Teachers & Staff

Yoga Instructors

Sara Turk - TittibhasanaSara Turk, 500ERYT:
Cherry Blossom Yoga owner, Yoga Association of Houston, Lululemon Yoga Ambassador (The Woodlands, 2010-2011)
Sara began her study of yoga in 1997, as a compliment to her dance training, and came to Ashtanga yoga in 2005. She has had the fortune of in-depth study with great teachers such as Doug Swenson, Andrew Eppler, Michael Gannon, and Ashtanga Guru Sharath Jois. Sara completed her 500RYT in Sadhana Yoga Chi with Doug Swenson (June 2011) - emphasizing a holistic approach to yoga (Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Power, Yin & Restorative asana, along with meditation, nutrition, and cross-training). Sara is a dedicated yoga practicioner, teacher, and health & animal rights advocate. Sara has been honored to be part of the Hyde Yoga clothing catalogue (Spring 2014) and serve as Yoga Ambassador for Lululemon (2010-2011). Over the years, Sara has cultivated an award-winning healthy recipe blog, The Innocent Primate Vegan Blog. After leaving the life of a scientist (Neuroendocrine Physiology), Sara opened Cherry Blossom Yoga (Spring TX) with her sister (Johanna), and in addition to regular classes and teacher trainings at the studio, now travels offering workshops, teacher trainings, and assists Doug Swenson in his trainings and workshops nationally. Her teaching philosophy: "Yoga heals the mind, body, and spirit - loosens what's tight, unbinds that which hinders, and comforts what aches."

Karen Henderson: 200 hr Registered Yoga Teacher
Karen began her study of Ashtanga Yoga with Norman Allen while living in Kona, Hawaii.  Fueled with curiosity, yoga quickly became an integral part of her life.  After moving back to Texas she began studies with Jill Lampert and Andrew Eppler.  Karen is deeply grateful for their patience, grace, gentle yet determined teaching.  In addition to being inspired by her Ashtanga teachers, she has been influenced by studies with Nicki Doane, Eddie Modestini, Jill Miller, Robert Boustany, David Williams, Ann Hyde, Doug and David Swenson. Her teaching comes from the knowledge of her own experience as a practitioner.  Karen understands the challenges of yoga, but also its rewards.  She brings to her teaching a profound respect for the healing and calming effects of yoga, focusing on the flow of the breath and steady movement.  She works to make her classes fun and engaging, infusing kindness, humility, and lightheartedness, inspiring to make yoga both accessible and non-intimidating to her students. "On this path no effort is wasted, no gain is ever wasted; even a little of this practice will shelter you from great sorrow." ~Bhagavad Gita 2.40

Karen Orvos -Toth Karen Orvos-Toth - ERY200, AWC, AWP (P. NAMA), Reiki Master, B.Sc, P. Geol . 
My journey in yoga began in 2000 in Calgary, Alberta Canada. I spent two years primarily exploring vinyasa flow but my destiny guided me to Ashtanga. I never looked back and my journey continues today. After 10 years on my mat as a student, again, destiny took over and I registered for the 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training Certification with the Dallas Yoga Center in 2011. I completed the my certification in 2011 and my yoga journey continues however with a much deeper sense of gratitude, appreciation and understanding for the relationship I have with myself and others. My passion for wellness moved deeper and my destiny guided me to Ayurveda. I completed the Ayurvedic Wellness Counselor Program and the Panchakarma Technician Training through Kerala Academy in Seattle, WA. My Ayurvedic journey moved even deeper. I am currently registered with Kerala Academy in Los Angeles, CA focusing on completing the Ayurvedic Wellness Practitioners Program. My Ayurvedic training has granted me the privilege of being able to register as a professional with NAMA (National Ayurvedic Medical Association). Additionally, I am a certified Reiki Master. I am truly grateful  for all of the training I have received both on the mat and off the mat. I give thanks, gratitude, appreciation and love to each and everyone of my Gurus (there are too many to list). It is because of their guidance, support and patience that I am able to share my Yoga with you. In addition to the above, I completed a B.Sc. from the University of Calgary with a focus on Environmental Geology. I have been working in the Energy Industry since 1990 and I maintain a license to practice as a professional geologist through the AAPG in Alberta, Canada.
The Truth is One, but the teachers are many, for each has a different lesson to impart - Srimad Bhagavatam

Britney MaxwellBritney Maxwell: 200hr Registered Yoga Teacher
Britney's yoga path began in 2009, when she began taking classes to help her stay flexible while training for marathons. Britney has studied many different styles of yoga including Hatha, Bikram, Ashtanga, Forrest Yoga. However, she feels that it was Vinyasa Flow that ignited her passion for yoga. It allowed her to move through asanas linked with the breath, creating a platform for transformative meditation. Britney also believes yoga class for body awareness that moves one beyond critiquing one's flaws and instead forces one to accept where the body is each day and celebrate it's ability. Britney is certified through the Yoga Institute. She is also a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) with the Yoga Alliance. Her classes are musically charged, fun, challenging, and consistently diferent. She is very thankful to be able to share her love of yoga with others. When she is not practicing yoga, she is a mother to two sweet girls and two wild dogs, wife and youth minister, all of which keeps her from taking herself too seriously.

Melanie Merle-RootMelanie Merle-Root: 200 hr Certified Yoga Instructor,
Lululemon Yoga Ambassador (The Woodlands) July 2011-July 2012

Melanie's first essay into yoga was in 1993 under the instruction of Ruby Diamond (AKA Carroll MacDonald). "We were yoga gypsy's from the start - holding class wherever we could find space, practicing without mats, simply following our leader." Yoga quickly became more than a physical practice for Melanie - it became a solace, a vehicle of self-discovery and a new lens through which to view the world.  Ten years later, while living in Edmond, OK, one of Melanie's teachers, Rachel Mor, suggested Melanie take over teaching a yoga class at a local private high school. "I was a yoga gypsy again. The high school hadn't secured a space for the class, nor did we have yoga mats. We were moved room to room in a nearby YMCA. At one point, we practiced on a racquetball court. At another, there were 25 of us in a cramped, unheated storage room. The girls would tumble out of vrksasana onto one another. It was a blast. I knew then that I really wanted to teach."  It was during her time at Mor's studio that Melanie had the good fortune to study with many teachers and enjoyed a variety of yoga styles, including vinyasa, hatha, Iyengar, restorative and Ashtanga. She lucked into an intensive with one of the founders of American Power Yoga, Beryl Bender Burch. "I was pretty much clueless. I'd heard of Burch and I enjoyed the flow of vinyasa-style classes, but I wasn't familiar with the rigors of Ashtanga. It was a new awakening. That's the thing about yoga. There are so many layers, subtleties, mysteries. It offers a journey for many lifetimes." 
"Whatever you do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power and magic in it. Begin it now."  ~Goethe

Substitute/Part-Time Staff

Emily WilliamsEmily Williams: 200hr Registered Yoga Teacher

Emily’s journey with yoga began to blossom in 2006. Guided to yoga by a hope to deepen her spiritual journey, find peace and happiness within her heart and connect the energies of her mind and body; she fell in love with the principles and sequence of the Ashtanga practice. 

She received her 200 hour RYT from Sara Turk in 2012, where she focused on Ashtanga-Vinyasa (flow) style yoga, as well as anatomy, physiology and the energetics of yoga. She is a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) with the National Yoga Alliance. Her Vinyasa style blends yoga postures with music, sprinkles of humor and applicable wisdom. Emily strives to create a wisdom practice for all levels, hoping to reach each student who enters her classroom. Her classes always address the body mind connection that can turn daily stress into a tool for self-discipline and growth.  

Emily is also a middle school language arts teacher at a private school in the Spring/Houston area. Her students help her embrace the vivacity of youth, and live in the moment. She utilizes her understanding of yoga and the mind/body connection in her classroom to help engage all students, including those with ADD, ADHD, autism, and other learning differences.

Lyndsay RogersLyndsay Rogers: 200hr Certified Yoga Instructor

CBY Staff:

Carol RackleyCarol Rackley: Studio Manager

Carol is the mother of the two daughters behind Cherry Blossom Yoga, Sara & Johanna. Her yoga journey started back in the early '00s when Sara dragged her to a yoga class (it wasn't uncommon for Sara to bring Carol to various benefit/donation dance classes and/or yoga classes - and it seems some things never change). After various paths in life serving our future generations :: public education Math teacher, assisting youth and adults find funding and/or job training at Workforce Solutions:: she now offers her services  helping all generations find peace and tranquility at CBY.  She was an integral part in the genesis of the studio, and continues to offer her support as a friend and mother to Sara, the studio, and every student who walks through the door.

Jerri StephensonJerri Stephenson: Front Desk/Boutique Staff

Jerri is currently a graduate student working on a Masters/PhD in clinical psychology. One of her main interests is in yoga as treatment for PTSD. Jerri offers her assistance at the front desk a few nights a week, and sometimes mornings.