Teachers - Pine Rivers Yoga - Brisbane, Australia


Ruth Campbell (Dip IYTA,YA)

Senior level 3 Yoga Australia teacher

Ruth qualified as a Yoga Teacher in 2001 after studying with the International Yoga Teachers Association. Since then she has continued her studies with Yoga for Health Australia gaining an intermediate level diploma in Yoga Therapy. She has also trained with Yoga Trinity in the principals of Ayurveda to enhance her Yoga therapy skills.

In 2010 Ruth continued her Yoga Education by attending an Intensive one month course with Master Teacher Nicky Knoff and qualified to teach the Discovery and Foundation levels of the Knoff Yoga Program.She is a Yoga Australia Registered Senior Teacher.

Pine Rivers Yoga runs an 18 month Yoga Teacher Training which is registered as a 350 hour course with Yoga Australia.  Ruth is the Principal trainer for the teacher trainees.

Recent addtional trainings have included a level 2 training and a further 200 hour Yoga Australia registered training is scheduled for 2024.  

Ruth maintains a continuous approach to professional development having recently attended trainings with Heather Agnew of Yoga Trinity, Lance Schuler of Inspya Yoga, Flo Fenton of Intouch Yoga and qualifying as a Meditation teacher through the Gawler Foundation in the Yarra Valley.

Yoga Australia

Her general teaching concentrates on the traditional approach to yoga of strengthening the body to calm the mind, and to improve the overall sense of well-being that comes from a happy mind in a healthy body. She believes that yoga and meditation are great tools for dealing with all of life’s challenges.

Ruth’s students come to yoga for many different reasons. She caters for the elderly; for sportspeople needing particular strengthening or flexibility; for people with back pain or injuries; for those recovering from illness; for mothers during pregnancy or after giving birth; and for many people looking for a safe physical practice that offers the additional benefits of releasing stress through focused relaxation. Yoga is indeed for Every Body.

Read more about Ruth in this 2023 article in the The Village Pump.

Nicola Smith (Dip PRY), level 2 Yoga 
Australia teacher.

Nicola discovered yoga in her early twenties and was drawn to the feeling of calm it gave her, in addition to the physical challenge it offered. Although her practice was initially sporadic, after becoming a mother and returning to Australia from an extended period overseas, she returned to yoga and began attending classes regularly at Pine Rivers Yoga, starting with a beginner's course.

 Yoga quickly became essential to Nicola's life, providing a much-needed space for physical and mental release. Her passion for holistic health led her to pursue studies in natural therapies, and eventually, she decided to share her love of yoga by qualifying as a yoga teacher. In 2017, Nicola completed an 18-month teacher training program with Pine Rivers Yoga, becoming a Yoga Australia Registered Level 1 teacher with specialist knowledge in Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga. 

More recently, Nicola has completed Pilates Matwork training with Studio Pilates, which has enriched her understanding of movement patterns, allowing her to utilise these techniques within a Pilates practice and bring them into the yoga space. She believes in providing her students with a well-rounded practice that focuses on both strength and flexibility.

Nicola has also added a training in Meditation techniques to her repertoire of knowledge and having completed 500 hours of training, and 500 hours of teaching over 5 years is now a level 2 Yoga Australia registered teacher. 

 With her extensive training and passion for holistic health, Nicola is committed to helping her students achieve physical and mental well-being through Yoga, Meditation and Pilates.

Melinda Felder (Dip PRY)

The benefits of alleviating chronic back, shoulder and neck pain has kept Melinda loyal to yoga. A diligent practice has eased the physical and healed the emotional associated pain. This personal experience has inspired her interest in yoga for spinal care, focusing on safe spinal mobility and correct postural alignment.

Practicing yoga for over 10 years, Melinda is a Yoga Australia Registered Level 1 Teacher and has completed a Back Care workshop with Sal Flynn.

After having completed specialised study in Healthy Ageing Through Yoga, Melinda’s passion is about improving quality of life on and off the mat.  Her Hatha and Vinyasas flow style is to strengthen the body and connect with the breath, to calm the mind. Tuning us to handle life’s challenges, improve our vitality and most importantly, feel refreshed!

Melinda aims to make her classes a sanctuary of inclusion, recognizing that everyBODY is anatomically unique. Her classes are accessible to people of varying ages, levels of health and fitness.

She believes that progression in yoga, and life, is more important than perfection. Students are encouraged to work at their own pace and to practice safely and confidently within their own ability.

Melinda’s emphasis is on alignment and finding space within the body, whilst creating a body, mind and breath connection.  Integrating pranayama (healthy breathing practices) and mindfulness into her classes to improve physical mobility, emotional resiliency and mental disposition.

Personally, she loves the concept of balancing the energy within and around us and empowering others to be the best version of themselves.

Melinda looks forward to guiding students to find a sense of calm and equilibrium from which their own journey of healing, nourishment and joy begins!

Heidi Richards (Dip PRY)

Heidi has been a student of yoga for 15 years, starting yoga in 2009 as alternative wellness and healing practice. For Heidi, yoga offers guidance, peace, comfort, and mindfulness to a productive work-life and stability to her overall lifestyle. Having juggled full-time work with the completion of undergraduate and postgraduate university degrees in Early Education and Human Resource Management, from the early 1990s to 2000, Heidi gravitated to yoga to find a place where she could focus on the present moment. Feeling the direct benefits of her practice Heidi wanted to gain a deeper understanding of yoga and offer this practice to others as an opportunity for them to feel freedom from the fluctuations of the mind.

Commencing yoga studies in 2018, Heidi has deepened her connection to yoga completing Level 1 and 2 Yoga Teacher Training (500 hours) with Ruth Campbell at Pine Rivers Yoga, Restorative Yoga Teacher Training (50 hours) with Marian Cavanagha, Meditation Teacher Training with BIYOME (110 hours) with a minor in Yoga Nidra, and Yoga Therapy Teacher Training (690 hours) with the Yoga Therapy Institute. Heidi is currently completing mentoring and supervision with Sal Flynn (Yoga Therapist, Psychotherapist, Counsellor).

Heidi has specialised in yoga psychology and yoga for stress, anxiety, and fatigue. These specialties are complimentary to Heidi’s 15-year career in Human Resource Management. Through people and culture management, Heidi understands firsthand how yoga can benefit people from all walks of life and believes that yoga is accessible to everyone! Heidi has a passion for how yoga can support mental wellness and will continue formal learning in the integration of yoga and mental health.

Commencing a Masters of Counselling in 2023 at QUT, Heidi sees a strong alignment with the integration of yoga, yoga therapy, and counselling.

Heidi teaches with awareness, kindness, non-judgment with a focus on developing harmonies of the mind and body.

Cherrie McMillen (Dip PRY)

Cherrie has been practising Yoga for over twenty years. Having benefited greatly from Yoga, particularly in times of high stress, Cherrie deepened her practice by undertaking an 18-month Yoga Teacher Training Course registered with Yoga Australia in 2017. 

Cherrie enjoys teaching a flow style of Yoga that connects movement with the breath, strengthens muscles, releases tension from the body and reduces stress. Cherrie has also trained in Yin Yoga (where poses are held for longer to target the body’s connective tissue) and often incorporates Yin poses into her classes.

Cherrie enjoys sharing the passion she has for her own yogic life with her students and is looking forward to completing her Level 2 Teacher Training Course in 2020.

Belinda Berrington (Dip PRY)

Belinda has always had a deep passion for wellness, and an innate sense of discipline, which is what drew her to the practice of yoga over 20 years ago.

She found the physical aspects of the yoga asanas helpful in staying grounded and healthy, and finding calm through meditation has allowed her to manage the ups and downs of life.

Belinda has long been a proponent of vegetarianism, having embraced the lifestyle since she was a teenager. Her commitment to healthy living extends beyond her diet, and she is deeply invested in helping others improve their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing.

Coming from a theatre background, Belinda brings a wealth of skills and techniques to her teaching, which allows her to connect with students on a deeper level. Her passion for helping others is evident in her approach to teaching, and she is dedicated to creating a supportive and nurturing environment for her students to learn and grow in.

After graduating with a Diploma of Yoga Teaching from Pine Rivers Yoga, Belinda has been teaching a variety of styles including chair yoga, beginners, multi-level, vinyasa, and senior floor classes. Her versatility and adaptability allow her to tailor her teaching to meet the unique needs and abilities of each individual student.

In her classes, Belinda emphasizes the importance of breath work, alignment, and mindfulness, and encourages her students to explore their physical abilities, whilst also practicing self-care and compassion.

Ruth Plowes (Dip PRY)

Ruth found yoga when looking for a way to manage stress in her corporate career in 2014. Since discovering the practice, Ruth has become a dedicated practitioner and teacher of vinyasa, hatha, and restorative yoga, with a particular passion for beginners.

Ruth began her yoga studies when she started to realize the mind and body benefits of yoga and developed a fascination for the anatomy and possibility of building strength and mobility for health and injury recovery. As a certified yoga teacher, she is known for her patient and supportive teaching style, and loves to see her students progress and grow in their practice. She is committed to making yoga accessible and beneficial to everyone.

Ruth's interest in wellness began before her yoga practice, and is focused on plant-based cooking and nutrition. She is passionate about using food as medicine and promoting a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. Ruth's expertise in plant-based cooking has also led her to lead workshops and classes on healthy eating and meal planning.

Continuing her studies, Ruth is dedicated to deepening her knowledge of yoga and wellness, and regularly attends courses and workshops on topics such as back care, healthy aging, yoga therapy, philosophy, breath, and systems of the body. This enables her to share her insights and knowledge with her students and provide them with the tools to improve their overall wellbeing.

Overall, Ruth is dedicated to helping others cultivate mindfulness, self-care, and inner peace through the practice of yoga and a healthy lifestyle, recognizing the long-term benefits it can bring to both the mind and body.

Victoria Sutton (Dip PRY)

Movement had always been a passion for Victoria and in 1993 she qualified as a Personal Trainer and Group Fitness Instructor alongside her career as a Directors PA. Working for the Multiple Sclerosis Society in London exposed Victoria to the debilitating effects of the disease and the correlative effects on those affected by MS by keeping a strong body through yoga practice, as well as a good diet. Witnessing such amazing results was inspiring and she integrated these movements into her work and personal life. 

Over the years, Victoria further studied psychology, counselling and clinical nutrition, as well as continual professional development as a personal trainer. The philosophy of Yoga also became enchanting, it was evident through her experiences that it was a good way to live and a holistic approach to the well being of a person, she was keen to learn more.

In 2017, Victoria was put into a restorative pose for one hour. It changed everything and she realised that integrating a personal style of yoga into her own daily movement and into her clients sessions was not enough, she needed to be a yoga teacher and bring restorative yoga to her community. Finally making space for her level 1 training in 2018 at Pine Rivers Yoga, this amazing experience allowed exposure to the multi faceted practice of yoga. It has awoken a strong spiritual connection and she has fallen in love with exploring the philosophy, mantras, meditation and nidra.

Victoria personally practices both Yin and Restorative yoga and believes that the gentle practices are her craft, having the ability to see and sense what a person needs to let go. As well as completing her 25 hour restorative training, she has been working alongside Marian Cavanagh in her workshops and trainings and will continue to learn from her mentors and peers in Australia and overseas, long into the future.

While she mainly teaches Restorative Yoga to smaller groups and individuals, Victoria has been working with Ruth Campbell (principal at PRY), at beginners Yoga, Pendicup Place in Warner. Being a stickler for technique with a sharp eye for detail, she loves beginners and the opportunity to introduce the practice of yoga to the community in a methodical yet fun way. 

Victoria has extensive experience with human movement, having worked over time with thousands of bodies, all shapes, all sizes. She has particular experience with female bodies, those carrying extra weight, older bodies and disability. Victoria can recognise an individual’s ability and can modify movement accordingly, she inspires confidence and belief in ‘any body’ with positive encouragement and a sincere smile.

Jill Button (Dip PRY)

Naturally finding the mat was not how Jill became a Yogi!  In her younger years, she deemed Yoga too slow for both body and mind.  After years in Gym’s, feeding a running addiction, and living a very busy Corporate life, she recognised her body wasn’t coping with the day to day as well as it used to.  Mentally she was running faster than physically and she needed to find a way to slow things down. 

Attempting Yoga again, the gentleness and focused breathing practices this time offered space and healing in her life.  

So taken by the benefits she was experiencing, and already a part-time Personal Trainer and Gym Instructor, Jill saw an opportunity for Yoga to complement her teachings completing Level 1 Teacher Training in 2017 and Level 2 in 2022 - both with Pine Rivers Yoga. In 2018 Jill completed studies in Healthy Ageing through Yoga and in 2019 Restorative Yoga with Marian Cavanagh. Jill also holds current certification in Mental Health First Aid.

While recognising that movement and fitness does not come naturally to everyone, Jill looks to promote functional fitness, particularly as we age, and to this end has undertaken specialist study in Healthy Ageing through Yoga.  As a teacher, her aim is to help you build confidence, strength and resilience in both body and mind.  While always Yang at heart, her personal struggle to find and appreciate the Yin in life will forever be a work in progress.  

She looks forward to working with others, at their level, and passing on the benefits of the ancient art of Yoga.