Ashley Bell, ERYT-200

Charleston, SC


I’m a yoga teacher because throughout my life I’ve taught everything that I’ve ever loved, from dance and group fitness to art and math (yes, I love math).  My interest in health and wellness is rooted in my days studying dance and participating in sports every semester beginning in eight grade for the duration of my secondary education.  I taught ballet as a high school student and group fitness in college before completing my graduate studies in Art Education at Columbia University’s Teachers College.  As a creative arts teacher, I always hoped that students would come to recognize the validity of their own stories, and in trusting that truth find a medium through which they could share those experiences.  As a yoga teacher, I hope that students will see that their bodies are an autobiographical collection of patterns of tightness, weakness, strength and softness resulting from their life, work and play.  Through yoga, we can begin to observe and then adjust the structure of the body, breaking down those patterns that restrict movement and growth, opening into our full potential one breath at a time.  Being able to move freely feels good, and when we feel good we are kinder and more compassionate towards ourselves and others.  I truly believe that yoga can change the world that way.  Some may regard that opinion as naive, but I am unapologetically enthusiastic about the power of this practice.

I completed my 200-hour teaching certification in 2003 at Gaea Yoga, Charleston’s first dedicated vinyasa studio.  I have a prenatal yoga training from Asheville Yoga Center and have completed my 300-hours advanced certification at Laughing Lotus in NYC.  I have served as a primary instructor for several 200-hour teacher trainings at Blue Turtle Yoga in Charleston, SC and have been on the faculty of trainings at both Gaea Yoga and Mission Yoga.  As much as I enjoy sequencing complex flows that incorporate interesting balances and playful inversions, I truly love teaching beginners, which is why I enjoyed my time as an Adjunct Professor teaching Beginning Yoga to students at the College of Charleston.  I also served as the yoga consultant to Pivotal Fitness, a regional franchise of gyms offering yoga programming.  I’m also the mother to a son in 7th grade and a daughter in 3rd grade.

Reflections on practice with Ashley:

“Yoga students who work with Ashley soon learn that the body is not all there is, the mind is not just a passive witness to the journey, and the heart is not simply along for the ride. She imbues the physical dimension of yoga with intelligence, the esoteric dimension with practicality and humor, and the heart-centered dimension with disarming intimacy. Even after more than four decades of yoga practice and teaching, being a student in her class is for me a great delight.” – Sal Familia, Yoga Scholar

“I took my first inversion workshop from Ashley Bell over eight years ago and still use her cues every time I go upside-down. Her approach is totally relatable and speaks to the individual.” – Jolee McLeod, Yoga Teacher

“Ashley’s dynamic classes are infused with her insight, humor and a sense of calm that helps her students to build confidence on and off the mat. She has a gift of sharing poses step-by-step, healing people to reach far beyond what they think they can do. It’s difficult to truly articulate how healing her classes are – mind, body and spirit!”   – Solange Swafford, Yoga Student