Take Deep Breaths
Sitting cross-legged on the floor before a huge poster for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – “Take time to appreciate beauty,” it reads – yoga instructor Debby Kaminsky is about to demonstrate how to follow that advice in a span of 45 minutes.
Her 25 students, lined up dutifully in rows in a meeting space at NJPAC, are learning to chill out when the temperatures are high enough to melt nail polish off fingers. During Kaminsky’s sessions in Vinyasa yoga (“flow yoga”), the simple act of breathing, coupled with movement, is tailored to calm racing minds and tone physiques.
For NJPAC staffers, it’s a restorative way to spend Tuesday lunchtimes. “The benefits are endless,” says Kaminsky, who is founder of the Newark Yoga Movement. According to the instructor, it’s good for what ails you, whether it’s heartache or heart stress. Yoga is credited most frequently for improving flexibility, balance and posture and relieving pain, such as back discomfort and migraines.
Participants learn to clear their brains and replenish their lungs while moving through common yoga positions – downward-facing dog, cobra, plank – and savoring the quiet of their surroundings. Each class ends by performing the Namaste gesture which, Kaminsky explains, is a meditation of acknowledgment: “I see the good in you. You see the good in me. We see the good in each other.”