Quirky studio The Little Volcano brings cat yoga to Asheville

POSES WITH PERSONALITY: The Little Volcano's star projector yoga classes cultivate cameraderie deeper than the burn of pigeon pose. “This class gets ridiculous, hilarious, loud, silly and sometimes deep,” co-owner Rosie Volcano says. “When we play yoga truth-or-dare, the dare has to be a yoga-related dare, and the truth has to be a middle school-style secret — something you wouldn't normally share with strangers. I love the concept of sharing an unexpected or forgotten story with complete strangers. It's an intensely liberating and healing experience.” Photo courtesy of the Little Volcano

On a cozy corner of Wall Street, Rosie and Killian Volcano are doing their part to “keep Asheville weird,” as the saying goes.

On Monday and Friday nights, their first-year Forrest yoga studio— The Little Volcano: Yoga, Mischief & Magic—hosts a candle-lit star projector yoga class. The Chicago expats also pioneered Harry Potter yoga in Asheville (if it wasn’t already a thing) and host other costume-themed classes monthly — anything to ruffle the stereotype of yoga being bland.

But the duo behind The Little Volcano’s free-form classes, resident wig collection and magical wand (available upon request) isn’t stopping there. On Sunday, July 12, they host their first cat yoga session.

“Yoga with cats was an idea we had because we love Brother Wolf and would like to help kitties find homes,” says Rosie, “and because we just love cats and yoga.”

The class, they say, will combine “felines, adoption, yoga, snuggles and happiness,” with all proceeds benefiting Brother Wolf Animal Rescue. It’s perfect timing since Brother Wolf experiences an influx of strays during “kitten season” each summer. Depending on turnout, the event may become a regular addition to The Little Volcano’s annual schedule.

Although Rosie and Killian often bring their dogs to the studio, the animal lovers decided a clowder of cats would be more appropriate for the space, as they’re smaller and make less noise. The distraction of prodding paws, however, may be just what participants are after.

“We don’t know of any history of yoga with animals or cats specifically, but animals have been used in healing since the beginning of time,” Rosie says, citing Native American animal healing as one example. “Have you ever had a dog or a cat or any pet who knows when you’re upset? Or knows when you’re sick and puts its paw right over the spot that hurts?”

“Since we view our style of yoga as a healing process more than a workout,” Rosie continues, “we try to incorporate the healing tools that have helped us the most, such as smudging [or using smoke from plants], essential oils, flower essences, gem stones, bodywork, meditation, animal therapy and obviously Forrest yoga.”

Rosie and Killian bring their next in-class healing tool — cats — to the studio on Sunday, July 12, from 4-6:30 p.m. Advanced registration and a $20 donation for Brother Wolf are recommended, but drop-ins and smaller donations are welcome on the day of the event until the class is full.

The Little Volcano is at 62 Wall Street. Visit thelittlevolcano.com for more information.

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About Kat McReynolds
Kat studied entrepreneurship and music business at the University of Miami and earned her MBA at Appalachian State University. Follow me @katmAVL

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