Gazelle Animalia is a Certified Baptiste Yoga teacher, Family Nurse Practitioner, NPC Fitness Competitor, and a lifelong student who came to yoga in 2000 after the discovery later in life that she was born with spina bifida and that this was the cause of her lower extremity paralysis. Through the practice of yoga she has gained physical abilities that her doctor’s remain baffled about as they say it is a miracle that she was born with the ability to even walk. She is grateful for the physical benefits yoga has provided, but it is her inner peace and the ability to release her “stories” that Gazelle finds to be the true gift that yoga has given to her. Her passion is to make yoga accessible as a practice to everyone. Her compassion for others, strong anatomical knowledge base, and ability to relate to each student as an individual allows her students to explore their yoga practice with a curiosity and playfulness that facilitates a willingness of the student to explore and deepen their practice. Gazelle’s intention is to create an inclusive yoga experience that invites each student to drop their perceived limitations, both physical and mental, and to open themselves up to new possibilities both on and off the mat.
Gazelle is a Certified Baptiste Power Vinyasa Yoga Teacher, a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) through Yoga Alliance and has partnered with the Grand Rapids Buddhist Temple and Zen Center to teach yoga to the greater Grand Rapids community. She also began a yoga initiative, Passion Yoga Project, with the Western Michigan Hispanic Center to bring yoga to local Hispanic communities. She feels truly blessed by this unique opportunity and is grateful for all that her personal yoga journey has given to her. Her mission is to give back.