Empowered yoga instructor offers donation-based class

Photo Credit: OUTLOOK PHOTO: CARI HACHMANN - Kris Myers and her daughter, Cheyenne, practice the tree pose under the gazebo at Fairview Community Park.A few years ago, Kris Myers felt that Fairview was missing something.

“It seemed like the community didn’t have a way to get together and do things, like yoga,” she said.

Photo Credit: OUTLOOK PHOTO: CARI HACHMANN - Myers believes yoga should be available to everyone. A $5 donation is optional for her Sunday classes at the park.A former yoga instructor at Balley’s Fitness, Myers said it made perfect sense that she would combine her love for the outdoors and passion for yoga by starting outdoor summer yoga classes at Fairview Community Park.

Her classes, focused on Vinyasa and Hatha yoga and designed for ages 12 years or older, begin every Sunday at 4 p.m. in the park at 21600 N.E. Park Lane in Fairview.

Aside from getting to do the tree pose at a park, the coolest part about Myers’ classes are they’re donation-based, founded firmly on her belief that yoga should be available to everyone and access not limited by money.

“The idea of the class is to pay what you can afford,” said Myers, who is a mother of two children.

Myers asks for a $5 donation, but she said if you can’t afford it, please come anyway.

Anyone, no matter your skill level, is welcome to join the class and bring a yoga mat or beach towel to spread in the grass. Folks are also free to go without. If you don’t have a mat and want one, Myers has extras to lend along with blocks and straps if needed.

Myers began practicing yoga in 2001 and has been teaching since 2007 as a certified yoga instructor.

For her, teaching the practice is part of a larger life philosophy based on giving back and good karma.

After she began, Myers said, “It put me on a new path where I felt peace.”

She said, “Yoga gives you the power to open your eyes and see everything as new, all the time, and I want to share that with the world.”

She founded her own practice, Empowered Yoga, to make yoga available to everyone.

Myers is knowledgeable in a range of practices from gentle restorative Hatha to hard and powerful Vinyasa. Her emphasis is on safety, alignment and creating an atmosphere of inclusivity.

For those just starting out, Myers said yoga is a constant journey, but once you get going, she said it feels natural.

Kids enjoy the movements too. Myer’s 9-year-old daughter Cheyenne said, “I love it. I think most of the names are weird, but I love the poses.”

She said when she’s bored, yoga gives her something to do. Her favorite pose? Pigeon.

On warm days, Myers asks participants to bring water and sunscreen.

Class will not be taught in the rain, thunderstorms or temperatures above 100 degrees, Myers said.

If it does rain, there is gazebo the class can move into, but space is limited.

Myers plans to continue the class through September, or until the weather turns.

“I’ll hang out until the rain comes,” she said.

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