meet your instructors
Our staff is made up of a fantastic group of yoga lovers, and self-love enthusiasts. We are comprised of Miami students, and townies alike, ranging in age from 21 to 70+ years old. We all bring our own unique stylings and teachings to our classes, but the foundation of all of our classes is RESPECT. We want you to move your body in a way that feels good to you. Please know that you are cherished in our space, and welcome to come as you are.
Emily is the owner & operator of Root. She keeps the peace & keeps things trucking behind the scenes in the studio. Emily came to yoga out of pain, after an injury to her low back. She is passionate about providing thoughtful, safe, inclusive and fun yoga to anyone and everyone who is interested. Emily is a certified 200 HR-RYT. When she's not working, you can find her spending time with her husband and their son, Benjen. Emily loves to be outside hiking in the woods, walking around town or spending time around water. You can always rely on her for the best book & podcast suggestions (especially if you enjoy creepy thrillers or true crime genre).
Gail has lived and worked in Oxford for most of her life. She graduated from Miami, is married, and has four grown children; all of whom did their undergrad at Miami. Gail has been attending classes at Root since 2016. After a year of practicing yoga at Root, she decided to make a list of all the reasons why she probably shouldn't do yoga (due to time and physical restraints) and realized that these reasons were also the same reasons she should be doing yoga. When Gail saw Root was offering our first ever Yoga Teacher Training in 2017, she decided this was the best way to learn more about the practice. Gail loves how restorative yoga helps to gently open the joints and energy centers, while stretching the muscle, and calming the entire body, mind, and soul.
Melanie is a junior from inner-city Chicago, studying Kinesiology and Nutrition at Miami University. She loves learning about the body and digging deeper with anatomy, as she is on the Pre-Physical Therapy tract. She has been active her whole life doing gymnastics, dance, and figure skating, but started practicing yoga about 3 years ago. Just last year, Melanie found Root and joined the 200-RYT here at Root. She loved it because she could still be a student and keep learning more about yoga. She loves teaching multiple classes ranging from restorative to power vinyasa, and is always open to beginners. Melanie loves showing her students what yoga has to offer them. Off the mat, you can catch her at the nearest pool or beach (no matter what season) or binge watching netflix.
maggie jo frey
Maggie has been teaching at Root since the fall of 2017. Originally from Oxford, she is so grateful to have the opportunity to share yoga with her hometown! Maggie first fell in love with yoga while studying at Indiana University. She completed her teacher training in 2005 at the Sivananda Vedanta Ashram in Woodbourne, New York. Back home in Chicago, Maggie managed Bloom Yoga Studio for over 4 years and taught at several studios throughout the city. Her class is welcoming and playful, challenging students of all levels to cultivate a strong and flexible body and mind. Maggie is also a Licensed Acupuncturist and board certified herbalist with a Masters of Science in Traditional Oriental Medicine from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in Chicago. She loves spending time wrangling her two year old daughter (and looks forward to welcoming a little boy in December).
Kristen Braun is from Nokomis, Florida, which is where her yoga practice first started. At the age of 19 she fell in love with the practice at Nelda’s yoga studio where she was able to trade the day’s spearfishing harvest for unlimited yoga. Through trading and attending as many classes as possible at Nelda’s, Kristen’s love for yoga grew and she took it with her to Sheridan, Wyoming and Columbus, Ohio as a way to connect to her surroundings and community when making a new home. While living in Columbus, she acquired her 200-RYT from Yoga on High. Now Kristen lives in Seven Mile with her husband and her beloved dachshund, Ludwig. She hopes to share her love of the practice through helping others connect to themselves and their community. Her favorite class to teach is a Power Vinyasa, where you can expect to be challenged, but also have room to practice within your body’s ever-changing needs. Her classes are influenced by anatomical sequencing and good jams. Where the spirit, mind, and body can all have what they need.
Jaimie began practicing yoga 9 years ago as a form of exercise. In an effort to deepen her personal practice and learn ways to reduce anxiety & stress, Jaimie pursued her RYT-200 in Cincinnati. When she's not on the mat, you'll find her spending time with her husband and their daughter, snuggling her pup, cooking up a storm in the kitchen or with her nose in a good book. Jaimie is passionate about health & wellness and wants everyone to know that yoga is for all sizes & ages. Jaimie is also a certified kids yoga instructor through Kidding Around Yoga & has also completed an 85-hour Prenatal Yoga Certification through The Prenatal Yoga Center.
Olivia is from Toledo, Ohio and a current student at Miami University. She is studying Economics and Fashion Corporate Business. She has always done yoga and pilates with her Mom, ever since she could walk, and eventually became certified the summer before freshman year. In her free time, she likes to hike, go up North, and find the nearest music festival to groove at. Her signature class strengthens, balances and detoxifies your entire body and mind as you move through more challenging postures and connected breath. Set to an energizing playlist, you’ll power up your yoga practice like never before.
Stephenie Richardson is dual certified in Hatha and Vinyasa yoga with training in various styles, but mainly teaches Power Vinyasa as it naturally flows from her. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher 200-hour with the Yoga Alliance and a Miami University of Ohio Alumna ’19 holding a BA of Botany with concentrations in Horticulture and Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies. Stephenie’s personal yoga journey took flight in 2011, as a way to connect with herself - mind, body, and soul - at a time when she felt lost and unsure of her path. The practice affected her so deeply that in May 2018 she completed yoga teacher training at Root, so that she could be a guide for others as they embark on their own personal journey of self-healing. She candidly believes in the healing power of plants, and is passionate about plant medicine, the connection between peoples and plants, and the connection between plants and spirituality. She feels that yoga falls right into place and is a beautiful attribute to these passions. Combining her love for plant medicine, yogic philosophy and yoga practice, she patiently teaches from her heart and soul, while wearing a contagious smile. You can count on her for a vigorous, yet restorative flow leaving you to feel like a flower openly embracing the sun.
Lori has been practicing yoga for 13 years and has been teaching at Root since May 2018. Lori completed her RYT-200 training in our first ever teacher training at Root! Lori especially enjoys teaching those that are new to the practice. She is also a 6th grade math teacher at Talawanda Middle School where she tries to incorporate yoga into her classroom whenever possible. Lori and her husband live in Oxford and are enjoying their newest role as "empty nesters." Lori loves to read, bakes to relax, and chills out to old movies. Most of all she loves getting to know new people and enjoying a good laugh!
Abby is from Cincinnati, and currently a student at Miami University. She began practicing yoga 4 years ago, as a way to let go of stress. She fell in love with the practice and completed her 200-hour training at Root. Abby studies Biology & Pre-medicine at Miami, and is a certified EMT as well. Off the mat, Abby enjoys cooking, and spending time with her family, friends, and dog, Zoey. Abby is excited to share the practice with you, whether you are an experienced yogi or just starting out.
Emily is a sophomore at Miami, from Cincinnati, Ohio. Currently, she is studying marketing and nutrition. She has been active her whole life doing beach volleyball, yoga, and running. After practicing for a few years, Emily felt inspired and motivated to deepen her practice. She got her yoga certification this past summer, and looks forward to meeting new students and root members.