Salvatore Familia

Asheville, NC
United States
Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

25 Reviews

I began Classical Yoga training and study in 1972 and have been both an active participant in and astonished witness to the evolution of yoga in the US ever since. I began teaching Yoga in the late 70’s long before the “branding” of yoga.

My teaching is inspired by a personal four-decade journey along the many paths of Yoga and Meditation; academic study of Western and Eastern philosophy; struggles with translating Sanskrit Yoga texts into English; encounters with inspiring teachers, scoundrels and charlatans; explorations of life through meditation, Jungian analysis; business ventures such as founding a vegetarian restaurant, and computer school; creating the Internet’s first online database of Yoga postures; building Yoga and Meditation-related web stores; the directorship of a Yoga ashram; and the founding of a non-profit Yoga & Meditation studio.

Although I’m thrilled by the explosive popularity of Yoga today, I’m also convinced that other traditional dimensions of Yoga like spiritual inquiry, meditation and an openness to embrace all contemporary forms of wisdom would bring greater balance and insight to its practice. My teaching style is dialogical in nature and is informed by the insights of the ancient Yoga Shastras (Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, Samkhya Karika, the Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, etc.) as well as the contemporary arts, modern psychology, and neuroscience.


Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

25 Reviews

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Demonstrates More
Explains More
Very Friendly
More Hands off
Frequent Adjustments
New Teacher
Very Experienced
On the Wild Side
Safety Oriented
Body Focused
Very Spiritual


Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Yoga philosophy

I have taken quite a few yoga philosophy workshops with Sal over the years. He has an extensive knowledge of yoga history and spirituality. He engages you in the class and awakens your thoughts and inner explorations, and calls you to be more. He guided my yogi classmates and I during our recent 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training in the Healing Movement program. I find him to be an amazing person and look forward to his workshops.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Yoga for everyone

Sal is a wonderful, experienced, and well-educated teacher! He captivates and engages students by staying fully present and keeping the class in an open discussion, his thoughtful words and detail-oriented stories have enriched my yoga practice tremendously! I don't think there is a question he cannot answer. I am so grateful to have learned from Sal! He has a beautiful, wise spirit!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Superb - Highly Proficient; More than a Teacher

Sal is a remnant of a dying breed of scholars. He has gained his knowledge from passionate study and the love of his search for the answers. An advanced practitioner of great expertise, he offers his students - limitless access. His cognition is second to none and it supports his unique teaching style. He is a longtime practioner of yoga.


His experiences - meshed with his academia are unparalleled; I have never met anyone who can break down Sanskrit writings and explain exactly what is literally written. No relying on someone else's commentary here! He makes you think! He challenges you to challenge yourself. Thought provoking! HE is the real deal and if you ever have the chance to attend any of his workshops or lectures - run- you will not be disappointed. His knowledge is endless and he incorporates ancient studies with current research. So interesting. The best Yoga and Eastern philosophy Instructor ever! A hidden treasure and a "gem" of a person! I will continue to attend his sessions, anytime he is in my area.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Awesome teacher

His love and passion for yoga palpable!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Incredible teacher and wonderful human being!

Sal teaches meditation classes, in addition to participating in numerous events at my studio. The breadth and depth of knowledge, insight, and wisdom he contributes to the various activities never fail to enrich the content and enliven the overall experience. I feel truly blessed and privileged to be his student and friend.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

I learned a lot. When first had philosophy
With Sal. I wasn't sure what to expect. I was not sure I would like it. After a few classes. I was excited to know more. His approach to the philosophy, keep me interested to hear more.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

Learned a lot for his class

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Sal familia is awesome

Sal is the best yoga teacher I have ever had, period. Sal is a man who embodies the practice of yoga- deeply genuine, kind and intelligent. If you ever have the privilege to hear him give a talk about meditation practice or yoga philolosophy, you will not be disappointed. He's a teacher with a strong intellect, and an equally big heart, and a wealth of wisdom.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Sal is the best!!!

I have known Sal for about 5 years and am so lucky to have been able to practice with and learn from him. He is a truly special person who has kept me on the path and has made me really think about my journey and what I want from this life. He is the best!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Philosophy Sal

Salvatore was the yoga philosophy teacher for my 200 & 500hr teacher training. He is a tremendously knowledgeable and experienced philosophy teacher. With an open mind he taught us the basics of yoga philosophy and opened new doors in our minds. Sal always encouraged (well, sometimes he challenged) us to tie the connections between ancient yoga philosophy and our everyday lives. We went from the basics of understanding the yoga philosophy to the nitty-gritty details and influences of various cultures to seeing the potential of defining yoga in today's societies.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

Sal has a tremendous depth and broad range of knowledge to share with his students. Yoga philosophy came to life for me when he taught as part of our 200 hour teacher training. Throughout Sal's discussions, he threads stories, poems, Sanskrit linguistics, neuroscience, and Buddhism (and of course the sutras!) At the end of our training I left with a great education and hungry for more. It was the beginning of a deeper personal exploration for me. Very grateful to have met Sal, and to have studied with him.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
A true philospopher teacher

Sal taught yoga philosophy to our 200 hour teacher training class this past year. His classes did not involve asana practice so I left some of the ratings above at neutral. His philosophy classes were spiritual, intelligent and had a deep impact on my yoga practice on and off the mat. I admire and respect his knowledge base, but more importantly, his ability to explain sometimes complex ideology with loving kindness and truthfulness impressed me. His teaching has quite honestly impacted my daily life in a very positive and transformative way. I recommend him most highly as a loving teacher.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Sal taught us philosophy in our Yoga Training

Sal welcomes questions and discussions in his yoga philosophy classes. He is well versed in sanskrit. He is an amazing teacher

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
A Great Professor of Yoga

Truly a legendary speaker who totally captures your mind heart and soul. Being in his presence is wonderful. I look forward to being with him again. Bart and Linda Ruben Yoga For Life Teacher

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Awesome teacher !

6 stars !

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Would have given 6 stars if I could have

Listening to sal speak is life changing. His love for yoga philosophy is very obvious and he makes you want to know more and more about it. He opened up my eyes to a side of yoga that I never had the opportunity to experience & for that I thank you.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

Sal is a very inspiring, innovative and intelligent instructor. I enjoy my classes with him and learn so much from him.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars

Sal was my second yoga teacher, & is the person who opened my eyes to the fact that there are Eight Limbs of Yoga, & not just asana. He inspires his students with his vast knowledge of yoga philosophy & the Yoga Sutras. He embodies the yoga

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
A Wonderful Teacher

I am very pleased to provide a review of my experience with Sal Familia, as a wonderful teacher.


I met Sal many years ago, when first coming to Yoga. At the time, he was already well-versed in Yogic texts such as Patanjali and the Bhagavad Gita, and many others. He was also well-versed in Western philosophy. He was clearly dedicated to his practice, and to being a teacher. He was always supportive, an excellent listener, and an excellent guide on the Yoga path, for me. He was never dogmatic, but open-minded and insistent that one must find these truths by oneself, with teachers only as guides. His enthusiasm for teaching and for sharing the Yoga path with others was infectious.

Sal remains all these things to this day, and I think even more so than before.

After many years of only sporadic contact, I reached out to Sal, feeling like I very much wanted to reconnect with Yoga. He was there to offer help, as he always had been years ago, for which I will always be grateful.

Anyone who has the opportunity to discuss philosophical or spiritual texts, and especially to receive guidance on Yoga practice with Sal, is very fortunate. He is a genuine teacher, with many years of practice, study and love of the Yoga path within him. His dedication to the spiritual life, his seriousness in that regard if you will, is balanced by a light-heartedness and sense of humor that are wonderful to be around. I cannot say enough about him, as a person and a teacher.


Jeff Gaines

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Attending a class with Sal, will be life changing!

Sal was one of my first Yoga teachers, and for that I remain extremely grateful. In this age when the true essence of Yoga is often covered over with glitz and glamor, his in depth knowledge of Yoga philosophy and the great classical texts of the tradition is extremely impressive. He has dedicated most of his life to understanding the mystery of the human condition through the practice of Yoga. He is insightful and compassionate, and has the ability to reveal the real question behind your questions, with a good sense of humor. It is an experience to be experienced, and is hard to put into words, but I walked away from his teachings knowing fully that I had been in the company of one who truly sees. You will not be disappointed!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Bottomless Well

The depth and breadth of Sal's knowledge of and insights into yoga source texts makes studying with him like unto tapping into the source itself. As encouraging as he is commanding, Sal instills and inspires both confidence and reverence in those fortunate enough to share their practice with him. Sal is a Teacher in the truest sense: a seasoned guide and model on the Yogic path, able to demonstrate and illuminate meditation--the essence of a wisdom tradition that cannot be taught except by embodying it.

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Salvatore Familia a Wonderful Teacher of Yoga Philosophy

It was a real gift to learn yoga philosophy from Salvatore Familia. He is incredibly knowledgable, and has a great way of imparting his wisdom. If you have the opportunity to study with Salvatore I wouldn't hesitate!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Passionate knowledgable teacher, a true gift to learn from!

I've shared hours in training, exploring and gaining knowledge listening to the wisdom Sal has to share! I look forward to the next time our paths cross again!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
a lifetime of yoga philosophy wisdom

sal's use of story telling to teach yoga philosophy, is captivating! he relates the 8 limbs of yoga to everyday life, making it easy to apply these ancient teachings! his translation of the gita, is also brought into modern times.
his classes are never simply lectures. discussion and disagreement and other views are welcomed!

Average: 5.0 of 5 stars
Authentic Yoga Teacher

Salvatore is a wonderfully kind and generous yoga philosophy teacher. It has been a blessing learning from him.