Yoga Teacher Training from The Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center of Hudson
"Ohio's oldest Yoga school" founded in 1978.
We are a "Registered Yoga School" at the 200 hour level (RYS-200) with Yoga Alliance.
Matt Lerner, E-RYT-500

Matt Lerner, E-RYT-500
Director of Yoga Teacher Training


Matt Lerner

Matt grew up in Hudson and is a 1974 graduate of Hudson High. Shortly after Matt moved to Madison to study at the University of Wisconsin, a friend gave him the book Be Here Now by Ram Dass. He was intrigued and began practicing Yoga and meditation on his own, following the simple instructions in the book. Matt took his first formal Yoga and meditation classes when he returned to college in the fall of 1975. He began teaching Hatha Yoga the following year, and began teaching meditation and related techniques in 1980.

Matt lived at the Himalayan Institute fpr six months in 1979, and another six months in 1982. He was a member of the Himalayan Institute Teachers Association (HITA) and completed all their coursework. In 1984, Matt was certified to teach Hatha Yoga by Yogiraj Behrmaji. Behramji was given the title "Yogiraj" ("King of Yoga") by Swami Rama of the Himalayas, who was the founder of the Himalayan Institute. Behramji had mastered Yoga in India under the guidance of B.K.S. Iyengar during the 1960s. Matt's teaching style is a blend of the gentle, meditative practice of the Himalayan Institute and the precise alignment of Iyengar style. In addition to having had close personal relationships with and being inspired by Yogiraj Behrmaji and Swami Rama, Matt also studied Jnana Yoga closely with Swami Shantanand Sarawati.

While studying Pschology at UW, Matt was appointed president of the Yoga Meditation Society of Madison, an affiliated center of the Himalayan Institute. He led the Yoga Teacher training program there, and the principals that he had learned became the foundation for the formal Yoga teacher training program at the the Spiritual Life Society. Matt moved back to Hudson in 1982 and soon began teaching along with Larry Terkel.

Matt has a BS in Psychology and MBA in Management from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

This symbol is for 'aum' or 'om'.

Yogiraj Behramji

Swami Rama of the Himalayas

Swami Shantanand Sarawati

Matt practices and teaches the classical eight‑limbed Astanga Yoga
(a.k.a. Raja Yoga)
as codified by Patañjali
in the Yoga Sutras. and passed on by Swami Rama, Yogiraj Behramji, Swami Veda, and Pandit Rajmani.

Yoga Teaching Experience:
  • Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center of Hudson, Hudson, Ohio
    1982‑current: Director of Yoga Teacher Training; Yoga and Meditation Instructor; Webmaster; Founder of www.YogaTeacher.org

  • Kent State University (Wellness Center/Adult Ed.), Kent, Ohio
    2002: Yoga Instructor

  • University of Akron Adult Education, Akron, Ohio
    1989‑1990: Yoga Instructor for Adult Education

  • University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin
    1980‑1981: Yoga Instructor for Adult Education and student "Minicourses"

  • Yoga Meditation Society of Madison, Madison, Wisconsin
    1980‑1981: President, Yoga and Meditation Instructor
    1976‑1980: Yoga Instructor

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Yoga Related Studies:
  • Yoga & Meditation School, Rockford, IL and San Diego, CA
    Matt studied with Yogiraj Behrmaji (Behram Guard) from 1978 until 1995 and was certified by Behrmaji to teach Yoga in February, 1984. Behramji became a close personal friend, and was one of the teachers who has had the deepest influence on Matt's Yoga experience (along with Swami Rama of the Himalayas).

  • Himalayan International Institute, Honesdale, PA
    Member of residential program for 6 months in 1979 and again in 1982. Activities included daily instruction and practice in hatha yoga, meditation, pranayama, diet and nutrition and related programs. Member of H.I.T.A. (Himalayan Institute Teachers Association) from about 1975 to 1985. Completed all classwork required for teacher certification. Appointed by Swami Rama to run the Yoga Meditation Society of Madison and to teach Hatha and meditation in the Himalayan tradition. Completed additional ten-day residential Teacher Training refresher in 1985. During this time and during time at the Yoga Mediation Society of Madison, Matt studied intensely with most of the senior teachers including Swami Rama, Swami Veda Bharati (aka Pandit Usharbud Arya), Pandit Rajmani Tigunait; Yogiraj Achala (aka Charles Bates), Swami Ajaya, Dr. Rudolph Ballentine, Dr. Justin O'Brien (aka Swami Jaidev), Dr. Phil Nuerneberger, Dr. John Harvey, Dr. John Clarke

  • Yoga Meditation Society of Madison, Madison, Wisconsin (an affiliated center of the Himalayan Institute)
    Began formal study of Yoga and Meditation in 1975. Began teaching Hatha Yoga in 1976. President and instructor of Yoga and Mediation, 1980-1981. Directed Himalayan Institute sponsored Yoga Teacher Training Courses with Madison Staff, Yogiraj Behrmaji, and the guest teachers listed above from the Himalayan Institute.

  • Various other studies include:
    • Ongoing study of Jnana Yoga with Swami Shantanand Sarawati since  1990.
    • Ongoing study with Manju Pattabhi Jois when he visits The Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center of Hudson
    • Workshops with: ; Manouso Manos; Dean Lerner; Rama Birch; Sam Dworkis; Bobbi Goldin; Judith Lasiter; Amrit Desai; Lilias Folan;
    • Forty day residential program at 3HO Ashram in Madison, WI (1976) and additional ongoing studies of Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan Singh
    • Yoga Trip to India for three weeks in September, 1984, with Swami Rama and Swami Veda
    • Meditation studies with Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan, head of the Sufi Order International, 1980-1990
    • Week at the Sivananda Ashram Yoga Retreat, sometime in the late 1980s
    • Initiated into Transcental Meditation (TM), 1975
    • Worked on staff at almost all the "International Congresses" on Yoga sponsored by the Himalayan Institute in Chicago and New York from 1975 to 1985.
    • 1st Annual Midwest Yoga Conference, June, 2000
    • Ongoing study with colleague Larry Terkel at The Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center of Hudson since 1982

  • E-RYT-500 "Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher" at the 500 hour level. Registration is current and may be verified at the YogaAlliance website at www.yogaalliance.org

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AUM. In the beginning was the word...

Work Experience:
  • Automated Packaging Systems, Inc., Streetsboro, Ohio (www.autobag.com)
    2002 - current: Executive Vice President
    2000 - 2002: Vice President of Marketing
    1995 - 2000: President, Comstar Printing Solutions (Div. of APS)
    1989 - 1995: Marketing Manager
    1982 - 1989: Market Analyst (1982); Sales Rep (1984); Customer Service Manager (1985)

  • Shakti Bookstore, Madison, Wisconsin
    Manager 1978-1981
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Education - University of Wisconsin at Madison
  • 1981: MBA in Management

  • 1979: BS in Psychology
    Graduated with distinction with membership in Psi Chi (Psychology honor society) and Phi Beta Kappa (academic honor society)


    Matt leads chanting during our Sunday morning meditation/worship
    and is a founding member of Shantiband

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 YogaTeacher.org in conjuntion with
 The Spiritual Life Society and Yoga Center
 at The Old Church on the Green
 One East Main Street
 Hudson, Ohio  44236   USA
Contact us at
Classes take place at the Old Church on the Green in Hudson

© 2005-2015 YogaTeacher.org and the Spiritual Life Society and  Yoga Center of Hudson.   All rights reserved. Last update 10/23/2015.