Lisa began studying and practicing Yoga in 1986. She apprenticed for three years with her principal teacher, Janet Bhuyan, in Kalamazoo, Michigan, before becoming a Yoga teacher. Lisa continued to study with Janet while teaching in Kalamazoo, until 1991 when her family moved to West Lafayette.
She taught Yoga at the YWCA for one year and then began teaching at Morton Community Center, where she remains. Lisa also studied teacher training with Erich Schiffmann and Judith Lasater. She belongs to both the Indiana and Michigan Associations, and continues her education by attending several workshops a year. She describes her style as an eclectic blend of all her wonderful teachers combined with her personal practice.
Lisa obtained a Bachelors degree in Biology from Purdue University and her Masters degree in Science Education from Western Michigan University. She was a high school Chemistry teacher and a Research Assistant before pursuing teaching Yoga as her true vocation.
I look at yoga as a journey to be approached in a joyful way. My approach is an eclectic blend of Hatha yoga influenced by a variety of styles and teachers. I enjoy adding a Kundalini style class with Krias (movements) to work the Lymph system or a Yin/Yang class with playful vinyasas. I love the variety that yoga offers. There are so many ways to find peace, to get grounded, to feel like everything is going to be okay with the bonus of taking care of your body.
I feel like yoga is endless in it’s possibilities to learn and grow. From studying the Yama’s and Niyamas (guides to living ethically), to diving deeper into the Chakras,(energy system) yoga has so much to offer. Weaving the teachings into my classes can present a new way to think about issues such as compassion, intuition or inner strength.
I love the people drawn to yoga. Sharing and experiencing the transforming effects of yoga with others provides the motivation for my teaching and continued study. Introducing yoga to new students and sharing the journey of continuing students as we discover the benefits for each individual is an honor. I continue to devote myself to the study of yoga, both physical and spiritual, by attending workshops and teacher trainings and deepening my personal practice.
When I began taking classes in 1997, I loved learning the asanas (poses) and moving my body in different ways. I was attracted to the physicality of yoga. As I have moved along my yoga path, I have grown to love the wonderful benefits of pranayama (breathing exercises), meditation and the value of creating awareness and curiosity about my body, my mind, and my spirit.
I began teaching in 2002 and started the yoga program at McAllister Center in 2004. Currently I am teaching at Lilly Nature Center and Happy Hollow Complex through West Lafayette Parks and Rec. and The McAllister Center in Lafayette. I volunteer at Hanna Center in Lafayette, teaching to young yogis in their after-school program. I also teach private classes to corporations and individuals.
I earned my 200 hour Yoga Teacher Certification through LYP- Living Yoga Program in Austin, TX. It has helped to shape my philosophy and style of teaching and has exposed me to many styles of yoga. It also has given me an in-depth knowledge of the technical aspects of yoga and its physical benefits. Through the LYP Network, I have the experience of a wonderful yoga community at my fingertips.
Whether you take classes with me or anyone else, I would encourage you to develop the practice of yoga in your daily life. It’s fun, it brings wonderful people together, it makes you feel better – mind, body, spirit. Yoga has enriched my life beyond expectations and can do the same for you.
Lisa Banu, Ph.D., MSW, RYT
Yoga brought Lisa relief in a confusing time of loss and ever since she has been a champion of Mind-Body healing. Over the past 12 years, Lisa strengthened her investment in the Mind-Body connection through yoga teacher certification (2016), grief and loss recovery certification (2017), as well as Mind Body Therapy Certification (2021). Her Mind-Body practice focus combines with her studies in architecture, philosophy (PHD), social work (MSW) and allows her to offer a wide range of interventions and perspectives that include, focusing, logotherapy, existential psychotherapy, Hakomi, somatic experiencing, tapping (EFT), IFS, DBT, trauma informed therapy, mindfulness and yes… YOGA! Consistent with her loss and anxiety counseling practice she is devoted to offering emotional wellness skills as embodied empowerment able to mitigate and perhaps prevent chronic anxiety. Lisa offers yoga for emotional balance, a 7-week embodied psychoeducation program from self-assessment to self-acceptance.
My Yoga journey began in my twenties after serving as a Peace Corps volunteer. While living in the villages in Vanuatu (S. Pacific islands), I learned the value patience and stillness.The Ni-Vanuatu people taught me a calm and peaceful way of Being. When I returned to Indiana in 2001, I knew that I wanted to teach the art of relaxation because our culture is so fast paced- so I turned to the practice of Yoga.In 2002, I traveled to Lenox, Masssachusettes to the Kriplau school of Yoga where I lived for 1 month and received my 200 hour certification.I have been teaching and practicing Yoga ever since!
I am also a Massage Therapist and Reiki Master. In 2018, I developed YoReiMa, a gentle yoga class that blends Yoga, Massage and Reiki in one class.I absolutley LOVE teaching Yoga and meeting new people from all walks of life. I am grateful to have the opportunity to work with such wonderful, talanted teachers at Yoga Balance and look forward to working with YOU too! All of my classes are gentle and no experience is necessary.