Local yoga instructor offers tips for everyone and every body
The Yoga Room offers yoga classes for seniors, mobility for all ages
Evelyn Nelson, photos by Andrea Paulseth
Everyone starts somewhere. In yoga, whether you are 25 or 70, this motto is what defines The Yoga Room in Eau Claire, and their accessibility to all members of the community.
Lucinda Kemmet, instructor at The Yoga Room (2839 Mall Drive, Eau Claire), said she enjoys sharing her values about yoga with a wide variety of audiences — and now seniors.
“Yoga is such a powerful practice for people whose bodies are starting to speak to them in different ways,” Kemmet said. “The foundation of a yoga practice is helping us stay connected with our bodies, so I started studying yoga for seniors.”
Senior-friendly classes have been in place for two years at the studio, with the mission of providing access to yoga practices to people of all ages.
“We want to do the moves without attachment to the outcome,” Kemmet said. “We talk a lot about the process of moving and the process of creating a connection between mind and body, not really what the pose looks like in the end.”
With a community that wants to “feel better,” Wendy Oberg, owner of The Yoga Room studio, says that mission has been brought to life through inclusive classes held at their studio.
“My vision for the space was simply to create a fusion-style yoga studio that created opportunity for everyone and anyone,” Oberg said. “We’re so lucky to have Lucinda here who I’ve known for many years, and she’s very passionate about this age group.”
In his foundational classes, Kemmet focuses on the intent of each yoga pose and understanding the movement between each.
“With senior yoga, we take longer to get in and out of poses,” she said. “We do a lot of strengthening, flexibility and balance.”
Since the COVID-19 pandemic — and its impending effects on older demographics — the studio has moved all of its classes online.
Kemmet said the majority of issues students discuss with her are related to declining spinal mobility and chronic pain. These conditions often affect — or “talk to” older people on a regular basis and impact the things they enjoy doing, she said.
“Maybe there are days when they just can’t make that walk or they can’t quite make it to the grandkids football game,” Kemmet said. “With yoga, there’s really no other exercise modality that I know of that allows us to have a greater impact on the muscles along the spine.”
Kemmet and other entry-level yoga instructors at the studio work to provide additional support for specific health conditions in scenarios where a student comes to them with specific concerns.
“We can change our practices, so they feel better,” Kemmet said. “Not only do they feel better today, but we can also empower them to do things at home that keep them feeling better every day.”
Senior yoga classes are currently held virtually every Tuesday and Thursday for one hour. To register online, visit www.theyogaroomec.com.