Asheville Yoga Center (AYC) is a beloved local landmark in the grassroots Asheville community as well as a respected regional and national hub for inspirational, heart-centered yoga classes, workshops, retreats, and transformational teacher training programs.
Our intention is to create a beautiful, encouraging space for the exploration of yoga that is community-oriented, welcoming, friendly, open-minded and open-hearted. We believe it’s possible to foster fun, humor, and play with focus, dedication, and depth simultaneously.
Being human can be hard at times, and we want to share yoga as a way to move through life’s joys and challenges with greater presence, compassion, and grace.
We’re committed to making yoga and our schedule of classes as accessible as possible. We offer a wide variety of classes for all levels of experience. Our classes range from gentler and more restorative for people looking for more of a focus on stress relief, relaxation, and meditation — to more rigorous classes for folks seeking a more physically challenging experience.
We’re dedicated to giving back to the community through our fundraisers, service projects, community classes, and BIPOC teacher training scholarships.
Our intention at AYC is to foster a heart and art-centered approach to yoga practice and teaching. Our teachers share the art and craft of yoga in skillful, soulful, imaginative ways in their own sincere voices. We teach from our own passion, personality, and practice – rather than from a script.
In a holistic approach to yoga, our teachers enthusiastically share the practices that have opened their hearts including traditional yoga postural and breathing practices; creative movement; singing; art; poetry; loving-kindness meditations; personal, ancestral, and mythical stories; spiritual and philosophical teachings; awe-inspiring wisdom from physics, biology, neuroscience; and more— woven together to encourage living a more vivid life. We invite and encourage students to listen to, trust, and follow the wisdom within their hearts.
In this spirit, many of our teachers love to build their classes around particular intentions or themes that call their hearts, designed to help you expand your awareness and more deeply integrate yoga into your life.
At AYC, we are passionate about sharing yoga as a universal inclusive, non-dogmatic spiritual practice that can bring depth and practical value to anyone’s everyday life.
For over 25 years we have offered transformational yoga teacher training programs, one of the first studios in the country to do so. We have decades of experience supporting students as well as seasoned teachers on their teacher training journeys. We are proud that our teacher training programs have helped seed and grow yoga communities across the southeast and beyond— with graduates teaching in venues around the country and founding their own yoga studios and communities.
Our Teacher Training faculty are passionate and inspiring yoga educators, who have dedicated their lives to yoga. They are expert “teacher’s teachers” who are deeply supportive and caring of students. Each of our lead teachers genuinely feels that supporting people in finding their voice as yoga teachers lights up their heart and gives their life greater purpose and meaning.
Our daily schedule includes a wide variety of 50+ classes a week guided by our family of gifted teachers who care deeply about sharing yoga in a kind-hearted, inspirational, skillful way.
In addition to our daily classes, we also host an extensive variety of events designed to help you deepen your practice and nourish your soul. AYC events include workshops, courses, immersions, and retreats with topics ranging from yoga, spirituality, meditation, wellness, and the healing arts. The depth, variety, quality, and abundance of our offerings has been compared to yoga destinations retreat centers like Kripalu, Omega, and Yogaville, yet all available locally here on our campus in beautiful Asheville.
More inspirational course opportunities are also offered by our sister venues: health and wellness workshops and practitioner trainings at The Ayurvedic Institute, who we share our campus home with; as well as inspirational music concerts and wisdom talks at The AyurPrana Listening Room in West Asheville.
AYC has been a beloved home for high quality, inspirational yoga teacher training in the southeast and beyond for over 25 years. Many curious yoga practitioners have followed their hearts to AYC to immerse in our “Teaching From The Heart” 200 hour Teacher Training Program; and to keep their inner flames lit and skill sets evolving in designing their own self-paced post-graduate yoga education in our “Rekindling the Flame” 300 Hour Teacher Training Program.
Our new director, Seán Johnson, has also integrated the best elements of his Soul School teacher training into AYC’s time-tested methodology to create one-of-a-kind, inspirational, heart-centered yoga training programs designed to light up your body, mind, and heart.
Wherever you are in your yoga exploration and teaching journey, we offer inspiring, rich, and resourceful paths for you.
At AYC, our roots run deep, and visionary new partnerships nourish our growth and evolution…
Asheville Yoga Center (AYC) was founded in 1997 by Stephanie and Sunny Keach, who followed their dream of bringing positive change to the world through health, healing, education, movement, and music. Seeded by this vision, they created AYC and built from scratch a thriving, influential, and beloved local and regional community for yoga — founded upon the values of accessibility, empowerment, and holistic growth.
In 2022, inspired by shared intentions, Stephanie and Sunny passed the torch of AYC to Mitesh and Sneha Raichada and their visionary AyurPrana team, founded with a kindred group of friends who wanted to join their hearts to make the world a better place.
Mitesh and Sneha Raichada
AyurPrana celebrates a modern approach to personal wellness to help people flourish into their fullest self-expression. This harmonious partnership celebrates the beauty of Yoga and Ayurveda, two abundant healing systems that empower individuals to embrace proactive health and wellness practices.
AYC is an anchor within an amazing, one-of-kind-in-the-world collective of healing arts venues held under the umbrella of AyurPrana, a visionary organization that seeks to bring more inspiration and healing to the world.
Vasant Lad, BAM&S, MASc
It’s a joy to be in community with and share our beautiful campus with The Ayurvedic Institute, led by Dr. Vasant Lad, which has served as a beacon of traditional Ayurvedic Medicine and therapies since 1984. Our other brother and sister venues are: The AyurPrana Listening Room, a unique music venue in West Asheville dedicated to uplifting global, sacred, and folk music; the enchanting SoHum Mountain Healing Resort, nestled just 6 miles outside of Asheville in the Blue Ridge Mountains, where nature and ancient wisdom come together for healing; and the upcoming AyurPrana+ media app, home of documentary short films, sacred music performances, dharma talks, yoga, meditation, cooking, and other consciousness-lifting video content to nourish and inspire our lives.
In the fall of 2023, Seán Johnson came on board as the Director of AYC. With decades of experience as a community leader, yoga studio owner, teacher and trainer, musician and recording artist — Seán resonates deeply with our longtime love of nurturing and honoring each person’s unique yoga path. He also brings his passion for a heart and art-centered, community-focused approach to yoga and spirituality to AYC.
Our solar-powered, environmentally sustainable campus is one of the few in the country that was designed specifically for yoga from inception. The studio sits on a lushly landscaped campus of edible, aromatic, and native trees and plants. Bamboo floors and plenty of windows with southern exposure and natural light make for lovely spaces to experience our celebrated teacher trainings, classes, and workshops.
Seán Johnson, AYC Director
There is the history shared above, and then there’s also another subtler, and perhaps more powerful timeline – and that is simply our teachers and students showing up again and again over the years to practice yoga together, the art of being present.
Living Wage Certified
Voted one of the best yoga studios in WNC
— Cherokee Proverb
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