Lisa Alban Ellisen
Founder and Teacher
Soul Yoga was born in 2014 as an extension of Lisa Alban Ellisen's lifelong relationship with movement and mindfulness. Lisa began teaching yoga in March of 2001 at the 21st Century health club in Cotati, California. She was one of the first yoga teachers to introduce Power Vinyasa Yoga to Northern California. Lisa received her bachelors degree from UCSB in Sociology, and while in college studied anatomy, physiology, kinesiology and nutrition. She also has a rich background in massage, personal training and weight lifting which she used for her sanity. Like many others, movement was her medicine and what she turned to when the stress of daily life was overwhelming. However, yoga was the first place where Lisa actually treated her body with tenderness and kindness rather than trying to push through pain or numb her feelings.
When Lisa discovered yoga she found a place to slow down and listen to her body and intuition, rather than be governed by her thoughts, and is continually grateful to be sharing this with others. When she began teaching it was before 200 hour yoga teacher trainings existed. She earned her teaching certification with Baron Baptiste at a week long program in Mexico in August, 2001 and then took multiple trainings with Ana Forrest, Seane Corn, Shiva Rea, Rodney Yee, Scott Blossom, Sharon Gannon and David Life and went to all the Yoga Journal Conferences in California. She voraciously read the Yoga Journal every month as well as yoga manuals such as "Light on Yoga" and "Autobiography of a Yogi" and soaked up all the yoga information she could find or listen to. She continues to up-level her teaching through ongoing courses and learning.
Between 2001 and 2014 Lisa taught yoga throughout Sonoma County. Her classes were well attended and brought her great joy and connection. Lisa always thought, "the more places I teach, the more students I can reach." However, in 2014, after going through a divorce with 2 young children she took a leap of faith and opened her own studio, Soul Yoga & Wellness. Lisa brought in some of the best teachers in Sonoma County and also trained over 50 teachers through Soul Yoga's 200 hour yoga school (yoga alliance certified) and the yoga community at Soul continued to grow and thrive. Soul Yoga was there for the Sonoma County community through fires, power outages, more fires and then a global pandemic. Between 2015 and 2020 Soul Yoga won the Press Democrats well known "Best Of" 4 times; 2015 Best Yoga teacher, 2017 Best Yoga Studio, 2020 Best Virtual Yoga Studio & Best Yoga Studio. However, In December of 2020 Lisa realized she couldn't sustain the business any more, even through a model of virtual classes only, and closed the doors, though she never stopped teaching.
November 2021, witness a SOUL rebirth!
Soul Yoga is so proud to be joining forces with Barre Energy (B.E.) in the Farmers Lane Plaza. You B.E.autiful SOULS will have a place to practice together once again. We will be sharing this B.E.autiful space that has been contributing to health and wellness in Sonoma County for the past 7 years. Lisa will be teaching 9 classes/week (to start) and memberships will include ZOOM classes as well as access to our ON DEMAND video library for at home practices. We will continue to pay close attention to the ongoing pandemic and stay up to date in masking and cleaning procedures for the health and safety of our students.
I look forward to seeing you back on the mat!