Meet Our Teachers

Adam (Polhemus) Shirley graduated from teacher trainings with Asheville Yoga Center, Jivamukti New York, Tim Miller (Ashtanga) and the school of hard knocks. He gives all credit and glory to his teachers and uses their wisdom to impart to his students a calm demeanor  that will enable them to handle the constant flux of life.

Adam’s practice is a daily reminder to let go. He believes that yoga has the ability to evoke an empathic response in living beings that can unite us as a whole, leading to a greater understanding of where we are going. As an athlete, he teaches from a place of experience with the human body, having been an amateur/professional boxer for years, before dedicating his studies solely to yoga. Through yoga, Adam believes that new channels for thought processing are opened up, and through understanding the body and the subtle body, we learn how to direct, redirect and free up the residue of our life choices.

Jivamukti, which means living liberated, is a yoga method created by Sharon Gannon and David Life that guides body and soul to spiritual freedom, physical strength, peace of mind, better health, and self-realization – the ultimate goal of any practice. Designed to inspire and motivate you to live fully, it will strengthen your practice and challenge your soul through powerful breathwork, asana and meditation.

Adam Taylor has been studying yoga for eight years and teaching for three. Following a history of enthusiasm for various sports and martial arts, he discovered yoga practice as a means to heal the body, calm the mind, and enliven the spirit.

In his ‘Yin/Yang Restorative’ class you can expect movement for heat and strength building, long holds to open the body, and restorative poses for healing.



Alex Ali: With a background in martial arts, classical ballet and modern dance, Alex has been a lifelong student and teacher of the body. Classes infuse a broad range of movement vocabulary to foster kinesthetic awareness and authentic expression within each student. By incorporating the physical, ethical and spiritual components of yoga, Alex offers transformation both on & off the mat.

Alex believes that the human body is a self-sustaining miracle, wired with its own language of experience and ability. Alex emphasizes the importance of self-acceptance and the cultivation of an authentic desire to simply experience the body; without ego, judgment or expectation. Through proper alignment, dynamic movement and mindfulness mediation, he invites you to surrender your body to a physical practice, and open your heart to a metaphysical experience.

Experience Yoga Nidra in Alex’s 60 minute Sunday evening class devoted to total relaxation. Soften, Release, Nurture, Restore. Low lighting and ambient music create a healing atmosphere where you’re invited to relieve stress and renew energy. Sequences of mostly supine postures are held from 3-5 minutes with props such as blankets, blocks & bolsters optimizing support and targeting areas of chronic tension. To enhance your journey, guided meditation, chakra attunement and energetic assists (always optional) are offered throughout the practice. Read more at alexaliyoga.com.

Alex Moody recently relocated back to the Asheville mountains where she did her 230 hour and 500 hour yoga therapeutics training. She is teaming up to do the Traveling Yogini Tours here in town and leads an active yoga retreat in Ecuador every August. Alex is also available for one-on-one yoga therapy work and is obtaining her Thai Yoga certification in May. A self-proclaimed yoga mutt {and exercise mutt, she loves Pilates and CrossFit} Alex loves to learn about yoga from all different styles. She always relates to instructors who talk about their practice off of the mat and has studied with many instructors in Asheville as well as Michael Stone, Amy Weintraub, Steve Ross, Kathryn Budig, Heather Tiddens, and Bryan Kest.

‘Slow Flow and Deep Stretch’ is a mindful mix of holding poses for a bit longer with intelligent transitions in between and then a balance of yin poses to really ground you for the rest of your week. Breathing is the essence of slow flow and you will build a powerful practice and balance with a therapeutic stretch and yoga nidra or relaxation techniques that will allow you to fall deeper into your bliss layer. Really, the class could be call slow it down, bliss it out!!

Andrea Rich brings over 30 years of yoga and meditation practice to her classes. At age 12, she was introduced to meditation, and five years later she was regularly practicing yoga at the only class in Indianapolis IN, luckily taught by an incredible teacher who had studied directly with BKS Iyengar. For several years, she apprenticed at Lynda Mitchell’s Hatha Yoga studio in Bloomington IN, receiving one of the first teacher certifications offered by the studio.

In 1997, while spending the summer on Fire Island NY, she was asked to take over the only class going in that area, and so her teaching career began. She went on to start up two classes in NYC’s East Village, one one at a progressive bookstore, and the other at the Interfaith League, both on 1st Ave. Since then, she continued to teach private clients consistently, in upstate New York, and has added an additional teacher training certification from Sadie Nardini’s Core Strength Vinyasa Yoga. She has continued her studies at Ananda Ashram, her ‘home away from home’. Here, her immersion into vedic ritual and philosophy, sanskrit and chanting, as well as ayuryoga taught by Dr. Vasant Lad, has opened new ground for her.

Andrea has created her own program, ‘The Misfits’ Guide to East West Living: a lifestyle guide for success’, which combines Tarot and yoga. Read more at arichproduction.com.

Now living in Asheville, Andrea’s ‘Meditation in Motion’ class is a must for anyone who wants to deepen their yoga practice and enrich their yoga mind. This unique class delves deeply into our psychological motivations, assisted by Tarot archetypes. Through pranayama, and sustained inwardly focused asanas, this 45 minute class will profoundly and quietly anchor intentions for success. Ask yourself, ‘What thoughts am I following?’ - even in your practice. With this class you can start your day by planting and nurturing the seeds you want to grow.

Anna Levesque: Yoga has enhanced Anna’s life and career as a professional whitewater kayaker and stand up paddle boarder for over 18 years.  Whether she’s teaching yoga as part of her whitewater kayaking and yoga trips in Costa Rica and Nepal, on her paddle board teaching SUP yoga classes or in the studio, Anna creates a calm space for her students to nurture awareness of their bodies and minds for alignment, health and healing.  She graduated from AYC’s 230 hour TT in 2010 and is working toward her 500 hour certification.  In 2011 she produced the DVD, Yoga for Kayaking, in collaboration with Joe Taft that has sold over 1500 copies.  Anna maintains a strong daily home practice that includes asana, pranayama and meditation, and is deeply connected to nature through kayaking, paddle boarding and her path on the Red Road.  For more information you can visit her websites:  mindbodypaddle.com and watergirlsatplay.com

In her Slow Flow & Yin class, you will flow mindfully with alignment to strengthen, open and balance your body, before moving into quiet Yin poses that assist releasing and going within. Anna combines her journey on the Yogic path with her journey on the Red Road. She calls in themes from nature and animal medicine, such as ‘soaring and seeing the big picture, like eagle’, ‘knowing that you have everything that you need for your highest and best, like turtle’ and ‘remembering to not take yourself too seriously’ like coyote’. You’ll come away feeling relaxed, energized and connected.

Ann-Lee Waite: Yoga, meditation and spirituality came into Ann-Lee’s life in 1989 while she was living in Munich. It took many, many years for her to develop a regular practice, but that feeling of connection with her highest state kept calling her back. In 2002, while living on the island of St. Kitts, she had a life-defining crisis and discovered that, in all times of crisis, seeds of greatness wait to find fertile ground. So she stopped and waited for further instructions.

In 2003 she went to Santa Barbara and got her yoga instructor certification at the White Lotus Foundation, also studying Thai massage with Saul David Raye. She the studied with Yamuna Zake at home in the Cayman Islands and got her body rolling certification. Over the years, teaching in Panama and Italy, her teaching focus was on vinyasa yoga, while body rolling was a personal practice. Then old injuries motivated her to work more with body rolling and she discovered how well the balls and footwork not only complimented her yoga practice, but also helped sustain her body’s wellbeing. Her personal practice and exercise priorities changed to focusing more on body sustainability.

Ann-Lee’s classes begin with a mix of Yamuna® Body Rolling, where the person’s weight creates traction, movement and release on the balls, and Yamuna® Foot Fitness. Yamuna® Foot Fitness addresses the most stressed and challenged part of our bodies to increase flexibility, movement and separation of the foot bones, improving muscle tone and increasing circulation in the feet. Then students will then take their bodies through a yoga sequence to experience the difference in sensation and movement once impact and restriction has been taken out of the muscles, tendons and joints.

Brian Winslett has been practicing Yoga since 2001 and earned his 230 hour teacher training certification at the Asheville Yoga Center in 2008. He is now working on his RYT500 hour certification. His first and most influential teacher was in the Kripalu tradition but he has specifically made Yoga is own path and continues to study with a wide variety of teachers from differing traditions. He follows the path of integration of diverse styles of yoga and believes in personal innovation, as that was the path of the great Yogis of the past century.

As an activist, entrepreneur, community organizer, and teacher of permaculture and sustainability issues, Brian learned first hand how life passions, stress, caffeine induced adrenal fatigue, family duties, modern life, and one’s own shadow self can leave us depleted and virtually crippled in various ways as we age if we do not show up to a practice of union with self. He has experimented intuitively and successfully with methods of self administered myofascial and muscular massage, as well as being a life long enthusiasts of nutrition, especially foods and herbal medicines from local and wild harvested sources. His Yoga philosophy is blended with spirituality of this gritty earth gift.

Corey Brown Corey Brown. With an open heart and open mind, Corey affirms the dignity and worth of all people and provides students with a safe space for self-exploration and growth through yoga practice. She graduated from the 230-hour Yoga Teacher Training through Asheville Yoga Center (AYC) and is a licensed Psychotherapist and Expressive Arts Therapist specializing in wellness and stress management. In the spring of 2014, Corey will continue her professional development by starting the 300-hr Classics of Yoga Teacher Training also through Asheville Yoga Center.

Corey teaches a creative and energetic vinyasa flow class that combines movement with breath and expression while weaving in evidence based philosophy of holistic wellness and stress reduction.

She is also a photographer. Amazed by people and their life stories, Corey enjoys capturing images in a way that highlight ones unique personality. She loves to hike and play outdoors as well as travel as much as she possibly can.

Danielle Marie Goldstein is a certified Kripalu Yoga Instructor and a Khalsa Way Prenatal Yoga Instructor.  She was first introduced to Kundalini Yoga in 1996.  During her college years she developed a strong Kripalu based yoga practice and was inspired to to become a certified instructor in 2006.  In 2008 she took the Khalsa Way prenatal yoga teacher training with Gurmukh and an Anusara based pregnancy course with Jessica Jennings.

Danielle has been a birth advocate since 2008 serving women and their families as a birth and postpartum doula, prenatal and family yoga instructor, and mentoring BIRTHING FROM WITHIN® childbirth classes. She offers distinct services including: prenatal & postnatal health consultations, birth art sessions, mother blessing rituals and placenta encapsulation for hormonal balance.  Danielle is also a community herbalist with a passion for plant medicine.  She feels blessed to have learned from so many fabulous mentors, her daughter being the brightest and most inspiring of all!

Danielle’s prenatal classes are grounded in the technology of Kundalini yoga with a strong focus on alignment.  They offer expecting mothers a safe and sacred space to prepare for labor, a conscious birth, and motherhood through yoga and meditation.  This class welcomes women at all stages of their pregnancy, including women who wish to conceive.  We will weave a community of heart centered connection and support. Read more at theconsciouscanopy.net.

Evan Marsh Evan Hart Marsh began his practice in 2004 studying various styles including Ashtanga, Iyengar, Ishta, Yin, Therapeutics, Vinyasa, and Restorative. His approach to teaching yoga is greatly influenced by different forms of movement therapy including Gyrotonic®, Pilates, and Physical Therapy. He holds a B.A in Dance with an emphasis in Physical Therapy from Loyola Marymount University. In 2008 he began teaching in Berkeley, CA at Berkeley Yoga Center and in 2010 moved to New York City to complete his 200hr certification. Evan continues to participate in additional teacher trainings and workshops that focus more on spinal care, disc herniations, scoliosis, injury prevention and recovery. He recently moved to Asheville in 2014 and is currently enrolled in AYC’s 300hr Therapeutic Yoga Program.

Therapeutic Flow invites you to connect your breath with mindful movement therapy. Whether you are new to yoga, recovering from an injury, or interested in preventative care, classes are designed to fit the needs of the individual. We will explore a holistic approach for a sustainable practice using movement as a form of healing. Instruction is hands on to ensure safety and to guide students towards proper alignment and positive growth. The focus of class is for students to align, strengthen, and thrive on and off the mat. To read more, visit evanhartmarsh.com.

Gayle Jann believes strongly in yoga’s ability to heal and promote optimal health. Her years of experience in whitewater kayaking, horseback riding, modern dance, skiing and jogging contribute to her deep understanding of movement and the biomechanics of the body. Yoga has helped her see how the foundation of alignment and how we move are related in all of our activities. Gayle has a keen interest in the therapeutic aspect of yoga and has studied Anusara, Iyengar, Ashtanga, flow, and hatha yoga, and was certified through AYC in 2000. Rather than following one particular style of yoga, Gayle blends what she has learned from all these styles with her own intuition into her practice and teaching.

Gayle’s classes use a spiritual theme to inspire the shape and feeling of your poses and the flow between poses. Attention to building a strong core and alignment cues are woven into a creative sequence that is designed to help you understand your own body and respect its talents and limitations. Classes are challenging, yet accessible, and guide you to work the deep core lines of the body and move gracefully from the inside out. Read more at www.YogaAtYourPlace.net.

Hilary Drake believes that rue health represents a graceful choreography between the physical, emotional, and spiritual body. Yoga teaches that we can maximize our chances for health and healing when we consciously align these essential elements. Over the years, movement and the practice of yoga have guided Hilary through many of life’s challenges – rehabilitation from sports injuries, as well as recovery from disillusionment, loss, and grief – and back toward a feeling of wholeness. A practitioner for over 20 years & graduate of the Black Mountain Yoga Yoga Therapy and Teacher Training, Hilary owns and operates Thrive Yoga Therapy and Instruction, a private practice based out of Asheville offering one-on-yoga therapeutics, instruction, and small group classes.

Her classes are a playful, light-hearted hybrid of Vinyasa Flow and Restorative, with a focus on intention, anatomy & alignment, self-inquiry, and internal listening.

Izzy Shurte fell in love with yoga while in college, however it was the catalyst of losing her father suddenly at twenty-nine years old that prompted her to seek solace in committed daily asana practice. Izzy is a graduate of Asheville Yoga Center’s 200 HR Teacher Training program along with AYC’s Classics of Yoga 500 HR program. Currently Izzy is completing a Masters in Mental Health Counseling. Izzy is grateful to have studied with Stephanie Keach, Andrea Dyer, Michael Johnson & Stephanie Johnson, David Williams and Kristin Luna Ray.

Izzy’s classes include exploration of yogic philosophy, guided meditation to quiet the mind, pranayama and asana to balance the nervous system, mantra and music to open the heart and the freedom to discover your own flow. 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.

Jackie Dobrinska is a yoga therapist, holistic health educator, minister and author. She recognizes that finding fulfillment and beauty is an inside job – the result of an inner radiance that comes from connecting to the core of who we truly are.  A long-time student of Yogarupa Rod Stryker and Pundit Rajmani Tigunait, Jackie has mentored with some of the world’s pre-eminent teachers, scholars and visionaries in mind-body health. Today, she weaves together elements from Classical Yoga, Sri-Vidya Tantra, Ayurveda, the Wise Woman Tradition and the Pachakuti Mesa Tradition - teaching at universities, hospitals, teacher trainings, studios, national conferences and festivals, and also privately.

Jackie is the Founding Director of Greater Asheville Yoga Association and Director of Tula Health, and she has been featured in both Yoga Journal and Yoga International Press. When not writing, teaching or sharing practices that support inner growth, you can find her digging in her medicinal herb garden at a local non-profit whose mission is “to feed all types of hunger”.

Tantra means ‘to weave’.  Vinyasa means ‘wise progression’. Jackie’s Tantra Vinyasa class weaves ancient wisdoms of tantra – asana, pranayama, intention, attention, sound kriya, meditation, and mantra – in wise progress, to ignite radiance from within. The class is a journey, with vigorous asana to get the kinks out, into steadying Moon practices to calm the mind, and ending with bit of Fire to remind us of who we really are.

JaneAnne Tager aka Pretzel Kids Mama has been practicing yoga for a decade and a half and has benefited from its positive physical and mental changes. She began to explore kids yoga when her daughter developed asthma and has now been teaching kids yoga in yoga centers, schools, and dance studios for over ten years. JaneAnne’s educational background includes degrees in child psychology, speech pathology, and a master degree in training and facilitation. She received both her 200 and 500 hr yoga certification through the Asheville Yoga Center and has trained with Marsha Wenig, featured in Time Magazine and Yoga Journal and Sonia Sumar, who specialises in using yoga as physical (and emotional) therapy for special needs children.  She also teaches pre-natal and gentle yoga.

JaneAnne loves teaching kids yoga and her classes are not only playful, but also improve strength, balance, flexibility and offer a heightened awareness to their young minds and bodies. She notes that kids can make significant progress in a short period of time, and seem to be very proud of what their bodies can do. Every class is different, as is each student.

Janelle Railey: From the time she was a young child Janelle has explored the meaning of life through embodied imagination. She began her formal yogic journey in 1995 when she traveled to India to receive teachings from H.H. Dalai Lama on the graduated path to enlightenment. It was there, as well, that she initially immersed herself in yoga, meditation and other contemplative practices.  Her training includes certification in the Kripalu tradition as well as in-depth study with Richard Freeman in the Ashtanga tradition. Janelle has studied with many master teachers from several lineages over the years and finds that her role as a student continually informs her teaching, bringing her back to the beginner’s mind. She is committed to her own daily practice as her own teachers have assured her that the best teacher is the commitment to practicing.

Julia Albertson Julia Brenn Albertson has been teaching yoga in various styles for eight years. After being raised by yogi parents, Julia completed her first teacher training at the age of fourteen at the Miami Yoga Shala where she was deemed the youngest yoga instructor in the state of Florida. She continued to teach daily yoga classes based in the Power Yoga method for one year all over the Miami Beach area. It was when she met Kino MacGregor that her journey with Ashtanga began. Julia was one of the members on the opening teaching staff of MacGregor’s studio, Miami Life Center where she taught the Teens Yoga program. Years later she came to manage the studio and continued to teach weekly classes. She has taken class with the late guru of Ashtanga yoga Sri K. Pattabhi Jois as well as his grandson, R. Sharath Jois. Julia firmly believes in the power of yoga and service as a means of healing and recovery for all. In 2013 Julia completed the Y12SR (Yoga of 12 Step Recovery) certification program with its founder, Nikki Myers. She knows firsthand how yoga, in conjunction with other modalities, can inspire and secure a healthful and happy life. She hopes to carry this message with her wherever she goes.

Julia’s yoga classes combine her background in Ashtanga Yoga and dance to create a playful and strong Vinyasa class. You will sweat, breathe deep, and laugh your way through creative sequencing. She hopes to hold the space for deep personal connection, using humor and awareness to facilitate a fun and meaningful asana experience. To read more, visit facebook.com/JujuYogaLife.

Kelsey Armbruster has been an active yoga practitioner since 2009 and received her RYT-250 hour training from Asheville Community Yoga Center in 2012. For Kelsey, yoga is her compass home; it has taught her to be aware of her breath in any situation. When breathing through life, she believes, we can accept and activate all the infinite awareness that is channeled through us. Sharing her practice with the world to improve and motivate the health and growth of others has been her dream since she was a child. In finding yoga, she has found a shared bliss that transcends the unconscious to consciousness.

Innercise Yoga is designed to balance the body, clear the mind, and activate awareness. Based on the fundamentals of Hatha yoga, this therapeutic flow class provides a series of balanced asanas to enhance and expand not only your strength, but your center. In this expansion, the unconscious becomes conscious. Along with breath and movement, this integration of body center and source, ignites divine knowledge. The intention of this practice is to embody and cultivate this bliss in your daily journey.

Kimberly Drye began her yoga studies in Asheville in 2001. 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 all the benefits yoga has to offer. She believes that yoga can help every individual lead a fuller and more satisfying life. To learn more about Kim, visit her website herenowyoga.com.

Her classes are focused on alignment, awareness, and the preservation of each moment. Breath control, relaxation techniques, and meditation are coupled with focused asana to bring students into a state of mindfulness in their practices that hopefully spills out into their everyday lives. Students of all abilities are welcome.

Krystal Kinnunen is in her fourth year of Chinese Medicine School at Daoist Traditions and is treating patients currently in the College clinic while raising a loving daughter. About 18 years ago, Krystal discovered yoga by attending weekly vegetarian potlucks that included yoga and meditation. This started her on the path of self-healing and exploration. Krystal healed many family ancestral wounds through breath, yoga and meditation. She received her calling loud and clear that her destiny was to teach Kundalini yoga, which was ironic since it happened while she was at a Vinyasa teacher training with Shiva Rea! Shortly thereafter through a series of synchronistic events, a friend took her to Golden Bridge Yoga in Los Angeles where she met Tej Kaur Khalsa, her soon to be mentor and teacher. Immediately Krystal signed up for teacher training and studied with Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa, Tej Kaur Khalsa, and many other wonderful teachers. During her training she received her spiritual name, Siri Gobind Kaur, which means one who serves, helps and sustains all of mankind. Krystal loves Kundalini and all forms of yoga and understands yoga has the power to heal and transform a person from the inside out.

Her classes feature traditional Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan. Kundalini yoga’s aim is to encourage students to elevate to their highest potential and connect with their true identity.

Kumiko Yamada aka Kumari is originally from Tokyo, Japan and brings a wonderful understanding of the world to her classes. She has been teaching yoga in New York and internationally for over a decade. She is trained in both vinyasa and Jivamukti styles and has a BSc in psychology from Boston University.

Kumiko is an advanced certified Jivamukti teacher and was the Director of Continuing Education at Jivamukti before moving to Asheville in 2013. Jivamukti, which means living liberated, is a yoga method created by Sharon Gannon and David Life that guides body and soul to spiritual freedom, physical strength, peace of mind, better health, and self-realization – the ultimate goal of any practice. Designed to inspire and motivate you to live fully, it will strengthen your practice and challenge your soul through powerful breathwork, asana and meditation.

Kumiko’s classes offer dynamic movement, incorporating sun salutations, creative asana sequencing, and mindful attention to alignment that works with individual bodies.

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.

Lisa’s classes build strength, stamina and flexibility, using playful, energetic vinyasa sequences. Her instructions emphasize present moment awareness through alignment of the body and attention to the breath. Classes start low and slow, build up to creative standing flows and balances, and then move down to the floor, to finish with some yin poses and a well-deserved relaxation.

Liz Harrison’s first experience with yoga was a Level 2 Iyengar class at a studio in Northern California in 2000. Immediately humbled by the practice, she was hooked! Nine years later Liz made a New Year’s resolution to get on her yoga mat every single day with the hopes of building a strong home practice. Later that year, she completed her 230-hour teacher training and has since deepened her studies with many great teachers including Cora Wen, Kate Greer, and Stephanie Keach. And, indeed, almost 4 years later, Liz still makes it to the mat on most days.

Her teaching style is deeply introspective and seeks to wed mindfulness practices, dis-identification, breathwork, and the sweet flow of vinyasa yoga. Her hearts desire is to create space for her students to dive inside on the mat so they are able to discover more love, more peace, and more compassion off the mat.

Meghan Ganser has been studying and practicing yoga asana since 2001. She holds a black belt in aikido, loves to dance, has great respect for the power of the human system to heal. She chose to study yoga deeply after back and shoulder injuries invited her to pay closer attention to the relationship of her parts. She is currently completing her 500 RYT training with Lillah Shwartz, and has trained with many other masterful teachers. She sees yoga as a path to self-inquiry; she encourages her students to find their own relationship with the world and themselves; she enjoys the contemplation of biomechanics, whole systems thinking, and the philosophical teachings of world religions.

Meghan’s classes are centered around understanding alignment principles, sweat, and sweet relaxation.

Natalie Epstein discovered yoga during her freshman year of college while on the varsity soccer team. Shortly thereafter, it became her salvation, enabling her to stay injury and stress free both on and off the field. Since then, she has been an avid practitioner of yoga, going on to study with Stephanie Keach, Ana Forrest, and Angela Farmer. Natalie’s approach to teaching incorporates strength, flexibility, alignment principles, pranayama, mantra & fun! Her goal as a teacher is to help students become more adept at understanding the framework of their own body and minds. By developing greater awareness through a physical practice, she encourages her students to take the beneficial tools they learn on the mat, off of it and into their daily lives. She strives to make every student that walks in to her class leave feeling nourished and balanced.

Vibrant Breath Yoga is a more dynamic and free form expression of exploring the body through yoga asana. Rather than contracting the muscles and holding poses in a very static way, we are working to soften the muscles to enable the energy to flow more easily, as well as to lubricate the joints. We accomplish this by incorporating movement into static poses. The idea is to make a moving meditation out of exploring our own unique inner landscapes, and for the journey to be fun!

Nicole Killeen has been a student of yoga since 2006. She discovered a love for yoga while living in Boone, NC and going to graduate school at Appalachian State University. She graduated from Neighborhood Yoga’s 200 hour teacher training program in 2008 and is currently enrolled in a 500 hour training with Kelly Golden of ViraBhava Yoga.

Nicole’s class weaves breath and movement to balance and harness energy in such a way that your practice becomes powerful without any wasted effort.

Paige Gilchrist Paige’s warm and welcoming style will invite you to stretch, strengthen, balance, move energy, release stress and tension, and cultivate peace and joy you can take with you back into the world. Paige has been practicing yoga and Zen meditation for more than 15 years, and completed her 230-hour teacher training at Asheville Yoga Center. She is Yoga Alliance certified, and is currently pursuing advanced training through AYC’s 500-hour Therapeutic Yoga certification program.


Rebecca (Becca) Odom: As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker Associate and Certified Yoga Teacher, Rebecca combines clinical therapeutic methods with mindful yoga techniques to create a space for deep emotional, physical and spiritual healing for her students. Rebecca has been practicing yoga for over 8 years now and it has been remarkable for her to witness her process of growth and self-exploration through this practice. After exploring a wide range of classes in various styles of yoga, Rebecca has settled into a sweet love for yin and restorative yoga. As a practitioner, Rebecca maintains awareness of the stages of human development and its relationship to the development of our own chakra system to provide a more individualized approach when teaching yoga to her students. It is her goal as a teacher to empower others to heal themselves because she truly believe that we each hold the key to our own happiness and she feels it is an honor to offer tools to unlock and release whatever is not serving us in the present moment.

Rebecca is the founder of Soulful Spirit Yoga which offers Yoga Centered Psychotherapy and Equine Yoga sessions. Rebecca teaches a breath centered practice using mindful techniques because she believes that our breath is the one thing we have with us at all times no matter where we are-from the moment we come into this world until the moment we take our last breath-it is our constant companion. She believes that by enhancing our relationship with this part of ourselves will help increase our own self-awareness and ability to become more aware of our emotional, physical and mental response to experiences. This practice helps us develop the skills to become the true witness to our mental and emotional processes that occur all the time, so that we can make a more conscious choice about the way we truly want to live.

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. Read more at nourishinglife.com.

She is the founder of the Nourishing Life Center for Integrative Medicine for Women, which 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, DVDs and workshops in the US and Abroad.

Tanya Neplioueva RYT-200, Tanya is passionate about sharing yoga as a deeply expansive and therapeutic way of life.  Her vibrant classes offer an eclectic blend of her background in Ashtanga, Vinyasa Flow, Anusara, Yin Yoga, and bodywork, allowing each student a tailored practice with extensive hands-on assists.  Her teaching style seamlessly weaves pranayama, meditation, and intention practices with asana for a refreshingly dynamic and integrative experience.  Tanya is a graduate of Asheville Yoga Center’s 230-hour Teacher Training, Samadhi Shala’s 200-hour Ashtanga Vinyasa Teacher Training, and of the 675-hour program at the Asheville School of Massage and Yoga.

Timothy Burgin’s greatest love is sharing the teachings and practices of yoga with others. Trained and certified in the Kripalu and Prankriya yogic traditions, Timothy has both the knowledge and experience to guide his students deep into the experience of yoga and to address their individual needs through gentle assists, variations and pose modifications. He possesses a wonderful combination of centeredness, authenticity, thoughtfulness and playfulness.  Timothy’s students often describe him as a kind, compassionate, gentle and accessible yoga teacher. He is the founder of YogaBasics.com and the author of Yoga For Beginners: A Quick-Start Guide to Practicing Yoga for New Students. Read more at www.YogiTim.com.


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