If you have ever wanted to try yoga but didn’t know where to start, Lowcountry Power Yoga has the solution for you. Or, if you never wanted to try yoga, because you didn’t think you could, Lowcountry Power Yoga has the solution for you as well.
Grounded in the methodologies of Baptiste yoga, Lowcountry Power Yoga offers a three-dimensional approach to the practice. Physical movement – asana – meditation and self-inquiry create transformative results on and off the mat. Traditionally, this power vinyasa practice is taught in a 90-degree heated room for 60 minutes to 90 minutes to build focus and stoke an inner fire in the practitioner.
The truth is, this structure produces powerful results, and the traditional level of intensity might not appeal to everyone, so Lowcountry Power Yoga couples these more intense classes with variations that welcome people of every level of interest and ability.
This is where Spry Mind+Body comes in. It’s a series of classes designed for healthy aging, and mother/daughter duo Heather and Jennifer Downs and husband/dad Jamie are bringing it to Charleston, both online and in their new studio in West Ashley, in the summer of 2022.
Developed at Savannah Power Yoga by Kate Doran, with whom the trio completed their 200-hour teacher training, the Spry method brings together the Baptiste method of yoga with Integrative Yoga for Seniors Professional Training at Duke Integrative Medicine.
“It’s designed to address some of the issues that older individuals might have as they age,” said Heather. “Although anyone can benefit from a slower, more deliberate practice. I’m 60 and I see a lot of my friends struggling with age. They’ve been very sedentary and just getting in and out of a car can be a challenge.”
The style is based on a vinyasa power sequence, and the poses are designed to build stability, help with balance and increase flexibility, which can help someone learn how to get back up after a fall.
The practice is modified to make the poses as accessible as possible – even to people in their 80s.
The Spry method also helps increase bone density.
“I started offering karma yoga classes at no charge through my church,” said Heather. “Then reached out to community centers to make chair yoga accessible to as many people as possible. Now we want to bring it to Charleston. There’s nothing like this in Charleston – not to this degree. You can get the occasional class, but we have a very intentional program of progression from using the chair to transitioning down to the mat – then mat classes, then we start to introduce vinyasa flow.”
They started teaching virtually in 2020, when Jennifer was living in Hawaii and practicing yoga.
“We took advantage of the fact that we could reach people all over the country when everyone was staying at home and not moving as much,” she said.
Jennifer relocated to Charleston so they could open a studio together.
Lowcountry Power Yoga will offer a full range of in-person and Zoom classes, including heated and nonheated vinyasa power yoga, accessible yoga, gentle yoga, chair yoga, yin yoga, meditation, workshops, book groups and retreats.
“We are focused on making yoga accessible for each and every person, with an emphasis on yoga for healthy aging,” said Jennifer.
“Really, we offer yoga for every body,” said Heather.
For more info, visit: lowcountrypoweryoga.com, or follow on Facebook at @lowcountrypoweryoga.
By Christine Steele