HCN News & Notes

CHD Disability Resources Offers Chair Yoga Wednesdays in September

WEST SPRINGFIELD — On Wednesday evenings throughout September, CHD Disability Resources is presenting a chair yoga class designed to bring the physical and mental benefits of yoga to participants of all ability levels. The classes will be offered from 6 tom 7 p.m. at the CHD facility at 85 Interstate Dr. in West Springfield. The cost is $5 per participant per class, payable at the class.

The chair yoga class is taught by Janice Pagano, owner of Guidance for Inner Peace, who has specific training in chair yoga. Pagano designed the class for a mix of ability levels and makes sure everyone can participate at their highest level of independence. The program is geared toward adults, but well-behaved children who are accompanied by a parent are welcome to participate.

Participants sit in a chair and do the various moves from a sitting position. It’s less strenuous, and balance is less of a factor, compared to doing yoga while standing, but it still provides the authentic benefits of yoga, including overall relaxation, stress reduction, physical flexibility, mental clarity of the present, mindfulness, and improved breathing and posture.

“Our chair yoga program provides the same sort of physical and mental experience as a typical yoga class, adapted to fit the ability of each individual participant,” said Rachel Keyworth, program director for CHD Disability Resources. “It’s an inclusive program. Our participants have included an individual who is completely blind, a resident of a CHD Meadows Home with intellectual disabilities, someone with a below-the-knee amputation and prosthetic, someone whose disability requires using a wheelchair, someone coming off an injury, and someone with no disability who just wanted to be part this inclusive class. Chair yoga is also a great way to begin yoga for people who are older and haven’t been physically active. If interest allows, the program will continue on Wednesday evenings throughout the fall.”

To learn more about the chair yoga program, call Keyworth at (413) 788-9695.