Marshall area residents looking to increase their flexibility, relieve stress and improve their strength have a new place to go - Prairie Yoga.
The yoga studio has recently opened for business in a space on Third Street that had been previously occupied by Gunvar's Home Decor, around the corner from the Marshall-Lyon County Library.
Kristin Knight, the owner and instructor, had been giving yoga lessons since September 2007 out of her husband's tae kwon do studio in Marshall and was on the lookout for space of her own, she said.
Photo by Karin Elton
Kristin Knight, the owner and instructor of Prairie Yoga, recently demonstrated the side plank pose at her new yoga studio which opened in December.
"I wanted to get comfortable with teaching first," she said.
Knight said the Third Street space is a great location. She didn't have to make any renovations and she loves the large picture windows in the front.
"Sometimes (during class) we turn toward the windows to get the sunlight," she said. "It's important to receive natural light."
Knight said she started taking hatha yoga classes looking to get a workout, relieve stress, get more flexible and get stronger.
"It makes me feel good," she said.
She received teacher training at the Yoga Center in Minneapolis.
Knight said yoga is not a religion, but it is more than just an exercise technique; it incorporates the mind, body and spirit.
"Yoga literally means 'union'," she said.
A big part of yoga is breathing.
"We tend to be shallow breathers," Knight said. "(During classes), we practice integrating the breath with physical movement."
Knight said yoga is a "way to become more in touch with your own self. It quiets the mind."
A typical yoga session includes warm-ups, standing poses, balance poses, seated poses, then savasana, which is five to 10 minutes of relaxation.
Knight said students don't have to be flexible when they first start - that comes with practice.
"We meet you where you are," she said.
For those who need help with flexibility, Knight has blocks, blankets and straps.
In addition, Knight makes sure the yoga student does the pose correctly.
"I have a strong emphasis on alignment, protecting people's low backs," she said.
Knight said the classes are open to all ages and are for both men and women.
The classes are from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Monday for mixed level, from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Monday for intermediate, from 7-8 p.m. Monday beginning, from 8:30-9:30 a.m. Friday, from 9-10:30 a.m. Saturday intermediate and from 10:45 a.m.-noon Saturday beginning.
Knight says she intends to offer more classes, probably by summer, and may offer a men's class.
Students should bring a mat if they have one or they can use the studio's and they should wear comfortable clothing.
Knight plans to offer retail items for sale such as tea, yoga mats and T-shirts.
For more information, visit prairieyogaonline.com or call 401-3360.