On Saturday, Homer Council on the Arts will present a full day of community yoga instruction with a different teacher to share a unique yoga style each hour of the day.
The idea sparked with Joolee Aurand.
“It sort of took over my brain in April and May,” she said. “I ran it by a few people and then noticed I was thinking about the idea any time I had a little lull. I had the event named and everything, so I figured I should try to find a space to fulfill it.”
Her original goal was “to provide Homerites a glimpse of the plethora of yoga options available here,” Aurand said. “They range from Yin, Restorative, Kundalini, Vinyasa, Shivananda and Acro to Fascia Flow.” The event will also provide an opportunity for local teachers and learners, both new and experienced, to share ideas and offer inspiration from each other. Many of the teachers present regular class options at Many Rivers, but not all of them. They also represent class opportunities in other various places around Homer including: the Bay Club, Skeletal Connections and solo venues.
Prior to the Yogicstatica inkling, Aurand was already working on a course proposal to explore and express AcroYoga workshops, to take place at HCOA this fall. Those workshops will be held on Saturdays from Sept. 14 to Oct. 19.
Not a full time Homer resident, this is Aurand’s sixth summer in Homer, one she plans to stretch into October.
“I love it here in the summer and trying to stretch my Homer time even longer,” she explains, “… I do love the community and it seems like the little snippets I’ve seen of the winter folks seem really cool.”
The rest of the year Aurand and her partner travel to McMurdo Station in Antarctica, but she took last year off and she is planning to do that again this year. Denver, Colorado is her additional home location.
Aurand explained a bit more about AcroYoga and how she got started in that yoga field. “Three years ago I took an immersion course through www.acroyoga.org,” she said. “I got hooked so much that I wanted to explore a teacher training. AcroYoga is an umbrella term; there are two different kinds. One of them is a more acrobatic kind with fun, playful, trick style moves. Then, there’s a version that is more therapeutic, where there’s more relaxation, traction or massage-style work for participants.”
Aurand works with both and, as she says, “trying to show it in 45 minutes will be hectic and concentrated. Generally, the whole day is just going to be a way to show many of the different yoga styles available to partake in here. And, it will be casual enough for all.”
It did not take long to get all the instructors to commit to participating with the event, Aurand said.
“I got so lucky with all the instructor contacts,” she said. “I sent an email to everyone, had a few more names suggested, and after responses and logistics we ended up with exactly eleven teachers. Then, Sydney Leto showed up on the Many Rivers schedule, I attended her class, told her about the event, and she filled the 12th spot. It worked out perfectly.”
One participating instructor, Leanne Barske, shared what she will offer in terms of a physical class.
“I’ll be delivering a gentle movement class using trauma-sensitive yoga language and methodology,” she said.
Barske also suggested a more philosophical opinion on what the event can provide.
“I believe this brings an opportunity for people to experience yoga in an affordable way with diverse representations of practice,” she said. “Ultimately, an accessible way to connect to an evidence-based health improvement activity that maybe invites further exploration and healing. Yoga can be for every body and there are a lot of options in Homer.”
Another teacher, Bonita Banks, provided this: “Any style of yoga will help someone connect with their body, calm their mind and support better health. Kundalini yoga is a yoga of awareness, encompassing the use of breath, mantra, meditation and movement through postures to develop your connection with your truest self.”
Most significantly, the event will provide a fun, healthy, educational, affordable day for as many people who care to attend. The day fee is $10 for as many classes as one is able to join. Classes will be held at Homer Council on the Arts, 355 W. Pioneer Avenue.
Emilie Springer is a freelance writer living in Homer.
8 a.m. Kundalini with Bonita Banks
9 a.m Postural Flow Yoga with Minda Morris
10 a.m Vinyasa with Marcy True
11 a.m Feel Your Flow Vinyasa with Melisse Reichman
12 p.m . Gentle Hatha with Leanne Barske
1 p.m. Yin Yoga with Lori Zitzman
2 p.m. “Yoni Shakti” with Kayla Spaan
3 p.m. Acro Yoga with Joolee Aurand
4 p.m. Yoga Nidra Flow with Sydney Leto
5 p.m. Vinyasa Flow with Kay Sturm
6 p.m. Kundalini with Kate Balderas
7 p.m. Candlelight Flow with Asia Freeman