Butterfly Transformation & Healing, LLC
Our vision is to help people to live mentally and physically healthy lives through the practice of yoga. Our logo symbolizes the transformation and healing that can occur through a consistent yoga practice in an environment which is safe, friendly and free of judgment & negativity. Everyone has a unique journey to explore self-awareness, self-acceptance and mind-body connection. As you grow, yoga benefits can impact your daily life including your responsibilities and interactions with others. As you influence and inspire people around you, this growth and energy can become contagious! Our mission is to share yoga with individuals, families, businesses, academic & athletic organizations, and other community networks. We will provide safe and therapeutic solutions for overall health & well-being.
Elissa Kathleen Smith
I took my first Bikram yoga class in 2011 and was immediately hooked. At the time I was working as an engineer while completing my MBA. I was constantly on the go and being in the hot room 90 minutes a day helped to keep me balanced, reduced stress and increased my overall well being.
In the Fall of 2012 I attended the Bikram Yoga Teacher Training in Los Angeles, an experience that allowed me to grow personally and professionally. The time I spent in the yoga room, as both a teacher and a student, inspired me to leave engineering and become a pediatric intensive care nurse. Now I have the privilege of supporting health in both acute care in the hospital and preventative medicine in the yoga studio.
I am excited to be a part of this amazing yoga community and look forward to seeing you in the hot room!
I started practicing the Bikram method of hot yoga in 2002. I was certified by Bikram Choudhury to teach his method in 2006 and have been teaching varieties of hatha yoga ever since. Bikram taught me that all asana is good, as long as you breathe – if you’re not breathing, you’re not doing yoga, you’re not living. I’m inspired by witnessing the healing powers in breath, both in myself and others. I believe it is my karma yoga to share this understanding with everyone. My hope is that all realize their own power. I am honored and blessed to travel this path of self-realization with so many wonderful beings.
The first time I took Bikram Yoga was in the summer of 2000 in Arizona when I thought to myself, "what the hell am I doing here?" You can understand why I didn't return to the hot room again for another 5 years after moving to New York to pursue my career as a professional dancer. I enjoyed the heat and the sequence, but didn't find a deep connection until 2007 when a hip injury led me to surgery. Thankfully, there was a Bikram Yoga studio around the corner from my apartment where I found refuge in the community and the process of relearning how to rebuild my body. It was here on my mat, every day, that I found a deeper understanding of who I am inside out, bones to skin, fingertips to toes.
My yoga journey began in Raleigh, North Carolina in 2010. My first class was ironically on May 24, my daughter’s birthday, as she was the person who convinced me to try Bikram yoga. I clearly remember my first class, and it wasn’t pretty! At some point during the standing series, I hastened to roll up my mat, grab my empty water bottle, and crawl to the nearest exit! I am so grateful that the teacher, Jane B, gently and confidently encouraged me to remain in the hot room. Jane was m yoga angel and she planted the seeds of determination and tolerance of temporary discomfort. I returned to the hot room the next day, determined learn the 26 postures.
I did not start practicing yoga to cure or relieve any chronic or acute physical condition. I was simply curious about what yoga is all about. The benefits of my introductory week became quickly apparent to me and my family. I felt happier than ever, more patient and no longer disturbed by the “stuff” that life presents. Physically, my body just worked better inside and out. So without much deliberation, I applied for teacher training and successfully earned my Bikram Yoga Teacher Training Certification in the fall of 2011.
Shortly after a period of mentorship, I combined my passion for teaching and traveling and began guest teaching in various yoga communities. I’ve had the honor and pleasure to teach at most of the North Carolina studios, East Harlem-New York, Marietta- Georgia, Capitol Hill- DC, Indianapolis- Indiana, and Maui-Hawaii. My teaching style is dialogued-centered, motivational, humorous and alignment-focused. My teaching goal is to encourage students to relax their mind and body for 90 minutes, to connect to their breath, to conceptualize the postures, and then to allow the mind /body connection to happen, in time. I look forward to practicing with yogis worldwide and to planting a seed that may help take their practice to the next level.