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Yoga returns to nature; 5th year of outdoor classes starts Wednesday

Urban Yoga will kick off its fifth season at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

Classes will be held every Wednesday through August at East Side Lake Park near the gazebo.

“Doing yoga outside has benefits that go beyond a classroom,” said yoga instructor and personal trainer Chrissy Stiehm.

Urban Yoga offers free one-hour courses that are open to all ages. The courses are for beginners, thus no experience is necessary. Stiehm advises that participants bring their own yoga mats, but says it can be done on the ground.

In previous years, Urban Yoga classes were held at Bandshell Park, but Stiehm is pleased with the move to East Side Lake.

“It provides a different atmosphere with the water and beautiful sunsets,” she said. “The class is later at night, so we might catch some beautiful sunsets later in the summer.”

Stiehm encourages people to participate for their mental well-being.

“Nature is a natural mood booster and anti-depressant,” she said. “Combining the calming and balancing elements of yoga with the same elements of nature provides that much more benefit. Nature and yoga compliment each other.”