aumlightYoga Classes in Austin

Charles teaches Hatha Yoga classes at two studios in Austin. All levels welcome. $15/class for drop-ins or $100/8 classes.

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aumlightPrivate Instruction

Individual instruction in yoga (all levels); pranayama; meditation; stress management; yoga therapy; and life coaching – $85/hr.

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aumlightWorkshops in Tx, USA

Workshops on a variety of topics offered at studios throughout Texas and the US as well as National & International Conferences.

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aumlightYoga/Meditation Retreats

Since 1991 Charles has led Yoga & Meditation Retreats at locations in Texas, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Guatemala.

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aumlightYoga/Writing Retreats

Charles & award winning author Patricia Lewis offer 4 day Yoga & Writing retreats in Texas and Massachusetts.

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aumlightYoga Teacher Training

Our internationally recognized Living Yoga Program has graduates teaching yoga in 42 states and 14 countries.

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Charles MacInerney holds the highest level of recognition from both the Yoga Alliance (E-RYT-500) and from the International Association of Yoga Therapists (1000 hr. Yoga Therapy Certification).

Charles inherited his Mother’s interest in Eastern philosophy and his Father’s love of physics. As a teenager he was torn between these two paradigms but the more he studied science in school, read Eastern philosophy and practice Yoga & Meditation on his own, the more he saw how each enriched the other.

Over 40 years of personal practice and 25 years teaching yoga Charles has fully integrated these two great influences on his life. The ancient traditions of the East and modern innovations of the West come together through his practice and illuminate his teaching – whether it is an asana class, a spiritual retreat, or a corporate team building workshop. Charles is best known for his creativity, compassion, humor and intelligence. Read more about his story, credentials, and public speaking, etc.

New to Yoga?

Your first decision in yoga, who to study with, is one of the most important decisions you will make. It is easy to lay down bad habits and even injure yourself in yoga, especially for new students. It is the responsibility of your first teacher to help you to create a solid foundation upon which to build, but just as importantly, to help you fall in love with the practice, not just the benefits of having practiced.

Since 1989 Charles has introduced over seven thousand new students to yoga. He still takes a special delight in working with beginners.

New students are always welcome to attend Charles’ classes, workshops and retreats. Class sizes are kept small, allowing for more personal attention and customized individual instruction. Charles, with the help of his regular students, works hard to maintain a safe, non-competitive, accepting and friendly environment for new students to take their first steps on the path of yoga. See class schedule and pricing.

Helpful Guidelines for New Students….

1. Yoga is practiced barefoot. If you have custom orthotics please let the teacher know in advance of class so that they may make accommodations.

2. No special clothing is necessary as long as you dress modestly and comfortably.

3. Please do not use perfume as others may have chemical sensitivity.

4. Please turn off cell phones, and leave them outside the studio in the hall way. Even on ‘vibrate’ cell phones are distracting to other students.

5. Yoga should be practiced on an empty stomach, 1-2 hours after a light meal, longer after a full meal.

6. Please tell the yoga instructor prior to class if you are pregnant, on your period, medications, have any injuries, or illness.

More Q&A’s

Injured or ill?

Charles Macinerney holds the highest level of recognition from both the Yoga Alliance and from the International Association of Yoga Therapists, and has presented at several international yoga therapy conferences.

If you are pregnant, sick, injured, on medication, or recovering from surgery, you need to be more selective in who you study yoga with.

Yoga teachers are trained in how to teach yoga to healthy people. The same yoga class that is beneficial for those already in good shape may actually be harmful for those that are not. This is why it is important to seek out a yoga therapist (a much higher level of training).

Many traditional asanas will need to be modified to make them safe for you to practice until you are 100% again. A good yoga therapist does not memorize solutions to problems because no two problems are ever the same. Instead, they learn how to understand complex problems and then solve them. Unfortunately, this skill takes lots of time and experience to cultivate.

The first decision you need to make is whether or not you should join a group class, or first seek out private instruction. Here are some guidelines to help you decide

  • If you have never practiced yoga before, and you have limitations, consider starting with a private one-on-one class to assess and bring you up to speed before integrating into the public class. Usually just one private session is enough to ensure smooth entry to group classes.
  • If you have some experience in yoga, but your limitations are substantial, a private class is a good idea to learn which poses to modify and how, before rejoining a public class.
  • If your limitations are mild, and you are experienced in yoga, you might be ok joining the ongoing public yoga classes.

If you are not sure, please contact Charles and describe your level of experience with yoga, and what your current limitations are, and he can make some recommendations for you.

Remember, it is your responsibility both in private and in public yoga classes to let the instructor know before class if you have any limitations that might affect your practice.

Charles has been practicing Yoga Therapy for twenty years. Since 1997 he has set up and run two Yoga therapy clinics, first at Seton Hospital and later at the Austin Heart Hospital. He has presented and been key-note speaker at dozens of wellness conferences, including American Cancer Society, and the American Heart Association, and the International Conference on Yoga for Positive Health. In June, 2014 he will be teaching at the International Association of Yoga Therapists annual conference called SYTAR (scroll to bottom of Page).

Charles charges $15/class for a drop in fee, and $85/hr for private instruction. He usually meets private clients at his home/studio, but also sees clients in their own home if they prefer ($20 travel charge).


Stepping into a yoga studio for the first time, it is not uncommon for students to feel some anxiety and/or frustration. However, for the more experienced student the enemy becomes boredom. The more you practice the same routine, the more likely that you will check out mentally.

There are several ways to avoid this. One is to occasionally change teachers, or even styles of yoga. This will keep you in beginners mind and keep your yoga fresh. Another solution is to work with teachers who employ variety in their teaching. This variety should not just be in their sequencing of asanas (although that is a good start), but also in the use of language, music, silence, lighting, energy of the class etc.

Although some of Charles’ students have been studying with him for 22+ years, he still manages to keep them engaged by constantly shifting his emphasis so that each class is both familiar and comfortable, but at the same time, fresh and challenging. Charles teaches to the middle of his class, but finds time to work individually with more advanced students to introduce new and more challenging poses, or take a familiar pose to a deeper level of understanding.

If you have never worked with Charles, you will find his voice unique in the world of yoga. He has studied with dozens of yoga teachers from multiple styles, but is also influenced by other modern body work like Feldenkrais, Aston Patterning, Pilates, Alexander Technique, Somatics, myo-facial release, and also from science (physics, psychology, sociology, neuro-plasticity etc.). But mostly he is guided by his own insights over 40 years of personal practice of yoga since the age of 11.

Even now, his personal practice continues to evolve, as does his teaching. In addition to his regular yoga classes, if you are interested in going deeper with your yoga, Charles offers workshops, usually 3 hours long, on a variety of topics, as well as 3 and 8 day yoga & meditation retreats, and teacher training.

Yoga Teacher?

For the past 20 years Charles has offered Yoga Teachers a 30% discount on any Yoga & Meditation Retreat  that he offers. Participating teachers are free to come in the role of student, but are also invited to assist with the yoga if they want to.

For teachers hoping to deepen and widen their yoga practice, Charles offers 3 hour workshops at a variety of studios throughout Texas and beyond. Topics include specialty asana workshops (like balance, or opening the hips etc), pranayama, meditation, concentration, and yoga philosophy.

In Charles’ regular and intermediate yoga classes, if you let him know that you are a yoga teacher, or hoping to become one, he is happy to give you a little extra attention during class. He is also available for private consultations on all aspects of teaching yoga, from lesson planning to giving feedback to students to the business of yoga.

As a yoga teacher, you might also be interested in the Texas Yoga Retreat, which Charles co-founded in 2000. This annual retreat, held a beautiful Hindu Ashram, 20 minutes SW of Austin, is open to all levels, but has special workshops at every time slot specifically designed for yoga teachers, including a Yoga Therapy track. Faculty are chosen primarily from senior Yoga Teachers from across Texas, but also includes a few teachers from out of state.

In 1999 Charles co-founded the highly successful and internationally known yoga teacher training school (the Living Yoga Program). He has enjoyed working with yoga teachers and aspiring teachers. He has often been called a ‘teacher’s teacher’, both by yoga teachers, and by college professors and other teaching professionals. He is very proud of the Living Yoga Program and always happy to visit with potential students about the program.

Free Yoga!

Charles has always been a strong advocate for making Yoga accessible to everyone, regardless of race, gender, age, ability or income.

For the past 25 years, he has taken yoga into hospitals, corporations, nursing homes, government agencies, children’s’ shelters, schools, colleges, at risk youth, athletes, and more.

In 1992 Charles began offering his Full Moon Yoga classes, a free yoga class held once a month at a scenic overlook. It is open to all levels and backgrounds. We hope you can join us at one of these classes in the future.

Charles also offers free instruction on-line in a variety of styles of meditation.

In 1998 Charles co-founded the Free Day of Yoga, and helped spread this event from Austin to Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, and Tyler, and in the process helped those cities organize their yoga communities. He has continued to help with the organization of this event every year and also  teaches at least one free workshop. If you have not participated in this event you are missing out!

Social Media!

Any help with marketing is greatly appreciated. Like us on facebook, follow us on twitter, give us a yelp review, etc.

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