By | Blog

Each year on Mother’s Day I share the following poem. Each time it moves me in a new way. I hope it touches you too. ~Adi

The Invitation
by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain! I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it, or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see beauty even when it’s not pretty, every day, and if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!”

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.


By | Blog

Famous author Dr. Wayne Dyer discovers
the benefits of yoga

Lahaina News Thursday August 9th 2007

wayne-dyerBY RITA SAKAJIANLAHAINA  He walked in the door on October 1, 2005 and said he wanted to try doing yoga for 40 days, said Mary Katharine Wall, owner of Bikram Yoga in Lahaina.His face was familiar but I didn’t really know who he was. I asked him if he knew what he was getting himself into, and he said he was willing to find out.

That was two years ago!

She said if he was going to take her yoga classes, she was going to read his books.

The next day he brought in his book, The Power of Intention, and several of his other books. They have completely changed the way I look at life. I guess it was serendipity that brought him to my class that day, Wall said.

The man she is referring to is Dr. Wayne Dyer, world-renowned self-help advocate, author, inspirational lecturer and resident of Maui.

His 1976 book Your Erroneous Zones sold over 30 million copies and is one of the best-selling books of all time. He has written more than 30 inspirational books.

“I had been an avid runner from 1976 to 1998 and I was running between eight and 15 miles a day. Then I would go and play tennis for a few hours”, said Dr. Dyer.

“I knew my days of running would have to come to an end because I was living with chronic back pain. The doctor said I would also need knee surgery.”

He said that he heard different things about yoga through the years.

“My body was such a mess, I knew I had to do something. The first day of doing yoga at MK’s (as she is affectionately known) Bikram studio, I got through half of it, but I kept coming back, and after 40 days I was completely hooked. I don’t know where I would be right now without doing yoga the last two years,” he concluded.

Yogiraj Bikram Choudhury is the founder of the worldwide Yoga College of India. He was born in Calcutta, India, in 1946 and began practicing yoga at the age of four.

He taught yoga to Indira Gandhi at the tender age of 11, and now has more than 500 studios all over the world.

MK took over the ownership of the studio in December 2004.

I” heard it was on the verge of closing, so I moved to Maui and gave it some “TLC” and brought it back to life,” she said with a smile on her face.

The studio is heated to relax the muscles and help in healing and detoxing the body.

Some of the benefits of doing yoga are: reducing stress, increasing flexibility, increasing energy, increasing muscle tone, lowering blood pressure, losing weight, improving concentration and preventing injury and disease.

“Most people come to yoga to fix an injury to their back or if they have a knee problem. After doing yoga for a while, they find there are other benefits, such as sleeping better, eating better, and just an overall feeling of well being.” said MK.

“I’m an inch taller since I started doing yoga because it stretches the spine. It doesn’t just teach us to be flexible in our physical world, but to be flexible in our thinking and keeps us balanced. Because I am a public speaker, I first noticed a difference in my mind. I started thinking better and my lecturing was more focused. I didn’t have to take notes on what I was going to say. I also noticed I was sleeping better.” said Dr. Dyer.

He continued to say that practicing yoga works every part of your body not just the outer part, but the inner parts like your thyroid, pituitary gland, and your digestive system.

“Not only am I doing this interview because I want this business to thrive, but also to inform the people of Maui of all the benefits of yoga and how it can improve the quality of life. There is a miracle waiting for you in that hot room.” he concluded with a smile.

Bikram Yoga of Lahaina is located at 900 Front St., Suite F17, at Lahaina Center (across from the movie theater). You can call 661-6828 for more information.  Introductory rates are available.

For more information on Dr. Wayne Dyer and his books, go to his website


By | Blog

This past month has been super exciting for us! We were featured on two different news stations… WLOS and WYFF.

We are so glad that these stations have decided to share our special yoga with the world. And we are especially grateful to our student, Sherrie, who shared her inspiring story of using Bikram Hot Yoga to recover after brain surgery. We hope it inspires you to get into the yoga room and try despite any challenges you may be facing. We are all in it to help each other!


ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Recovery after a health crisis can take on many forms that often times go beyond “just what the doctor ordered.”
Some people seek additional strength in healing through a balance of body, mind and spirit.
Bikram, also known as hot yoga, is what Sherrie Martin has practiced for more than five years.
“I was looking for something that was low intensity, and something that would help me detox my body from all the medicine and stuff, and somebody said, ‘let’s try Bikram,'” Martin said.
What brought her to hot yoga is what nearly took her life in 2008 — a brain tumor the size of a lemon. She underwent emergency surgery, rounds of radiation, followed by a focus on getting better and living well.
“When you go in the room, it’s me and my mat, and it’s my mind, body, moving meditation,” Martin said.
The room is heated to 104 degrees with 35 percent humidity. The high temperature and moisture level makes joints and muscles more flexible and helps move oxygen through the body more efficiently.
There are 26 set postures performed over the course of 90 minutes; a hot yoga class never varies. It is intense and repetitive for a reason.
Adi Westerman is the owner of Hot Yoga Asheville and also a teacher. She instructs and nurtures all her students and admires what Sherrie’s accomplishing.
“To keep coming even through radiation and going through surgery, people, people don’t come in because they hurt their pinky toe, and here she is, she’s coming in day after day, you know, for her whole self, well-being,”  Westerman said.



By | Blog

Our instructor Sean posed the following questions this morning in class while we were in a quick savasana between sweating buckets and working hard:

Has anyone checked the Thermostat lately?   How about the Humidistat?   How about the Clock?  … and … How about Yourself???


He followed by reminding us that so often when we are challenged in a class, we begin to look outside of ourselves. We look for distractions. We look for anything that we can put our attention to, rather than going inward and focusing on ourself. What a great reminder! 

Remember, one objective of yoga is to slow down and check in with yourself. This not only means working hard when you can, but it also means backing off when you need to. To the best of your ability seek to be present with your body and your self. When you find yourself fidgeting or looking at the clock, remember that the more you stay in the present moment with your practice, the more easily the time/heat/and even postures move to the background and become simply tools in your success.

Thank you Sean for the wonderful reminder!

bikram hot yoga Asheville spine twist snow


By | Blog

“Oh the weather outside is frightful, but hot yoga is so delightful.

So, we know the place to go. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.”

This opening line is to be read exuberantly in the countertenor singing voice of Dean Martin, please. (Okay, I’m a dork. But it’s true!) That is today’s jingle for Hot Yoga Asheville; quite simply, the best place to be on these chilly, winter days. As the blizzard of 2015 ravages New England, we Asheville mortals also tend to hibernate against our less tempestuous, yet still blustery, cold weather. If you need to awaken from this shrouded state like I do, now is the time to step outside and let the windshield ice-scraping rituals ensue. The smartest of these awakened, winter creatures fly south to warmer rooms, like that of Hot Yoga Asheville.

“It just feels so good to do the Bikram Method in winter,” I heard someone say in the women’s room before class. I cannot argue.

After weeks of procrastination, I finally hauled my January carcass to the studio and hit the yoga mat at Ross’ Tuesday, 4:30 class. Wow. I felt completely transformed; an obvious outcome, in retrospect. The question is: what took me so long to get back there? Perhaps it’s harder to get there in winter, but it feels even better! Hunched, shivering forms, swaddled in down coats and dreaming of sweaty savasana, descended upon the studio, and stripped down to their zebra- print spandex, revealing their pale, goose-bumpy skin. As these bold, seekers of warmth stepped through the yoga room thresh hold, expressions changed from subdued agitation to ones of purposeful calm. Limbs sank gratefully onto mats; corners of lips lifted slightly. A soft chatter of common purpose rose like a murmuration of starlings that have just reached their point of migration. Yet, are we Bikram yogis really like starlings? I think not. We are more like a kettle of raptors; fierce and ambitious, riding the warmth of the thermals to a better place. As skin began to glisten in the heat, I noticed the robustness of my December body had withered some before me in the wall of all-too-honest mirrors.  But there was hope yet for my winter body. Ross pranced into the room and welcomed us to the class. For the first time in what seemed like ages, I felt like I was in exactly the right place at the right time.

4 things to keep in mind for Hot Yoga in wintertime:

  1. Get to class a little earlier. As delicious as the heat of the yoga room feels to your chilly body in winter, it may take longer to adjust to the temperatures of the room, which average 95 and 105 degrees. If you let your body acclimate to the room before class, your body will thank you.
  2. Be sure to bring a change of dry clothes. Finding one’s self drenched in sweat with no dry clothes to change into before heading back out into the freezing cold is a regretful experience indeed. Even if you decide not to shower in the studio after class, you will leave the studio in a much more blissful state if you towel off, and slip on some comfy, dry, warm clothes over your newly restored body.
  3. Wash your sweat-soaked yoga clothes ASAP. It is just no fun at all to discover a frozen wad of sweaty spandex in a plastic grocery bag on your car seat. The only things worse than old, sweaty yoga clothes are frozen, old, sweaty yoga clothes. Throw them and your wet yoga towel in the wash right away to keep bacteria, mildew and mold from setting in.
  4. Wash your hands thoroughly after class. Often, after a hot yoga class, you may opt to shower at home to avoid the lines in the studio. Yet, in winter, it is especially important to at least wash your hands after class to make sure you have not collected any of those pesky bugs that love to travel around town this time of year. Even though the hot yoga temperatures are too hot to harbor the flu virus, these little villains can still linger on other surfaces. (Hot Yoga Asheville is exceptionally clean though! Kudos!)


By | Blog

Did you know we use Far Infrared Heat?

Most yoga studios use forced air to heat their studio space, but at Hot Yoga Asheville we use FAR INFRARED HEAT. Similar to the way the sun warms the earth, far infrared heat aids you in your healing process. They even use it to warm premature babies. It is safe, quiet, and deeply penetrating to help stimulate cell regeneration, blood flow, metabolism and relieves muscle pain, spasms, joint pain and stiffness. The infrared heat stimulates your body to move your blood more quickly to the body, so while you exercise you are more effectively bringing fresh oxygen to your cells. (HYA is also equipped with a state of the art energy recovery ventilator that brings FRESH AIR automatically according to CO2 levels! So breathe deep! You are safe. )

  • Detoxification and Healthier Skin

More Blood Flow + Far infrared heat= Radiant Glow

  • Immune System Support

By raising core body temperature we neutralize potential bacteria or viral infections creating a wonderful environment for white blood cells to thrive.

  • Strengthening Cardiovascular System

Research suggests far infrared heat increases circulation and oxygen while lowering blood pressure.

  • Pain Relief and Injury Recovery

More flexibility and more range of motion with less strain on fascia and tissues

  • Deep Relaxation and Restored Energy Levels

Allow the heat to bring you to memories of lying on the beach and find a deep sense of calm, renewal and even better sleep!


By | Blog

I texted my husband yesterday: “Going to Glowga.  Costume theme: naughty or nice.” His response: “Please choose nice, honey.”

His text made me lol simply because I know that he still finds it slightly shocking what we Bikram yogis wear to class anyway, even without a racy theme. Yet, what he may not fully understand is the fact that if you wear normal exercise clothes to a Bikram class, you may learn the true and unpleasant meaning of the idiom “sweatpants.” The fact of the matter is: survival sometimes depends on wearing as little as possible. It’s literally a sauna in there. But the fun is just around the corner. Especially with Glowga, I’ve just discovered!

glowgaWhat in the world is Glowga? I thought I had a vague idea of what it might be before last night.

Turns out, I was completely naïve about this unique Asheville subculture. Glowga surpassed my wildest expectations. Truly. I have not smiled so much since the Beck concert last spring, or seen so many glowing works of art and body parts moving through space to a spectacular soundtrack, for that matter. And should I really have expected anything less when we are talking about the efforts of the dynamic team at Hot Yoga Asheville?

Now it is cliché, I have to exclaim once again: “ Only in Asheville…” 

If your image of a modern yogi is that of a slightly arrogant, curry-smelling, self-serious new ager in long, black leggings and an air of superior, mystic knowledge, prepare to be completely disillusioned. Hot Yoga Asheville has reinvented the Bikram Method for certain nights, and from time to time offers this thrilling and hilarious version, where participants come in crazy costume, brandish glow sticks around wrists and waists, and move to grooves from James Brown to Elvis, to Adam Sandler’s Hanukkah song. I chose to go “nice,” as my husband requested, and I must admit I did feel nice. The room was not as hot as usual, so my elf slippers were fairly comfortable, and my newly died ginger hair fit right into the holiday theme, braids glistening in the black light like dewy poinsettias. However, when they called out the “nice elves” for the costume contest, I was one of two and won second place. No hard feelings harbored, however, because I knew she was way nicer than me. Just look at the picture for proof. That’s once nice elf.

On the other hand, the room oozed with self-declared “naughty elves.” Strange slay bells rang from wrists as bending silhouettes of glowing elves came in and out of focus. And then there was the holiday centerpiece: Ross. In the spirit of Scooby Doo, “Holy half moon pose!” That guy in the neon, leopard print shorts and the Santa hat with a strobe ball dangling on the end, maybe should consider patenting this sort of class. He was magnificent. The play list was sublime, and the instruction was… just the right balance of naughty and nice.  Ross kept us laughing through our theatrical camel and triangle poses. We were like a throng of yogi elves and reindeer who had suddenly been transported to a San Francisco nightclub. Never change, Hot Yoga Asheville.

If Glowga was a black market drug, I might have to break the law.

gloga-2Though nervous beforehand that I might be too prissy to enjoy such close proximity with so many gyrating, sweating homo sapiens in the dark, I surprised myself by basking in a sort of euphoria through much of the class. Highlights for me may have been the moment when I stretched into standing bow while James Brown screamed that he loved me. Also, the Savasana at the end, set to the ever-languid sound of Ella Fitzgerald, held me in a happy trance. Believe it or not, I was in tremendous hip pain throughout the entire class from my chronic laboral joint tear. Yet, strangely, I breathed and smiled. Crazy, really. When I surfaced from my dark, sweaty poses, glowing arms moved like jellyfish around me, to the grooves of Madonna, Buddy Holly, Pat Beneatar, hip hop remixes of Brenda Lee… all I could do was laugh, sweat, smile, stretch, and breathe. This is the most fun I’ve had in ages. And I still respect myself this morning.

Rave yoga-style for a great cause.

Hot Yoga Asheville schedules Glowga sessions every so often as fund raisers for various causes. So far, the studio has raised money for Brother Wolf, Breast Cancer awareness, Manna Food Bank, and this one is for Sleep Tight Kids, which provides newly purchased nighttime-related items to children in desperate situations. So far, Hot Yoga Asheville has raised over $2000 in donations for these causes through Glowga.

Visit Hot Yoga Ashville to find out about the next Glowga night! January 9th raising money for Homeward Bound with a New Years Gratitude theme!


By | Blog

I challenge you to think of one experience in life that does not lend itself well to a yoga metaphor. Okay, you win. Candy Crush may not mirror the intention of finding balance, strength and renewal, or does it? The best yoga metaphor is subjective. For me, singing and playing music parallels my yoga practice in the dual quest of letting my best expression emerge out of chaos; the practice of finding a balance between not trying too hard to the point of affectation or artifice, yet trying just enough to hit the magic. I would imagine the parallel for, say, a painter or a glass blower might be similar. Even a robotics engineer may on some level seek that place where strength and creativity flow without unnecessary struggle, as yoga has taught me to seek. Yoga may be an especially helpful metaphor when we think about change and renewal in the coming year. As 2015 descends upon us, most of us find ourselves reflecting on the year and contemplating our perceived successes and failures as we look forward and formulate our new years’ resolutions. Though doing more yoga may be one of them, the metaphors within the yoga practice may lead us to other new years’ resolution breakthroughs. For instance, finding courage to try new things is one of my goals for 2015.


Have you strayed from yoga over the holidays? That’s okay.

If you are at all like me, you may have eaten too many chocolate pinwheels, bar-be-cued meatballs, and gravy-drenched side dishes at the holiday parties over the past few weeks. Not to mention the copious amounts of wine continually flowing, and bottomless Ben and Jerry’s tubs beckoning from Nana’s freezer. My Christmas week was an unplanned binge and purge rollercoaster, as the flue seized my body in chills and aches just before Christmas dinner. Taking the place of the previous days of indulgence, my next few days entailed frequent trips to the bathroom, and whimpering pitifully in the guest room while flipping through Nana’s People magazines. I sure up to date on the Hollywood gossip now, but I think Iwill pass on Cameron Diaz’ new diet plan since my body had apparently chosen its own unpleasant diet plan for me over Christmas.

Needless to say, I went without doing yoga for days on end. Sure, I would sneak in a standing bow here, a half tortoise there as the north winds wheezed at the gables, but my body was in no shape to plunge into the Bikram series.  It was all I could do to stagger down the stairs to watch Homeland or grope in the pantry for yet another swig of Pepto Bismol.  I found that I deeply missed my yoga practice. I needed it. Not only has my body suffered from abandoning the practice over the Christmas week, my sense of purpose and pursuit has blurred and loosened its clarity. I need to find that secret place again that lets me breathe, see more clearly, and let go.


Change is not only about resolutions. It is, above all, about actions.

New years’ resolutions remind us that we do not have to continue our same habits and patterns that constrain and limit our potential. They remind us that we need only choose to change in order to inspire real change in ourselves. Many of us use this time of year as a catalyst to launch us into the self that we most aspire to be. We say we will eat healthier, quit our unhealthy addictions, exercise more, do more for our friends and families, and the world, and pursue our dreams. These resolutions are little victories in and of themselves, yet when we take the action to make them real, we begin to feel the transformations of these resolutions. All we really need to do after we decide to do something different is to do it. As simple as this sounds, procrastination too often rears its lazy head and keeps us from awakening these changes in our lives. Margaret Atwood puts it beautifully in her timeless advice for writers:

“I think the main thing is: Just do it. Plunge in! Being Canadian, I go swimming in icy cold lakes, and there is always that dithering moment. ‘“Am I really going to do this? Won’t it hurt?”’ And at some point you just have to flop in there and scream. Once you’re in, keep going. You may have to crumple and toss, but we all do that. Courage! I think that is what’s most required.”


For me, Bikram Yoga has become this catalyst that breaks through the roadblocks of procrastination and fuels me with courage to change. Not only do I aspire to my best self, physically, spiritually, and emotionally through yoga, I strive to simply take the action necessary to make it happen in the first place. That is, on a good day. It is a continual challenge though, to hurl aside the insidious excuses that tempt us to do anything but our resolution. Sometimes that first step is the hardest part. But looking at it in another way, it is easy. In the yoga context, this is how easy it is: Check out the yoga schedule, pack up the mat and yoga clothes, jump in the car, and head to the studio. Then the real action begins. Yoga teaches me to surrender to my intention and take action accordingly.

In order to ignite ourselves fully to the awesome potential that we know is sprouting within us, we must follow our aspirations by springing into physical action. Roll out your mat. Resume your practice. The rest will follow.

sunset blue ridge mountains


By | Blog
We live in one of the most beautiful places in the world!- Tucked away in the mountains with amazing weather, mountains, rivers and lakes! Asheville is also the home to some incredible yoga studios, teachers and students. The best thing about Asheville is that while we enjoy playing hard- cycling, hiking, enjoying the breweries- there are plenty of opportunities to find balance through a hot yoga practice. With us at Hot Yoga Asheville we pride ourselves on providing a safe place to detox, heal and relieve stress. Our hot yoga room is equipped with far infrared heaters and fresh air exchange to allow for the most clean and effective way to safely cleanse and improve your body.

Unlike other hot yoga classes in Asheville, our yoga studio specializes in hot yoga, thus we built our hot yoga room specifically to provide the best in hot yoga therapy. Far infrared heat is an optimal heat source as it allows for deep penetration, speeding up recovery from injury while increasing relaxation and cell regeneration.  We also have a wonderful fresh air exchange system (ERV) to ensure proper oxygen levels in the room. In addition, we provide Kangen Alkaline Ionized water to replenish those vital electrolytes lost during a workout. You can truly hydrate your body to compliment the detox process. More Oxygen-More Health!

One thing we hear a lot from our students is how much they enjoy outdoor activities, especially in the fall! Watching the leaves change from green to fiery red and orange is eye candy to say the least. They enjoy mountain biking, hiking, climbing and more. But what we also have found is that these activities, while extremely fun and fulfilling can create stiffness, soreness and even injury.

We want you to enjoy the outdoors and all these great activities. Even more so, we want you to enjoy these for the long term. So we work hard to provide the best hot yoga in Asheville where you can feel reinvigorated and limber again. Using this Hot Yoga as a tool to strengthen your core muscles will help minimize risk of injury in all your activities and increase your enjoyment of them as well. So get outside, enjoy Asheville, and then hop into a hot yoga class with us to top it off and feel great!


By | Blog

emmyOne of my favorite teachers, Emmy Cleaves, is recognized as an icon in the Bikram Community.  Emmy Cleaves is in her late 80’s and still teaches the beginning Bikram Yoga series as well as leads advanced class in Los Angeles often twice a week. Her style of teaching includes a tremendous amount of medical knowledge and an in depth understanding of the human body as it relates to the yoga poses we practice. She teaches from the back of the room and can often be found sneaking up on you with a poke of a finger that changes your posture profoundly… and it always happens just when you think you’ve mastered the pose. She doesn’t miss a beat!

Her class is interlaced with tons of tiny gems that when captured, will forever change your life. One thing she can be heard saying is “the yoga is innocent.” While in the moment, this saying helps us get through perhaps an extra tough class or posture… upon further reflection I have found so much more to this saying.

Since beginning my practice in 2001 at just 21 years old and nearing the end of my college days, this yoga has served as a staple in my life. There have been many classes and moments throughout my years of practice that have brought me to tears of both joy and frustration. There have been days where I have spent the entire 90 minutes of a class hating the class, postures, teacher, heat, etc.

Somewhere in the back of my mind, on these occasions I hear Emmy in my head reminding me, “The yoga is Innocent.”  But what does this really mean?

When I look back at my 13 years of practice I can honestly say that my yoga practice has always been an expression of where I am in my life. When I have struggled with anger… the challenge of the poses has been a way for me to push through it. When I have felt insecure… the mirror has reflected this back to me and sometimes made looking at myself for 90 minutes excruciating. In moments of sadness… the postures have felt so heavy and challenging. And through moments of joy… the class seems to fly by and I feel super human.

So my humble advice to anyone finding a particular “good” or “bad” in class, do your very best to let it go. The yoga is innocent. Do not blame the yoga. But most of all, do not even blame yourself. You are only human and to go through the emotional and physical ups and downs is a part of our living. Use your practice as a time to reflect, let go, enjoy, move on, heal and mostly as a time to accept yourself, as you are… because YOU ARE truly beautiful.