Ioana (founder/ president of KELANI)
Biography – 2013
Ioana - wife and mother of three daughters who she repeatedly refers to as her inspiration- is the founder and president of KELANI® international. She created and began developing KELANI® in 2007. The word KELANI® is a derivative of her older girls' names: Keona, which means God’s gracious gift in Hawaiian and Leilani, which means heavenly flower in Hawaiian. In April of 2008 she opened her own boutique holistic fitness studio in downtown Windsor called Studio Kelani, Pilates and Polynesian Movements. She owned and operated her studio until July of 2013 after which she decided to close her physical doors to focus full time on developing and spreading the wings of her KELANI brand.
Ioana differs from many other professionals who have spent their lives active, in that she grew up with extremely unhealthy eating and lifestyle habits. She often jokes when she does her talks and presentations that she actually does not like to ‘workout’, she just likes to dance. She urges everyone, especially the young, to find something they love and not to be discouraged if there are certain disciplines they don’t thrive in. As a child she wishes she was exposed to the disciplines the youth of today is exposed to. Through a combination of inspiration, education, holistic nutrition, joyful movement and mind-body-spirit connection and the support of her loved ones, Ioana is now on a mission to help spread the joy she has found and embraced in holistic wellness.
Ioana is a direct descendant of the troupe members of ‘The Royal Polynesian Revue’ - a world famous Polynesian group. In 2007 she decided to follow in their footsteps while adding a contemporary flare to traditional Polynesian dancing- hence the birth of KELANI®. In December of 2010 she proudly released her first KELANI ®DVD which was filmed on an island.
So what exactly is KELANI®? KELANI is an exhilarating holistic Polynesian inspired experience. In the true spirit of Polynesia, Ioana wanted to create something which was uplifting and simple. KELANI is not only a class, it is a way of thinking and living. In a blog Ioana writes called “The Life of a KELANI® girl’ Ioana documents her ‘KELANI philosophy’ as it applies to her and her family’s journeys.
In a class setting, KELANI® consists of intoxicating tribal beats, evocative hip shaking and lyrical grounded movements with an island twist which will sweep your body, mind and spirit away leaving you drenched and your soul renewed. Participants of KELANI® can expect to experience joy in this freedom of movement, dancing for the sake of dancing and kicking off their shoes to feel the rhythm of their souls!
As well as being a holistic nutritionist, Pilates instructor, personal trainer and of course KELANI® instructor, Ioana has performed and been involved in several shows within Ontario many of which have been for charity. Ioana's love for the arts lies primarily in music and any form of musical expression including dancing and singing. The KELANI® philosophy is “health and happiness from the inside out” which Ioana lives and breathes and tries to pass on to everyone she meets.
In January 2013 Ioana launched her Kelani Instructor Certification program which is CanFitPro (Canadian Fitness Professionals: the largest fitness organization in Canada) accredited providing 4 FIS CEC’s and 4 NWS CEC’s. To date she has certified several KELANI instructors between Windsor and Toronto. Ioana is constantly adding to/ updating certification dates/ locations.
Ioana has also been adding more KELANI® master class/ workshops around Canada. These are updated on this website (www.kelaniworld.com) as well as KELANI® international facebook page at www.facebook.com/studiokelani.
It is Ioana’s hope and dream that KELANI® spread nationally and internationally. She wants KELANI® to be known as a safe space where people of all ages, backgrounds, physical fitness levels, shapes and sizes, can come enjoy a freedom of movement and experience a taste of Polynesia. When she was a teen, uncoordinated but still loving music and dancing, Ioana would shut the door to her room, blast her 'hippy' music (as her dad would call it) and dance. Just dance for the sake of dancing. She would feel happy, emotional, exhilarated and euphoric. She wants KELANI® to be that same space for people. She wants them to come into her room and dance with her! Ioana wants KELANI® to be synonymous with community, holism, joy, fun, laughter, simplicity, being grounded and connected: mind-body and spirit.
Ioana will also be expanding and adding more branches of her KELANI® ‘coconut tree’. She has just developed her newest KELANI® class - KELANI® Fire™ (a hot sizzling fiery version of her KELANI® class) with new classes on the way including ‘KELANI® Jungle™’.
Ioana has been featured on several local media outlets including CTV national news, CBC national news and CBC radio and continues to make news in her city of Windsor, Ontario (Canada) as she spreads the spirit of KELANI®. An example of her most recent feature on CTV National News was her ‘World’s Largest KELANI® Class’ where she filled a large hall with a record breaking number of participants. Footage from this news-piece can be viewed by following this link: http://windsor.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=889061.
It is the mission of KELANI® to spread the spirit and culture of Ioana’s ancestors, the Polynesians, and for people to experience the essence of KELANI® which is soulful joy in simplicity and finally for KELANI® to be a household name across the globe. Already well known in her city of Windsor, with Ioana’s spirit, determination and support of her growing KELANI® family she could be well on her way!
* KELANI & PILATES classes/ workshops
* self-esteem youth workshops
* KELANI/ Polynesian inspired vibrant performances for all events
* private KELANI & PILATES training
* in-home holistic nutritional consultations by registered holistic nutritionist
* KELANI instructor certification
KELANI is an exhilarating holistic Polynesian 'movement'. Take off your shoes & feel the rhythm of your souls...
KELANI mission: To spread the spirit and culture of our ancestors, the Polynesians.