Create the life and career of your dreams (and don't forget to breath) - Sharon Tessandori Coaching

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Sharon Tessandori

Hi. Welcome.  I’m Sharon, the really happy owner of Barefoot Works Yoga.  I educate and inspire people to live their very best life.  Yoga and Ayurveda (a fancy word for the art and science of self care) are the tools that I use for transforming body, mind, and heart.

I was among the first in my Appalachian family to go to college.  Receiving my MS is to this day one of my proudest accomplishments.  However I soon discovered it was not my path to work a nine to five job for someone else.  I knew that my path must be one I forged myself.  And I haven’t looked back.  A strong desire to live a creative and authentic life and a deep love of yoga was the inspiration for Barefoot Works Yoga, which was established in 2004 and the opening of the studio came in 2006. 

I am an “experienced yoga teacher” with Yoga Alliance, meaning that I’ve put in a lot of study and teaching of yoga.  I’m also an Ayurveda Educator and have completed over 550 hours of study with the California College of Ayurveda.  I’ve completed nearly 200 hours of study in yoga therapy and have studied with numerous yoga teachers with Seane Corn serving as my inspiration for Vinyasa Yoga.

I teach group classes at Barefoot Works, lead workshops and retreats, and direct our 200 hour yoga teacher training.  All of which occur locally and internationally in amazing locations.  Seriously, I am forever amazed that I get to make a living doing what I love and am passionate about.  I nearly pinch myself daily. 

Away from the yoga mat and studio you can find me cooking delicious vegetarian food, writing on my blog, reading non-fiction, walking in the cemetery by my home, sipping coffee, dreaming of upcoming travels and dancing wildly everywhere from Big Sur, to Tulum, to the entry foyer of my 100 year old home.
I’m thrilled that you’re here reading this and that you’re thinking of joining us for a yoga class.  I can’t wait to meet you on the mat.


Sarah Frank Bowker

I just love teaching at this studio! I have been lucky to be a teacher here for over four years. I started my journey after meeting Sharon in early 2007. After a year filled with learning about myself and yoga, I took part in Sharon’s yoga teacher training. She gave me a strong foundation and a tree house to teach in that supports an amazing Lexington yoga community. I am currently completing my 500 hour training with Leeann Carey’s Yapana Yoga Therapy Program, which is further refining my teaching skills (and of course my own yoga practice). In addition to teaching weekly classes at the studio, I have assisted in Sharon’s summer retreat and teacher trainings and lead workshops and private yoga sessions at Barefoot Works.

I absolutely love the two classes I teach. Our Sunday morning class gives students the opportunity to move inward; to connect to spirit, to find their breath, and to re-center themselves in preparation for the new week ahead. Our Yin yoga class allows students to rest deeply in their bodies as they gently stretch their connective tissues. In teaching both of these classes, I truly enjoy guiding students into a restful place where they can explore more of the mental, emotional, and spiritual aspects of their yoga practice.

I am so fortunate to be a part of this yoga studio both as a teacher and as a student. We have a special community at Barefoot Works, one that challenges our students and teachers to keep growing and learning in a supportive, caring environment.

I am a yogini who teaches yoga at night and has a full time day job at the University of Kentucky! You’ll find me in the College of Agriculture as a Program Coordinator for the Community and Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky. When I’m not on the mat or at a desk, I love to cook and bake, knit, hang out with my husband, Brandon, and our two cats, see live music, take mini weekend trips to hike and camp in the many wonderful Kentucky parks, and I also enjoy keeping up with Cincinnati’s professional sports teams (go Reds!).


AnneDean Watkins

The practice of yoga rapidly began to steal my heart in October of 2009 when I stumbled upon Barefoot Works Yoga. It immediately became my "safe place" and my home away from home. I went on to complete the Barefoot Works Yoga 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training in June of 2010. All of my life experiences, my passion for mindful living, and gratitude for all the amazing things the body can do tend to flow into my teaching. I teach both at Barefoot Works and the YMCA on High Street and adore each and every one of my students. I emphasize self-care in my classes and doing only what feels good for the body, mind, and heart in that particular moment. My favorite part of teaching yoga is the look on students faces when they open their eyes after Savasana. Sometimes a little stillness is all that we need to put a smile on our face.

Off the mat, I surround myself with books in my role as an Acquisitions Editor at the University Press of Kentucky and a part-time bookseller at The Morris Book Shop. I spend my free time reading, journaling, dreaming, making mixed CDs, riding my mint green beach cruiser, frolicking with my pets, cooking, relaxing on my front porch, and spending time laughing with my best friends.


Julie Ransdell

My journey into yoga started several years ago with the hope of cultivating a healthy exercise regimen. I soon found that yoga not only toned and fueled my body, it calmed my mind and provided me a space to be free and creative. I wanted to stop keeping this discovery to myself, and start spreading it to others. So I completed Barefoot Works Yoga Teacher Training in the Spring of 2010 and soon became a certified yoga instructor.

What I enjoy most about teaching yoga is being able to assist others in finding acceptance and peace no matter where they are in their yoga practice and to take that peace off their mat and into the world. To me, yoga leads the way into a life where we can unwind, de-stress and breathe intently through any moment life throws our way.

Off the mat, you can most often find me at home with my husband tending to our garden or riding bikes around our neighborhood. I believe in supporting local business and local musicians. I love reading, cooking, dancing, UK basketball, Bob Dylan and daydreaming!


Meredith Swim

I am a yogini on a quest for self-discovery on and off the yoga mat. As a teenager I serendipitously stumbled upon my first yoga class. I have been down doggin' it ever since! I am empowered by the emotional and physical benefits of the practice and feel inspired to share the wisdom and power of yoga with others.

In 2009 I underwent Sharon's Yoga Teacher Training at Barefoot Works and received my 200 hour Yoga Alliance Teaching Certification. In the summer of 2010 I received a Kids Yoga Teacher Certification at the Asheville School of Massage and Yoga in Asheville, North Carolina in hopes to continue sharing the gift of yoga with teens and children.

This splendid yoga journey has led me to teach in a university gym and dorms, middle schools, and family fun nights! Though I've unrolled the yoga mat in many a place, my true yoga home is Barefoot Works. I feel truly honored to be part of the Barefoot Works yoga family, and especially love teaching a crew of terrific teens every Tuesday!


Jeanne Clotfelter

I came to yoga in 2002 and have been a devoted student ever since.  I found Barefoot Works in early 2007 and it soon became my home studio.  It was here that I began delving deeper into this practice that made me feel so energized, yet so calm and peaceful.  I completed my teacher training in 2009 at Barefoot Works and soon became a 200-hour Yoga Alliance Registered Yoga Teacher  (RYT).

My classes are offered during the noon hour, and I feel grateful to be able to bring some stillness to the middle of my students' busy days.  I encourage my students to get fully in touch and connect with the body, mind, and breath and to listen to what their inner selves tell them.  I find it rewarding to be able to introduce people of all ages and physical conditions to yoga, so that they, too, can experience all that this practice has to offer. 

Off the mat, I spend quality time at home in woods of Lawrenceburg with my husband, our cat, and my mother.  I love reading, sewing, crocheting, and cooking.  I've recently found that I enjoy gardening after years of avoiding it – maybe that has something to do with all the cool toys I have now, like the tractor and the riding mower. 


Laura Whitaker

Although I attended a few classes here and there in college, it wasn't until after I graduated that I truly explored yoga. Following a year of dedicated Bikram Yoga practice and a year of no yoga whatsoever, I finally found my way to Barefoot Works. Since then, I haven't slowed down and I haven't looked back. In 2010, I attended the Barefoot Works Yoga Teacher Training in Tulum, Mexico (and, yes, it was as amazing as it sounds). There, I challenged myself, learned more about yoga than I ever imagined, met fabulous yogis, and ate the world's freshest guacamole. Best of all, I was inspired and empowered to find my voice and my passion as an instructor.

As a teacher, I feel most honored at the end of each practice when I have that lovely privilege of exchanging smiles and "Namastes" with each yogi. My biggest goal as a yoga instructor is for students to leave class feeling happier and healthier than when they first stepped onto the mat. These feelings of happiness and health may manifest in different forms for different people on different days (less stressed, more content, less stiff, more mindful). I find that these elements have their unique ways of touching us on the mat, however fleeting or subtle they may feel. I hope to embrace this philosophy in my classes. And I've been known to help yogis work up heat and sweat in the process, too!

When I'm not teaching, practicing, or reading about yoga, I'm most likely working at the fabulous Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning or pursuing my Masters in Public Administration at UK. I also enjoy reading for my book club, making handmade greeting cards, pinning away on Pinterest, and sending subliminal messages to my boyfriend that we should go to Orange Leaf for frozen yogurt.  I have the honor of teaching the Monday classes at Barefoot Works, both Level 1 and Beyond Yoga Basics.


Megan Skirha

True religion is real living; living with all one’s soul, with all one’s goodness, all one’s honesty. Albert Einstein

Namaste Everyone! My name is Meghan Skirha and I am honored to be considered a guide to your personal yoga journey. My goal is to impart to you, the joy and fulfillment yoga offers as well as the enlightenment one can experience each and every time you come to the mat. Plus, these workouts Rock!

My love for moving meditation grew out of the experimentation with variant dance forms, in both the performance and tutorial roles.  The formative challenge of choreographing the magical flow of movement sequences to music and coupling one’s spirit with their biomechanics drove me to be a lifelong student of physical expression. 

After becoming a certified yoga teacher, life brought me to Lexington, KY, where I live with my husband and two daughters and am proud to join the talented teachers at Barefoot Works.

Much like people, the diversity of yoga was something that caught my attention and immediately attracted me to the practice. A firm believer that yoga is a personal and individualized journey, I am both appreciative of and receptive to all kinds of styles and forms.  Yoga gives you open-mindedness. My own practice and yoga style is most greatly influenced by Vinyasa flow and I am exhilarated by the creation of dynamic, uplifting sequences by which to inspire my students. My classes are energetic and musically infused, each a little different from the last or the next. New and seasoned yogis are welcome as modifications are always offered and encouraged. I strive to make all yoga practitioners feel safe, comfortable and scrutiny-free irrespective of where you are in your life or in your practice. Yoga gives you perseverance.

Come to class prepared to sweat and smile and hopefully leave feeling a little bit inspired. And if you don’t, that’s okay too; there is still the nimbleness, peace, commitment, humanitarianism, confidence, open-mindedness, motivation, and perseverance; you get to take it with you.  And of course, don’t forget the sweat!

See you on the mat!


Kate Dorvel

In 2008, as a very busy Bostonian, I would briskly walk up and down Boylston Street, eyes focused forward, minimal eye contact, concerned only with getting quickly to my next destination. Every day I would walk by one of the most well known yoga studios in Boston, see their sign, become secretly intimidated and continue on my perpetual rush forward. It wasn’t about the journey for me at that time.

One late winter, Sunday afternoon, I was out exploring my home town on foot, using this time to clear my head of a lot of anxiety and built up emotions. I, yet again, walked by the studio. This time I stopped. I decided, right then and there that it was time for a change. I wanted a challenge, something to derail me from my current course. I was surviving and successful but, no, I wasn’t happy.

That afternoon changed my life. I walked into a class taught by one of the most astonishingly wonderful women I will ever have the chance to know and call a dear friend, Kate Greer. As her challenging and playful class was ending, she said to us “always know that you are entirely perfect just the way you are.” Many of my students know that is how I close my classes now. That phrase, that realization, turned my relationship with myself around.

I achieved my 200hour RYT certification from Back Bay Yoga Studio, on Boylston Street in Boston,
Massachusetts in 2011. I am still a student myself, but I try to be kind to my spirit and my body as I continue to learn. I was transplanted to Lexington later in 2011. It was this move that allowed me to pursue leading others in their yoga practice.

I try to bring a balance of athleticism and grace to my practice, which brings harmony and joy into my life. My practice includes asana, pranayama, meditation, running, biking, hiking, swimming, tennis, beach volleyball, walking my dogs, mowing my lawn, tending my garden, and loving my partner, Craig and my family. It is all yoga to me.


Misty Pittman

Over 4 years ago, with two Jack Russell's and a cat, I drove through a blizzard from Ontario, Canada to Lexington, Kentucky.  I couldn't explain why, but I could feel a shift happening and I knew in my bones that an exciting, new chapter of my life was beginning. I settled into my new home with my Kentucky husband, and I spent my first few months daydreaming about the life that I hoped to create for myself, and us, one day. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was desperately searching for a life that was both meaningful and blissful.

It was a birthday gift for one month of yoga that lead me to Barefoot Works.  It was not my first time practicing yoga, though it was my first time exploring yoga in a way that was more than just about exercise.  I immediately fell in love, though life pulled me in another direction and it would be another 2 years before I found myself coming back to the studio. This second time around, I was there to stay.  

That connection with my breath, the stillness found in meditation, the grace and strength I felt as my body flowed, had (and still has) a profound impact on my mind and spirit.  I began exploring more creative endeavors such as writing and photography.  I was finding more joy in the simpler things of life.  I was learning to listen to my inner guide and make decisions based on love instead of fear.  

It was a surreal experience when I sent the email asking to participate in Sharon's yoga teacher training intensive.  Something I had dreamt about for many years but never thought could be possible for me.  And then, like a fairytale, I found myself at the edge of the Atlantic ocean in Corolla, NC, learning, breathing, and being completely immersed in the training.  I am now a Yoga Alliance certified yoga instructor at the 200 hour level and I'm tickled pink to be teaching at this amazing studio that has become a second home for me.  The yoga teachers here continually amaze and inspire me and I'm honored to be part of the family.

I am passionate about teaching students the fundamentals of the yoga postures, focusing on safe alignment and enlightening students to honor their own bodies and let go of their egos.  My classes focus on simplicity, ease, and fun, and it is my hope that students leave feeling restored and open to their own inherent creativity and joy.  

I infuse my days with plenty of daydreaming, spending time with family and friends, chasing my dogs around the backyard, reading, cooking, road tripping, and enjoying the occasional glass of sparkling wine.  You can learn more of my adventures at Bumble and Bliss or share my culinary explorations at Petit Billy.  

I look forward to meeting you and hearing your story.... Blissfully yours, Misty