Asthma to Vinyasa – Featured Yogi – Melissa Kara

Our Share Your Story feature for the month of November goes to Melissa Kara from Atlanta, Georgia. Melissa struggled with asthma for most of her life. In her heartfelt story, she recounts how being introduced to simple pranayama exercises changed her ability to breath and gain control over her debilitating disease. Breathing became a healing tonic for Melissa that revolutionized her life. Focusing on her breath allowed Melissa to gain control over her disease as well as relief from stress and anxiety. Now Melissa teaches others suffering from breathing difficulties to take control of their illness through the medicinal benefits of pranayama. Check out Melissa’s story below and continue to share YOUR personal stories with us at 

Asthma to Vinyasa


I have asthma. I have had asthma since I was a child. But no one ever told me how to breathe. Once I started yoga I worked on my breath. Allowing my lungs to expand and stretch the lung tissue, allowing me to better control my breath especially in panicked situations. When the lung becomes tight and an asthmatic can no longer breathe, your heart rate increases and you feel like you’re being suffocated. What yoga did for me as an asthmatic, was introduce me to the ability to control my head, heart and breath as one. Union. Once I harnessed onto my breath I no longer felt like I was being suffocated. Breathe became my calming mechanism. I found my way into a place that gave me some control over this disease I’ve had my entire life.

My mission now as a Vinyasa flow teacher is to connect the breath to the body. Trading ppl to become aware & create an intention for the breath. Everything we have is right here in front of us. Using our own lungs, breathing this free oxygen, using our mind to dedicate ourselves to controlling the panic and being back in control. Having the ability to train people on proper breathing techniques is my passion bc of this change in my experience. It has helped me and others and I hope to give it to the youth and other people with breathing difficulties as well as people with normal breathing function because the oxygen in the body to me is one the most important things that we have, at no cost. Namaste
Melissa Kara Yoga
Follow Melissa on Instagram at @5_star_yoga_atl

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