Clinical Yoga Specialist

Mary Pappas-Sandonas, MS, INHC, is a nationally and internationally recognized yoga teacher, certified nutrition health coach, and an exercise physiologist.  Certified as an Iyengar junior I intermediate instructor she has been practicing and teaching both general classes and specialty workshops for over 20 years.  She has also taught corporate workshops on Stress Reduction in the Workplace and Compassion Fatigue.  In the past, Mary has worked as a research associate in reproductive endocrinology and in schizophrenia and depression.  She has worked extensively as an exercise physiologist in cardiac rehabilitation and as a certified personal trainer.  At Casey Health Institute, she continues her inspired and purposeful work by helping patients regain their health and sense of vital well-being through yoga.  Patients who have worked with Mary appreciate her detailed, methodical and encouraging approach to teaching and treatment, delivered with characteristic compassion, sensitivity and humor.

As a Certified Yoga Specialist, Mary works at Casey Health as part of a collaborative team of clinical practitioners who treat patients with a variety of medical conditions and illnesses.  She has successfully used yoga to treat patients with a variety of medical conditions, everything from low back pain, depression, anxiety, infertility, heart disease, high blood pressure, and digestive issues to metabolic syndrome, and diabetes.  In the past, Mary has initiated and developed yoga programs for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Veterans Administration while co-directing their fitness facility.

Since 1992, Mary has trained with a renowned group of Iyengar yoga teachers and yoga therapists in the United States and India, including BKS Iyengar and the Iyengar family, John Schumacher, Patricia Walden, and Lois Steinberg, among many others.  She has studied with the Iyengars in Pune, India.  She is passionate about the practice of yoga as a spiritual and physical endeavor involving the aspects of joyful, playful curiosity and personal exploration.  She believes that yoga is a vehicle for personal transformation, self-empowerment, and service to others, while being an instrument of healing and an illuminative means to self-discovery and a joyful presence, and the peace and joy that we have within us is the peace and joy that the world receives–which makes the world a more peaceful place for all.

Mary has actively participated in the Iyengar community while serving on the board of IYASE and serving as Hospitality Co-chair for the Southeast region’s Maitri conference.  Mary has created yoga videos including “Prenatal Yoga Complete” and Yoga Complete for Weight Loss, which was reviewed by Yoga Journal as “an outstanding practice companion for all levels of students, (even if you don’t need to lose weight).

She holds a BS in Psychology/Neurobiology and an MS in Exercise Physiology from the University of Pittsburgh.  When not standing on her head, she can be found spending quality time with her amazing daughter and playing in the great outdoors.  She enjoys ice skating, hiking, knitting, writing and cooking for family and friends.

  • Low back pain
  • Scoliosis
  • Sciatica
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • High or low blood pressure
  • Cardiac issues
  • Diabetes
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Cancer and its treatments
  • Irritable bowel syndrome and irritable bowel disease
  • Asthma
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Fibromayalgia
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • PTSD
  • Infertility
  • Peri-menopause/ menopause symptoms and other gynecological conditions, can all benefit through the therapeutic aspects of Iyengar Yoga
Through the modified use of Iyengar yoga postures (asanas), breathing techniques (pranayama) and meditation, a hands-on, individually based program is designed for each patient based upon individual needs, abilities and responses, as well as on the highly trained and experienced yoga specialist’s observations. Props such as blankets, bolsters, straps and specially designed furniture pieces help make the poses more comfortable and safe as well to bring the physiological benefits of the poses to your current level.
Initial Consultation (90 minutes) – $125


  • 4 One-on-One Yoga Therapy Sessions – $399 (includes 1 – 90 minute consultation, 3 – 60 minute yoga therapy sessions)
  • 8 One-on-One Yoga Therapy Sessions – $799 (includes 1 – 90 minutes consultation, 7 – 60 minute yoga therapy sessions)
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Health & Wellness Classes:

See a full schedule of our health and wellness classes taught by our providers.