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Finding the Yoga State of Mind, Body and Soul

By Kelly Church

Teaching yoga "from the heart," Yoga State is an East Lansing, MI is inspired by the state of mind, body and soul that yoga creates. Owner Jen Hayes opened her studio after experiencing her own life improvements as a result of yoga, including being happier, healthier and seeing herself be more ambitious in life. For Hayes, yoga is so much more than just a physical activity.

"Practicing yoga enhances a person's life [in] so many ways," Hayes said. "Physically, it is a very good way to gain range of motion, strength, balance, lose or maintain a healthy weight and increase lung health. Confidence is improved as well as determination."

Hayes cites yoga as being a great additional exercise for athletes, including runners and those who play competitive sports, as yoga can help reduce injury. She also said it can be an effective method of healing past injuries that still inhibit the body, and to see a noticeable difference in overall temperament.

"At Yoga State, we teach the physical alignment and physical postures, as well as the other seven limbs of yoga to include the mental and emotional growth to increase happiness, and reduce stress and anxiety," Hayes said. "We teach breath and ways to train the mind to respond in a beneficial way, versus an automatic fight or flight mode that sometimes happens when the mind is reactive."

Hayes encourages all students to drop in to Yoga State, even if they are brand new to yoga. Hayes reassures to new students that yoga is supposed to be challenging, as a beginner and as an advanced yogi. The goal is to continue to build strength, endurance and overcome mental and physical hurdles.

"The hardest part is walking into a class," Hayes said. "After that, just breathe. Doing what feels good physically to progress from where they are starting from is important. Growth from there will happen."

Yoga State also offers spinning classes. These indoor cycling sessions offer students a means to increase their heart rate, getting an effective cardio workout, and enhancing their fitness goals.

"This really is a great way to get strong and increase cardio," Hayes said. "During the summer, we also have stand up paddle board classes. All levels, we have progressive sessions, drop in classes or you can get your own group together for a private class."

Drop-in yoga classes are $15 at Yoga State, but discounted classes are available for students who purchase class bundles. Stand up paddle boarding with a board rental is $30 per session. More information on Yoga State classes and pricing is online at yogastate.net.

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About The Author

Kelly Church is a writer and avid reader with a Bachelor's of Science in Journalism...

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