve internal peace.
While finishing up yoga school, I began attending The University of Missouri. Just a few months into college I received my yoga certification, and immediately began teaching for a student wellness organization called BREATHE. I believed in the intentions and mission of the organization, so I joined the Executive Team as the Event Coordinator. The team and I brought wellness practices, mindfulness conferences, guest speakers, informational classes to students and staff members. Additionally, I taught for Contemplative Practice Center (CPC), The Student Recreation Center, Veterinary Student Hall, and led various mindfulness in nature expeditions on and off campus. As BREATHE leaders, my colleagues and I wanted to further project the message of wellness so we became certified Peer Educators. This granted us the ability to give in-class presentations for the incoming freshman, and various lecture halls, sororities, and fraternities. The impact of sharing our offerings was phenomenal! I’ll never forget the students that had thanked us for showing them that a stress free life is possible.
I graduated from the University of Missouri with a Bachelors Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. I then moved to the west coast where I taught for several local yoga studios in the Santa Cruz County. Including Pacific Edge Climbing Gym, DiviniTree Yoga and Art Studio, and all Toadal Fitness Gyms. I taught in the community for about a year before pursuing a position at Canyon Ranch; a wellness transformation retreat center in Woodside California. At Canyon Ranch we welcomed people of all walks of life that were looking to transform in some way. We offered the tools needed for mental, emotional, and physical change to accommodate the needs of all of our guests. On site, I taught countless styles of yoga, meditation, and breathing exercises tucked away in the redwood forest. Canyon Ranch had really opened the doors for me to work with individuals of all ages from all over the world. I truly felt the positive impact that wellness practices had on the people I had the pleasure to work with. At Canyon Ranch I created, organized, and executed over fifty different wellness experiences like forest meditations, candle lit labyrinth walks, breathing for pain management, glowga (glow paint yoga), and more.
After my time with Canyon Ranch, I decided to start teaching privately and began my business, Yoga By G. My company has been benefiting communities since 2018. Having experienced the magic of mindfulness practices myself, I strive to share my knowledge and to show my students how to move through life with ease. By leaving behind the past and the future, we can make space for the present. Being alive in every moment and inviting in all that we experience with acceptance and without judgement towards ourselves or others.
This year I celebrated 11 years vegan, 11 years as a practitioner, and 7 years as a certified instructor. As a nature lover, I now reside in Stateline, Nevada where I fill my days with yoga, nature, outdoor sports, and music.
With practice, my mind, body, and spirit become a powerhouse of strength and happiness. Understand the importance of
self-regulation, as we are the curators of our own happiness.
My beliefs inform and guide my teachings.
Focusing on helping my students to grow and better understand themselves, others, and their surroundings.