Yoga for the Body, Yoga for the Mind
- The Goods
- Published on Thursday, 13 October 2016 12:35
- Stacie M. Waldman
In places like Scarsdale, the big gym atmosphere seems like it's rapidly becoming replaced with boutique studios for Pilates, biking, barre and yoga. This summer I took a break from my "big gym" due to a recurring injury and ran as my form of exercise. However, I'm not so keen on running and I've had to exercise some serious restraint in order not to purchase the "0.0 I hate running" car magnet so I knew I needed to pair it with some formal class that would fulfill me mentally, spiritually, and physically. And since I was running on the Bronx River Parkway Trail, I easily discovered Here&Now Yoga+Body on Garth Road.
From the moment you enter the Here&Now studio, the vibe, the equipment, the cleanliness, and the ambiance just feel good. The Here&Now mantra is "Strong Body. Present Mind." and both my mind and body felt blissfully satisfied after a Sunday 8 AM yoga class. I felt recharged and ready to enjoy my Sunday. Even my son noticed my yoga-induced contented-state by commenting, "Hey mom, you're so all relaxed." (And I had no glass of wine in hand at 9 AM.) But that didn't mean I didn't get a great body workout; I was definitely sore and stretched.
Owner, instructor, and Scarsdale local Jocelyn Koenig taught my yoga class. Jocelyn is living proof of the many benefits of yoga. She's a runner and she ran to the studio from her Greenacres home. She began practicing yoga more than 15 years ago by adding it to her daily running and fitness regimen in hopes of easing the daily stress she experienced as an Assistant District Attorney in the Bronx. She tried some classes and she was hooked. "I relished the physical challenge and opportunity to quiet the mind while moving on the mat," Jocelyn said. "As an added bonus, my running times improved along with my knee joint issues." As the mother of three young children, yoga for Jocelyn, "...continues to inspire within me a calm and centered presence. Through three pregnancies, yoga helped me to remain conditioned and strong and to rebuild my fitness level post-natally." Still, it takes more than that to actually open your own studio. "I wanted to open Here&Now to make a space for the community to practice, a place for people of all levels and all ages to have the opportunity to enjoy yoga and barre fitness that is creatively thoughtful and nurturing yet also strengthening and challenging for both the body and mind," Jocelyn said.
Here&Now attracts a great mix of people, both men and women, young and old, because of the wide variety of classes that are offered. There are yoga classes of all types and all levels, including stretch, restorative, vinyasa flow, and power. There are also barre fitness classes and fusion classes, which are a mix of barre, yoga and Pilates. No matter whether you have been practicing yoga and barre for years or are brand new, all enjoy the benefits. "Yoga strengthens the body, increases muscle tone and flexibility, helps to prevent injury, improves respiration and circulation and helps with weight reduction," she continued. "Yoga also improves focus, self-awareness and confidence which is why our kids' programs have become so popular. Older practitioners also benefit from better bone health and circulation."
The Here&Now teachers that work with Jocelyn have undergone hundreds of hours of training and ensure that students practice both yoga and barre with proper alignment. During my class on that Sunday morning, I realized that there were several poses that I had been practicing incorrectly at my mega-gym. Jocelyn and her teachers take the time to teach the poses so students get the most out of each class. At the larger gyms and big companies, teachers often have to adhere to a script but at Here&Now, Jocelyn states that it is important for "teachers to be creative, so classes are always engaging, never repetitive."
Here&Now keeps clients coming back by offering more than 30 classes per week. In addition, they offer special workshops taught by prominent instructors, like the Arm Balances&Inversions workshop on October 22nd with Miriam Wolf. Jocelyn also feels strongly about giving back to the community and is hosting a Candlelight Yoga class for all levels on November 19th at 7pm to benefit an orphanage in Haiti. All donations go directly to Project House of Hope.
Here&Now is currently offering a free second class with the purchase of a first class so you can give it a try.