Martha Catz, M.S., E-RYT 500 – Owner/Director
Martha has practiced yoga for over 20 years with more than 6000 hours of yoga teaching experience since completing her 240-hour training in 2003. She approaches teaching yoga as a method for health and wellness rather than solely a physical exercise; to develop skills within each practitioner to improve the quality of life; and promote self-empowerment to improve physical, emotional and psychological health.
Additional certifications and education:
- Master’s in Health Psychology
- Yoga Therapy 800-hours
- Integrative health Coach, Duke Integrative Medicine
- Mindful Awareness Meditation, Duke Integrative Medicine
- Therapeutic Senior Yoga with Carol Krucoff and Kimberly Carson
Martha is the Regional Director for the Connected Warriors program representing North Carolina.
When not teaching and studying, Martha enjoys being with her rescue horses, 2 dogs, and her human family.
Individual yoga instructors with whom Martha has trained in Yoga: Sean Corn, Amy Ippoliti, Tias Little, Cora Wren, JJ Gormley; Carol Krucoff; & Kimberly Carson, MPH, E-RYT; Gary Kraftsow.
Individuals with whom Martha has trained in Mindful Awareness Meditation and Coaching: Julie Kosey, MS, RYT; Sasha Loring, M.Ed, LCSW; and Jeffrey Brantley, MD.
People who have inspired me: Jon Kabot-Zinn, Ph.D.; JJ Gormley-Etchells, MA, E-RYT; Gary Kraftsow; Martha W. Bartlett (mother); and N.Daniel Catz (husband) and 2 fabulous daughters who believe in my potential.
Megan Starling, RD, LDN – Dietitian
Our partnered dietitian, Megan Starling, RD, LDN, has been a registered dietitian for 8 years. She received her undergraduate degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from East Carolina University.
Megan has extensive experience in counseling individuals in a healthy dietary modification.
Megan’s experience includes:
- weight management
- reduction of cholesterol and sodium in a diet
- and much more
Megan is a certified trainer in adult weight management. Her current skills include nutritional analysis of diet, recipe modification and evaluation of nutritional habits.
She takes pride in her ability to help clients make positive changes for an improved health and quality of life.
Pam Kuras, RYT-200
Pam Kuras, RYT-200 has been practicing and studying yoga and meditation for all of her adult life. She is also a proud graduate of the Yoga Connection 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training, completing the program in October 2011.
Pam’s insatiable appetite for learning keeps her reading, researching, and attending workshops to continue her education as often as she can. She strongly believes that yoga can benefit a person of any size, shape, or age which comes through in her teaching. At present, Pam is pursuing her MSW at NC State.
Her friendly approach as a yoga instructor emphasizes the basic postures linked with the breath and is straightforward and thoughtful. Pam offers a welcoming, inclusive method of teaching that equally supports both the novice and the more experienced yogi so students of all levels can enjoy Pam’s friendly and passionate instruction.
She has a specialty certification in Senior Yoga. Pam lives in Johnston County and is currently pursuing a degree in social work.
Teresa Smith, RYT 200
Teresa began practicing yoga in 2008. After a 33 year career in Special Education, she retired in January 2014 and began her yoga teacher training. She completed her 200-hour teacher training in September 2014 from The Yoga Connection of Smithfield. Teresa also holds certification in Yoga for Restoration and Yoga for Seniors.
Teresa’s background in Special Education has equipped her to meet the unique needs of each individual. Her teaching and personal practices focuses on function rather than form and strives to make yoga accessible to all individuals.
Windy Sloan, RYT 200
Originally from Faison, NC, Windy Sloan’s first exposure to yoga was in Greensboro during graduate school in 1998. Yoga opened up a world of physical exercise incorporating breath work and mental relaxation that quickly proved beneficial in handling the stresses of school. Windy continued her yoga practice upon moving to NYC in 2001, where it helped her maintain sanity in the big city. Before returning to eastern NC in 2005, she obtained her 200-hour teaching certification from NYC’s Yoga Works in order to bring yoga’s many energizing and healing qualities to folks back home. Windy has had the great pleasure of watching many yoga students experience the transforming power of yoga for themselves. She looks forward to sharing this gift with many more to come
Amber Perry, 200 RYT
Amber began practicing Hatha yoga in the spring of 2005 under the instruction of Jan Alexiou in Raleigh, NC. Since that time, she has continued one-on-one instruction with Mrs. Alexiou. In college, Amber took yoga as a physical education course. This course introduced her to the background and deeper philosophies of yoga. June 2013, Amber attended the SYTAR (the annual research conference for the International Association of Yoga Therapist) expanding her knowledge of therapeutic research and approaches to yoga. Amber has participated in trainings with Martha Catz, M.S., E-RYT. Amber completed her 200-hour teacher training through The Yoga Connection. She is currently teaching yoga classes for The Yoga Connection in Goldsboro, NC.
Yoga has expanded Amber’s quality of life assisting her to deal with the stressors of life, allowing her to slow down, and providing solace and reflection. In September 2013, Amber began teaching yoga to others. Amber hopes others can find their own benefits of yoga and improve their quality of life.
Lorie Walther, CYT-200
Lorie took her first Hatha yoga class in 2004 while serving in the Air Force, stationed at RAF Lakenheath, UK. She immediately fell deeply in love with the healing benefits of the practice (mind-body-spirit). In 2009, Lorie studied Ashtanga yoga under Debbie Jo Allen, RYT who convinced her to dive deeper into the practice. In 2009, Lorie received her primary Hatha yoga instructor certification from FiTour and her advanced training in 2011. In 2012, she spent time studying with Richard Freeman, renowned yoga teacher and meditation instructor. From 2009-2014 Lorie has taught yoga and fitness classes at the Goldsboro, YMCA.
She is devoted to the practice of yoga and strives every day to bring the message of yoga into the lives of those around her. Her recognition that yoga is not something that one does, but what one lives shines through in every class she teaches.
Lorie is currently in training to receive her 200-hour certification in Yoga through The Yoga Connection. Her years of experience teaching and additional certifications in fitness inform her yoga teaching practice.
Micheal Headen, M.S., CYT200
Michael has bee a fan of yoga for a number of years practicing both at home and attending sessions at the Family Y in Goldsboro. With the urging of his wife, Nancy, Michael enrolled in Martha Catz’s 200-hour yoga teacher training at The Yoga Connection last February and completed his training in September along with a number of outstanding students. Michael also completed training in Yoga for Seniors, Restoration and healing, Trauma and Connected Warriors.
Michael holds a BS from Campbell University and M.S. in psychology from NC. State University. His area of specialty included working with individuals struggling with addictions and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). He recently completed training to become a Clinically Certified Sexual Offender treatment specialist. He is currently in training to become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. Yoga has become a way of life for him and is very excited about getting more men involved in the benefits of yoga for health and wellbeing.
Keri Ann Pennie, RYT200
A New Englander at heart, Keri is accustomed to a fast-paced lifestyle. After years spent playing high-impact sports, Keri was left with multiple athletic injuries which conventional medicine could not remedy. Seeking a low impact form of movement, she discovered the boundless benefits of regular yoga practice during college in 2008. She holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Massachusetts, as well as training from Boston University’s Aging and Disability Studies. Keri and her husband moved to North Carolina in 2015 seeking adventure that military life provides.
Keri’s background includes health coaching, care management, and higher education. After working in social services, and subsequently observing the negative of reactive interventions, Keri shifted her attention to promoting proactive, preventative, and self-empowering lifestyles. She obtained her 200 RYT in Raleigh, North Carolina in 2016. She holds Certifications in Senior, Detoxification, and Trauma-Conscious Connected Warrior Yoga. She has attended trainings with Nico Luce and Clara Roberts-Oss.
By integrating different styles of yoga, Keri’s approach encourages one to explore their spirituality, challenge oneself and ultimately to restore inner balance. Keri is passionate about learning, traveling, photography, forests and Greek cuisine.
Kaylee Caress, RYT200
Kaylee Caress is in the process of completing her 200-hour yoga teacher training. Her style of yoga teaching is centered on her students feeling comfortable within their yoga practice. She invites breath and conscious movement to alleviate tight muscles, encourage strength, and reduce the wear and tear of daily stresses on the mind.
Kathy Wood, RYT200, Reiki Practitioner II
Kat Wood has been a Reiki Practitioner for 2 years. Her 18-year background in Counseling/Social work has helped inform her experience in the emotional healing of Reiki. Kat believes the sensing & redirecting of energy flow and the deep relaxation of a Reiki session improves one’s health and well-being.
Each session of Reiki with Kat is unique, healing and deeply restful.
For more information about Reiki please contact Kat directly at:
919-750-3293 or email Kathleenw1021@gmail.com
Rachel Frederick, CYT in training (June 15, 2017)
Rachel was born and raised in a small town just south of Atlanta, Georgia but now resides in Goldsboro, North Carolina, where she was able to enroll in the Yoga Connection 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training with Martha Catz.
Over the past three years, Rachel has developed a personal relationship with her yoga practice. She enjoys studying and reading about the traditions of Hatha Yoga and frequently attends workshops and classes to further her career as a yoga teacher, on and off the mat. For Rachel, yoga has been a healing and growing experience through times in her life. It has been Rachel’s dream to become a yoga teacher so that she can spread the joy of yoga to those around her.
Rachel invites students of all levels to join her in sequences that strengthen and stretch the body in new and available ways so that each individual student can experience an empowering yoga class. Through dynamic and static breath-body movements, her students will understand the benefits yoga has to offer for body, mind, and spirit. Rachel strives to improve the well-being and quality of life for each student who attends her yoga classes, on and off the mat.