By VANESSA McCRAY, firstname.lastname@example.org
TRAVERSE CITY — A yoga workshop is planned for women who want to be pregnant.
Yoga instructor Aimee Meeker will lead a special workshop centered on fertility from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, at Yen Yoga & Fitness. Meeker decided to offer the workshop to gauge community interest. If response warrants, the workshop could develop into a regular class offering.
Meeker moved to northern Michigan from Boston about a year ago and has been teaching power yoga and vinyasa classes at the downtown Traverse City yoga center. She developed the workshop based on research and training and said it will focus on easy and relaxing breathing exercises, guided meditation and yoga poses.
She makes "absolutely no guarantee" that women hoping to conceive will become pregnant after practicing yoga. But the gentle movements promote balance and increase the "overall mind/body connection" instead of feeding into the stress and depression that can accompany unsuccessful attempts to conceive.
"Women who continue through that cycle lose power because their mind has become so engulfed," Meeker said. "Yoga teaches them how to let go."
Meeker said the confidential workshop is also intended for women who are just thinking about trying to become pregnant. Yoga experience is not necessary.
"You don't have to be fit. All the postures will be doable by everyone," Meeker said. "And if they can't do it — no expectations."
The workshop will focus on balance postures and the second chakra, located in the abdominal region.
She encourages women to attend with their spouse or partner. Doing the activity together can make their "partnership stronger," she said
"(It's) just as important for the men to come, (so she) knows she isn't in this alone," Meeker said.
Meeker, who practiced yoga before, during and after she was pregnant, suggested women take up yoga as well as continuing to follow the recommendations of their health-care provider regarding pregnancy.
The workshop costs $25 per person. To register, contact Yen Yoga at 421-5496.