About the Instructors

Anne Plyler

Instructor Anne Plyler

Instructor Anne Plyler

Anne Plyler, is a practicing physical therapist, passionate about spreading the benefits of Tai Chi for older adults, especially its benefit in fall prevention.  She is inspired by hundreds of tai chi for health participants and the supportive Tai Chi Community of WNC. Their stories of personal growth, healing, friendship and courage, their ability to listen, learn, laugh, socialize and share with others increase their own strength and that of the Tai Chi community.   Anne, an early member of the WNC Fall Prevention Coalition, continues work to expand the Tai Chi Community and offer increased access to safe, affordable interventions to reduce falls in older adults . She is delighted that many former novice participants have become certified instructors through programs offered or supported by WNC Tai Chi Arthritis which continues to support instructors by offering mentorship opportunities and advanced training.

As an APTA Certified and Advanced Clinical Instructor, Anne, brings 47 years of clinical and teaching excellence to Tai Chi practice.  Beginning in the 1990’s she has been instrumental in bringing Tai Chi workshops to Western Carolina University , to MAHEC and to Mission Hospital. She has been awarded the title of “Outstanding Clinical Instructor” from South College.

Anne is a premier member of the Tai Chi for Health Institute and a member of the Tai Chi for Health Community.  She is certified as an instructor for the following programs: Tai Chi for Arthritis(Sun style) – Level I & Level II, Seated Tai Chi for Arthritis, Tai Chi for Falls Prevention, Tai Chi for Beginners (Yang Style),Tai Chi for Energy (movements from Chen and Sun styles ), Tai Chi for Diabetes  and Tai Chi for Osteoporosis ( both offering movements from Yang and Sun style).  Additionally, she is a member of the American Tai Chi and Qigong Association.

Anne has studied with several instructors over the years, and is grateful to each of them for a variety of learning experiences including:

Dr. Paul Lam,

Master Trainers Bill Pickett, Dan Jones, Linda Arksey.

Senior Trainers Linda Pickett, Bob Feezer,
Tai Chi for Health Institute

Tingsen Xu, PhD and T’ai Chi Grandmaster of Emory’s NIH FICIT trials

Jay Dunbar, PhD “T’ai Chi & Geriatrics”, “Five Animal Frolics”

Kathye E. Light PT & Paul Campbell, Eds, “Eight Ways of Tai Chi”

Robert Levine School of T’ai Chi Chun Psycho-Physical Balance Levels I & II

Caroline Demoise, Master Trainer & student of Dr. Paul Lam

Brent Neely, student of Ben Lo, Student of Chen Man-ch’ing
Neely School of T’ai Chi – Asheville, NC


Kim Heiselman

Kim Heiselman

Instructor Kim Heiselman

Kim Heiselman, MD is a family physician who has been practicing Tai Chi for Arthritis since August 2012. She is a certified Tai Chi for Arthritis Part 1 and Part 2 instructor. She has studied with master trainers Caroline DeMoise, and Bill and Linda Pickett, as well as with Dr. Paul Lam. She has found that the Tai Chi for Arthritis form can be used by people both with and without arthritis as an effective tool for health promotion. It is a wonderful way of becoming more active in developing and maintaining wellness.

Dr. Heiselman has been a practicing family physician for 19 years at the Hot Springs Health Program in Madison County. She is inspired every day by the strength and stories of her patients. She believes that listening and connecting to others is the key to being a good doctor. She is excited about expanding the ways she can help others heal to include Tai Chi for Arthritis classes.

In addition to Tai Chi practice, she finds personal renewal in nature, and playing outdoors. She loves hiking, paddling, mountain biking and gardening.


Dennis Hagarty


Instructor Dennis Hagarty

Dennis became a Tai Chi Arthritis Level I instructor under TCHI’s Master Trainer, Caroline Demoise, in September 2013. He trained under Master Trainer Bill Pickett and Senior Trainer Linda Puckett for Level 2 instructor certification in January 2014. In October he participated in Dr. Paul Lam’s “Exploring the Depth of Tai Chi” workshop in Asheville. Dennis has been working with Anne and Bob Plyler, teaching at First Baptist Church for several years.  He’s also been instrumental in bring Tai Chi to the VA Hospital in Asheville for the first time and will be teaching classes to veterans there.

As a nurse for 33 years, Dennis has spent the past 30 years working with veterans in both the Durham and Asheville VAMC.  He served on the Executive Board of the International Nurses Society of Addiction (IntNSA) from 2012-2015.   For the past 10 years, Dennis has been working with Veterans with substance use disorder. He’s spoken at international conferences and published on addiction topics. He authored a chapter on complementary and alternative treatments in the CORE Curriculum for Addictions Nursing. Dennis is also a Level IV Healing Touch provider.






Linda Schlensker


What does a dance teacher do when it is time to retire? Find something else to do. For me that was Tai Chi. And I was being selfish about it. I wanted to retire. This was for me. I wanted to make new friends and still move to music. I got hooked fast. Tai Chi was different enough from Competitive Ballroom Dance to provide new challenges. Like any art form there are limitless depths to explore. I dove in. And I’m still learning. And then something awful happened. I wanted to share what I learned with others. I saw how my dance friends could benefit from Tai Chi. I saw how it helped people improve their balance and their health. I knew that all the background I had in adult education and teaching dance could be put to good use. So I began to study how to be a good teacher of Tai Chi by learning how to teach it from the best teachers I could find. I liked Master Wu, Wen-Ching because he smiled when he did Tai Chi. So many people smile before and after but not while doing Tai Chi. I liked the system developed by Dr. Lam for its health results, insistence on ethics and safety and teaching techniques. I suspect I will spend the rest of my coherent life learning more about Tai Chi, learning more about how to teach it and sharing what I know with others. So here I am with WNC Tai Chi for Arthritis. I’m looking forward to meeting you!

“Blessed are we who can laugh at ourselves for we will never cease to be amused.”-(unknown)

“The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his
own.”-Benjamin Disraeli