Owner, Dance & Fitness Instructor
After a successful career in corporate finance, Jill has realized her dream and returned to her true loves… dance and fitness. Beginning dance at the age of four and never looking back, Jill’s accolades include 8 years as a member of the San Francisco 49er’s Goldrush Cheerleaders, where she also served as line captain and choreographed for the team, performing in England, Japan and at four NFL Superbowls. She spent 5 years as lead Instructor for United Spirit Association (USA), being a U.S. Latin Ballroom Champion winning in both Latin and Ballroom Divisions while competing in Blackpool, England, and teaching alongside celebrity pop star and professional dancer/choreographer Paula Abdul. She is passionate about creating a space where people feel welcome, supported and moved.
Classical Ballet Director/Instructor
Mindy Pedlar has worked professionally as a Singer, Dancer and Actor. She toured with Serendipity Singers, performed in musical theater productions throughout the state and was a featured singer/dancer in Juliet Prowse’s night club act. Mindy is a lifelong student of Classical Ballet. She began teaching basic ballet at Synergy in 2006. She now teaches 4 classes a week to accommodate beginning, intermediate and advanced level students; recognizing the progress of her long time students and welcoming new students desiring to enter the wonderful world of Classical Ballet.
Peggy is a long-time resident of Aptos and has an extensive dance background concentrated in jazz and ballet. She taught cardio dance under the direction of Frank Duncan at DanceSynergy, where she also served as dance captain, choreographer and performer in Frank’s annual Cabaret Musical Revues from 2008-2013. Some of her choreographic credits include Cell Block Tango, Show Me How You Burlesque, Sing Sing Sing, Mein Herr and On Broadway. Peggy loves teaching and wants to share her joy and love of dance with others in an encouraging and supportive environment.
Liza Manley has been a student of classical ballet since the age of six when she began her training in the Vaganova method. She has lived in Santa Cruz for over a decade now, and continues to take as many ballet classes as possible, always striving to improve her technique and artistry. It is with this mindset that she loves sharing her passion for ballet, and all of its beauty and challenges, when she teaches beginning through intermediate ballet classes. When she is not dancing, she is in her classroom working as a local school teacher in PVUSD.
Foam Rolling, Classical Ballet
Zari Le’on is an artist and educator who challenges perceptions of either/or. A lone wolf in lineage, heritage and praxis, Zari’s work in liminal space bleeds into her performance, technique classes, scholarship and healing modalities. The late historian Hayden White, called Zari a “radical visionary,” an accurate description, as every mode of Zari’s work challenges existing notions of what “is.” The participant is plunged into an intellectual and/or physical articulation that uses the voices of both colonizer and liberator: Whether Ballet or vernacular, slang or scholarship, Zari uses languages that seek to tame, while simultaneously liberating the proverbial savage beast that humans ignore through 9-5 practices of counter-intuition
Yoga Sculpt, Pilates HIIT
As an escape from the daily life with three boys under 5, Tricia turned to yoga as a workout as well as a mental reset so that she could be the best mom possible. After practicing Hot Yoga for 5 years, she was inspired to take her first teacher training. Inferno Hot Pilates was a new and challenging experience and she continued on the Yoga education pathway and completed trainings in Yin Yoga, Vimana Yoga, Yoga Sculpt and a 200 hr RYA certification.
At an early age growing up in Santa Cruz County, Shaunah found a second home in theatre arts. Shortly after graduating high school, she found her rhythm and developed a love for dance. Starting with Zumba, which she found gave her the freedom to move and express her “goofy sassy” self. Then connecting with our own Zari Le’on who spotted her talent and encouraged her to dive deep into dance aside her.
Under Zari’s mentorship, Shaunah studied Dunham dance technique, jazz, funk, Afro and soul, while simultaneously training in hip hop and African dance at Cabrillo College. All leading her to Synergy where she taught Zumba, youth hip hop and Cardio Dance.
Shaunah moved to Los Angeles for a few years where she fell in love with Dancehall. Ultimately realizing her heart remained here in Santa Cruz, she returned with an exceptional arsenal of dance experience, which she pours into her amazing JAM classes.
Limalama, Kickboxing for Fitness
Rea (pronounced Ray) studied and instructed martial arts for many years within the Bok Fu system in San Jose where he rose to the brown belt level. While stationed in Germany, Rea was a member of the U.S. Army boxing team and later participated in the AAU Golden Glove Tournament at the Cow Palace in South San Francisco. He has been training in Lima Lama with Senior Master Rudy Tuiolosega for several years and holds his Lima Lama black belt. Rea loves sharing his martial arts knowledge and skills to increase his student’s mental and physical strength leading to a state of empowerment.
Jazz Fusion Dance
Reina began dancing at the age of 3 and studied ballet, tap, jazz, bellydance and Hip Hop. Born in Watsonville, she was part of the National Champion Cheer team in 2005 at Aptos High School. Also a talented singer and actress, she performed extensively for 11 years with Kids on Broadway, starring in many shows and serving as an assistant choreographer. Reina became a certified Zumba instructor in 2013 and is a school teacher in Santa Cruz County.
Tammy is a longtime Santa Cruz County resident, whose dance experience spans decades. While earning a degree in psychology, an independent study of dance/movement therapy allowed her the opportunity to teach her methods at the University of California Santa Cruz and led her into a 20-year career teaching children with special needs.
Inspiring movement in children with physical and mental limitations has made an indelible impact on her, the lives of her students and fueled her passion and belief in the power of dance.
Tammy has studied and taught ballet, modern, jazz and lyrical and is trained in belly dance and Indonesian dance. She has also performed in local musical theatre productions, including Cabaret, Evita and Pippin.
Tammy says the only thing greater than the gift of dance is the honor in teaching it!
Yin & Restorative Yoga
Olivia started teaching yoga while completing her B.S. degree in Health and Wellness Promotion at the University of North Carolina Asheville. Soon after graduating, she then went into 200 hour yoga teacher immersion training through Asheville Yoga Center. She enrolled in 300 hour advanced studies yoga teacher training in August of 2020, and is scheduled to graduate with a 500hr RYT certification in December 2021. Olivia has training in various styles and lineages of yoga including Vinyasa, Bhakti, Kundalini, Yin, Restorative, Anusara, and trauma informed teaching. When Olivia first came to her mat for a yoga practice, she felt humbled by the practice and felt the healing power (even though often uncomfortable) that came from just connecting into her breath and opening up to befriend her body, instead of being at war with her body. That is why she decided to teach. Olivia hopes to provide a space for participants to explore, to feel, to be vulnerable, to play, to be curious, and to be present with what comes up, whatever that may be. Olivia believes in the healing power of yoga, from becoming more comfortable with discomfort, allowing ourselves to just be, becoming more present more of the time, and to take what is uncovered on the mat into our lives off the mat.
Originally from Watsonville, dance has been an important part of Lindsay’s life since childhood. As a young kid, Lindsay was found dancing tap, jazz and hip hop with local dance choreographer Nancy Coolidge. In high school Lindsay was a member of Aptos High’s Dance Team and in her Junior and Senior year was on the Hip Hop & Breakdancing team known as the Flava Unit, under the direction of the late Gary Ray Kendall. In college Lindsay danced with UCSD’s Hip Hop Dance Team, Ascension. She became a Zumba Instructor in 2009 and taught Hip Hop classes at local studios, which was a dream. After taking a break to get married and start a family, Lindsay is ready to get back in the studio; enter Synergy, and the dream begins yet again.
Senior Master Limalama
Rudy Tuiolosega was officially promoted to Senior Master/Soke, 10th degree black belt, Malamalama in June 2004. Senior Master Rudy Tuiolosega has over 40 years of experience in self defense both as a competitor and instructor. He has traveled extensively and has done numerous seminars worldwide specializing in combative arms and well as specialized self defense training for police officers, and anti-terrorist groups.
Senior Master Rudy Tuiolosega has a deep love and respect for his father’s teachings and holds a deep commitment and passion to carry on the quality and integrity of Limalama to the new generation of practitioners. He speaks Samoan fluently and his love of his Samoan culture is reflected in his teaching. He believes Limalama will enrich the lives of those who study this unique martial arts system and asks of his students, “What can I do to benefit you.”
Dance & Certified Trainer
Lifelong athlete and performance artist, Caitlin is an accomplished singer, dancer, actor and teacher. Her list of credits include being a member of the breakdancing crew Total Khaos, competitive Bellydancing Troupe Baktiari, choreographer and instructor for Dancenter, Tannery World Dance and Cultural Center and Santa Cruz Performing Arts and featured dancer and flying monkey in Cabrillo Stage’s The Wizard of OZ. Also a very experienced personal trainer and fitness instructor, she has worked at Spa Fitness Watsonville, Bay Avenue and 41st Ave, Santa Cruz CORE Fitness and Rehab, BodyWorks, and for herself conducting her own fitness camps since 2007. Caitlin loves to dance and is incredibly passionate about helping people lead healthier, happier more balanced lives.