Tara-Padma is no stranger to the transformative power of yoga. She discovered its benefits in 2008, after enduring a difficult early family life, the tragic suicide death of her younger brother, the difficulties of divorce, and the experience of bereavement associated with spiritual awakening. It was during this time that yoga provided healing; a tool for processing through the enormity of emotional and spiritual trauma she faced. For Tara-Padma, recovering from great loss has been a mind-body-soul endeavor, and the center of her life and work.
After relocating to South Carolina from Eastern Canada and finding her own healing through yoga and meditation, she was inspired by her very personal grief journey to dedicate herself to providing a variety of holistic healing services to others who have experienced similar challenges. On a path towards realizing her dharma, she completed her Yoga Therapy certification through Subtle Yoga in Charlotte, NC, her RCYT specialization through the Integral Yoga Academy at the Satchidananda Ashram in Virginia, and Medical Qigong Practitioner certification with The Atlanta School of Oriental Medicine. She also studied Nursing at the University of New Brunswick, holds a Master's Degree in Psychotherapy from Saybrook University, and became a Certified Holistic Health Coach through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in New York.
Tens years later, and through her vast experience, she has achieved immense healing and liberation via a combination of energy work, a vegan diet, yoga, meditation, and Chinese Medicine. Tara-Padma is extremely passionate about sharing an amalgamation of these healing modalities with others, because of their profound and transformational impact in her own life. She founded Blossoming Soul Yoga & Integrative Wellness in 2014, Elevate Upstate festival in 2016, and the Seeds Of Compassion blog in 2017, due to her innate desire to be of service in the world and to assist others with the flowering of their own consciousness.
Off the mat, Tara finds immense joy in nature and can often be found sitting beside one of the many beautiful waterfalls of Oconee County or growing her own vegan food in her organic garden. She enjoys living a compassionate, zero waste, minimalist lifestyle in her new tiny house along with her husband and two teenage sons.
Dawn began her dedicated yoga practice with the founder of Blossoming Soul, Tara-Padma Lavoie, in 2014 after 10+ years of intermittent practice. She first came to yoga as a means to seek relief of her SI joint pain and a neck injury from a car accident years earlier that was exacerbated and aggravated after the birth of her second child. After several years of encouragement from Tara and others, Dawn decided to continue on her yoga journey and attend yoga teacher training. Dawn completed her 230 hour training at Asheville Yoga Center under the guidance of Kimberley Puryear, Stephanie Keach, Michael Johnson, Libby Hinsley, Joe Taft, Shala Worsley and Sierra Hollister.
She is a lover of all types of yoga and believes that a diverse practice incorporating strength, challenge, relaxation and centering are key to bringing balance and displacing dis-ease in the body and mind. Her current favorite motto/mantra that she tries to bring to the mat and into everyday life is “slow and relaxed with good technique“, a quote that she got from a former coach and mentor, Larry Brown. Off the mat, Dawn is busy with her two kiddos, husband, four dogs, a tortoise and two ferrets in addition to pursuing a graduate degree at Clemson University.
Christen is a veteran yoga teacher for the Oconee County area. After receiving her RYT certification at the renowned Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Massachusetts, she went on to offer her traditional style of yoga at many venues in the area before finding a home at Blossoming Soul.
Her inspired classes are often infused with the deep yogic practices of pranayama (yogic breathing) and japa (mantra chanting), and will leave you feeling refreshed and replenished.
A genuine lover of Christ, Christen is a gifted "Yoga Blessings"/Holy Yoga teacher and feels honored to share the word on the mat.
When not teaching, Christen is a happy newlywed who enjoys hunting and fishing with her new hubby.
Beth Ashley began her yoga journey in 2014, finding yoga as a great tool for relieving anxiety and building strength and flexibility in both her mind and body. She completed her Yoga Alliance 200 hour yoga teacher training from Integrative Yoga Therapy in 2016. She is also certified in plant-based nutrition, Advanced Reiki Techniques, and Curvy Yoga with a passion for modifying and adapting poses for bigger bodies.
Beth lives in Pickens with her husband, 2 dogs, and 4 goats. She loves to spend time working in her vegetable garden.
Donna was full of energy as a youngster and competitive in gymnastics through school. However, later in life, a sedentary, demanding career as an official court reporter for the state left her feeling mentally and physically drained. Looking to increase energy and feel better, she began teaching aerobics after having children. Initially, she became certified as an aerobic instructor through AFAA, and then a personal trainer through AFPA. It was in the fitness industry ithat she was first exposed to yoga.
As it oftens happens, yoga quickly become so much more than physical exercise and she was immediately hooked on how it made her feel more relaxed and alive. The more she learned about yoga, the more she realized its benefits; not only physically, but mentally and spiritually, as well. It brought greater peace, positivity, and a sense of community into her super stressful life. In 2017, she attended Pranashama Yoga Institute and studied under Dashama Gordon, where she obtained 300RYT designations. Additionally, she has taken many continuing education workshops at Asheville Yoga Center. She teaches to become a better student and because she finds it rewarding to share the many benefits of yoga with others.