NANCI SHAKTHI NARDONA, 500-Hour E-RYT, RPYT, YACEP, CMT, DOULA-IN-TRAINING, has been passionate about yoga since discovering it on an Ayurvedic meditation retreat in 1990. Her studies began in Los Angeles with Rod Stryker, Shiva Rea, Ana Forrest, and especially Bryan Kest. Moving to San Jose in 1998, she studied with Kent Bond, Joyce Anue, Robin Sale, Scott Blossom, Paul Grilley, Cheri Clampett and Arturo Peal, Samantha Shakti Brown and Kenny Graham.  Nanci holds an advanced certification in Hatha yoga, focusing on breath awareness, structural alignment and relaxation as the health of the body is reflected by one’s state of mind.  She instructs all ages and stages of life specializing in ~ Prenatal Yoga,  Mommy & Baby Yoga, Mom’s Yoga, Prenatal & Postnatal Couple’s Yoga & Massage, Gentle Yoga, Alignment-Based Hatha, and Restorative Yoga.  Nanci teaches yoga and meditation in San Jose and leads workshops in the Bay Area.   She travels and studies with Vaidyaji Priyanka, an ayurvedic practitioner from a 722-year old lineage of Ayurvedic experts, to teach yoga and meditation.  Nanci is currently learning the Vedic healing art of Marma with Vaidyaji Priyanka.  In May 2016, Nanci became a doula-in-training to further support her pregnant mamas.  In 2017, she co-created IN HARMONY PRENATAL TEACHER TRAINING with Lorena Martinez Michel, 500-Hour E-RYT.  Their school is registered with Yoga Alliance.  Together they share their collective wisdom teaching and mentoring new prenatal yoga teachers.


Her interest in Ayurveda led Nanci on her healing arts path. Healthy foods and exercise have been a way of life since her vocal lessons in New York at the age of 19. She realized the quality and strength of her voice was enhanced by a strong and healthy body. Studying anatomy or anything pertaining to the human body would interest her. In 1995, she became a Certified Massage Therapist. While studying yoga, she trained in Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido. Nanci believes that the focus, balance, and inner-core strength of yoga helped her achieve her Black Belt in 1996. She taught martial arts to adults and children for Master David Park in his studio in Encino, California. Moving to the Bay Area in 1998, Nanci left behind her entertainment career as a legal assistant (while moonlighting as lead singer of a rock band!) to continue her massage studies. In 1999, she was a Massage Therapist at Watercourse Way in Palo Alto, and soon became a First- and Second-Degree Reiki Practitioner. Ayurveda and a Vedic lifestyle play an important role in her life and in her teaching.


During her pregnancy in 2001, her commitment to yoga grew. Nanci attributes her easy pregnancy to staying active in her yoga practice.  Yoga and motherhood go hand-in-hand as parenting is the truest form of surrender.  Being a mother is one of the most precious experiences in her life.  Like yoga, as parents we quickly discover that we have no control over anything or anyone.  As her yoga teacher, Bryan Kest, would say, “We have control of our effort but never the result”.  So we take it all moment by moment, breath by breath, and see how the body unfolds.


When Gia was 18 months old, Nanci was diagnosed with cancer.  Letting go was again a lesson for her.  Although an unpleasant experience, it made her a more compassionate teacher who understands physical limitations, changes, and challenges of her students.  Nanci believes her illness was her spiritual “wake-up call”.  She got back on the meditation cushion with her twice daily TM meditation, and her morning Sadhana.


While pregnant with her daughter, Giavanna, in 2001, Nanci became certified in Whole Birth Prenatal Yoga, and certified in Postnatal Yoga in 2002, both with Robin Sale.  She began teaching soon after her daughter’s birth.  To further her yoga education, she enrolled in a 200-Hour Teacher Training.  It was then she was diagnosed with cancer.  Her spirit gave her the strength to continue her training as she received chemotherapy, radiation, and two surgeries, scheduling her cancer treatments around her training schedule.  It was especially sweet when Nanci completed her first 200-Hour Teacher Training with Yoga Educational Seminar (Y.E.S.) teacher Joyce Anue in 2003-2004.  She is Registered Yoga Teacher and member of Yoga Alliance.  She completed her certification in Restorative Yoga with Cheri Clampett and Arturo Peal in 2009.


With her experience as a body worker, she loves giving her students hands-on adjustments and massage almost as much as they love to receive it!  Nanci is a proud member of Bay Area Birth Information (BABI), an organization which supports and educates new families and mothers-to-be.  She believes a good yoga teacher is one who continually learns and shares this knowledge with her students.  In 2012 Nanci completed an Anusara Immersion with Samantha Shakti Matthews and Kenny Graham, followed by a Teacher Training with Samantha Shakti Matthews and Kenny Graham in March 2013, logging another 300 hours of continuing education.  She achieved her 500-Hour RYT certification in February 2015 with the Balanced Action Yoga School guided by Anusara-trained teachers Samantha Shaki Matthews, Kenny Graham, Siri Peterson Cavanugh, Alice Kennedy, and Kelly Blazer.  Since teaching yoga in 2002, Nanci has become a 500-Hour E-RYT, having well over 10,000 hours of teaching experience, crossing that milestone in 2015.