get to know us

Our Story & Team

At Yogaheart you’ll find a collective of instructors who are passionate about teaching yoga. We strive to offer you high-quality yoga classes in a safe and caring environment. The idea of Yogaheart was born of the wish to open a centre from which we could share the practices that have enriched our lives. It was from humble beginnings, a lot of hard work, the support of our students, and the dedication of our teaching team, that the dream has come to fruition. Yogaheart now exists in a beautiful space and offers all who walk through her doors the opportunity for transformation and healing through the ancient practice that is yoga.

Our Studio

With stunning views of the sea and sunrise, our bright and spacious space allows practitioners to enjoy the benefits of a studio while feeling in touch with the natural beauty of Walker Bay. We are often treated to sightings of dolphins, whales, and marine bird life. Yogaheart is fully equipped with everything you need for safe and happy practice. We offer a wide variety of classes and styles of yoga. As a centre of learning, we host workshops, specialised courses, and events. Private classes for individuals and groups are also available. Our studio is easily accessible in the centre of town, has ample parking, and is in walking distance of our best restaurants, hotels and the beautiful cliff path.

Our Team

Pauline Leppan

Pauline began her yoga journey while travelling through India in 2003. She has been keenly exploring this vast subject ever since. She is a certified Iyengar Teacher (Iyengar Institute of South Africa, 2017). She also certified to teach the Prana Vashya Primary Series in Mysore, India, 2007. David Jacobs, Jurgen Meusel and Vinay Kumar served as her primary mentors.

Pauline started teaching yoga in Hermanus in 2008. It was her passion for sharing the benefits of yoga that prompted her to open the doors of Yogaheart in 2012.

Pauline regularly attends workshops with local and international teachers. She enjoys learning fresh approaches to the subject but maintains great respect for yogic tradition.

‘I am deeply grateful to all my students – who teach me so much, and for the dedicated, and supportive team of teachers who make up the Yogaheart collective.’

Dean Leppan

Dean’s practice started in 2003 with a month of intensive practice in Northern India with a wandering yogi named Zoltan. Dean’s yoga practice has continued to evolve ever since. He has been certified to teach by the Iyengar Institute of South Africa (in 2017) and the Atmavikasa Centre of Yogic Sciences in Mysore, India (in 2007)

Dean has been teaching, alongside Pauline, since they arrived in Hermanus in 2008.

‘I’ve always been drawn to the more traditional practices that have a clear lineage to the roots of yoga. I focus on holding poses that are well aligned and the breath. I continue to be inspired by many teachers including my wife Pauline, David Jacobs, Jurgen Meusel and Patrick Hattingh.’

‘My biggest inspiration is the dedicated students who continue even when the practice is tough – that’s when the magic happens.’

Kathleen Booyse

Kathleen entered the world of yoga after eight years of travelling, learning photography and working as a producer in South Africa and abroad. She spent five years at The Shala Cape Town Yoga School completing her 200 Hour and 300 Hour Yoga Alliance Registered Teacher Training. In those five years, she also managed the studio full-time and helped create the Girlchild Project which aims to supply sustainable sanitary wear to girls in the Earthchild Project.

Kathleen has trained with and studied under multiple teachers and experts in the field of Yoga, including Patrick Creelman, David Jacobs & Jürgen Meusel, and Keith McFarlane. She also had the privilege to be privately tutored for 5 years by Tamsin and Tom Sheehy, owners of The Shala and experts in their fields.

‘Teaching Yoga is not my career. Teaching Yoga us my Purpose. As a teacher and life-long student, I pledge to undo all that is false and step into all that is True.’

Victoria Young-Pugh

Victoria made an easy progression into the practice of yoga after fourteen years of classical ballet classes. After two years of dedicated practice, she trained at Ananda Sanga Yoga Centre in Somerset West, under Dr Anne and Dr Martin Combrinck, concluding her 200hr Yoga Teacher Training in 2019.

‘They were fantastic mentors, and their patience and gentle guidance inspired me to become a full-time yoga teacher. Pauline and Dean have also been great mentors, building on to my practice with their knowledge of Iyengar Yoga.’

‘My inspiration is the students I teach and seeing how much yoga benefits them. It is lovely to watch people grow and become more confident and joyful through practising yoga. My mission is to keep learning, growing in my own practice, continuing to teach and, hopefully, inspire others.’

Emma Dainton

Emma immersed herself into yoga in Thailand after living a fast pace lifestyle as a personal trainer in central London. It was a much-needed journey of self-discovery, healing and growth from the everyday pressure of modern-day life. She spent a year learning kriya, philosophy, and other courses at a Tibetan Tantric Yoga school.

In 2012 she moved to Hermanus and started teaching yoga to private clients. In 2017 she completed her 200hr Teachers Training Course at The Shala in Cape Town with Tamsin and Thomas Sheely. She completed a further 300hr TTC at the Shala in 2020.

Emma is inspired by her students and loves to teach with lots of energy and positivity. She includes chakra work, mudras, and music in her classes.

‘My mission is to help individuals connect to their bodies through breath and movement and to fall in love with their souls.’