Category: What’s Happening at WYC?

Ask An Instructor!

Want to ask your yoga teacher something but feel like there’s not enough time after class? Or maybe you’ve considered doing private yoga but aren’t sure…

Try “Ask An Instructor”: your free opportunity to meet with a certified yoga teacher for 15 minutes.

You can get guidance about your most challenging pose – or maybe get tips on how to nail your yoga goals; you might want their feedback about mediation or other wellness practices. It’s your time to get a little one-on-one…

Thursday, October 4th, 5:30 – 6:30 PM: Amber Kleid
Saturday, October 7th, 11 AM – 12 NOON: Kayla Vreeland 

Spaces are limited + going fast! To snag yours, register on our class calendar.

Team Member of the Month – September 2018

Please join us in celebrating our Team Member of the Month: Patricia R.! Many of you have seen Pat in the studio, as she attends an variety of classes and workshops here at Waynesville Yoga Center. We are grateful to have her calm, joyful presence in the studio – and honored to support her wellness goals.

To get to know Patricia a little better, we asked her to share a bit about herself and her journey with yoga…

  1. Tell me about your experience with yoga: how it began, where it has taken you, and how yoga has impacted your life.

I began a home practice of yoga in my early twenties. I’ve been a lifelong runner and I loved the physical aspects of yoga then; stretching and muscle strengthening. Over the last twenty years (I’m 62 yrs. old now), I began to explore the spiritual teachings of the yogic traditions; taking classes at yoga centers, attending yoga retreats, and beginning a meditation practice.

I moved to Waynesville four years ago when I retired from a deeply rewarding career as a teacher, then an elementary Principal in New York State. Over these last few years here, I continued my yoga practice; sometimes taking workshops and classes in the Asheville yoga community and at the Waynesville Recreation Center. When I learned of the opening of the Waynesville Yoga Center (just 1.3 miles from my home), I was thrilled!

I joined the Waynesville Yoga Center (WYC) with an unlimited classes/monthly membership and take as many classes as I can weekly! Since joining, I have lost 23 pounds! Some of it is from changing my diet and being more active in general, but some of it is definitely from the classes I take every week at WYC.

The variety of classes and the expertise of each one of the instructors has given me the opportunity to deepen my yoga practice, and improve my overall health! Practicing yoga at WYC has supported my personal goal of living mindfully and strengthening union of my body and mind! I am ever grateful that the WYC community is here!

  1. What are your favorite styles / classes?

I have to say that I have no particular favorite classes. Every class that I’ve taken, from Restorative/Yin to Mixed Level Flow yoga, is taught with such expertise and beauty of intention! I select classes based on what I’m feeling I need in my practice that day and having so many class options in the weekly schedule, that easy to do! I also love taking the energizing Buti Yoga and the muscle stretching/strengthening Barre classes!

  1. What’s your favorite pose and why?

It’s hard to pick a favorite pose; again I appreciate each pose and flow for what it has to teach me! I have to say that in the course of a Flow class, I do love, and feel empowered by practicing Breath of Fire in Goddess Pose!

  1. What do you do when you’re not practicing yoga?

When I’m not practicing yoga, I’m enjoying retirement in these beautiful Smoky Mountains! I love to run, hike, walk my dog, read and spend time with my amazing twenty-six year old daughter, Roxy. 💕

  1. Tell me something funny or unexpected about you.

This is a tough question! Being one of the oldest in a family of seven children and in adulthood having a wonderful career in teaching and school administration, I’ve always held a “role” of responsibility. Being in my cognitive mind to consider best courses of action in decision-making was my strength. Although I loved every minute of my position in educational leadership, I’m trying now to live with a lighter heart, appreciating and grateful for living in each moment!

Next time you see Pat, give her a fist bump for a being a total bad-ass! 🙂 We are grateful to have her in our yoga community – and to feature her as the September Team Member of the Month!

Introducing: CBD Massage!

Wait, are you talking about marijuana!? NO! 🙂

There are many species of cannabis, and one them – cannabidiol (CBD) – is really hot right now. Some people are wary of CBD because they confuse it with THC, the compound in cannabis that gets people “high”. However, these compounds are very different: while THC produces altered states of mind, CBD does not. It’s not psychoactive and has significant medical uses, such as treating:

  • Muscle Pain
  • Muscle Soreness
  • Muscle Spasms
  • Joint Pain
  • Nerve Pain
  • Inflammation

“CBD stands out because it is both nonintoxicating and displays a broad range of medicinal applications, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-anxiety, and analgesic (pain relief) properties,” said Dr. Blake Pearson, founder of Greenly Medical Consulting and practicing medical doctor in Ontario, Canada, specializing in cannabinoid medicine.

People with arthritis, broken bones, sports injuries, overworked muscles from working out, neurological disorders, and those who want to relax or relieve anxiety can benefit from CBD oil treatments. According to Dr. Pearson, there’s also a growing body of evidence supporting claims that CBD has been shown to improve symptoms related to “inflammation, including inflammatory bowel disease (for example Crohn’s and colitis), rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and sports and occupational injuries causing chronic pain, like tendinitis,” mood disorders, and more. He’s observed patients in his clinic find great relief from their pain after starting cannabinoid therapy.

CBD in Massage + Spa Treatments

Because of its many benefits, CBD has been taking the healthcare and beauty industries by storm in recent years. In fact, CBD is being used in spa treatments throughout the country — and for good reason. The incorporation of CBD into spa treatments has been shown to minimize inflammation, ease pain, and relieve stress, tension and anxiety.The use of CBD oil in massage can be “great for musculoskeletal and joint pain relief,” says Dr. Mark Rosenbloom, MD, MBA.
He usually recommends CBD for localized pain and has seen very positive results from it. Dr. Rosenbloom has also seen a decrease in nausea, inflammation, and oxidative stress in patients when using CBD.

CBD Massage @ WYC

Inspired by spas across the county, we’ve just started offering CBD oil massage at Waynesville Yoga Center. We mix the highest quality CBD tincture from Barlean’s into our custom massage oil, which includes avocado + jojoba oils. Our oil blend is nourishing for your tissues, and the addition of CBD makes it even more therapeutic and anti-inflammatory!

Want to see how this compound can help you? Come give it a try! We only charge $10 extra for the CBD oil and are happy to see how it might benefit you. For more details about our massage and bodywork – and/or to schedule an appointment – click here.

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

Thank You

Thank you for not only making our first birthday celebration a success – but also for being our yoga community. We  wouldn’t be here without you, and as we celebrate our first year, we want to recognize each and every one of you.

This past Tuesday, our one year anniversary, we held raffles after each class and gave away some pretty sweet gift baskets to the winners! We also had snacks and champagne available all day and offered half off WYC merchandise.

For those of you who made it in, nice celebrating with you! For those who didn’t, come by and see us soon. We don’t have champagne every day, but would love to connect, especially if you’ve not been able to make WYC a habit yet. 🙂

We look forward to celebrating many more years (if not decades!) with you. Thanks for all you are, for all you do, and for supporting us.

Team WYC


(goodies courtesy of Kaninis)

Changes to the Monthly Membership

Have you been on the fence about switching to a monthly unlimited membership? Or want to join with your spouse or family member? Now would be a good time to sign up!

As of June 1st, we’re raising the price of our monthly unlimited auto-debit membership to $89 and our monthly unlimited non-auto-debit to $108.

If you’re already a monthly auto-debit member, you’re grandfathered in at the original cost! As long as you don’t cancel your membership, your monthly rate will stay the same. However, if you cancel and restart it in the future, it will increase to the new price.

Have you been trying to convince a family member to join the studio with you? If you both sign up for a monthly unlimited, we’ll take 10% off the two memberships!

So if you’ve been debating making the switch, sign up before June 1st to be locked in at the $79 monthly unlimited membership fee! Sign-up online or stop by the front desk to enroll!

Team Member of the Month: April 2018

Give a big round of applause to our Team Member of the Month- Terri M.! Many of you may have seen Terri on the mat beside you, as she attends an array of classes and workshops here at WYC. We are so happy to have her warm energy in the studio on a daily basis, and excited to see her avidly pursing her wellness goals.

To get to know Terri a little better, we asked her to share a bit about herself and her journey with yoga…

  1. Tell me about your experience with yoga: how it began, where it has taken you, and how yoga has impacted your life.

I picked up a postcard in Hazelwood Soap Company announcing the opening of Waynesville Yoga Center in September of last year. I took my first restorative class and was hooked! I take so many classes, sometimes I feel like a WYC stalker! My flexibility, strength, stamina and breath have improved dramatically. I have made a whole new circle of wonderful friends and have had many amazing new experiences. Practicing yoga has decreased my anxiety level dramatically. I have learned to take one day at a time, with an inner calm and sense of peace and well-being I never had before.

  1. What are your favorite styles / classes?

My staple classes are restorative and yin which have increased my strength and flexibility. Without them, I could not have moved into beginner and slow flow classes that have further increased my strength, stamina and balance. We are so fortunate to have such a talented and caring group of instructors.

  1. What’s your favorite pose and why?

Warrior 2 is my favorite pose because it reminds me how far I have come, and that I have the strength to face whatever life brings my way.

  1. What do you do when you’re not practicing yoga?

When not practicing yoga, I work part time for our business, McGovern Property Mgt., care for my precious grandsons, Lukas and Grant and spend time with my husband Bruce, the most supportive husband a girl could ever want.

  1. Tell me something funny or unexpected about you.

I am a huge sci-fi fan. If there’s an alien, a vampire or a zombie – I am there!

Next time you see Terri in class, be sure to introduce yourself!

Tapas Time

No, not the kind you can eat, though we love those too! 🙂 Tapas in this context means “self discipline”. It’s one of the five niyamas, or personal practices that relate to our inner world, our relationship with our selves. 

The five yamas are self-regulating behaviors involving our interactions with other people and the world at large – and together, with the niyamas, are yoga’s ethical principles. They’re like a map written to guide you on your life’s journey.

Simply put, the yamas are things not to do, or restraints, while the niyamas are things to do, or observances. Together, they form a moral code of conduct. 

At this time of year, the niyamas of self-discipline and saucha (“purity”) seem especially relevant. Many of us arepurifying in some way: nature is producing a bounty of bitter greens, such as dandelion, that detox the body and organs.

Many of us feel energized to engage in some spring cleaning, releasing from our homes and closets what no longer serves. Nature is bursting forth with fresh, pure new life: buds, blossoms, seed sprouts, and animal babies of all kinds. 

As the days grow longer and warmer, as we feel more energetic after winter’s rest, we need to maintain discipline and structure to help our seedlings take root into viable plants – whether that’s staying outside after dinner to till the garden; pushing through that clutter-clearing project at home; or maintaining our yoga practice in spite of spring fever!

Do you feel the upwelling energy of spring pulling your attention in many directions? Do you feel motivated to cleanse? How can the principles of self-discipline + purification help transform your goals into reality?

Team Member of the Month: February 2018

Please give it up for WYC featured Team Member – February 2018 – Maura Finn!! Most of you have taken a class – or attended an amazing workshop – or had a killer reiki session – with Maura, and we want to acknowledge how much we value her!! She is a valued member of the WYC community; and we appreciate her, both personally + professionally.

Maura teaches several weekly classes – offers regular reiki sessions – and has several events in the works, including Open Heart Journey: Cacao + Self-Love this coming Wednesday. She’s finishing up her first “Inner Teacher Training” and is gathering information for those interested in round 2: email us if you’d like to be added to the list.

To get to know Maura a little better, we asked her to share a bit about herself and her journey with yoga…

  1. Tell me about your experience with yoga: how it began, where it has taken you, and how yoga has impacted your life.

I was a college athlete and always very physical and connected to my body, but I was also really intense and carried a lot of stress. I never thought I could “do yoga” because I wasn’t tall and skinny nor super flexible. The thought of being ‘still’ was really unappealing. I dabbled in pilates and gyrontics quite young, but it wasn’t until I went to a yoga class after getting out of the hospital in 2006 that everything changed.

In many ways, yoga was one of the most important ingredients in my healing journey. I began teaching children’s yoga in 2010 and found a way to express the joy I felt in movement with play. I then devoted more time to my personal practice, more breathwork and mindfulness. Yoga is not a separate part of my life, as it informs everything I do even beyond the physical practice.

  1. What are your favorite yoga styles to teach and why?

I love to teach mindful and intentional yoga. Hatha yoga is the basis of all yoga, so it is really lovely to teach a slow, breath-infused class. I also enjoy teaching a solid vinyasa practice with some challenges and lots of great music. It is also amazing to teach beginners and children/teens. I love to witness the growth and expansion for each individual.

  1. What are you doing when you’re not teaching or practicing yoga?

I am most at home in nature so I am often outside hiking, spending time near water or playing with my Golden Retriever, Blue. I am also a writer and working on my first children’s book as well as just completing my first bilingual poetry book. I have a private practice working with all ages using energy work and alternative therapies, so that also keeps me busy! I can also be found drinking cacao, singing and dancing. I love to travel and haven’t done much of it in the last year, so 2018 is calling me to get my backpack packed.

  1. Tell me something funny or unexpected about you.

I have always had wanderlust, even as a child. My first plane ride in sixth grade was to Disneyland to babysit a neighbor’s child while she was at her conference. I never stopped! I drove across the USA with a friend at 19. We camped everywhere and visited many states. I still do not know how we did it. I lived and studied in Scotland during college and traveled throughout Europe. I moved to NYC after college and lived there for a decade.

There are many unexpected stories from those years. I moved to Guatemala in 2009 and lived there for 5 years. I returned to the USA in 2014 and have traveled back to Guatemala twice, Mexico, Hawaii, Virginia, Texas, Colorado and then lived in Indonesia for 3 months before landing in North Carolina for the last year. A lot of this travel was soul-searching, but also to learn a lot about people so that I can be of better service in the work that I do.

I am humbled that I have had these experiences and many of them were done on a super tight budget. I am grateful my path has taken me where it has, even if I felt really frustrated at never having a physical home. So, I take my ‘home’ with me. I do know that anything is possible when you put your heart to it. And, I believe in magical thinking.

Please join us in recognizing all that Maura is – and the goodness she brings to Waynesville Yoga Center! To register for one of her grounding yet invigorating classes, click here.

Team Member of the Month: January 2018

by Leigh-Ann Renz, 1.10.18

We’re honored + excited to recognize Sara Lewis as our Team Member of the Month for January! Sara is an engaged, invested and dynamic instructor – not to mention a kind, calm and all-around good person. We appreciate Sara very much, personally and professionally, and are so grateful to have her on our team!

sara-lewis-teaches-yoga-in-waynesvilleSara teaches several weekly classes and hosts regular workshops (check out her next one coming up on January 20th: Beating the Sugar Blues). Additionally, she has her own holistic cooking business and has provided us with healthy, delicious treats for other events. If you were lucky enough to sample any of the amazing food at our recent Holiday Open House, you know what a killer cook she is!

As part of recognizing her as our January Team Member, we gave her a goodie bag filled with WYC swag – and asked her to share a little bit about herself and her yoga journey. Check it out:

  1. Tell me about your experience with yoga: how it began, where it has taken you, and how yoga has impacted your life.

My first experience with yoga was around 2000 when I took a class at UNC-Chapel Hill. I remember distinctly having a floating sensation during savasana and I said to myself, “wow, I need to do this again!” At the time I was in a stressful job and traveling internationally on a regular basis.

That first class gave me a taste of what it would be like to slow down and focus on being present. A lesson that I continue to focus on every day! Regular yoga practice has been transformational for me, not just the physical aspect, but also breaking down psychological and emotional barriers.


  1. What are your favorite yoga styles to teach and why?

I enjoy teaching gentle flow and yin yoga because I think this style attracts new students. I love hearing new students express amazement about how they feel after a class! And I enjoy connecting with people and listening to their stories. Everyone brings a unique energy to class and that allows me to bring my own creativity to the mat as well.

  1. What are you doing when you’re not teaching or practicing yoga?

You can usually find me in the kitchen experimenting with local food ingredients and developing new recipes. I love trying to create something delicious out of just a few basic ingredients. One of my favorite things to do is to visit a friend’s house, and with their permission, peek into the pantry/fridge and dream up a dish from what’s available. You might also find me on my road bike, exploring hills and valleys, with a group from the Bicycle Haywood NC Club.

  1. Tell me something funny or unexpected about you.

I tend to bring home strangers (my husband, who is very tolerant and supportive, says it’s sort of like taking in stray dogs or cats, but in my case it’s people!).  Many years ago, I met an elderly Japanese woman in the Miami airport when we both got stuck overnight due to flight delays. My new-found friend had purchased a “round the world” pass and was trying to decide where to go next.

She pulled out a map of the US, spread it on the floor and a group of us gathered around, giving her advice. I found myself saying, “you really should visit the mountains of Western North Carolina”. Next thing I know, we are both on a plane headed to Waynesville!

I was just returning from a 3-week work trip, had moved into a new apartment and had no food in my refrigerator. But we had a fabulous time and I showed her some highlights of our beautiful area. I learned that she was a translator/interpreter during World War II. Experiences like these are what makes life more interesting to me!

Please join us in recognizing Sara as an amazing instructor and simply lovely person! 🙂 Come experience one of her classes for yourself: click here to register via our class calendar.




Get Real

by Leigh-Ann Renz, 11.3.17

Yes, yoga can promote Peace + tranquility – it can powerfully transform your life for the better. But that doesn’t mean yoga has to be stuffy or holier-than-thou. All of the instructors at WYC are real people, who practice yoga so we can be our best – not deny or transcend being human.

You are already “good enough” to do yoga in a studio!

We’ve found that a common misconception of yoga is that you have to be perfect to practice it! That simply isn’t true: you don’t have be any particular skill level to join one of our classes! Show up, as you are, and see how yoga can meet you in the moment.

None of us are perfect. People fall over in class – they fart in class! It happens: life happens. Some of us can do certain poses; others can’t. We all have our own goals and restrictions, on + off the mat. Don’t let the fear of failure – or judgment! – keep you from your practice.

Get Real

Check out our new video series showing how yoga can integrate with life where you are right now… and share with us your stories of how yoga has helped you get real:



Leigh-Ann Renz offers yoga + massage at Waynesville Yoga Center
Leigh-Ann Renz loves being part of the WYC Team, helping to gather the yoga + wellness community in Waynesville and Haywood County. As a massage therapist, she incorporates a variety of modalities into an intuitive + fluid blend, based on the clients’ needs.

When not working, she can be found in the woods – or by the ocean – with her family.

  • “What has set the program apart for me, as well, is the approach to teaching that encourages us not to focus on a “perfect” pose, but rather perfecting a pose within our bodies and the bodies of our students. This means everyone’s expression of a pose will be slightly different, and there is such beauty in that. It runs counter to so much that we are taught elsewhere in life.”

    – Kristen, B

  • “Amber is an incredibly gifted instructor, particularly when it comes to yoga. She is calming, thorough, and provides that extra-added touch of essential oils, gentle adjustments, and themed practices. I love that Amber’s yoga classes are dynamic and she’s taught moves in her classes that I’ve never done in 15 years of practicing yoga. She’s a breath of fresh air in the yoga scene. I highly recommend her!”

    – Christine G.

  • “My experience during my YTT at WYC has not only increased my confidence on the mat but has opened up endless possibilities and opportunities for a courageous, confident, and grateful life off the mat. “

    – Teresa F.

  • “Thank you all so much for offering this. It has truly been a gift in my life and I am very grateful to be part of this class!”

    – Kristen, B

  • “Jay is a wonderful yoga instructor; has great variety in classes; is always dependable (there and on time); is kind and understanding; and always available to answer questions and give additional instruction if necessary. She is calm and classes are enjoyable no matter the challenge.”

    – Myndie S.

  • “Jay is an always-patient, highly skilled teacher who makes everyone feel welcome and able to participate. Her class is always a joy and rewarding.”

    – Barbara S.

  • I signed up for YTT thinking I had time to myself to focus on me, but the world has other plans. It’s still the best decision I’ve made, and I am so grateful that what I have learned has come to me at a time that I can apply it to so much real world trauma. This YTT has been a saving grace!

    – Kim T.

  • “Jay takes time to answer questions, to give help when needed in performing movements and is a gentle, calm person which helps my yoga experience.”

    – Anita S.

  • “With all of my health issues, I never would have believed I could ever learn to teach yoga. WYC’s Real Yoga for Real Bodies built my confidence as a leader, reminding me that my journey is my strength, and I will actually be a better teacher because of the challenges I’ve experienced. Thank you so much for creating a program that encouraged us to bring the beauty and the beast through this incredible transformation.”

    – CJH

  • “Amber, you’re an incredible teacher! You are a natural at creating flows that challenge and inspire your students.”

    – Michelle G.C.

  • “I waited years looking for the right yoga teacher training program and WYC was definitely the reason why. I’m absolutely convinced I could not have found a program that was more creative, inclusive, or supportive. I would definitely attribute that to the meticulous design of the curriculum and incredibly talented teachers you brought in to lead so many cool facets of the course. You drew in some of the most amazing students with all this awesomeness and I’ve been so thrilled to learn alongside them this year so thank you, thank you, thank you for every last delicious bit of it.”

    – CJH

  • “WYC YTT has given me such tremendous depth in my practice of yoga on and off the mat. I’ve loved seeing my evolution this year as I learned all the ways I can add yoga to my home and work life. I started just expecting to build a stronger personal practice, but now I am so excited to see where this will all take me in the years to come.”

    – 2019 YTT Student

  • “That special moment when your body, mind and spirit blend into a yummy synchronized yogic OHMMMMMMM……..yeah, YTT has given me like a hundred of those so far! You guys are awesome!”

    – 2019 YTT Student

  • “When I first began practicing yoga, it seemed like the more I learned, the more I wanted to know. I bought a few books but still didn’t feel like a real student of the practice of yoga. When the 200 hour YTT was offered, I saw it as the perfect chance to really expand my knowledge. I have come to realize that with this deep dive into the practice of yoga, I have a strong knowledge bank that will allow me to continue to expand my knowledge of yoga for years to come.”

    – Jann F.

  • “I woke up one morning and realized I was 60 years old, that I could live well into my 80s and that I had to do something to improve my strength and stamina if I wanted a good quality of life. I was caring for small grandchildren periodically, and it exhausted me.

    As soon as I saw Waynesville Yoga Center was opening, I came. I am so thankful to Jay for a place where I feel safe, not self-conscious, and where I can attend classes that benefit me without feeling in competition with anyone else. Restorative and Yin have improved my flexibility and meditation skills; Beginner Flow, Flow Level 1 and Gentle Chair Yoga have increased my strength and balance and also challenged me, as has Barre and Balance!

    I feel better than I ever have – physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I have met so many new friends. All of the instructors I have had are wonderful and willing to share of themselves. Thank you, Jay, your endeavor is making a tremendous difference in so many lives!”

    – Terri M.

  • “YTT provided me with the tools and knowledge to deepen my own yoga practice and help others with theirs. This program challenged me in unforeseen ways and I am so thankful to have experienced this journey with such incredible teachers and fellow students. It was truly a life-changing experience.”

    – Hayley P.

  • “After my first private session with Amber my body felt so good! Because of her guidance and personal assisting I highly recommend working with her.”

    – Barbara B.

  • “One of the things I have loved about the program is that we are not just learning how to teach certain poses; I have been learning things I didn’t even know I could learn about yoga in general, including about the subtle energies, how they tie to both anatomy and the philosophy of yoga.”

    – 2019 YTT Student

  • “Jay met me prior to class to help me polish my yoga teaching skills. I really appreciate her willingness to meet and teach me to make me a better instructor.”

    – Brooke H.

  • “I haven’t felt this good since I got my puppy, ten years ago!…”

    – Steve S.

  • “Since I started taking classes at Waynesville Yoga Center, I can now go down the stairs ‘normally’, instead of one foot at a time. I’m really pleased with how these classes are helping me.”

    – Carol L.

Our mission is to provide a safe and accepting space where students can learn, heal, grow - and have fun! We work to create peace in our world, communities and families by first creating peace within ourselves.

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Waynesville Yoga Center
274 S Main St
Waynesville, NC 28786