The Yoga Alliance is now in place to help Roswell breathe, stretch and relax.
Yoga Alliance is a national education and support organization in the United States. Their mission according to their website is to “ensure the thorough understanding of the benefits of yoga,” which is, according to registered yoga teacher and Roswell resident Branka Barrett, quite extensive.
“We are actually here to invite them to come to us, so we can teach them,” she said. “It’s very important so people can learn the right thing the right way, because it’s not just partial to know certain poses. The energy, the breath, the control of the breath, the mental issues are much more important than just stretching and putting your body in a certain pose.”
She described the Yoga Alliance as a group dedicated to teaching future yoga teachers in the city. Being the only certified instructor in Roswell, Barrett said her goal is to see that number grow rapidly.
Barrett credits Anne Garrison as one of the first yoga teachers in Roswell and an individual that inspires her every day.
“She’s an amazing woman,” she said. “She’s the most dedicated person as a yoga instructor here in Roswell. She teaches at Senior Circle and at church. … I think she never stopped educating herself, that’s why I ad-mire her.”
Barrett said that thirst of knowledge is what all yoga instructors should have in order to teach. She said the issue is many young instructors are only learning a few elements and not helping their students as much as they can.
Yoga is a practice Barrett believes could benefit the entire city, from the elderly on down to children.
“They’ll know how to promote their own energy without taking any medication,” she said. “It’s not only about flexibility, but to teach young children how to calm down instantly.”
She’s seen first-hand the effects yoga has on individuals, particularly those who may be struggling with bad habits and or addictions.
Those interested can take yoga at various locations around town including the Roswell Racquet Club and Spa, AscenDance Arts, Dance & Yoga Studio and for members, the Roswell Adult Center.
To become an instructor, Barrett said one must go through the extensive two-year program that covers anatomy, physiology, the methodology of teaching and psychology. Yoga Alliance classes are free to members of Harmony and Art International Yoga Association.