Blueberry cake with a twist!
Recipe from Naturally Nourished by Sarah Britton
Where are you from? I was born and raised in Knoxville. My dad is from India and my mom is from Singapore. They came to Knoxville in 1987.
How long have you lived in Knoxville? I have lived in Knoxville my whole life, 27 years.
What do you like about living in Knoxville? I like that Knoxville isn’t too big or too small. It’s more like a big town rather than a city. I love how welcoming, friendly and helpful people are here - you can go anywhere and strike up a conversation with somebody you’ve never met before. Knoxville just feels like home to me!
When and why did you begin practicing yoga? I have to thank my younger sister, Pooja, for introducing me to yoga. She has been practicing for 9 years and always encouraged me to do practice along with her. I however only recently started practicing seriously after I suffered a bad hamstring pull during taekwondo practice. I have always been very active and health and fitness are my passion - I’ve practiced martial arts since I was 7 years old, I played tennis for close to 10 years, and I love working out and keeping my body healthy. I also have my masters degree in exercise physiology and work as a personal trainer to help others lead a healthier lifestyle. Since fitness is a huge part of my life, it was very difficult for me to be limited in activity due to my injury. That’s when I discovered the benefits of yoga. It gave me a way to be active while I was healing and I believe it helped me recover faster. I began by practicing on my own and following videos online. I joined Blue Ridge Yoga a few months ago so I could experience yoga in a different setting.
What is your favorite thing about yoga? Yoga has helped me become more flexible and fluid in my movement and this has helped me with injury prevention while practicing martial arts and working out. While it has greatly helped me physically, my favorite aspect is the mental and emotional journey just one class can lead you through. When I step on my yoga mat, I feel like my surroundings just melt away. It’s like being on vacation and not having to be anywhere or do anything. It’s a time to just take care of myself.
Meet Kris, our free-spirited and lighthearted instructor!
Catch Kris Tuesdays at 7:15pm and Saturdays at 9am or 10:30am!
What is your favorite yoga pose? It is difficult to choose a single favorite yoga pose. I tend to treat the postures like medicine for whats ailing me and as a means for creative expression. Lately I have been loving Halasana or plough pose. Physically, it relieves my leg cramps after a run, but it also is so very calming and grounding. If you know me, I'm sure you understand how beneficial that is for me!
What is your favorite place you've travelled to? My favorite place that I have traveled to is actually right here in the U.S. It wasn't the destination but the way in which we travelled that made it such an amazing journey. I rode my bike across the U.S. and Canada and down the West Coast into the Bay Area. It is hands-down one of the best experiences of my life. I discovered many things about myself on those long, quiet rides. I received the great blessing of sharing the adventure with wonderful people along the way. I got to connect with people from all walks of life whose beautiful, kind, and generous hearts taught me what I consider to be one of the most important truths for my life: We are all in this journey together, we need one another, and there is no greater gift in life than the love we share.
What do you like to do for fun? Fun! Yes, please! I love being with my family and friends, especially the kiddos. They are the epitome of fun! I love yoga, running, being on my bicycle, paddle boarding, travel, being in nature, gardening, photography, painting, playing my guitar, cooking...I think I have too many hobbies! Living is fun!
What effect has your yoga practice had on your life? I believe yoga has made me more courageous. In my early twenties, when I first discovered yoga, I discovered how confined I was by my fears and self-doubt. Yoga empowers me, humbles me, teaches me about acceptance, and my intention. I found a deeper love for myself, others, and life in general while on my mat. I learned to trust. The journey is certainly still underway, but I find that I can always return to my mat to find peace, to center myself, and to celebrate the miracle of being alive!
What do people not know about you? I suppose something most people do not know about me is that I had severe asthma as a child. Lesson learned...be grateful for every breath!