Sue Kulynych Melhorn has home schooled her three children over a span of twenty years. She holds a B.S. degree in Business Administration/Accounting. She is also a yoga instructor was a 200hr certification in power yoga and is currently completing her 500hr certification in Subtle Yoga. You can find Sue working at the front desk, filling in for another instructor, or most likely, taking a class herself.
Emilie is originally from Gadsden, AL and moved to TN in 2014. She first fell in love with yoga when she started taking classes at a local studio in AL. When she moved to TN, Emilie began searching for a new yoga home and found Blue Ridge. After she began practicing with Blue Ridge, Emilie decided to further her practice by becoming a certified instructor. She recently finished her 200-hr yoga teacher training program at Blue Ridge and shortly after began working at Blue Ridge. When she is not teaching or practicing yoga, Emilie loves hanging out with her husband and two beautiful daughters. She also has an amazing golden doodle named Olive. Emilie is excited about what this new chapter in her life will look like and is looking forward to getting to know all of the faces at BRY.
Susan has been teaching yoga and pilates since 2009. She is a E-RYT-500 hour certified yoga teacher and a comprehensively certified PEAK pilates teacher. Her training and experiences include working as a yoga therapist for both PT's and chiropractors plus working with patients at a major medical center. She has taught numerous styles of yoga including vinyasa, power, boot camp, yin, yang/yin, restorative, gentle, basics, hot, chair, and yoga for cancer survivors. Originally from Illinois, Susan has moved around a bit in her life—Hawaii, Japan, San Diego, Dallas, Jackson, MS, and Cincinnati. Now she is enjoying exploring her new home city of Knoxville! Join her on the mat for a wonderful yoga experience!
Dani fell in love with yoga 10 years ago when she took a class in college just to fulfill her hour requirements. Since then, she has kept her practice up, and has always been curious to how she could spread the joy of yoga to others.
Dani pursued her goal of becoming a physical therapist and graduated with her Doctorate in Physical Therapy in 2012. After graduation, she became passionate about helping and educating women. This passion grew even more after she encountered some physical issues following the birth of her daughter in 2015. She has pursued continued education in the field of Women’s Health and Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy.
Dani found BRY last year and fell in love with the bright and inviting atmosphere it creates! Dani then completed the 200 hour YTT at BRY and is very excited to be able to combine what she has learned about the life-changing aspects of yoga with the joy of empowering women through knowledge and movement.
Ashley works at the front desk, assisting with checking in for classes and helping new students get acquainted with the studio. Ashley graduated from MTSU with a Bachelor's degree in Athletic Training and a Master's degree in Health. She has an extensive background working with athletic injuries and rehabilitation. Always focused on her passion of helping people, Ashley began teaching group fitness classes and found a love for Yoga. She started her 200 hour teacher training at Blue Ridge Yoga in November 2016 and is looking forward to continuing to grow as a yoga teacher and as an individual. She believes yoga is an amazing way to better maintain mental and spiritual health by bringing peace and clarity, while also being really beneficial physically as well.
Lisa is originally from Lebanon, TN. She graduated from Carson-Newman College and worked as a social worker for over 9 years before leaving to stay home with 2 young daughters.
She loves the peace yoga brings her, and is excited for the opportunity to help others experience this peace.
Cassie joined our team on July 22. She will be one of the warm faces greeting you, helping you register for classes, sign up for packages, and more!
Cassie is originally from Manchester, TN. She graduated from The University of Tennessee in 2011 with a Bachelors degree in Psychology and from Liberty University in 2016 with a Masters degree in Professional Counseling. She has worked as a social worker for the past 4 years helping children and adolescents living with diagnosed mental illnesses.
Cassie loves the stress relieving and healing aspects of yoga and is excited about helping others strengthen their self-care skills and improve their overall well-being!
Randy has been practicing yoga for over 15 years and has successfully completed 230 hours as a Certified Yoga Instructor from the Asheville Yoga Center. Randy has been teaching in the Knoxville area for the last six years. In addition to Certification through Yoga Alliance, Randy has also furthered his education through many workshops and intensives with emphasis on Iyengar Yoga. Randy has studied under several Senior Iyengar instructors such as, Laurie Blakney, George Purvis, Dean Leaner, Roger Cole and Ramanand Patel. Randy has also studied other styles of yoga with Bryan Kest (Power Yoga), Kino McGregor (Ashtanga), and Stephanie Keach (Asheville Yoga Center). Randy’s base yoga style is in the Iyengar method, but loves to fuse Vinysas and Breath work into his yoga classes for a fluid approach. Randy is also a distance runner and a former Marine.
Upcoming Classes with Randy
Always fascinated by the mind-body-soul connection and intuitive potential, it was no wonder Lasha fell madly in love with Yoga in 2004 after her first class - a Bikram experience that began a majestic journey into this ever-evolving practice. Curious to dive deeper, she was impelled to complete a 225 hour Hatha Teacher Training in 2007 with Shasta Townsend at Balanced Life Yoga in her homeland of Ontario, Canada. Since then, Lasha has diversified her learning and teaching experiences, trained in Prenatal Modifications & Yoga Therapy, and in 2010 she received a Master’s Degree in Exercise Physiology specializing in Athletic Performance and Wellness.
Lasha is passionate about outdoor adventure and has led various trips and retreats. She is very grateful for the abundant blessings that come with sharing yoga, from spearheading new studios in unexpected places, to down dogs and deep breaths in the beauty of nature all over the continent. She loves witnessing the universal magic of healing from within and wholeheartedly believes there is a Yoga practice for everyone. Helping others to explore and adapt their unique potential is her greatest intention. Lasha is currently in the process of obtaining licensure in Massage Therapy and eagerly looks forward to blending the benefits of Yoga with hands-on bodywork. Namaste!
Lindsay is a Knoxville native who graduated from Middle Tennessee State University in 2011 with a Bachelor’s degree in Child Development and Family Studies with a minor in Elementary Education. After graduation, she spent a year and a half working as a Care Coordinator at the Helen Ross McNabb Children and Youth Center. After leaving McNabb and working for a year as a full-time nanny, Lindsay began graduate school in August of 2014. She will be graduating in May 2016 with a Master’s in Social Work with a certificate in Trauma Treatment from The University of Tennessee. Lindsay enjoys working with children, especially children who have experienced trauma, and will be pursuing a certification in Play Therapy upon graduating with her MSSW. Lindsay loves living in East Tennessee, traveling, all things Tennessee football, being active, and going to the beach any chance she gets. Working at a yoga studio fits Lindsey’s idea of brining care to all types of people.
Katie joined Blue Ridge Yoga in Fall 2015 to improve her own health and well-being. She helps manage the studio and is excited to incorporate her supervisory experience as well as her passion for non-profit work into her role. Katie has 9 years of experience working with non-profits including management and grants administration. She earned a bachelor's degree in Psychology from Troy University and a master's degree in Social Work from University of Tennessee. Katie is drawn to Blue Ridge Yoga by its welcoming and healing environment and its philanthropic work with local community organizations.
Gary is an accomplished athlete with experience in multiple disciplines; he is a former professional-class mountain biker, IronMan triathlete, competitive soccer player, marathoner and has a profound love for all things fitness / nutrition-related. Gary has his 200-hour certification in Power Yoga, through a Baptiste Inspired Program with Mark White. He is currently earning a 500-hour with Kristine Kaoverii from Subtle Yoga. The program focuses on yoga as a therapeutic modality in a integrative care setting whereby we design a patient-specific practice to treat various structural abnormalities and psychological conditions.
He was introduced to yoga after an injury but found it offered much more than physical rejuvenation, that the benefits of yoga extended well-beyond the mat.
"We live in moments, not hours, day or years. Accordingly, it is only when we realize the value of a single breath that we can begin to appreciate the beauty that is life. Yoga forged within me a sense of mindfulness, a deep-seeded connection to the present moment...which is all any of us ever really have. It taught me to slow down and be still in difficult times, to sit with discomfort, to embrace my authentic self and to breathe, just breathe. Yoga taught me that even through hardship, one should always feel gratitude. "
Becky Maze is a Knoxville native and has shown an interest in yoga since her college days. She is also a Dental Hygienist and holds a B.S. in Health Education Her desire to know yoga’s balance intensified in 2005 as her life changed and growing pains ensued. She studied yoga under Asheville’s Cindy Dollar (Iyengar Method) at the Glowing Body and she claims Patty Dougherty to be one of her most precious mentors. She has a love for vinyasa and yin and practices Reiki as well. Her personal yoga journey has brought her into a more balanced lifestyle, which she delights in sharing with others through teaching.
Casey was born and raised in sunny southern California. She has been teaching Power Vinyasa Yoga since 2014 and truly feels it is her calling. She has a passion for nurturing wholeness in others, specifically through the practice of yoga and the use of essential oils. She has spent extensive time training in the therapeutic benefits of essential oils, and she brings that knowledge into the yoga studio by incorporating oils into all of her classes. Casey’s classes are filled with fun, great music, and high energy. Her goal is that students leave their mats feeling revitalized, confident, and inspired. When not on her mat, Casey can be found reading, singing karaoke, drinking insane amounts of coffee, and road tripping across the U.S. with her husband and three kids.
Caitlyn was first introduced to yoga in 2008 through the BodyFlow classes she took at her local gym. It was during her first savasana that she realized that there is something special about yoga. Over the years, Caitlyn became more interested in learning about the mental and emotional benefits of yoga and decided to take the next step by getting certified to teach. She completed her Associate of Science at Pellissippi Sate Community College in 2015, and then began her 200 hour yoga teacher training at the Glowing Body in Knoxville. Caitlyn received her RYT-200 in 2016, and began teaching later that year. Her teaching style is influenced by the Iyengar method taught in her training program, as well as Vinyasa Flow—her favorite style of yoga. Caitlyn’s classes are designed to be fun and challenging but also calming. Caitlyn is a huge believer in a long savasana! Above all, Caitlyn’s desire for her students is that they are safe and have a good time. When she is not teaching classes or working at the studio, Caitlyn is probably at a concert or music festival, traveling, taking a yoga class, or relaxing with a good book or TV show.
For Dianne Cecchett yoga was a natural transition from her dance studies. Dianne began studying classical ballet when she was 15 years old and was fortunate to take classes with Nicholas Petrov, founder of the Pittsburgh Ballet Company as well as Jean Gideon, present Artistic Director for Pittsburgh Youth Ballet. In 1984 Dianne realized that her dancing was becoming too grueling for her body, and she sought a more healing modality which led her to yoga. She completed her 200 hour teacher’s yoga certification in 2010 through Kula Shala Yoga Center, Jupiter, Florida where she was taught components of both Hatha and Yin Yoga. She began teaching Silent Yin in 2014, which is a specialty yin class she learned from Norman Blair, a Yin and Ashtanga teacher in the United Kingdom. Dianne continues her studies with James Brown of American Yoga School. She sees all yoga as a refuge and vehicle for self-study. Her past teachers are Jaye Bryan, Scott Feinberg, Tasha Patterson Shirley, Gary Hirschman, and Sarah Powers. She graduated from California University, California, Pennsylvania with a BA in Social Work and continued her studies for an additional year at Heartland Community College, Normal, Illinois, with an emphasis on anatomy. Dianne’s classes are warm and inviting, fostering a calming and centering environment.
After graduating from university in 2009, Jess decided to pursue her love of travel, life and spirituality while studying yoga practices around the world. In Kerala, India, Jessica earned her 200-hour yoga certification from the Tulasidalam School of Yoga. Her training emphasized and taught her the importance of meditation and Pranayama as integral components to yogic practice. As a result, her yoga classes host a variety of teaching elements and established sequences which highlight detoxification of the body and the mind in order to achieve higher consciousness. Inspired by her studies in India, she then pursued her 500-hour training certification at Ishta Yoga in New York City under the guidance of Alan Finger. After practicing her skills as an instructor and yogic retreat organizer in Costa Rica and Nicaragua, Jessica returned to further her education in therapeutics at Integrated Yoga Therapy at Kripalu in the Berkshires of Massachusetts, where yoga is uniquely tailored to each individual, and their experience.
Jessica has lived on six continents in order to experience and explore life from every angle. From the ashrams of India washing her clothes in a bucket, to living in a shipping container in Costa Rica, and life on a vineyard in Tuscany, Jessica has a deep thirst for travel, adventure, and life. Jessica has practiced and studied yoga throughout India, England, Spain, and Singapore, Costa Rica, and Nicaragua. She hopes to bring everything she has learned from around the world to her yoga studio.
Upcoming Classes with Jess
Meryl's journey of learning began in 2001, at the age of eleven, when she embarked on her martial arts path within the discipline of Kung Fu. She was trained by a second generation Si Fu assisted by a female Si Fu who was trained in massage therapy. The passion and knowledge of her two teachers, combined with the traditional approach of the school, inspired Meryl's inquiry into the mechanics of the inner body and holistic healing. Later on, Meryl added Tai Chi to her martial arts practice, which further deepened her mind-body connection. It was Meryl's female Si Fu who inspired her to pursue holistic healing, massage therapy, and yoga as a profession by treating her throughout the years as she attended the school.
In 2009, Meryl chose Asheville School of Massage and Yoga as the launching point for her education in massage therapy by completing 675 hours of school and completing her license massage training. The Asheville School of Massage and Yoga greatly emphasized the need for student self-care through yoga practice, as well as extending self-care awareness to clients. After starting her own practice, Meryl quickly grew an extreme passion for the combination of massage and yoga. In 2013, she traveled to Costa Rica to complete her 200 hour yoga teacher training with Frog Lotus Yoga training program. Recently, at the beginning of 2017, she traveled to India to receive not only her 500 hour yoga teacher training certification, but also a 50 hour yin yoga certification. After that then traveling to Spain to stay at the beautiful yoga retreat centre Suryalila for three months to continue her personal growth and deepen her yoga knowledge. Now she's back in Knoxville ready to share all the extensive knowledge and training to all who seek it.
Meryl has spent the last several years developing her skills by working in freelance. Her working experiences have included practicing out of yoga studios, art festival healing sanctuaries, hospitality massage for multiple music venues, and private appointments. She currently practices integrated massages including Swedish, Deep Tissue, Shiatsu, Thai yoga, and her personal favorite: Myofascial Release. Her multi-faceted training and experience enable Meryl to treat each client with unique and intuitive approach, inspiring them to take an active part in their own healing.
Upcoming Classes with Meryl
Kris Evans, CYT, is a certified Vinyasa Flow Yoga Instructor receiving her certification from Asheville Yoga Center in 2013. Kristen was first introduced to yoga through a study of yoga philosophy which led to her curiosity in the physical practice of yoga. The transformation she has discovered throughout her yoga journey inspired her to share what she had learned. She brings to her practice over 10 years of experience in various styles, having studied and practiced with many different teachers around the world.
Kris is an energetic person with a great passion for life and a desire to make a difference. She spent her 20's traveling in the U.S, Canada, Thailand, and Spain, completed a trans-American/Canadian bicycle tour, and worked as a guide in wilderness therapy, sharing her love of life, nature, and yoga with at-risk youth. These experiences have made her appreciate the abundance of the human experience and given her a great passion for empowering others to find and travel their path to healthier, freer lives.
Kris is a believer in the profound and life changing benefits of yoga from increased strength, flexibility, vitality, and endurance, to a greater sense of well-being, inner-harmony, and mental focus. Kristen teaches with much gratitude for and celebration of the body, mind, and spirit, using a combination of Vinyasa flow coupled with deeper longer holds with breath as the guide. She looks forward to sharing the yoga journey with you! Namaste
Upcoming Classes with Kris
D’lene began her studies in meditation in 1988 while working in the Burn Trauma Unit at the University of Tennessee Hospital as a Physical Therapy Assistant. Several of her cancer patients introduced her to the Silva Method, using the mind as a healer. When she learned that one patient had actually reported putting their cancer in remission 3 times over a 15 year time span using only diet and the Silva Method of meditation all before 1988, refusing Chemotherapy or Radiation, this unleashed her passion for studying meditation.
She obtained her Master’s Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling and Educational Psychology from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville in 1992 and began teaching relaxation techniques to individuals and in groups and continued her studies in different meditation techniques. She moved to Chicago in 1994, as she was working as a Community Therapist with gangs on a federal grant for wrap around services, and there she was introduced to/studied/and then taught the two meditation technique categories of either Focused Attention Meditation or Open Monitoring Meditation. Over the past 20 years, she has continued her love of teaching meditation and has taught a multitude of techniques including Guided Visualization, Zazen, Loving Kindness Meditation, Chakra Meditation, Kundalini Meditation, Sound Meditation, Mantra Meditation, Mindfulness Meditation, some types of Taoist Meditation, and Effortless Presence Meditation.
Now that hard science has caught up and proven over the last several years that meditation has many health benefits including actually increasing gray matter, changing our cells at the genetic level, lowering blood pressure, pain management, increased immunity, and increasing emotional balance, she intends to keep discovering and teaching. She believes what Sandy C. Newbigging has said, “the main way to do meditation wrong is to try to do it right”.
D'lene has completed her RYT teacher training hours and is certified to teach yoga and meditation.