Seeking a natural boost to emotional health and improved fitness to boot (not to mention what some say is the best “booty” around)? Roll out your mat and get with a yoga program.
It’s been long known in cultures around the world that practicing yoga increases overall wellness, both emotional and physical, as various asanas (poses) and attention to the breath detoxify the body and bring clarity to the mind.
Greater flexibility is an obvious benefit; but there are more. Practicing yoga—and yes, even the most seasoned and enlightened yogis still “practice”—can reduce stress and anxiety, improve balance, range of motion and strength, and create an overall feeling of well-being. Both traditional and alternative physicians tout yoga as a natural way to reduce risk factors for chronic diseases such as heart disease and high blood pressure, as well as alleviate chronic conditions including depression, pain and insomnia.
“It’s been so rewarding to see people growing through yoga along with our studio,” says Priscilla Stoll, who opened Forever Om Yoga in Lake Forest four years ago. “People tell me that yoga has essentially saved them, whether it’s helped them emotionally through a divorce or another traumatic event, or boosted their confidence in their bodies.”
With local yogi practitioners increasingly realizing the benefits of stretching, twisting and planking, it’s no surprise that the North Shore yoga studios are attracting top-notch instructors, as well as featuring guest instructors who bring new methods and strategies for that hard-to-achieve handstand and other asanas.
Forever Om is bringing two of the nation’s most well-regarded yoga instructors to its studio for a series of mind- and body-bending workshops this February. The California-based duo, Dice Iida-Klein and Briohny Smith, are best known for arm balances and inversions that would make even a Cirque de Soleil performer swoon.
The five different workshops, running February 7-9, will focus on standing postures (think warrior, eagle and tree poses) that strengthen the core and engage the mysterious internal bhandas to further achieve mental clarity and physical strength. In the more advanced workshops, yogis will learn the fundamental alignment points for handstand through a thorough study of foundational asanas like downward-facing dog, plank, chaturanga and the dynamic interlinked movements of the yoga vinyasa.
“I love bringing in different instructors, and this is a really amazing couple and a unique opportunity for our yogis,” Stoll says.
For more information about the workshop, and a general schedule at Forever Om Yoga, visit their website.
Forever Om Yoga
1407 Western Ave., Lake Forest