MASSILLON Laura Landon took a deep breath and pulled her knees into chest.
With another breath, she slowly lowered her legs and stayed motionless, taking in the gentle directions of her yoga instructor.
The 71-year-old Navarre resident has been taking yoga sessions at the Massillon Museum for more than a year.
“It’s not strenuous activity,” she said. “But when you finish you feel like you have accomplished something.”
The lunch-time yoga sessions have been a mainstay at the museum since mid-2018, the museum’s education and outreach manager Stephanie Toole said. Class is held from 12:30 to 1:15 p.m. Fridays.
“It’s a great lunch break opportunity,” she said. “We get a lot of working people that like to come as well as a lot of retirees.”
Kristie Comsia, a certified yoga instructor, was filling in on Friday for instructor Leslie Schenider.
The class is designed for all levels and ages, she said.
“I like to say if you don’t use it, you lose it,” Comsia said. “We try to move all things (during the class).”
Yoga not only offers relaxation, but it’s great for stress management, flexibility, self awareness and most importantly, mental health, she said.
“When you become aware of your movement and aware of your mind, you can redirect your energy,” Comsia said. “We don’t spend as much healthy quiet leisure time with ourself.”
The program took a hiatus during the COVID-19 shutdown earlier this year. Virtual classes were held through the summer. In person sessions began in September, with yogis taking to the museum’s lawn. Videos of the virtual sessions are available on the museum’s YouTube page.
With the crisp air and chilly wind, the class was moved inside on Friday, but Landon hopes they can still take advantage of the lawn in coming weeks.
Being outside helps expose passersby to the practice of yoga, Landon said. It also lets people know the museum is open and bringing back programming, Toole added.
“It doesn’t matter your age. We have an 81-year-old woman who comes. You don’t have to be athletic,” Landon said. “Even if you are just curious, try it out and go at your own pace.”
Reach Amy at 330-775-1135 or [email protected]
On Twitter: @aknappINDE
Join a class
The Massillon Museum offers yoga on the lawn from 12:30 to 1:15 p.m. Fridays at 121 Lincoln Way E.
All ages and levels are welcome. Sessions are $6 each or 3 for $15. Participants should bring their own mat.
For more information, call 330-833-4061, extension 104 or visit massillonmuseum.org.