Yoga in the Park kicks off 2022 season | News, Sports, Jobs

TR PHOTO BY ROBERT MAHARRY – Instructor Heidi Draisey, left, led the first Yoga in the Park session of 2022 at the West End Park in Marshalltown on Saturday morning.

With temperatures in the 50s and a clear blue cloudless sky above, Saturday was a perfect morning for a group of at least 20 to 30 participants to set up their mats at the West End Park and settle in for the first “Yoga in the Park”. event of the 2022 season.

There was no cost to join, only a free will donation offering for those who felt compelled. Heidi Draisey of Spirited Yoga and Wellness led the session, and the shelter area at the newly completed park created quite the backdrop among the bustling 13th Street District.

While Yoga in the Park has been an ongoing program over the last several years, the first session of the season is always exciting for Draisey and her fellow instructors, Hilary Powell of River Boulevard Yoga and Taylor Bear and Soul Magick, who are all Yogafit certified .

“We are not competitors. It takes a community. Everybody has a talent they bring forth with their yoga skills, ”Draisey said.

Like many other in-person events, it went on hiatus in 2020 due to COVID-19 but returned last summer. Nonetheless, bringing back shared experiences has contributed to the overall feeling of a revitalization in Marshalltown, which Bear referenced in connection to the recent Best Burger award at her other employer, The Flying Elbow just across the street.

“There’s beauty in the collective, especially for the community,” Bear said. “Having something that brings people back together and they see small or independent businesses working together, it’s such a good thing for our community. Not to mention, we’re having an insane amount of new traffic coming into our town. ”

Those who participated on Saturday entered with a wide range of skill levels, and especially during the early sessions, Draisey strives to make them as beginner-friendly as possible.

“As teachers, as instructors, we want to provide those modifications so that everyone can participate to the best of their ability,” she said.

Although the grass was still a little too damp for yoga on Saturday morning, Draisey, Powell and Bear expect that it will be dried up soon enough so the class can move to the open area for future sessions. All are welcome to join and blow off steam, improve their skills or simply find a brief moment of inner peace.

“I always tell people it doesn’t matter if you are flexible or not. It doesn’t matter if you are small or not. If you can breathe, you can do yoga, and the flexibility will come with time, ”Bear said. “We want everybody to be able to come and enjoy yoga and what it can do for you just mentally, physically and emotionally.”

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Contact Robert Maharry at 641-753-6611 ext. 255 or rmaharry@timesrepublican.com.

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