Asheville Community Yoga Teacher of the Month – October 2015 [INTERVIEW]

I am incredibly honored to be featured as this month's Teacher of the Month at Asheville Community Yoga

asheville community yoga logo circleAsheville Community Yoga is a 501(c)3 nonprofit yoga center offering donation-based yoga classes, workshops, and trainings here in Asheville, NC. Their yoga community is supportive and strong and so inspiring! The donation-based structure of the weekly classes makes yoga accessible to anyone who wants it and the welcoming and inclusive atmosphere at ACY has made it one of Asheville's favorite places to practice yoga. I am grateful to be a part of the goodness that is Asheville Community Yoga.

BIG thanks and hugs to ACY staff, students, fellow teachers, and volunteers for everything you do to make the studio so awesome. Thanks for coming to my classes and sharing in this beautiful practice week after week. 

Below is an interview I did for the occasion. Hope you all enjoy reading a little bit about my yoga journey!



Lindsay Fields has been with us from the beginning, teaching one of our most longstanding and loved classes, Tuesdays night’s “hot core” practice. Her classes are definitely challenging, but Lindsay’s demeanor is so authentically kind and her instructions so clear and intelligent, that even the toughest sequences seem accessible. If that wasn’t a reason enough to come to her class, the music might lure you in! Lindsay has great taste in music and her playlists are energizing and inspiring. Not only that, but Lindsay herself is an accomplished musician, and her students receive the soothing gift of her sweet chanting voice and ukelele songs at the start and finish of every class. We asked Lindsay some questions about her practice, and here’s what she had to say:

What was the experience with yoga that got you hooked?


When I was 20 years old, I was very unhappy and depressed. I somehow intuitively knew that yoga was something that I needed. I don’t even remember where I first heard about yoga but it obviously intrigued me. So, I sought it out. In 1999 yoga classes were not as abundant as they are now (especially here in Asheville!). I would go to any free meditation lectures I heard about. I bought a yoga book and a DVD and started practicing at home. And then one day, I opened the phone book and found the closest yoga studio to my house and went to a class. It was a hot yoga class and I was hooked from that very first class. It was tough. It was hot. Most of all, it was DIFFERENT. I have always said that the experience of that first class felt like coming home. I think the missing piece, something that yoga offers that was lacking in other areas for me, is bhakti. Through the asana practice alone, I learned to move in prayer and in service, not even knowing to what at first – maybe to myself, to call my spirit back, to remember my wholeness. The practice is so rich and so deep. It’s the way yoga makes me feel about myself and my role in the world. Yoga is more than just physical exercise. For me, simply exercising my body left me feeling incomplete, and even “less-than,” because I always felt like I didn’t fit the mold, you know? Yoga has taught me that the mold is much bigger and I am so much more than my body or my successes/failures.

What inspires you to continue yoga?

I have been practicing for 16 years now and I am still learning. And the yoga tradition is still evolving. I heard someone say once that yoga is a “living practice.” I love that. The practice is always changing and growing as more and more people are coming to their mats. I think that’s exciting to think about and I definitely want to be a part of it.

What is your favorite pose?

Probably plank or crow. I spent a good portion of my early life being sick and feeling like I was at war with my body. Arm balances are something I never imagined I would be able to do. They have helped me feel strong in my body and make friends with it again.

What is your most challenging pose?

Handstand. I broke my toe falling out of handstand when I was first learning it. It is still scary for me.

What is your favorite time/place to practice?

Whenever and wherever I can! I am so busy these days and I am super grateful for any opportunity to sit, slow down, and reconnect. I love practicing outside.

How has yoga changed your life?

I tend to be anxious. Yoga has taught me that I am more than my anxiety and that within me is divinity and unconditional love. Like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, it was with me all along. And that no matter what is going on in my life, no matter how much my outer world spins, I am ok. I am love. That is so comforting to me. I am less afraid as a result of my yoga practice. I am less anxious. This has had a huge impact on how I live my life and the choices I make.

Do you have a favorite yoga book or video?

Light on Yoga by BK.S. Iyengar and The Heart of Yoga by T.K.V. Desikachar are my 2 all-time favorite yoga books. I also love The Secret Power of Yoga Nischala Joy Devi for a women’s perspective on the yoga sutras.

What is your mantra?

Aham Prema – I am Divine Love

Do you have a passion other than yoga you’d like to share about?

Music! I began playing music again about 1 1/2 years ago when I picked up a little ukulele at a local music store. I was obsessed at first and now my ukulele and singing and mantra are like food for me – something I do every day because it is so nourishing. I really want to be playing music more. In addition to playing for my weekly yoga classes, I’d love to be playing for other people’s yoga classes, collaborating for a bhakti vinyasa workshop or kirtan, writing songs and playing with a band, and teaching people to play music. I have lots of ideas and big plans for the future for sure.

I Was On The Radio!

asheville yoga show logoI recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Asheville Yoga Show host, Mike Hiers, to talk about some of my favorite topics – yoga and Asheville. He even let me bring my ukulele! It was super fun and even though it was not my best vocal performance by any stretch (only got 1 take and I was nervous), I'm so glad I did it. The show originally aired on Independant Asheville RadioNow, it's available as a podcast here. I have also posted it below. Just hit play. :) 

Listen to the end for a surprise announcement. Many thanks to Mike for having me on the show. Enjoy!

P.S. Please check out some of the other interviews. They are all available for free on the Asheville Yoga Show buzzsprout podcast page. We are really lucky to have so many wonderful yoga teachers here in the Asheville area. 

#365yoga on Twitter

Mindful Monday Recap: Living Your Yoga in 2011 #365yoga

One of my favorite things about blogs and social media networks is the way in which they foster community and support. Perhaps this is because I am already accustomed to, and really enjoy this aspect of my life (you know, the part when I’m not on the computer). Yoga studios, teachers and practitioners do the exact some thing every day by creating meaningful relationships, by reaching out to one another with questions and guidance and by engaging in conversations about what really matters to them.

So, thanks yoga bloggers, for bringing that community, support and authenticity online.

For this week’s Mindful Monday post, I thought I would share with you some of the amazing recent developments in the online yoga world. It is truly inspiring.

#354yoga is a movement of yogi tweeters and bloggers who are intentionally creating a space to support their dedication to their path and deepening their commitment to themselves and to yoga. I love it.

#365yoga on Twitter

It began with a tweet. Read Nancy’s post on her blog, Flying Yogini to learn how #365yoga started and what it means to live your yoga every day. Then, subscribe to Flying Yogini to follow Nancy’s journey and insights. Thanks, Nancy, for getting the ball rolling!! Follow Nancy on Twitter at @yoga_mydrishti.

I am loving Sarah’s 365 posts on her blog, Sarahsana. So, definitely head on over there and do some reading. Her most recent post is titled The Yoga of Jack White and it totally caught me off guard with how deep and insightful it is. Simply beautiful – Chaturanga push-ups for your life. Thanks, Sarah! Your yoga is beautiful and inspiring. Follow Sarah on Twitter at @SarahKohl.

YogaDork is joining in on the fun and kicking it off with a super-duper giveaway. 10 YogaDork readers will receive a copy of Judith Hanson Lasater’s book, A Year of Living Your Yoga: Daily Practices to Shape Your Life, followed by an interview with Judith Hanson Lasater and regular #365yoga posts. Thanks YogaDork for helping to spread this message to a larger audience and for providing a forum of support and all kinds of yoga goodness. Follow @YogaDork on Twitter.

Want to get involved? There are many ways to join the 365yoga community (hint: you already are). You can follow along by typing the #365yoga hashtag into a Twitter search. Share your year of yoga by adding the hashtag #365yoga to your tweets. Journal or blog about your experience. Post status updates on Facebook, create a photo journal, or simply read others’ posts and leave comments to share your thoughts.

As for me, I will be joining in as well with regular #365yoga posts and tweets (follow me @lindsayyoga) as well as more yoga videos and giveaways! Yippee!!

Are you blogging about your #365yoga journey? Are you a fellow yoga tweeter? Please share a link to your blog and/or your Twitter handle so that we can stay in touch, share and continue to inspire each other.

Yours in Gratitude,

Lindsay Fields

Her trainer, Hari Chetan, began teaching her when she was four, and calls her a miracle and a perfectionist

Mindful Monday Recap: 6 Year Old Yogi, Mantras and The Un-Indian Experience

Happy Mindful New Year!

Kick off your week and your New Year with some yoga-related reading. Here is a quick recap of some blog posts and articles that I have read recently and wanted to share. Good stuff.


If you haven't already, check out My Yoga Hot Spot: 2010's Greatest Hits for some fun and useful yoga reading. I am celebrating and saying goodbye to the past year of yoga blogging and moving into 2011 with one word in mind … Wheeeeeee!!!!

Yoga: A Positively Un-Indian Experience This post recently make the rounds on the social networks and sparked some interesting conversations and re-sparked the Yoga/Hinduism debate.

I think this is pretty neat-o. World's youngest yoga teacher, six, hailed as a miracle at Indian ashram It reminds me of my little girl and how she teaches me yoga on occasion.

Release to Receive Beauty and insight from the Chopra Center. The idea of releasing the past in order to receive the future is something I have heard and read about before, yet is is always good advice.

A Monday Morning Mantra for the New Year via the YOGANONYMOUS blog. I have tuned in for these posts for a couple of weeks now and I love them. Thoughtful. Inspired. Honest.

My friends in hotness, Moksha Yoga, have themselves a really fabulous website complete with Yoga Posture Tip of the Month videos. January's tip is Savasana, Corpse Pose – one of my personal favs. They also share Green Living video tips and I am loving it.

Last but not least, from Yoga Journal, read about The Sweet Simplicity of Om

So, read it up already and have yourselves a super mindful week!




My Yoga Hot Spot: 2010’s Greatest Hits

Today is January 2nd, 2011 and I am saying my goodbyes to 2010

Yes, I am fully aware that I am a little behind in my New Year's themed posts. I did consider not posting this and simply going ahead with my 2011. But I decided that it was worth it to honor 2010 with a simple blog post so that I can move forward with a sense of completion and that fresh-all-over feeling that the new year can bring. So much has happened in the past 12 months. I will spare you the play-by-play but basically, to sum it up, it was all I could ever ask for. I have grown. I have had fun. I have opened myself up in new and exciting ways. I am doing what I love. And I have the support of friends and family and you, my readers all over the world. So, thanks … really, thanks!

So here it is, Some of My Yoga Hot Spot's most memorable posts from 2010.

1. 10 Things They Don't Tell You About Hot Yoga


2. 26 Hot Yoga Quotes and Some Smokin' HOT Photos, Too!

3. Foot Yoga – Foga? How yoga and stretching your feet can help with pain, stress and more! [VIDEO]


4. You Know You're a Hot Yogi If …



5. Bringing Your Yoga Practice Off of Your Mat


More Goodies From 2010

I have some truly fabulous stuff planned for 2011. I am so excited I can hardly stand it. In a word … Wheeeeeeee!!!!!



Phillip Askew New York City Vinyasa YouTube Still

Friday Favorites: Beautiful Vinyasa Yoga Video

I love everything about this video – the music, the editing, the asana.

A friend of mine forwarded this to me a couple of days ago. It is definitely my favorite YouTube find of the week. I am even considering updating my Top 5 Yoga-Related YouTube Moments to include it. Enjoy!

Phillip Askew New York City Vinyasa

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P.S. You might recognize Phillip Askew from another breathtaking yoga video Variations on Surya Namaskara.

meditation video

Friday Favorites: Wowy Cool Meditation Video


Change your thoughts and you change your world. -Norman Vincent Peale

Admittedly, I am a bit of a YouTube junkie. Here is one of my favorites finds of late. This video depicts the transformation that occurs through the discipline of meditation practice.

Or, if you'd prefer you can read this post: Top 20 thoughts to think while pretending to meditate. Both are equally enjoyable.

Happy Friday!

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two thumbs up

Mindful Monday Recap: Yoga Bloggin’ Goodness

Be Yourself. Everyone Else is Taken. -Oscar Wilde

Whew! It has been a few weeks since I posted a Mindful Monday Recap. It's like that John Lennon song says, "Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans." Totally.

So, I recently experienced a technology meltdown with my iPod and my laptop (not making excuses or anything) and I'd be lying if I said it made me crazy and twitchy with withdrawal. I actually enjoyed the break.

But, I'm back! My technologies have been restored and here's what I've been reading recently. There seems to be a common theme in these posts. Maybe you can tell me what it is. Enjoy!

two thumbs up

This Yoga. That Yoga. Real Yoga. Fake Yoga. My Yoga. Your Yoga. It's ALL YOGA. Read this awesome post from the brilliant Y is for Yogini: 10 ways I am "unyogic" { and don't give a #%&* }

Another on of my favorite yoga blogs, Yoga for Cynics begins this post " …with debates raging on about commercialism, body image, and what should and shouldn't be termed “yoga,” I’m pleased to announce the impending publication of my new translation of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras … re-titled, for the sake of commercial viability, Patanjali's 196 Secrets for Tight Buns and Rock Hard Abs…" Don't you want to read more?

I love this post over at The Everything Yoga Blog. She writes about questioning yoga authority and the infamous Yoga Rebel, Krishnamacharya.

This post is beautiful in its simplicity. From Yogic Muse: Yoga is our nature. Brooks is also rockin' things over at

More beauty and simplicity via The Mad Yogi Poet … this one is titled, Be Your Self. The rest will follow.

Don't forget to read my debut about doing yoga with my kids.

Also, my current giveaway is for an Aurorae Yoga Mat and Slip Free Package. Ends 9/27/10.

Thanks for stopping by!



Image: Stefano Valle /

Eat Pray Love Movie

Mindful Monday Recap: Eat a Little, Pray a Little, Love a Lot

Have you seen the Eat Pray Love Movie yet?

I realize this topic may have been exhausted already but, darn it, I have not yet witnessed the aforementioned motion picture event. At this point, I am vicariously eating and praying and loving and criticizing the Julia Roberts movie via my favorite past-time, blog reading. Yes, the blog community has exploded with reviews and criticisms and I have gathered some here for your reading enjoyment.

If this post at all piques your interest, I figure you must fall into one of two categories.

1. Like me, you have not seen the movie yet and you are looking for the low down on what to expect.

Or …

2. You loved the movie and just can't get enough EPL.

There may be a 3rd category, something like this: You're sick to death of all of the blog reviews and commentary and just want to tell me to shut the heck up.

Whatever your reason for tuning in (by the way, thank you!), below you will find a collection EPL posts from around the web, some critical, some funny and also an opportunity to tell me to "shut it" in the comments below. Enjoy!

Eat Pray Love Movie

First, stop by YogaDork and check out the EPL coverage there. Good stuff. Be sure to read the reader comments as you will find even more reviews and bloggers sharing their take.

EPL even has a Zombie Spoof poster courtesy of Merit Badger. The ultimate compliment, sort of like when Weird Al remakes your song.

And, to be expected, the sensationalized and scandalous reporting ensues … Accusations of financial misconduct, sex abuse scandals: The dark history of Elizabeth Gilberts's yoga mentor.

Another great EPL-related post written by David Romanelli (Yeah Dave): Eat, Pray, Love … Hate? In this post, Dave discusses the homophobia surrounding EPL and so-called "chick flicks" and offers a suggestion for moving beyond the hate.

Does Eat, Pray, Love and other movies about a "self-centered Westerner squeezing one-dimensional natives for exotic food, wisdom, and spirituality" make you want to gag? If so, you might like this post.

I LOVE Linda's Yoga Journey. If you haven't yet read her blog, now's your chance! Read my Eat Pray Love Tour of India but don't stop there. She has many wonderful, funny and insightful posts totally worth your time.  It is also where I found this hilarious Lewis Black video (thanks Linda!).

What about my thoughts?

I have read the book. I enjoyed it very much, probably because I am a woman around and about Elizabeth Gilbert's age in the book and I have suffered and overcome serious depression and "losing myself" in relationships. I like Italian food, yoga and desperately want to travel the world. Reading the book was as close as I've come to experiencing all of those things in one place. To sum it up, I identified with Liz. Basically, she had me at "One Woman's Search for Everything."

As for the movie, well, even after reading others opinions, I still would like to see the movie and experience it for myself. Who knows, I might even be writing my own review.

Eat a Little, Pray a Little, Love a Lot.


Bonus! Here is Liz Gilbert talking on TED about EPL, artists, inspiration and genius.


Mindful Monday Recap: Sexy Yoga and Looking in the Proverbial Mirror

I love blogs (especially the yogic variety). What I love most about blogs is that they are an open forum for conversation. Media and information-finding is no longer a one-way street, it is no longer a monologue. Blogs encourage participation and I think that is cool.

If you are at all tuned in to the yoga blogosphere, then you are probably familiar with all of the conversations around yoga advertising and the placement of beautiful nude women in yoga advertising. If not, start here. Then go here and here and here.

Are you caught up? Cool. Let's move on …

Brooks Hall recently posted on a response to a specific yoga ad and the conversation has continued. Read her post about the Tara Stiles and Nissan: Master the Shift campaign recently featured in Women's Health magazine: Slim, Sexy Yogini + Car, and what the heck are we sayin' here at Elephant?

Major kudos to Brooks and for creating a space where diverse opinions are allowed and respected.

I do a lot of "stalking" and relatively little blog commenting these days. This is mostly because I am too cautious (I've always been that way) and it takes me forever to formulate my response. What takes some people 15 minutes takes me 45-60. I read a lot of blogs, something like 15-20 per day. So, you do the math. I just don't have that kind of time.

However, on this post I managed to gather my wits and this is what I said:

"I am loving everyone's comments. Brooks you have such a gift for writing and inspiring intelligent, thoughtful and respectful conversations. This is truly a brilliant piece.

I will just add, in response to no one in particular, that It is difficult to assume (though we certainly try) what others' intentions are in life and even in advertising. Over the years I have learned to take full responsibility for my reactions to things like this Nissan/Tara Stiles ad. Analyzing the bigness of it all (or what's "wrong" with society) and looking to the past for answers (what yoga has been defined as in the past) doesn't get me very far and is actually quite limiting to my growth and understanding. However, recognizing that I am uncomfortable when I see an image or read an article and then owning it completely is rather empowering. It is an opportunity to release some of my suffering (past karma). Conciousness starts with understanding myself, right? My initial reaction to the above ad, which was not unlike many others here, had nothing to do with Tara Stiles, Nissan or elephantjournal. It was all me.

Exploring the physical body's potential is a path to freedom (from pain, stress, karma) for many and I don't believe there is a right or wrong way to freedom. It is an individual and extremely personal experience. My opinion is that this ad was meant to appeal to those who have pre-conceived or even mis-informed notions about hatha yoga.

So, just a thought … what if it (the ad) could actually be a good thing? Just asking you to consider … what if???"

Read the rest of the comments and replies to my comment here. Please share your thoughts over there at elephant. Of course, you are welcome to respond here as well.

One more thought for you …

A beautiful blog post by Nikki Chau: Don't Bite the Hook: A Lesson in Working with Anger

Thanks for stopping by my little blog. I welcome any and all comments!

Lots of Love,