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info@bikramcolumbia.com

4715 Forest Drive • Columbia SC

1150 F4 Bower Parkway • Irmo SC

803.730.8225

 

Staff List


Lacy Carbone
Owner, Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
I had a really good friend that had been raving about Bikram Yoga for over a year. She felt great, looked great, & was overall really happy. I was planning a move to Jacksonville, FL for a new job & decided that would be a good time to try this Bikram Yoga my friend loved so much. I took my first Bikram class in April of 2011. It was LOVE at first SWEAT! I had always been active, but never really loved any of the activities I was doing to try to stay healthy. With a dance background, being a disciplined person, & my love of heat, Bikram was the perfect workout for me. The yoga made me feel great physically & mentally. I began to plan my life around my yoga practice. One month into my practice, I could not get enough Bikram Yoga. I knew I had to make it a larger part of my life. As I researched more about Bikram, I discovered the next logical step was to attend Bikram’s Teacher Training. After months of discussion with my family, I quit my job & left for Bikram’s 9 Week Teacher Training in Los Angeles. It was a fabulous experience & without a doubt one of the best decisions I have ever made. I began teaching in Jacksonville & St. Augustine, FL in November 2011. Out of Training I was teaching & taking as much as I could & learning from my Studio Owners. Coming from a business background, I wanted to make more of this love of Bikram Yoga. My husband was always traveling to Columbia where his businesses were located. Tired of being apart so much, I longed to have both my husband & Bikram Yoga in the same place. So I decided to open a Bikram Studio in my home town, Columbia. Not only will I get to have my husband & Bikram in the same place; but I will get to share this amazing & healing yoga with the city of Columbia. Teaching Bikram Yoga has been such an amazing experience thus far. It’s so inspiring to see the transformation of students’ body, practice, & mental state. I am very much looking forward to bringing Bikram to Columbia & hope it will change the lives of those in the Columbia community as it has changed the lives of so many other people around the world. While building Bikram Columbia, I taught at Bikram Yoga Charleston, the only other Bikram studio in the state of South Carolina. I learned a lot from David Kiser, BYC’s owner & hope to emulate the wonderful Bikram community he has created in Charleston, here in Columbia.
Kira Kowalski
Teacher Manager, Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
I did Bikram yoga for the first time in January 2012 while visiting Lacy Carbone in Jacksonville, FL. When I left the class I thought everyone in there was insane & Bikram yoga was not for me. The next morning, I woke up feeling sore in muscles I didn’t even know existed. I couldn’t believe how much my body was affected, so I started doing research on the yoga. The more I researched, the more challenged I felt to return. I had always suffered from scoliosis & thought Bikram yoga might finally be the solution to my problems. I began practicing a lot at my home studio, Bikram Yoga Charleston & then went to work for Lacy as Studio Manager once she opened Bikram Columbia. My posture improved drastically and my back pain disappeared. With a lot of encouragement from Lacy, I finally decided to go to Teacher Training. I attended Teacher Training in the Spring of 2013. It was the hardest & most amazing experience of my life. I made some amazing friends & learned so much about myself. Bikram yoga has changed my life in so many positive ways & I am thrilled to have the opportunity to share it with others!
Katie Williams
Studio Manager, both locations
Caroline Boyce
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
After spending a summer in and out of the emergency room with stress related heart issues, a doctor recommended taking up a regular yoga practice. I met Lacy while waitressing at a restaurant right before she opened Bikram Yoga Columbia. I took my first Bikram yoga class on the grand opening day and I was convinced I would never go back. I somehow ended up going back the next day, then the next day, then the next day. I signed up for my first 30-day challenge and fell in love with the yoga. Not only had my heart palpitations completely stopped, but I was less stressed and had more energy. Bikram yoga quickly became a huge part of my life. I convinced everyone in my life to come take class with me; my mom, my boss, my coworkers, and my friends. I started working at Bikram Yoga Columbia as a front desk receptionist, then assistant manager. After graduating college in May, I took my first opportunity to attend Teacher Training in Khao Lak, Thailand in Fall 2014. I am so happy to have the opportunity to share this practice with others!
Melissa Olam
Front desk
Kay Forrester
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
Throughout life, I have tried many forms of physical activity. In 2010, my best friend gave me a 10 day pass to Bikram Yoga Redmond, WA. After the 1st class, I was convinced that I would never go back, but rather than face my friend with embarrassment, I decided to accept the 10 day challenge. I quickly realized the benefits of this healing practice & knew almost immediately that I wanted to someday share this gift with others by becoming a teacher. I believe as we age, strength & flexibility are critical for health & well being. I also believe in good nutrition.
 
In fall of 2013, my husband & I became “empty nesters,” so the time had arrived for me to attend the 9 week Bikram Yoga Teacher Training in Los Angeles. I am now sharing my passion for Bikram Yoga with students across Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, & Washington State. My teaching style is fierce but compassionate.
Jamey DeMyer
Bikram Yoga Teacher

Bikram yoga has been such an incredible & essential part of my journey & evolution.
 
Although it is not the only yoga I have ever practiced, it is was the very first yoga I was introduced to & have loved it from the start. I was introduced to Bikram yoga back in 2008 while training for the Marine Corps marathon and pursuing a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. It was an amazing compliment to my training that gave me more endurance, better focus & balance physically. In 2009, I moved to Jacksonville, NC to marry my current husband and become a stay at home mom to his amazing twin sons. In a nutshell, I went from being a single, jet-setting, hard-driven flight attendant/athlete always looking for the next challenge to a doting wife & mother. It was a beautiful gift, however, the transformation, not so beautiful. I gave up on consistent running, stopped training in Tae Kwon Do for a short time & stopped practicing Bikram altogether. I gained weight & struggled emotionally & mentally. Gratefully, I found my way back to Bikram yoga & have been on an amazing journey of discovery, forgiveness & compassion ever since. It has helped me look at life from a more positive place & has definitely helped me become a better mother & wife. My family will attest to that without a doubt.
 
In 2013, after about a year of practicing again, I made the decision to attend teacher training. I do not have a “home” studio at this time. My decision to attend teacher training was driven by an immense desire to open a studio where I live. I love Bikram yoga for so many reasons. It truly changes lives from “bones to the skin, finger tips the toes” and beyond.
 
I am so blessed to have an amazing supportive home & yoga family that give me the opportunity to travel, learn and share my passion for this yoga with everyone I meet. I feel honored and privileged to be a part of the healing in the Columbia/Irmo Bikram community and look forward to meeting each and everyone one of you that walks into the hot room. See you soon ☺
Sean Heeney
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
I’ve been teaching Bikram Yoga for 8 years. I love seeing the strength & well-being it cultivates in the people that practice it. It is easy to be intoxicated by how great this class makes you feel & it is easy to love looking good from a disciplined practice, but the real power of this yoga is in the power it creates from a day to day practice to a lifelong journey. It has been amazing to see bodies shift from the very core out. The great thing about this yoga is that it accentuates what lies within, bringing forth the harmony inherent in people. This yoga is foundational. It creates so much strength. That strength functions as a springboard from which the spirit can explore & engage in the world around it. I love helping to foster that power & helping to bring out the most amazing things in people. A healthy & hearty body lends itself to a creative & joyous spirit. I am excited to be a part of the creativity & joy that is flourishing in Columbia. Thank you for bringing me into your community.
Crystal Cordoba
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
Originally from the coast of downeast Maine, I have been a resident of South Carolina’s capital city since 2010. After suffering from a running injury in my home state during 2007, a coworker recommended Bikram yoga to me as a low-impact workout. The practice enticed me from day one because it truly serves its purpose as a moving meditation and full mind/body cleansing. Only a few months after becoming in love with this type of yoga, a series of circumstances required me to relocate to a different part of the state where there were no studios.
Years passed, but I never forgot the sense of fulfillment that was rendered by my yoga practice. When Bikram Yoga Columbia opened in late 2012, I knew that my hot room affinity, while dormant for years, was waiting to be awakened once again. I gained an immediate sense of community at the studio and became even more enamored of the practice after completing a 60-day challenge in March of 2013.
 
It was truly the yoga challenge that altered my perception of myself and what my body was capable of doing. Incorporating yoga into my life with such frequency sounded daunting, but it changed my life completely. With the additional energy I gained, it seemed as if there were more hours in the day than when I did not make time to practice. I realized then that the exertion and focus I devoted on the mat was not only returned to me in kind, but manifested exponentially in other unexpected ways. Never before had I felt more clear-headed and balanced, my body was stronger, and I began to identify with a more compassionate sense of self.
 
My commitment to yoga was furthered after training for the Florida Regional USA Yoga Asana Championship in St. Augustine during January 2014. Once again, practicing with regularity and intention created something like a higher order shift within me, and I was determined to attend Bikram Yoga Teacher Training as soon as possible. I realized my goal to attend training and became a Bikram Teacher in June 2014. It is my great pleasure to serve as an ambassador of these asanas, and to improve the lives of others one breath at a time.
Annie Stoppelbein
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
It was during my time at USC that I finally decided to make my health a priority. My severe anxiety and illnesses in my family drove me to seek out some kind of physical activity that I could love and maintain. In 2010, while visiting home in Charleston for Thanksgiving beak, a friend of my mother brought me to my first Bikram class. I left feeling six feet off the ground. Never had I been so thoroughly worked by a work out, I knew it was a step in the right direction. I went back several more times that break, and was sad to have to go back to Columbia where there was no studio. I continued to practice whenever I was home, or traveling, and even got to practice in Rome while studying abroad. I could not get enough. My anxieties were alleviated, my panic attacks gone, I lost weight, and felt amazing. The more I learned about the innumerable benefits, the more I enjoyed classes and the reliable consistency of the postures.
 
I was overjoyed to learn that Lacy would be opening a studio in Columbia. Practicing became an integral part of my everyday life, just as important to my routine as brushing my teeth. The more I practiced the more I came to know myself. I brought my friends and family, and told everyone I could about this amazing yoga I had found. I made the decision to become a teacher so that I would be able to help make Bikram yoga known to as many people as possible. I truly believe that it is a yoga for all. The Bikram Yoga Columbia community is so welcoming. They approach each class with strength, determination, and dedication. I could not be happier to watch each individual grow in their practice.
Danielle Schroeder
Front desk
Sam Barfield
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
I first found Bikram Yoga in May 2013. Growing up, I was never athletic, always facing problems with my spine due to scoliosis. When I was urged by a friend to try out yoga, I assumed I'd go in for one class, hate it, and then never return. I had no idea that my entire life would change, all in the span of 90 minutes. I moved my body in ways I had never thought possible and instantly became enamored with the practice. I wanted to learn as much about this yoga as I possibly could, so I took class every single chance I could get. Within months, not only was my spine in good, healthy condition for the first time in my life, it was actually pretty flexible! I never would have guessed that I could have improved so much in such a short amount of time, but as I would later learn, anything is possible with a consistent Bikram Yoga practice.
 
In January 2014, my practice and dedication to this Yoga reached a new level when I was urged by teachers at Bikram Yoga Columbia to participate in the Florida/South Carolina Regional Asana Championship. Having no athletic background and only a few months of practice with Bikram Yoga, I had plenty of self-doubt about this; but I knew it would improve my practice and understanding of the yoga. I agreed to participate, and was awarded 1st Place for the men's division for South Carolina! This moment made me realize that my dedication to this Yoga needed to go one step further - I needed to spread its benefits to others through teaching.
 
I opted out of participating in the USA National Championship, instead devoting myself to going to Bikram Yoga Teacher Training. In September 2014, my dream became a reality. I traveled to Khao Lak, Thailand and spent nine weeks practicing and absorbing as much information as I could from Bikram Choudhury himself. In November 2014, I graduated from Teacher Training and returned home to teach at Bikram Yoga Columbia, the place where my journey began. This yoga has afforded me opportunities to travel the world, shatter perceptions of my own mind and body, and live a healthy and fulfilled lifestyle. All of this is possible through Bikram Yoga, and it happens one breath and one backbend at a time. See you in the hot room!
Gina Florio
Bikram Yoga Teacher
 
I was at rock bottom when I walked into my first Bikram Yoga class. I had recently survived a pulmonary embolism, then I had been diagnosed with acute anxiety and adult ADHD, leaving my medicine cabinet fully stocked. At 30 lbs overweight, I was generally unhealthy and extremely unhappy. By second set Pranayama breathing, even before I could figure out where to put my head, I knew I'd found something special. 2 weeks later, after 14 classes, I flushed all my prescription drugs down the toilet and never looked back.
I was in charge of my own life again. I graduated from Harvard University with a Masters degree, then went straight to Teacher Training in Fall 2013. The next year of my life was an exciting blur of teaching and traveling. I spent a lot of time in Australia, and even made my way to Thailand to help out in Training of Fall 2014. Soon, my partner Myles (a Bikram teacher of 9 years) and I are headed to Lima, Peru to teach. We both love this yoga and are always amazed at the stories of utter transformation and redemption we hear. Sweat and weight loss and rosy cheeks are just the beginning of what this practice offers you; things are stirring on a much deeper level. I'm also a freelance writer - I've been honored to have a few of my pieces about yoga published. I hope I can continue to spread the word about the healing benefits of Bikram Yoga. See you in the hot room.