Why should men do yoga? Interview with Gary, Julianne, and July's recipie!

Meet Gary, our fun, charismatic Vinyasa Flow teacher. Catch him on Sundays at 4pm.

Gary-yoga-blue -ridge-yoga


  • What is your favorite pose?My pose is half-moon, because it engages almost every muscle in the body. It tests strength, balance, coordination, stability, and it opens the hips and shoulders. It's also a great transitional pose and a lot of fun to play around in!
  • What is your favorite place you've travelled to?My favorite place was Costa Rica. I loved the local vibe, being surrounded by rainforest, and feeling life slow down. Everything was so simple there. It was a casual yet powerful reminder to me of what really matters. Not to mention, sunset yin at an outdoor shala surrounded by lush rainforest is pretty hard to beat.
  • What do you like to do for fun?My motto is: I'll try anything twice! I strive to be well-rounded, so in my spare time you might find me: traveling, cooking, baking, biking, running, swimming, hiking, taking a local yoga class, reading, writing, playing guitar, listening to some acid jazz over a good glass of red wine, etc. There's so much in life to enjoy, why just have one hobby?!                              
  • What effect has your yoga practice had on your life?Yoga has had the most profound impact on me off the mat. Through the practice, I liberated myself from the affliction of chasing perfectionism that had plagued me for so long. I tightened up while learning to loosen up, haha, and found a beauty in my imperfections. This allowed me to become a more authentic version of myself and taught me how to make space for and truly connect with other people. At the end of every class I always say, "You never have to be perfect, you just have to be present." These are words I now live by. 
  • Why should men do yoga? Men, in particular, often have misconceptions about yoga... I know I did before first stepping on a mat. I thought I knew what core strength was until the first week I practiced! I quickly learned that you don't have to be flexible to do yoga, and I wasn't as strong as I thought! I maintain that whatever you do, yoga will make you better at it! Men typically involve themselves with "yang" activities so the meditative and restorative characters of the practice help create balance between the mind / body / spirit. That balance is not something you'll find with any other activity.


Julianne is one of our newest members! 

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  • Where are you from? I am originally from Bonn in Germany.
  • How long have you lived in Knoxville? Since April of 2017.
  • What do you like about living in Knoxville? There is a lot of nature, and I like to do outdoor stuff. I like to go hiking and kayaking, and the area is perfect for that. It is very green! There is a lot more space compared to where I lived before.
  •  When and why did you begin practicing yoga? I started practicing yoga a few years ago (3 or 4). For a while I went a lot, but then I moved and didn't find a studio that I liked where I lived. I am very happy now to have found a nice studio!
  • What is your favorite thing about yoga?I like the mixture of physical exercise and meditation which calms you down and relieves stress. 

Vegan Queso:

Oh, how I love this stuff!

1 1/2 cups raw cashews

3 Tablespoons nutritional yeast

1/2 tsp sea salt, pink salt, Morton salt, any fine salt will do.

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp cumin

chili powder (add to suit yourself)

1-2 canned chipotle peppers (or sub salsa or hot sauce)

1 Tablespoon grapeseed or olive oil (I use grapeseed)

Add all above ingredients to your blender or food processor. Blend until smooth, adding hot water in increments to achieve desired consistency. You may add another Tablespoon of oil, if desired. Use a spatula to scrape down sides of blender or food processor, as needed.

This can be stored in the fridge for about a week.