Thursday, June 21, is International Yoga Day. Says who? The United Nations, that's who. Have you taken a yoga class lately? Do you plan to?

Why June 21? According to Holiday Insights, the United Nations chose the date because it is the longest day of the year. In my experience, the average yoga class is about an hour to an hour and fifteen minutes long. This hardly requires the longest day of the year. It's a yoga class, not a telethon. That having been said, the longest day of the year does carry a certain significance in many cultures.

Why would you want to take a yoga class? Yoga has been shown to help with relaxation and lower blood pressure. I take yoga classes from time to time. In my case, it results in embarrassment, anxiety, and conclusive proof I'm nowhere near as flexible as I should be. Little old ladies can literally drive me into the dirt.

Despite my lackluster performance in the class, I keep coming back for more. I'm the Rocky Balboa of yoga. Seriously, I love taking a yoga class. It eases the mind and helps "even out" the body. Sorry, I know that sounds incredibly unscientific, but that's the way I see it.

According to the American Osteopathic Association, these are the top eight legitimate health benefits associated with Yoga:

  • Increased flexibility
  • Increased muscle strength and tone
  • Improved respiration, energy, and vitality
  • Maintaining a balanced metabolism
  • Weight reduction
  • Cardio and circulatory health
  • Improved athletic performance
  • Protection from injury

Yoga classes are popping up on every corner in this town. No matter where you are, a friendly neighborhood Yoga studio is somewhere in reach.

Over the years, I've participated in a number of Yoga classes. I'm pleased to say I've never seen a bad one yet. The instructors are informed, experienced, and passionate about their craft. Many have become friends of mine.

Let's say you want to take a Yoga class. Where do you go? According to YELP!, these are Grand Junction's top 10 Yoga studios:

  • 10. Academy of Yoga
  • 9. Hot Yoga
  • 8. Body Shock Barre and Tone
  • 7. Mind Body Yoga
  • 6. Grand Valley Climbing
  • 5. Barrelosophy
  • 4. Half Moon Yoga
  • 3. Crossroads Fitness
  • 2. Yoga West Community
  • 1. Yoga Vinyassa

I would certainly consider my last Yoga class to have been a positive experience. As a matter of fact, I'm looking forward to my next class. Coming in at 228 pounds and 48-years-old, it's safe to say my body was NOT made for Yoga. Then again, I simply find it to be an enjoyable experience.

Maybe tomorrow, June 21, International Yoga Day, is the perfect opportunity for you to start. What do you have to lose?