Laura Shanks


Originally from New York, Laura was drawn to yoga and movement at a young age. At the advice of a dance teacher, she began a regular Bikram practice at the age of 14 that evolved into a personal practice of her own. Over time, and through experimentation with various styles of yoga, her practice blossomed beyond the physical, becoming an all-encompassing, spiritual discipline. 


A self-proclaimed “yoga nerd,” Laura’s practice includes not only Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, but expands off the mat to traditional forms of yoga including Bhakti, Nada, Kriya, Raja, Jnana, and Karma.  

She completed 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training in Classical Hatha Yoga and Meditation at an Ashram in Lake Atitlan, Guatemala, as well as 300-hour Yoga Teacher Training and 100-hour Plus Yoga Teacher Training in Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga at Kranti Yoga in Goa, India.


Having fallen in love with Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga, she went on to complete Yoga Teacher Training with Kristina Karitinou-Ireland on the Full Primary Series (this is where she met Joanna) and has practiced with several senior Ashtanga Vinyasa teachers around the world, including, John Scott, David Williams, Radha Warrell, Pierre Seghir, Jörgen Christiansson and Louise Ellis.


Laura is a dedicated student of Saraswathi Jois at K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute where she continuously studies asana, chanting, philosophy and Sanskrit. She also studies traditional Ayurveda with Dr. Ranganathan.


Laura has completed 4 teacher training courses, each with a comprehensive anatomy unit.  Since her trainings, she continues to take workshops in anatomy regulatory.  She has studied with Dr. Robert Lamport (practitioner, anatomy teacher, and chiropractor) and taken several workshops, including one on the spine with Joe Miller.  She has also taken David Keil’s online anatomy courses.  Most recently, she completed a course through New York University on the physiological systems of the body and yoga’s impact on them. Through self-inquiry and a fascination with the mind and philosophy, she also developed a passion for the fascial body.  She is a big fan of Dr. Thomas Myers, who’s work she continues to study regularly.

A journalism major in college and former fashion publicist, Laura’s inquisitive nature gave way to a strong interest in philosophy and self-inquiry which turned into a lifelong passion. She is grateful to share this passion with others teaching Yoga Philosophy, Ayurveda, Guided Meditation, Anatomy, Myofascial Release, and Yoga Asana. Laura has taught in more than 15 yoga teacher training courses.

Laura teaches Meditation, Philosophy, Pranayama & Ayurveda in the 300 hour yoga training courses.

Meet the Alpha Yoga team

Yoga Teacher Training (YTT)

Martin Sittek

  • Instagram | Martin Sittek
  • Facebook | Martin Sittek

E-RYT 200

Joanna Vladescu

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  • Facebook | Joanna Vladescu

E-RYT 500

Laura Shanks

  • Instagram | Laura Sutton Shanks
  • Facebook | Laura Shanks

E-RYT 500

Rachel Berryman

  • Instagram | Alan Ellman
  • Facebook | Rachel Berryman

E-RYT 500

Eleanor Gisele

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  • Facebook | Eleonor Gisele

E-RYT 500