Birthplace: I was born and raised on the East side of Cleveland, Ohio. Moved to Charlotte in 2002 after I graduated from Bowling Green State University in Ohio and have called this home since!

When and how did you start practicing Yoga?
About a year after I moved to Charlotte, I met Brooks Haislip at the design showroom I was working for at the time . Brooks enthusiastically told me about the yoga studio her and some friends were opening and I should come take a class. I have been a dancer all my life so I had been looking for something help keep up my flexibility and yoga sounded like the perfect way to do so! I started in the Intro classes at Sangati and been practicing ever since.

How has it helped you ‘off the mat’?
Something my philosophy teacher Douglas Brooks says is “stop wishing the universe made you another way… that your gifts are not be refused!” Before practicing yoga, how many times did I wish I could do this, or be good at that and so and so. Your familiar with this track right?! I would not say I was not using my gifts, just not using them to my full potential and honoring myself for who I truly am as a human being on this earth. Off the mat, I am allowing myself more space to receive my own gifts and the gifts others in a richer way than I ever dreamt. I see all of our gifts collectively weave this amazing shri or beauty of our world and that I am worth contributing to this beauty! I am reminded to keep yoking my gifts to creating my best life, that these two pieces are not separate although sometimes it may feel that way. I see more clearly everyday that I can use every situation in my daily life to go deeper into my heart and to be more clear in my vision for the best life I can possibly have! What would we ever want to refuse such a gift?!!

When did you decide you wanted to teach Yoga, and where/with whom did you do teacher training?
Honestly, I had never really set out to teach so imagine my surprise when my beloved teachers gently began opening up the idea of me becoming a teacher. It took some convincing and my dear friend telling me that “teaching is just sharing what you know.” This simple piece of advice made me soften and feel like this is something I could really be good at because I love the practice so much and that maybe this was one of my gifts! And so began my teaching path! I completed my 200 hour teacher training in the Anusara style with Sarah Faircloth, Kelley Gardner and Stacy Milner-Collins.

What styles are you most influenced by in your teaching, and who are your favorite teachers?
I have a great respect for all schools of yoga however, my love for Anusara is so deep that I have not really spent much time studying or practicing other styles of yoga. The iyengar style is probably most influenced given this part of the foundation of Anusara. My favorite teachers are all the ones I know and work with here in Charlotte!! I would not be where I am without you all! Outside of Charlotte one of my most favs is Desiree Rumbaugh!

What are your favorite Yoga-related books or DVDs?
There are so many to choose! The Heart of Mediation, Meditation for the Love of It (both by Sally Kempton), Bhagavad Gita (Juan Mascaro), Light on Yoga (B.K.S Iyengar) Currents of Grace: The Philosophical Foundations of Anusara Yoga- CD (Douglas Brooks), Sadhana of the Heart (Gurumayi Chidvilasananda)

What do you like to do when you’re not doing Yoga?
Hanging out in my hammock reading, dancing anything from taking a ballet class to dancing with the girls out on the town, listening to live music, I am a huge fan of my soon to be husband’s band, The New Familiars, taking road trips, baking, attempting to learn the bass and learning how to find my singing voice, exploring the art art of cooking and gardening, arranging and then re-arranging my house, in my former life I was an Interior Designer and love pouring over design magazines getting new ideas for re-inventing my space and helping friends make their homes reflect their personality, hanging out with all my amazing friends who I consider my family since mine is so far away, most of all I love hanging with Josh who travels a ton so when he is in town the best thing is doing nothing with him!

Kellie was great! So nice to take an Anusara class while we are travelling, and we loved the studio! Thanks!

Stephanie

I love Kellie’s classes! Makes me a better yogi!

From the Comment Box

I’ve taken intro classes but this was my first class with practised participants conducted at a normal pace. I was slightly anxious about holding up the class but Kellie was awesome and so helpful. I felt at ease right away.

Happy Student