Meet the Marci’s Downtown Yoga instructors!

Marci Crawford

Ashtanga Vinyasa – RYT 200, ROCKET™ 50, Beginner Yoga

Marci practiced yoga for over 11 years – most of those years, she practiced Hatha (gentle) and vinyasa flow. When she came to It’s Yoga for teacher training, she learned Ashtanga yoga and continues to teach that, along with teaching beginner yoga. Marci completed her RYT 200 hour teacher training in September 2013 at Its Yoga Toledo, and also trained in their 50 hour Rocket™ system in February 2014. She loves to share the love of the practice with others! Marci likes to create a comfortable, encouraging space to learn yoga and she encourages you to have FUN!!! If you are not laughing and having fun you are doing it wrong! LOL!

Julie Van Hove

Julie has a MS in Kinesiology and Health Promotion, and is also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist. She began teaching yoga in gyms over 10 years ago, while also teaching several high impact group fitness classes each week. She enjoyed the quiet break, healing nature, and stress relief she received from having a regular Ashtanga practice. To expand on her knowledge and personal practice , Julie completed the 200 hour Ashtanga training through It’s Yoga in 2013. She fell in love with the flow of “The Rocket”, and really appreciated learning the history and traditions of this ancient practice. She uses yoga to help her live a healthy life, both physically and mentally. Her classes are built on modifying the asanas to fit and gently challenge the individual.

Name  Judi Pollock


I began practicing yoga before I even knew it was yoga.  As a child, I did yoga with my friends in play.  I also performed yoga poses in dance classes at about 8-12 years of age.  I took another surge in my practice when I was in college during modern dance classes and rehearsals, as well as, in stage movement class and play rehearsals. During my work life, I added a practice of Transcendantal Meditation.  I studied yoga for years with video tapes and Dvd’s.  I taught randomly to my friends throughout my life.  I received Yoga Alliance certification in November 2016.  I taught privately and then began teaching here in May of 2017

Name  Mike Zerner


In 1976, at the age of 22, as an up and coming tennis player and in preparation for going to Europe to play on a tour, I had the great honor to meet and play tennis with many great tennis masters such as Torban Ulrich, Frank Sedgeman, and others.

It is because of this experience that I first heard of yoga.  While waiting to play tennis with Torban, I noticed he was doing various stretches, but none I had ever seen before.  Then he would sit still for awhile  He explained that it was a form of stretching and meditation known as yoga.  Little did I know then, that yoga would soon become a daily part of my life.

As a result of a sports injury that I suffered while playing overseas, I had to have a major back operation at the age of 22.  After the surgery, my doctors said that I had lost nerve senses in my right leg and foot, and to make matters worse, they suggested that I have many more back surgeries.  With that I quickly turned to alternative methods.  Since then I have had 15 operations over various parts of my body, in addition to being a 2 time cancer survivor.  I can personally thank the practice of yoga and mediation for helping me cope with my health issues, and making me feel strong and healthy, on a daily basis.

Breath and meditation are basic parts of yoga.  By focusing on our breath and quieting our mind, one can overcome many physical and mental obstacles.  With life moving so quickly, isn’t it important to be healthy,  calm and collected, so as to enjoy every precious moment?

Healing through yoga and meditation can be, and is, often life saving.

While trying to deal with my pain and aching body, I remembered Torban Ulrich and the yoga moves he had previously showed me.  I was in search of a yoga teacher.  With great fortune I found a most wonderful yoga instructor in Ethel Mercer’s University of Toledo class.  She created a class of fun loving, and caring students.  Since then I have had the great fortune to have studied with Lillias Folan, Amrit Desai, Doug Keller, Doug Swenson, Todd Norian, Ann Greene and many other wonderful yoga teachers.

I am truly blessed to practice and teach my passion.

Name  Shay Ferguson


I started doing yoga in the 70’s in college.  After retiring in 2016, I went to Stillwaters yoga Teacher training.  My favorite type of yoga is Yin.  Here we focus on opening the ligaments, cartilage, and tendons of the body by holding a pose for a few minutes.  This allows these more plastic parts of the body to open up, increasing flexibility.  I have taken 30 extra credit hours of yin yoga training and also attended the Himalayan Institute for a month in the SEVA program. This is a work/service program.  Additionally, I lead a guided meditation once a month at a local spiritual center and am a Reiki master.  My hobbies include gardening, pottery, and wine making

Name  Beka Shaheen


Beka is currently studying Bioengineering at the University of Toledo.  She has experience in orthopedics.  She loves to apply that to her classes through correct joint alignment and show the importance of preventative health care.  She has been practicing yoga since 2010, and completed her 200 RYT in July of 2017.  Her classes have a lot of variability, but follow a Power yoga flow.  Practitioners of all levels are welcomed, as with every posture is finding their own intensity with ease.



Biography Text

  • Do your practice and all is coming.

    Sri K. Pattabhi Jois
    Founder of Ashtanga
  • The space is very welcoming – no judgements! Movements that intertwine the body, mind and soul…best people ever!

    Cindy Betz
    Marci's Downtown Studio Student

Have you fallen in love with yoga yet? Check out our class schedule and join us today!