Birmingham yoga aficionado, Villager Yoga owner and new mom Annie Damsky shares what brought her to yoga, and how she shares her practice with individuals and families throughout Birmingham.

What first brought you to yoga?

I started going to yoga when I was in my mid-20’s. It began as a Sunday evening ritual to help to stave off cases of “the Sundays” when the work week loomed. The calm I achieved in yoga, combined with the release of physical tension and excess energy/anxiety is really what had me returning each week.

Why did you decide to invest more time — both personally and professionally — in yoga?

Personally, I started attending more physically challenging classes and was able to get a full-body workout while still achieving the overall peace and calm, both mentally and physically, that I had with the more gentle classes. Yoga became a healthy addiction that left me feeling energized, clear-headed and balanced. I wanted more! Wanting more led me to enroll in a 200-hour teacher training program, primarily to fill my desire to deepen my personal practice — truly, I didn’t believe that I would teach, let alone open a studio one day. The more I learned about the practice and experienced the benefits, the more I wanted to share it with others who were interested and help people to find their own peace, clarity and empowerment through the practice.

How did you pick the location for Villager Yoga?

Since Villager Yoga is a studio whose classes cater to the whole family, my primary goal was to be a family-centric suburban area. I chose the Cahaba Heights/Mountain Brook area because of it’s accessibility to Highway 280, giving families from Vestavia, Homewood, Hoover and all over the Birmingham area a fairly easy opportunity to locate the studio. The specific spot came down to visibility, accessibility and the right size space and real estate managers.

What are people most surprised by when they visit Villager Yoga for the first time?

People always comment on how calm the setting is from the moment they come into the lobby/boutique. We have two studio rooms, so we have a lot of space for classes. Students appreciate that we don’t have any mirrors in the studio rooms and that we keep it minimalist in design.

What is the best part about being in Cahaba Heights?

We love the accessibility. Not only can students easily locate us because of adjacency to businesses such as Publix, Whole Foods, Magic Muffins and The Summit, but the neighborhood is walkable. We have many students who can easily walk to the studio, or pop over in just a couple of minutes!

Villager Yoga offers yoga classes for the entire family seven days per week at its Cahaba Heights studio location in addition to providing school programs and camps throughout the Birmingham area. For a complete schedule of yoga classes, visit the website.

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