Kite stunting, Yoga

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The BYU-Idaho Wellness Center is holding a yoga retreat Saturday in the Thomas E. Ricks Gardens at 11 a.m.

“Yoga is not only a great way to exercise but also an opportunity to challenge oneself and escape one’s comfort zone,” said Dakota Howell, who is running the retreat, and a freshman studying psychology. “It is a way to work the mind and the body to synchronize into your soul.”

Yoga is an ancient practice that stretches back thousands of years to India. People of all shapes and sizes do it every day for many different reasons, Howell said.

“This retreat is going to be a bunch of people who love yoga, and even people who have never tried it, coming together to have a fun morning of playing with new poses, learning and teaching each other and having a good time,” Howell said.

Yoga has both mental and physical benefits. It can lessen stress and anxiety levels along with an overall sense of well being, according to Mayo Clinic.

“Practicing yoga can lead to improved balance, flexibility, range of motion and strength,” according to the Mayo Clinic. “And this means you’re less likely to injure yourself in other physical endeavors or in your daily activities.”

Howell said that yoga can be good for lower back pain, which is what she was able to use it for.

“I began yoga as a gymnast to play and maintain my flexibility,” Howell said. “After getting injured, I used it as a tool to relieve my lower back pain, and then it developed into more of a mental release and a way to challenge myself.”

New participants in the yoga movement are encouraged to go to the retreat.

“Go for it! Don’t be intimidated because when it comes to yoga, everyone should adopt their own style,” Howell said. “It is a great method for learning about the body and mind, so keep a positive attitude and have fun with the different poses.”