Yoga for youngsters

Published 10:04 am Thursday, October 25, 2012

Eve Cowan leads Olivia Schmit, from let, Henry Skalicky and Nora Diekman through some fun yoga games Tuesday afternoon at the Yoga Studio of Austin. — Eric Johnson/

Studio expands to include children’s classes

It’s all fun and games inside the Yoga Studio of Austin, or at least it was Tuesday.

About eight children ran, jumped, contorted and pretended they were dolphins during a children’s yoga class, one of a number of

Olivia Schmit shows off her giraffe pose during a kids yoga class Tuesday afternoon at the Yoga Studio of Austin.

opportunities Yoga Studio has recently created. Now, with a new teacher, an additional studio — which officially opens Friday — and an ever-expanding list of classes, Yoga Studio staff are hoping to make the business a community hub.

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“It’s beyond my wildest expectations,” said Lindsey Kepper, Yoga Studio in Austin owner.

Kepper said more than 200 students have come to Yoga Studio since it opened in June, and more come in every week. Case in point: When Kepper opened Yoga Studio, she planned to offer classes Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. As of Nov. 1, classes are offered seven days a week at various times, and Kepper said even more classes are planned as they open a second studio.

Studio Two will house children’s classes taught by Eve Cowan, the new director of youth programs who started in late August. Cowan, from Grand Meadow, is a New York University graduate who studied children’s theater, movement and dance. She’s also a registered yoga teacher.

“We’re the only two in the county,” Kepper said.

Cowan is responsible for the children’s classes, which began last month. Though Yoga Studio kept children to one class, there’s enough interest among children and parents to split classes into three age groups: 3-6 years old, 6-10 years old, and 10 years old and older.

“We can do a little different things specific to each person’s age,” Cowan said. “We can teach a little bit more age-appropriate fun things for each age group.”

That means smaller children will play plenty of games and do plenty of activities while older yoga enthusiasts will learn a little more about technique and some of the breathing exercises adults learn.

Children’s classes cost $4 to walk in or $12 for a monthly pass, and there are grants available for families in need, according to Kepper. In addition, Yoga Studio will offer day camps for Austin students during in-service days, with the first day camp set for Nov. 21.

The children’s courses will compliment the heated yoga lessons already taught, and Kepper plans to expand the course offering with regular yoga classes as well as offer more introductory, “Slow Yoga Flow” times to learn the techniques under Cowan’s guidance. Ultimately, Kepper hopes more community members show up to make the yoga space their own, through community gatherings, yoga parties, or even rental space.

“I just want this to be the community place, the place that everybody feels not judged, welcome, and they can gather as a community for whatever it is they dream up,” she said.