For a healthy beginning to the New Year, you might want to visit Clear Yoga in Rhinebeck as they celebrate their second anniversary in February.
Students who come to study Iyengar yoga at Clear Yoga don’t take a class as much as they join a community. The students range from people with multiple sclerosis to world-class triathletes, from beginner yoga practitioners to older and seasoned folks.
Clear Yoga is the inspiration of Jessica Becker, who has been a student of yoga for 20 years and has taught yoga for 15 years in the Hudson Valley. Jessica is a certified teacher of Iyengar yoga, which teaches strength and stamina, flexibility, balance, concentration and meditation. And the serious student never stops learning. [Should there be doubts, founder B.K.S. Iyengar is still actively –- and agilely — practicing at the age of 94. (www.bksiyengar.com)]
Jessica’s inspiration transformed a former ceramics studio in Montgomery Row into the present bright, spacious studio with its unique rope wall, blocks, and trestles, all designed to help achieve poses and derive benefit from the many therapeutic aspects that yoga postures can give.
“Several people attend Clear Yoga who have MS,” Jessica explained. “The combination of the trestle and the ropes make movements that would be otherwise impossible… The student feels a huge sense of accomplishment at achieving postures that make them stronger and feel better.”
Cher de Rossiter has been a Clear Yoga student — and now also an instructor — and she said her health has benefited greatly from the experience. She was seeking therapy after being treated for breast cancer and gaining weight as a result of medications; she even thought she would need knee replacement because she had so much trouble walking. She started taking yoga classes occasionally at first and noticed a reduction in her arthritis pain.
“It’s a lot of fun to teach there,” Cher said. “It’s a very disciplined learning system. I still go to classes five days a week with Jessica. It’s a really interesting studio. People come in and say, ‘Oh, it’s beautiful, clean and crisp.’ It’s a reflection of the philosophy –- the name was well chosen. It’s an interesting group of students, so as a teacher, it’s a wonderful experience. I’ve never had anything but support from the Clear Yoga community.”
Sandy P. has been a student at Clear Yoga since it opened. She studied with Jessica prior to that, and studied yoga in general for many years. She said, “I have tried many types of yoga, but Iyengar is amazing. Jessica is an amazing, gifted teacher of this kind of yoga. She is one of my favorite people on the planet. Clear Yoga is a fantastic community of people.”
Jessica is glad she could establish the studio in Rhinebeck. “As a local resident myself, I felt that my community was in Rhinebeck, and the studio would benefit from the population that Rhinebeck attracts year-round,” she explained.
She is looking forward to the new year. “We have three senior Iyengar Yoga teachers coming to teach workshops in 2013, and we also will teach our free Yoga for Breast Cancer Survivors series that we offered in 2012,” she said. “We continue to grow steadily and seek to offer clear, safe, and thorough yoga instruction for all ages and abilities.”