I had the BEST time joining our fair queens Tuesday evening as they threw on some workout clothes, grabbed their yoga mats, and headed down to the Missouri River front for a relaxing evening of yoga together. These queens learned from instructor Elaine Blackmur of Mindful Movement that yoga isn’t simply about saying “Om” and touching your toes, but rather bringing consciousness to each movement in every moment!
In getting to know to the girls, I’ve learned that they all tend to remain quite busy over the summer by working jobs and keeping up with other activities. Amidst this everyday hustle and bustle, things can get exhausting, and it can be difficult to simply slow down. However, Elaine invited the girls to do exactly that, through a forty-five-minute Vinyasa Flow Yoga session! This style of yoga is characterized by stringing together a variety of postures so that movement from one to another is seamless. Using breath to movement connection practice, the intention is to slow down and simply be present by moving towards what is “sacred” or most important to us.
The girls rolled out their mats and formed a semi-circle around Elaine to kick-off the evening. After doing some quick introductions, the session began. Only a few girls raised their hands when asked if they had ever practiced yoga before, so to make sure no one felt intimidated, Elaine stressed that although it’s great to celebrate your abilities, it’s even more important to honor your limits. Nevertheless, regardless of whether the girl's yoga skills were those of a graceful swan or of a baby giraffe trying to use its legs for the first time, the good energy was beyond contagious! ;) As the girls inhaled, exhaled, and moved their way through the session, you could see them all start to relax and get into it. This was when I regretted not bringing my mat to join in on the fun!
The sounds of the river flowing and the birds chirping as the sun set made for a perfect, peaceful yoga experience. Well, despite the train that roared past and some loud cars occasionally thumping by! As the queens left, stretched and unstressed, it seemed to me that riverfront yoga was a GREAT success.
“Overall, I found yoga to be super fun and relaxing!” said one of the queens. “It was good to just kind of slow down for a bit and bond with the other girls in such a unique way.”
If you’re looking for a way to relax and yoga is something that you have yet to experience, take it from the queens, YOGAtta try it! :)