My massage therapist, Regina Beattie,  who is a very wise person, keeps telling me that I should try Yoga.  I usually say something like, “How about those Red Wings?”, or “It’s supposed to be nice outside this weekend.”  Sometimes I give the smart-alec answer, “Strawberry or vanilla?”  Oh, I hear her, but trying Yoga is something that I can talk myself out of faster than eating raw liver.   I’m not sure why.   My first thought is embarrassing myself in front of a class, by either ripping out the crotch in my sweatpants or pulling a muscle and crying out like a little girl.  What if I hurt my back?  I won’t be able to work.

Oh, I know.  It would be good for me. It helps you manage stress.  I have that.   It gives you more energy and brighter moods.  Some people say I could use that.   They say Yoga relaxes you and helps you sleep better.  It improves strength, balance, and flexibility---all things I could use at this point in my life.  It’s good for heart health and arthritis symptoms, and yes, it’s even good for your back, although sitting like that, I’m not sure how.

The thing is, I could do it online, shut off my camera, and nobody has to see me.  Ok, I’ll think about it.

Willard Library has yoga classes from time to time, but they fill up fast.   Lots of private practitioners are out there in the Battle Creek community.  And now, as part of its expanding education program, the Franke Center for the Arts is offering a new 6-week yoga workshop taught by Erin Reed. The sessions will start on Saturday, March 6th. In-person and virtual options will be available.

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The Begin yoga series was designed for people who are new to yoga practice and/or seeking to reconnect with their bodies. Through this series, participants will be supported to build awareness and create patterns that serve their wholeness and wellbeing.  The series will focus on accessible asana (postures), and pranayama (breath) to support practitioners in the experiences of awareness, self-compassion, empowerment, and flow. Each 75-minute class will include movement and breath, centering, embodied movement, deep relaxation, and integration.

Instructor Erin Reed is a graduate of The Evergreen State College, where she studied movement, mind/body practices, and multi-cultural counseling. She has been studying, practicing, and teaching yoga and mindfulness for 23 years. In 2018, Erin earned her 300-hour trauma-sensitive yoga teacher certification from Grand Rapids Healing Yoga, and in 2020 she completed an additional 300 hours of training to be certified as a yoga therapy practitioner by the Body Mind Being Institute. Erin has guided trauma-sensitive yoga practices for trauma survivors in both group and individual sessions, as well as community yoga classes. “The Franke Center is the heart of creativity and community in Marshall.  I’m so thrilled to bring yoga there as a way to support our community in creating experiences of connection and wellness,” Reed said.

The workshops will meet in The Franke Center’s Downstage space once per week, on Saturdays from 9:30 am to 10:45 am on March 6, 13, 20, and April 3, 10, 17. In-person or virtual attendance options are available. The cost is $100 for the six-weeks for the in-person option or $50 for the six-weeks to attend via Zoom. Drop-ins will be accepted for $20 per session. In-person spots are limited and will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis, and social distancing and masks will be required. For more information and to sign up click here

Will I sign up?   Can’t think of a good excuse not to, but I’ll work on that.   Even if it’s not time for me, maybe it is for you?


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