Meditation courses coming to Yoga On Main – Elkin Jonesville Tribune

Meditation courses coming to Yoga On Main - Elkin Jonesville Tribune 1

Yoga On Main instructors Denise Lyon, Kelly Dougherty and James Swaim.

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Yoga on Main, located in the lower level of The Liberty in downtown Elkin, will now be offering courses in meditation as well as welcoming back a former yoga instructor.

“I feel so grateful that Yoga on Main is offering more classes, styles and teachers for the community in Elkin,” said owner Kelly Dougherty. “My true passion is teaching and sharing the practice of yoga with my students but I am only one person, each teacher weaves their own experience, insight and wisdom into their classes. I feel honored to be a part of this growing community of well being and can’t wait to see where it takes us in the future!”

Dougherty began her own yoga practice about 10 years ago when she took a free class offered at York College in Pennsylvania, where she was a student. She said she fell in love with yoga and it all evolved from there. After moving to North Carolina a few years ago, Dougherty completed a year-long training with Sunrise Yoga Studio in Clemmons. She has been teaching at Yoga On Main, located in the lower level of The Liberty, for three years now. She also teaches yoga at the Yadkin Family YMCA.

James Swaim (RYT 200) has recently returned to teaching after a two-year break in which he underwent a successful bone marrow stem cell transplant. He looks forward to regaining full strength as he helps others with the practice of yoga. His first yoga experience came in 2002 when his wife Jennifer dragged him to a yoga class at Yoga on Main, operated at the time by Elizabeth Barr. It was love at first downward facing dog and he was hooked, he said. He subsequently practiced in Winston-Salem and surrounding areas and earned his 200 hour certification at Sunrise Yoga in Clemmons.

In 2012, Swaim retired from Triad Medical Services, Inc. after 25 years in the healthcare industry. He began teaching shortly thereafter with the goal of sharing the mental, physical and spiritual benefits he has found in the practice of yoga. As a senior citizen, Swaim is especially aware of the needs for flexibility, balance and retaining muscle mass and bone density as the body ages. He added Silver Age Yoga Certification, “A Healthy Aging with Yoga Project” in 2014. He offers encouragement to all who want to maintain or improve their health. In addition to his yoga practice and teaching, Swaim enjoys reading, working in his yard, biking, hiking, and traveling.

Denise Lyon has recently joined the Yoga on Main staff and is a certified meditation and mindfulness instructor. Lyon has been in the healing arts for over twenty years and is also a licensed massage and bodywork therapist.

“I meditated pretty lazily for several years, but about five years ago I began to be more disciplined and saw pretty wonderful results,” said Lyon. “I knew that it wasn’t easy to make it a priority, so I wanted to learn how to do it right.”

This started an exploration of meditation that began with a course in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and the beginning of an ongoing learning relationship with Bhante Gunaratana, the renown Buddhist monk and author of “Mindfulness in Plain English” at Bhavana Society Buddhist Monastery.

Lyon spent the last year on a 200-hour course of study with Sarah McLean, founder of McLean Meditation Institute and former educational director for the Deepak Chopra Center.

“Now it is my heart’s desire to teach peace and to share what I have learned and experienced with others. I believe that a meditation practice and living a mindful life can change the way you see things in a very basic way. Learning to live in awareness is one of the most awesome things that meditation teaches us, and that naturally leads to a life of peace and compassion and a richer experience all the way around,” she said.

Lyon grew up in Elkin, but lived elsewhere for 25 years until deciding to come back home.

“I thought for awhile that I would have to move to a larger city to be able to transition into teaching meditation, but I am starting to see that teachers who live in smaller areas might have an advantage. There are so many people yearning for a deeper experience of life and they are coming out of the woodwork in Elkin. I’m so happy about that. We can form our own tribe of people who want to create peace.”

Lyon will be teaching day-long classes and weekend retreats in the near future, as well as classes at Yoga on Main. For more information, contact her at [email protected] Lyon’s other interest is being a trail advocate. She believes that being outdoors and on a trail is a great way to find your peace and wellness. She is a founding board member of the Elkin Valley Trails.

For more information on classes and programs at Yoga On Main, visit

Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.

Meditation courses coming to Yoga On Main - Elkin Jonesville Tribune 2

Yoga On Main instructors Denise Lyon, Kelly Dougherty and James Swaim.
Elkin Tribune

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