To celebrate the United Nation’s International Day of Peace, Centre County will be hosting its third annual Yoga for Peace event by offering free yoga classes and a raffle this weekend.
“It’s kind of the hope that we can have one day of peace,” said Kristen Boccumini, the event coordinator. “This day is showing the practice of people coming together and offering services of healing and support.”
Boccumini said a lot of studios in State College will be participating in the event by putting gift cards in the raffle or offering free classes for those who wished to try out yoga.
She said the money raised from the event will be given to the Centre County Women’s Resource Center, and said the collective participation of the studios gave the event a bigger impact on the community.
“It’s a thank you, and it’s a giving back,” Boccumini said. “It’s a way to demonstrate the power of a collective group.”
She said students could find a schedule of events on their website.
Karen Caswell Sapia, the owner of Lotus Center Yoga, 129 S. Pugh St., said the studio was getting involved by contributing to the raffle and doing a family yoga class on Friday night.
Caswell Sapia said they also have yoga teacher training this weekend, which she said is open to the public.
She said the basic benefit to yoga was self-awareness, which came with the ability to step back from situations and respond rather than react.
“I think that, in general, practicing yoga makes you move around in the world more peacefully,” Caswell Sapia said.
Theresa Shay, the founder of TriYoga of Central Pennsylvania, 1315 S. Allen St., said the studio will be offering a number of classes Friday, as well as during the weekend.
Shay said she encouraged people to come and try yoga because they offered different classes for different levels.
“It makes the body healthy. It makes the mind happy. It makes life easier to live,” she said. “It helps people with their relationships, with their purposes in life and gives people energy to do what they’re here to do in the world.”
Shay said campus life could be very stressful for students, and yoga could teach students to put life into perspective.
She also said for students who could not come to class on a regular basis, they offered options for home practice like videos.
Erica Kaufman, owner and founder of Lila Yoga Studios, 103 E. Beaver Ave., said they would be offering free classes on Friday, Saturday and Sunday for the event.
Kaufman said she recommended people of all abilities come to the studio and said the event was not limited to any flexibility ability or age.
“Yoga is a holistic approach to healthy, balanced living, and the only prerequisite is interest,” Kaufman said. “Come in with your own curiosity and experience it.”