Yoga has become a very serious business with yoga studios popping up all over the country. The terms “hot yoga” and “power yoga” are among the most commonly heard names in the world of yoga that come up in connection with these newer studios. But does that really give the best description of what yoga is? And are we reaching all different types of people (sometimes the ones who may need the practice the most) in these types of classes?

In case you didn’t know, yoga is a form of cleansing, strengthening, stretching, and calming the body and mind. Although sometimes confused, yoga is not a religion. Yoga is a spiritual practice — one of bridging the body, mind, and spirit together in the ultimate self-development practice. Yoga is not just for athletes and those already physically fit. Yoga is for anybody and everybody. In fact, those who feel the most disconnected from their body/mind will be those who often get the most out of a yoga practice. But where do you start?

“Our yoga classes are meant to encourage the average person — mothers, grandfathers, teachers, store clerks, office workers — anyone, really — to start a yoga program. We offer gentle and all-level classes perfect for the beginner and ongoing beginning yoga student,” says Tracey L. Ulshafer, owner of One Yoga & Wellness Center (OYC) in East Windsor.

“Over the years the biggest comment that I have heard against taking yoga is often that a person is not flexible enough to do it. But that is specifically why you do practice yoga — to gain back or keep flexibility both in the body and the mind,” says Tracey.

Tracey has owned OYC for more than a decade. Most of the instructors have gone through her own yoga teacher training program and are skilled at teaching multi-leveled classes so that not only the beginning student feels taken care of, but intermediate students can also access their own practice in classes.

OYC offers many types of classes: from Gentle Yoga (done mostly for stretching and relaxation), Gentle Hatha and Hatha (a combination of solar practices to strengthen and purify the body and lunar practices to nurture and relax the body) to Vinyasa (a flowing style of yoga linking the breath to the movement) to Meditation (classes to calm the mind and create stillness), Pre-Natal Yoga (for expectant mothers), Kids’ Yoga (for children ages 5-9), and many workshops, yearly yoga retreats, and yoga teacher training programs that have been approved by the National Yoga Alliance.

OYC also works with those who have physical limitations or are recovering from injuries, as long as a doctor has given you permission to try yoga.

“I started practicing yoga because of a compression fracture in my spine. It is still there, but the daily pain is gone. Of course I still have a weakness in that area, but the strength that I have found through yoga has been truly life-changing,” says Tracey.

Tracey and OYC welcome any questions that you may have. Contact them today and begin your healing journey.

One Yoga Center, 405 Route 130 North, East Windsor. 609-918-0963.

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