Courtenay S. Brown, E-RYT 500, YACEP®

Founder & Owner

A former avid runner (turned avid cyclist), Courtenay took her first yoga class in 2007, after getting hurt training for her first marathon, when a physical therapist recommended it as a great way to cross-train. “After my very first practice, the moment I got up from the mat, I felt overwhelmed by a deep sense of gratitude. I felt like I had an encounter with God.” That sense of gratitude continued to prevail and 13 marathons later, she discovered that yoga was the perfect way to cross-train for life. She completed her 200-hour certification in 2014 and her 300-hour certification in 2019, both under the guidance of her Guru Dana A. Smith at Spiritual Essence Yoga. 

Courtenay is a Reiki Master,  Vibrational Sound Therapy Certified Practitioner, Certified Mental Health First Aid Provider, and Purpose Coach. She is the creator of Gospel Yoga Flow ®, a vinyasa flow, geared to creating a "worship experience" on the mat. Gospel Yoga Flow ® focuses on strengthening the spirit and the mind, as much as the body. 

A book editor/publisher by profession, she holds BA and MA degrees in English. She is also a wife and proud mother of two daughters. She is a Diamond Life Member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. (Fort Washington Alumnae Chapter), and a member of the Black Yoga Teachers Alliance and the International Association of Reiki Professionals.

Courtenay Brown

Our Teachers

Theresa Speed, RYT 500 

Senior Architect

Theresa started her yoga journey in 2015 when it was offered through the wellness program at her job. Her love for yoga grew so much that she developed a desire to teach. She completed her 200-hour certification in 2018 at Embrace Yoga DC and her 300-hour certification at Spiritual Essence Yoga in 2022. She wants her students to view yoga as more than a workout but a practice that can be used everyday.

Rachel Johnson, RYT 200


Rachel began her yoga journey in 2018, seeking relief of body aches and to increase flexibility after medical treatments. Over the course of time, she has discovered that yoga as a lifestyles offers so much more for the mind, the body and the spirit. In order to deepen her practice and share her love of yoga with others she received certification as a Gospel Yoga Flow® instructor in 2019 and completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher training at Shabach Yoga in 2020.

Caprice Nathaniel, RYT 200


Caprice began her yoga journey in 2004 while taking a class in her local gym. Although she was immediately drawn to the “flow”, she became conflicted due to her Christian faith. In 2018 she combined her love of teaching children and yoga by becoming a certified children’s yoga instructor through Kidding Around Yoga (KAY). She also discovered Gospel Yoga Flow® (GYF) at Shabach Yoga and became a certified GYF instructor in 2019. She completed her 200-hour training  at Shabach Yoga in 2020. Caprice believes true wellness can only be achieved through healing of our physical, mental and spiritual body.

Linda Pray, RYT 200


Linda began her yoga journey in October 2017 when she began practicing at home with an app on her tablet. She quickly fell in love but felt like she needed some hands-on assistance with proper form. She found Shabach Yoga the following month and quickly became a monthly member. She feels that in addition to increasing flexibility and strength, she has gained mental calmness as well. Her goal is to live the yogic lifestyle off the mat as well as on the mat.

She received her Gospel Yoga Flow® certification in July 2019 and completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training at Shabach in March 2021. She wants her students to know that yoga is for everyone, no matter what your age is or what shape you might be in. 

Trenace Richardson, RYT 200


Dr. Trenace Nikki Richardson

Trenace took a yoga classes here and there in the past, but in 2018 she found Shabach Yoga through a Google search and her life has not been the same. As a Christian minister, international speaker, and vocalist, Trenace had been led to believe that yoga and all things associated with it were not of God. By simply daring to experience yoga for herself, Trenace had a God encounter that has brought her faithfully back to her mat ever since.

In March 2021, Trenace  completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training under the direction of her Guru, Courtenay S. Brown, at Shabach Yoga. In her spare time, Trenace enjoys nature walks, biking, running, hiking, singing, reading, and spending time with her husband and two children.

Talaya S. Simpson, RYT 200


Talaya began her yoga journey in 2019, when seeking God for peace and healing in what seemed to be unconventional means. Every time she came to the mat, God met her on those four corners and she never turned back. The grace, peace, and healing love she encountered with every movement and breath were undeniable. For Talaya, yoga became a journey of inner healing and peace, and an expression of the fullness of God's love.

Talaya completed her Yoga Teacher Training at Shabach Yoga in March 2021. She sought her certification to be able to help guide others who desire to heal and to assist those who desire to experience God on and off the mat. When she felt the pull to become a yoga teacher, her immediate response was "I am available."

Talaya is a certified Reiki practitioner.  She loves tennis and cycling. She is an avid poet and writer, actress, and the proud mother of two amazing young adults. 

Nanette Evans, RYT 200


Nanette found yoga over 10+ years ago when she was looking for a way to balance in her vigorous workout regimen. 

In 2017, she decided to join Shabach Yoga Studio after experiencing several tragic events and began practicing on a regular basis. While in this space, she found inner peace with body, mind, and spirit. She has a deep passion for yoga and wants to share her experiences, and use her gifts to help others through holistic wellness.

Nanette is Reiki II attuned and completed her 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training in March 2021. She enjoys yoga, meditating, walking, boating, reading, dancing, and spending time with family. She has a loving son and three grandsons.