The donation studio has its own website now. woot woot!
Please visit ashevilledonationyoga.com
We want as many people doing yoga as possible. We envision a more peaceful world when there is more yoga being practiced in it. We are here to be of service.
We are at 239 S. Liberty St. at the corner of E. Chestnut and S. Liberty streets. (Just north of downtown, off of Merrimon Ave., in the same neighborhood as Greenlife and Staples) This is the location Asheville Yoga Center has been in for 10 years. All regular on-going classes have moved a few doors down to 211 S. Liberty St. A whole new schedule of donation based classes took their place at 239. Please note the donation center is cash and check only, no credit cards are accepted.
Check out ashevilledonationyoga.com/class-schedule
for the latest schedule
We will keep this up to date. Join our newsletter to stay in the loop.
Just to be clear.
211 refers to 211 S. Liberty St. it is our newer location and we refer to it as the Mothership. These are the same classes as always with your favorite teachers at a brand new, state-of-the-art yoga studio.
239 refers to 239 S. Liberty St. where we hold pay-what-you-can donation based yoga classes. As of January 1, 2012 these are all new classes in our old location. We refer to 239 as the Donation Studio.
Both of these locations are on the same street between E. Chestnut and Orange Streets, walking distance apart, literally 5 doors down from each other.
In short, it is pay-what-you-want yoga. The suggested donation is a sliding scale of $5-$15 per class. We don't turn anyone away for a lack of funds. Those who can give more help balance out those who have less to give. We thank you for supporting our intention to offer yoga classes to our community.
Even though we've offered no cost yoga to the community since 1997, we've never advertised free yoga. We've always viewed offering yoga as an exchange of energies. There is more meaning and value that way, on both sides of the exchange. Most people pay money, but some pay with their time by becoming a worker member and helping out in some way. Ask your teacher how you can get involved. We can always use help keeping the place clean and checking in people for class. We have occasional work days, join our newsletter to stay in the loop.
We do encourage you to examine your priorities when it comes to paying for class. Is there something in your life you could give up that not only would save you money but would increase your health? Are you currently paying for any sugar, caffeine, alcohol or distractions you could give up? We want to support you in greater health and wellbeing. We also want to make our service sustainable. The cool thing is the more yoga you do, the more you want to take care of yourself. Please don't let financial concerns get in the way of a regular practice. Come get your yoga on!
We pay rent and feed our families with what comes in. Half of the money goes toward overhead for the studio. The other half goes to the teacher. We believe in paying our teachers and not asking them to volunteer. We believe it creates a higher level of commitment on the teacher's part and a higher quality experience for all. Everything comes back to the ever-unfolding exchange of energy. Sunny and Stephanie Keach, the owners of the Asheville Yoga Center, are offering the space in service; they don't receive any of the money coming in for donation classes, it all goes back to the teachers and overhead for the studio.
Only the donation studio is donation based. We have two studio locations, both on S. Liberty St. While both are Asheville Yoga Center, they are run differently. Our 211 location has classes that range in price from $5 to $15. Only the donation studio is pay-what-you-can sliding scale.
Discounted class series can only be used at 211. In order to keep overhead to a minimum at the donation studio, we don't have a computerized check-in system like at 211, nor is there check in staff, only the teacher. This means you can not use your class series at the donation studio. It is a drop in only basis.
The donation studio is a more straightforward version of the mothership location at 211. It is a lean and mean yoga studio machine. The donation studio is cash and check only, no credit cards are accepted. It is drop in only. No membership or series happen there.
Only at 211 will you find information and registration for any of our many workshops,, teacher trainings and yoga events. There is front desk staff on hand most of the time at 211 for any questions you may have. You will need to go to 211 to buy any yoga retail. Yoga clothes, mats, props, books and DVDs are all at 211. There is a full weekend schedule of classes at 211, and 239 has fewer weekend classes to make room for our teacher trainings and workshops.
Some of the same teachers teach at both locations, but in general the donation studio is where you can find experienced teachers new to town and or to our studio. We've had a waiting list of wonderful teachers who would love to teach at the Asheville Yoga Center for years, but no room on our schedule for more classes. By opening the donation center we now have many more class times available for more teachers to teach.
The Asheville Community Yoga Center is a non affiliated entity located in Woodfin, NC. We are the Asheville Yoga Center founded in 1997 and located on Liberty St., just north of downtown.
Imitation is the Best Form of Flattery
The two organizations share a similar name and similar mission and Asheville Yoga Center is aware there is confusion due to this. Asheville Yoga Center has chosen to believe imitation is the best form of flattery and leave it at that. This sort of thing happens when you are a leader in a field. AYC accepts that and appologizes for the confusion. Asheville Yoga Center supports wholeheartedly the offering of more yoga for all, it's our mission. You can find out more about Asheville Community Yoga at ashevillecommunityyoga.com
Meet our AYC Donation Teachers
Please Visit ashevilledonationyoga.com/teachers
Amanda Hale has been a student of yoga since 1999, and began teaching in 2008. Though she has been inspired by many teachers over the years, she received her Yoga Alliance certification through the study of Bhakti Flow with Rusty Wells. Every time she steps onto her mat, she is reminded that this short, sweet life is meant to be a celebration, with her practice gently encouraging her to stay open to love, grace, devotion, and gratitude. Her playful, vigorous flow classes will build strength and balance on and off the mat as she gently encourages students to find a balance between peaceful surrender and energetic devotion, and to have a good time NOW.
Amy Kalyn Sims, a native of Florida, is a 500 hour registered yoga instructor and professional freelance photographer living in Asheville, NC. Amy came to yoga at a time in her life when she was seeking something more. What she discovered was a true path toward health and happiness. After practicing for 3 years, Amy completed the Sankalpah Yoga 200 hour teacher training with Mary Dana Abbott & Isaac Peña and began teaching yoga in NYC. After teaching for 2 years, she decided to further deepen her practice through the Laughing Lotus Advanced Teacher Training, studying with Dana Flynn and a host of other amazing teachers.
Amy comes from an artistic background and tries to bring this innovative aspect to the mat. Her vigorous classes incorporate a creative vinyasa flow threaded with breath, meditation, mantras, and a passion for music.
After a decade of living and working in Manhattan, Amy and her husband decided to seek a quieter lifestyle back in the South. She is honored to be a part of the Asheville Yoga Center Family and looks forward to serving the Asheville Community. For more on Amy, please visit http://www.amykalynsims.com
Autum Kirgan: Being a graduate from the Cayce/Reilly School of Massotherapy in 2004, she is a certified Massage Therapist and is currently pursuing her Masters in Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine at Daoist Traditions in Asheville. Autum found a love for the practice of yoga in 2006. She learned very quickly that yoga made her life more joyous and abundant. She believes that the mat is a place of empowerment, awareness and reflection, as it gives her space to break down barriers so she can take what she learns on the mat and apply and share it. Being a student of life, the world and cultures, she dove into teaching in 2011 with Baron Baptiste’s Level One in Hawaii and then received her 200 hour certification with Lalit Kumar at Himalaya Yoga Valley Yoga School in McLeodganji, India, while traveling through Asia.
Her practice consists of Power Vinyasa and Ashtanga. Her teachers and inspirations are Johnna Smith of Charlotte, NC, Baron Baptiste, Ashtangi’s Cathy-Louise Broda & Glenn Butcher of Purple Yoga in Honolulu, HI, and David Swenson. From her teachers' and her own knowledge of the body, she also has studied the art of assisting and adjusting yoga asana. Learning to deepen her own practice through this art, she believes assisting and adjusting are very empowering and safely bring more possibilities to the mat.
In her HOT Flow class she takes students through an empowering fluid sequence of Sun salutations, standing, balancing and floor asanas. Students will connect breath with movement, build strength and find integrity in their practice. This is a Hot class, please bring a towel, yogitoe or rug as you are bound to break a sweat. Come hydrated and ready to Shine!
Ethan Burns - Thinking he was in great shape, Ethan went to his first yoga class in 2005 unable to touch his toes, and when a class of “just stretching” left him more sore than he’d ever felt before, he knew he had to learn more. His love for yoga would bring him in contact with many excellent teachers, and eventually in 2008 would lead him to India where he practiced and studied intensely for 9 months. He’s been teaching ever since.
A YA Certified Teacher, Ethan focuses his classes on the practical side of yoga. His classes are vigorous, challenging, and fast-paced, but also emphasize safety, listening to your own body, paying attention to subtlety, and increasing mindfulness. Classes begin with a good warm up and standing series, bringing students through a balanced and progressive series of postures that naturally lead into and prepare for one another, and of course finish with blissful rest. A great class for everyone, cross-training athletes and dedicated yogis alike, the heat and vinyasa flow will build your strength, stamina, flexibility, and focus— opening doors to new possibilities both on and off the mat. More info at www.yogacowboyphotography.com
Gaia Boyd: Through her studies of various massage modalities and yoga therapy, Gaia has continued to develop her understanding of the physical, spiritual, and energetic components of the bodily experience. She believes a person’s deepest learning comes from her or his own willingness and effort to be present with the immediate moment. Gaia is on her way to being a certified Phoenix Rising Yoga Therapist, which is a therapeutic form of self-study using yoga poses, and sees clients in her office in West Asheville. She believes in your body's ability to hold and recall emotions and memories, and that awareness of your body brings inner and outer healing.
Gaia's Gentle yoga class is an exploration of subtle energy in your body, therapeutic repetitive movement, and restorative poses.
Izzy Shurte: Izzy first fell in love with yoga ten years ago while at college in Burlington, VT, but it was not until 2010 when Izzy began a committed daily practice to help cope with the sudden loss of her father. Izzy has felt first hand the tremendous healing and transformative powers yoga offers and is ecstatic to be able to share with others. A graduate of Asheville Yoga Center’s 200 HR teacher training program and incoming student of AYC's Classics of Yoga 500 HR program, Izzy is grateful to have studied with Stephanie Keach, Andrea Dyer, Michael Johnson, David Williams and Sadie Nardini.
Izzy’s Hot Flow class offers an exploration of yogic philosophy to help students locate a contemplative personal intention. As Izzy’s greatest teachers are deeply rooted in the Ashtanga tradition, ujayii breath along with the bandhas are especially emphasized. Feel certain that you will leave this class with a complete understanding of your mula bandha: where it is, what to do with it and why! Expect to work hard in Izzy’s class, with fun, inspiring music, multiple ways to press against your edges, ample humor and thought-provoking ideas to help you live your yoga on and off the mat.
JaneAnne Tager aka Pretzel Kids Mama: I always enjoy the opportunity to introduce children to Pretzel Kids yoga classes. My name is Jane Anne Tager and I have been practicing yoga for a decade and a half. It has really changed me physically and mentally. I would have to say all of the changes are positive.
I began to explore kids yoga when my daughter developed asthma. I thought learning about breathing and practicing breath control might benefit her when her asthma would flare. It definitely does help her when she remembers to use the exercises.
I have three children of my own, ages seventeen, thirteen, and ten. All three kids have at different oenjoy some yoga on their own (not cool to practice with mom), especially stretching; the boys were fond of down dog races when they were younger. I love teaching kids yoga and hope that classes are not only playful, but also improve strength, balance, flexibility and offer a heightened awareness to their young minds and bodies. Over the past years, I have noticed that most kids make significant progress in a short period of time with regards to their balance and strength, especially core strength (belly). Best of all, they seem to be very proud of what their bodies can do.
I have trained with Marsha Wenig, in Time Magazine and Yoga Journal and Sonia Sumar, an amazing yogi whose gift is using yoga as physical (and emotional) therapy for special needs children. I have been teaching kids yoga in yoga centers, pre-schools and elementary schools, and dance studios for over ten years now. Every class is different, as is each student. I have enjoyed most every one of them. Teaching kids yoga has been a continuous learning experience and it is just plain fun for me too!
My educational background includes degrees in child psychology, speech pathology, and a master degree in training and facilitation. I have my both 200 and 500 level certification through the Asheville Yoga Center. I also teach pre-natal and gentle yoga.
Recently I have been concentrating my “continuing yoga education” in anatomy and therapy I have had many fine teachers here in Asheville. We are fortunate to have such a rich yoga community here. BUT, I must say my best teachers are my students.
Julia Taylor, BA, Anthropology and Dance at UNCA. Julia has enjoyed teaching Flow and Yin styles since she completed the AYC Yoga Teacher Training in 2004. Her teaching style is nurturing and grounded. Accessible to all levels, her classes gracefully incorporate breath awareness, meditation, fluid and invigorating vinyasa flow, and the deep, longer held poses of yin yoga. She seeks to encourage compassionate self-discovery and evoke empowerment in her students.
Siri Karta Kaur (Joanne Barry) began her yoga journey twenty years ago as a student of Iyengar. She moved to Asheville in 2005 and discovered Anusara and Kundalini Yoga here at the Asheville Yoga Center. Desiring to deepen her understanding of yoga, she began the Anusara immersion program as preparation for teacher training. At the same time, her devotion to the Kundalini yoga practice increased. She completed the level one teacher training in Kundalini Yoga here in Asheville in 2011. Siri Karta feels called to share the practical application of this ancient wisdom.
Kathleen Hahn first turned to yoga looking for something therapeutic for her tired, aching, imbalanced dancer body. She was sucked in when she realized that it actually made her feel better, more balanced, more body aware, more centered and more mindful. Imagine that! Kathleen feels extremely fortunate to have studied with Jonathan FitzGordon in Brooklyn, NY, who passed on his love of anatomy and helping to heal people's bodies through his diverse studies and keen intuition. Kathleen likes to challenge bodies with her creative flow, encouraging students to safely try new poses or old poses in new ways and holds the intention that people discover something new about their practice, joyfully!
Kendall Williams aims to create an introspective and connected space for students, moving the class into poses with soft and direct guidance. It is with joy and lightness that she shares this practice. Incorporating a variety of breathwork, slow vinyasa flow, and yin she facilitates the shift into a well balanced state. She enjoys reading her favorite sections of various spiritual texts and poetry to refocus on the heart of yoga--self realization. Honored by every opportunity to share this practice with others, Kendall feels immense gratitude for the limitless growth offered on this path and the opportunity to support others in their dedication to their personal healing and health.
After graduating from UNC in 2006, with a deep passion and craving for authentic experience Kendall traveled to India. Propelled by a fascination with transpersonal psychology and eastern religions, she naturally discovered yoga. Through watching the breath, body and mind, she has found immense freedom from the constraints of traditional western perspectives. Her desire to share this expansive belief system with those suffering from addiction compelled her to return to the Himalayas in 2010. While studying meditation and yoga, she met her Guru and finds infinite inspiration in his evolved consciousness . She attended the Asheville School of Massage and Yoga and currently has a private massage practice one door down from AYC. Kendall teaches yoga and runs the recreation and adventure program at a progressive transitional living home for women in recovery from addiction.
Kim Chi is an ex-gymnast who initially started taking yoga classes to keep her flexibility and get a good work out in a way that was more gentle on her body than gymnastics. She fell in love with yoga as she discovered space around old injuries, the joy of playing with her edges and a new connection with her body. Her classes are created to be fun but challenging, usually concentrated on playing and connecting to feeling into each of the poses and how your body responds to the poses.
Forrest Yoga is a moderately paced class in which building strength, and connecting to breath, integrity and spirit are highlighted. Students are encouraged to listen to their bodies and find balance between being gentle while enjoying intensity. Core strengthening is always highlighted and on occasion there's fun with gravity surfing, backbends and big hip openers. The room is heated from 80° - 85°, with options to up-level or down-level and lots of hands on adjustments will be offered.
Kimberly Drye began her yoga studies in Asheville in 2001 while attending UNCA. She considers herself lucky to have stumbled upon the rich source of the talented teachers in the Asheville yogic community. A graduate of Stephanie Keach’s 230 hour teacher training at Asheville Yoga Center in 2008, she is currently continuing her 500 hour certification training with Lillah Schwartz of Lighten Up Yoga where she is pursuing deeper knowledge of yogic alignment principles. Kimberly is energetic, personable, and enthusiastic to share with you all the benefits yoga has to offer. Her classes are focused on awareness and the preservation of each moment. Breath control, relaxation techniques, and meditation are coupled with asana to bring students into a state of mindfulness in their practices that hopefully spills out into their everyday lives. Students of any and all levels and abilities are welcome in Kim's classes. Kim believes that yoga can help every individual lead a fuller and more satisfying life. To learn more about Kim, visit her website/blog: herenowyoga.com.
Lia Del Priore first fell in love with yoga 5 years ago when she went to a class with a good friend. Living in Philadelphia, yoga came in and out of her life until she stumbled across the website for a teacher training program in Portland, Oregon. Looking to deepen her practice and follow her passion, she contacted the proprietress of the studio, Lisa Mae Osborne, who immediately encouraged her to drop everything and come study at the Bhaktishop School of Yoga. Lia earned her 200 Hour certification in 2008 and taught at several studios in New Jersey before moving to Asheville. Since then she has also earned her Masters of Social Work, and blends Western therapy with the therapeutic practice of yoga in all of her classes. She is a Licensed Master Social Worker, with a specialization in Clinical Practice with Individuals and Families.
Lisa Sherman: A yoga practitioner since 2000, Lisa’s practice is rooted in the dynamic vinyasa flow styles of Ashtanga and Jivamukti. Coming from a background in Chinese medicine, she seeks to balance these yang styles with the softer, yin forms of qigong and sitting meditation. Lisa gained her Yoga Alliance 200-hour certification through the Blooming Lotus Yoga School, a well-rounded teacher training program, influenced by many great yoga traditions including hatha, vinyasa and yin.
As a long-time student of Eastern wisdom traditions, Lisa believes that yoga is a way to cultivate body, mind and spirit to enable the practitioner to be of better service to all beings. Having had first-hand experience of the transformative power of yoga, she is passionate about communicating these insights so that others can enjoy their benefits. As a yoga teacher she provides a firm foundation for students by clearly explaining the mechanics of asana, pranayama and meditation. She aspires to provide a supportive relationship that encourages students’ growth and inspires them with a passion for transformation.
Her classes build strength, stamina and flexibility using playful, energetic flow sequences, while emphasizing moment-to-moment awareness through detailed alignment and attention to the breath. They generally consist of grounding and intention setting, followed by sun salutes, standing poses, balances, twists, forward and back bends and inversions, rounded off with a well-deserved relaxation.
Lynn Spurling discovered yoga in 1997 while living in South East Asia and immediately fell in love with it. Her dance background made it even more appealing and yoga has inspired her to assimilate it into her daily life in mind, body, and soul. It was when she moved to Asheville in 2003 that she began her Anusara studies under a certified teacher. Anusara Yoga helped her recover from a knee injury and she has since fully embraced Anusara’s universal principals of alignment with many hours of registered practice. In addition, she has completed 125 hours of Anusara Immersion in 2009 as well as John Friend’s Therapeutic training. In 2005 she volunteered at Kripalu’s Seva Program and was inspired to share her love for yoga even more. In 2010, Lynn became a certified yoga instructor through the Asheville Yoga Center and began offering private and group lessons. Her style is alignment based while focusing on mindfulness, compassion, and loving kindness. She is a licensed massage therapist with the goal of integrating yoga and massage therapy to enhance her client’s physical and spiritual wellness.
New to Yoga? This class provides a nurturing environment where beginners can learn the foundations of yoga practice together: postures and breathing that bring the body into a balance of stability and freedom, woven with a philosophy that uplifts and affirms our essential nature.
Meghan Ganser has been studying and practicing yoga since 2000, with Dhyana D'Amato (Dhyana Yoga) and Kundalini yoga in Philadelphia. She completed her first teacher training under Dhyana and Marni Sclaroff (Jivamukti, Anusara) in 2005, and has been teaching ever since. Meghan studied primarily with Joan White and Kofi Busia (Iyengar) until she moved to Asheville in 2007, when she found the Anusara teachings and community to be a wild inspiration. She has studied with Tibetan Heart Yoga teachers, and considers the teachings of Mahayana Buddhism to be a great influence on her world view, as well as Srividyalaya. Currently, she studies Anusara regularly, as well as Bharatanatyam (Classical Indian Dance). Meghan earned her black belt in Aikido Kokikai in 2005, and has studied Tai Chi and Chi Gong as well.
Skillful Flow is Meghan's take on Vinyasa: rhythmic flow from posture to posture, with graceful and mindful transitions, and articulate alignment instructions to facilitate a safe, steady, and challenging practice. Meghan chooses her words carefully, with sensitivity to the practitioner's subtle body and the subtle nature of practicing together, and her classes center upon a life-affirming theme. Modifications and choices are given to support each practitioner's fullest expression of each posture. Be prepared to engage your mind, body, and spirit as you cleanse, strengthen, and renew!
Nate Oxenfeld began his yogic path on the physical plane in 2007 and has been diving deeper into the subtle non-physical plane ever since. Originally from Pennsylvania, Nate attended college in Wilmington, North Carolina, and graduated in 2011 in Anthropology & Religion. His teaching experience began during his time in university, when he studied abroad in a small self-sustainable Ecovillage called Solheimar in Iceland. For his three-month community project he offered free weekly yoga classes to the villagers based on what he had learned in Wilmington. After returning to the states and graduating, he taught sunrise yoga classes on the sand at Ocean Isle Beach, NC, as well as Chakra Yoga in Sunset Beach, NC. Feeling the need to fill in the gaps in his teachings, he attended a one-month 220 hour residential teacher training program at the Satchidananda Ashram (Yogaville) in Buckingham, Virginia. The teachings of Integral Yoga from Sri Swami Satchidananda and the experience of living the yogic lifestyle opened his eyes to a new direction and purpose of his practice. He moved to Asheville after leaving the Ashram to find a high-frequency yoga community and has found just that. Nate is also an avid musician and enjoys playing live guitar, banjo, mandolin, melodica and hand drums during local yoga teachers' classes. He is also a practitioner of natural vision improvement techniques and is a student of the Bates Method.
Nate's teaching style promotes an easeful, peaceful, and useful body and mind by using gentle methods, slow movements and holding of postures. His class includes mantras (chanting), asana (postures), yoga nidra (15 minute deep relaxation), pranayama (breathing practices) and meditation.
Richard Fabio Rich Fabio is certified with Yoga Alliance through the Asheville Yoga Center Teacher Training program. During the training Rich really impressed Stephanie Keach (the program director and head mama bear of the yoga center) with his natural talent. He is fully committed to yoga as a way of being, taking yoga well beyond the mat. His early yogic path began with sitting meditation. While his mind approached stillness, he struggled with chronic lower back and neck pain. Rich remembers barely reaching his hands past his knees in a forward fold. He quickly realized the importance of a strong physical practice for the process of healing. Rich is now a firm believer in the importance of proper biomechanics to restore the body to wellness.
In Rich's classes, students benefit from fun dynamic postures combined with insights from his meditation practice.
Rich would like to honor and thank his many teachers and the beautiful lessons that have shaped his path, especially his dear friend and guru Gary Weber.
Rich Risbridger began practicing yoga 1999 starting with gym power yoga classes and moving to a traditional Ashtanga practice. Inspired by some soul searching in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, he decided to leave New Orleans and move to Oakland, CA, to become a circus performer and yoga teacher. Rich completed his teacher training with Clayton Horton and David Lurey at Greenpath Yoga in 2006 and has since pursued additional Ashtanga training with David Swenson and Richard Freeman. Though devoted to his roots in Ashtanga, Rich believes that exploring and practicing a variety of yoga styles provides valuable perspective and has diversified his training with teachers including Shiva Rea, Rod Stryker, Ana Forrest, Dharma Mittra, and Les Leventhal. He also has a special love for AcroYoga and has participated in numerous AcroYoga trainings and classes.
Rich imbues his practice and his classes with a mix of challenge and surrender, outright silliness and deep tranquility. His Playful Flow classes blend elements of Ashtanga and Vinyasa yoga with his experience as an acrobat, dancer, storyteller, and circus ringmaster. Providing variations for students of all levels, Rich challenges one to mindfulness of the body and focus on the breath while striving to further one's personal practice in a spirit of humility, compassion, and of course--fun.
Rosie Mulford: In 1974, Rosie took her first yoga class from Eve Diskin, then the President of the American Society of Yoga, in Coconut Grove, Florida. Back then, there were no yoga mats and the "studio" was on the grass overlooking Biscayne Bay. She enjoyed years of practicing yoga combined with dancing ballet and running. As an adult, she practiced under the guidance of Jimmy Barkan for ten years in Fort Lauderdale. She has enjoyed teaching in South Asheville since she moved here in 2005. Rosie tries to mimic the challenges in life by reproducing them on the mat. This offers students the opportunity to practice in a safe environment and gain the tools to handle the stresses of every day life helping us to learn how to spread the love and compassion no matter what obstacles come our way. Rosie is certified E-RYT 500.
Dr. Robin Saraswati Markus is a holistic Chinese medicine gynecologist whose yoga practice began in 1998 in Southern California studying primarily within the Ashtanga yoga system with Tim Miller. She fell in love with yoga at first sun salutation when the poses started speaking to her through the energetic language of acupuncture. She completed her first teacher training with him in 2003, and soon after began integrating yoga with Chinese medicine in her medical practice.
She has been spreading her love of Yoga for women ever since. Following the path of her main teachers, Ram Dass and Krishna Das, along with annual pilgrimage to India gives spiritual root to Saraswati’s life and teaching style. Saraswati teaches from the heart, her classes invite the participant to use the body as a vehicle to go beyond the body. Students will experience both yin and yang elements, dynamic posture sequences with times for still presence– just like life. Believing the most potent healing power actually lies within the human being, classes focus on the neurohormonal centers of the chakra system, pelvic floor awareness, and pelvic blood flow- so vital to restoring function and balance. The yoga poses and breath-work act like a mini acupuncture treatment by activating energetic points and meridian lines. The introspective practice of yoga leads one to become deeply relaxed, to sink more deeply into themselves and adopt a natural flow and an openness to life, then one’s body shifts into its innate healing.
She is the founder of Nourishing Life (nourishinglife.com) Center for Integrative Medicine for Women, that weaves together Traditional Chinese medicine, Western medicine and Yoga into one healing cord. Her medical practice is in Asheville, she consults with patients over Skype and offers her teachings of Chinese medicine and yoga for women in weekly classes at Asheville Yoga Center’s Donation studio, through articles, DVD’s and workshops in the US and Abroad.
Susan Rothlein first encountered yoga at an adult ed class in a high school gymnasium in the 1970's and knew immediately that she wanted to learn more. Through the years she has studied with numerous teachers from many traditions and styles of yoga on her journey to becoming a Registered Yoga Teacher through Yoga Alliance. She taught for more than ten years in Florida before moving to Asheville in 2010 and her teaching style has evolved into an eclectic blend woven from the wisdom of these many traditions and inspiring teachers. She continues to love being a yoga student taking frequent classes from a variety of the many talented teachers here in Asheville, learning new teaching skills in training workshops, and gaining new insights in her home asana and meditation practice. Susan has extensive experience in teaching prenatal and postnatal yoga, having completed an in-depth certification training with Colette Crawford of the Seattle Holistic Center.
Susan believes that yoga can be safe, accessible, and enjoyable for everyone, and in her classes she offers adaptations and alternatives to help each student explore, stretch and open in a way that's right for their body on that day, along with an emphasis on breath awareness and learning to relax. Her hope is that each student leaves class feeling energized, inspired, and nurtured.
Tami Osiecki has been a student and teacher of yoga since 1995. She received her 230 hour teacher certificate from AYC in 2009 and is currently working toward her 500 hour therapeutic yoga teaching certificate. Her yogic path began at the YogaShakti Mission in Palm Bay, FL, where she was introduced to Yin Yoga. The deep and meditative style of Yin is gently interwoven into Tami's classes which focus on bringing presence and relaxation to the intuitive self. www.tamisbliss.com