Spiritually yoga connects you to a higher being. Psychologically it brings opportunities and breaks fear. Physically it brings flexibility and weight loss. Yoga can transform the inner and outer body; just ask Marifer Manns who has brought a studio to Ascension Parish. Blooming Yoga is what she calls her studio, because “just like a flower you need to bloom and open your petals to the highest potential.”
After working in Baton Rouge, Manns realized a need for yoga in Ascension Parish and decided it was time to bring the parish all the benefits of yoga. So she did. On Sept. 1 she opened doors at 36501 Mission St. in Prairieville inside of the Fusion Gym.
Manns started yoga in 2007 and her passion grew from there. Going through pregnancy, yoga gave her body comfort.
“When I came here to the United States I started to have a sciatic pain related to pregnancy, so I began walking and then I realized how important it was to bring oxygen into the body,” Manns said. “So, I tried a yoga class and fell in love. I went and immediately wanted to share and became a teacher because I knew it was my passion.”
Manns said she never used to exercise when she was younger. Her mom actually told her she had flat feet.
“So I never did any exercise and I would just write reports instead of exercise and I was happy with that,” Manns said.
“With pregnancy, all kinds of hormones in the body are changing,” Manns said, whose studio offers prenatal classes on Saturdays. “All those organs are tight and tense so it really helps with breathing techniques and to relax.”
The style of Hatha Yoga is taught at Blooming Yoga and is an ancient discipline that explores, develops, and integrates the body, mind, and spirit. Yoga systematically stretches and strengthens muscles throughout the body, increases circulation to internal organs and glands, quiets the nervous system, and improves concentration. This ancient system of self-care brings vitality, health, deep relaxation, and peace of mind.
Hatha Yoga is the Vinyasa method, which is a system of linking the breath with physical poses in a heart-oriented, and spiritually inspiring setting, according to Manns.
Susan Giglio, of Baton Rouge, has been studying yoga with Manns for three years. She said she hopes Ascension welcomes and appreciate what they get in such a great teacher.
“Her flow sequences are great,” Giglio said about Manns. “She comes up with a theme and she weaves it through the class and it’s very transformational.”
“It feels like you’ve been on a magical journey,” Giglio said.
Manns’ classes are reassuring, loving and kind and Giglio said it rubs off on Manns’ students.
Blooming Yoga doesn’t just offer classes for women, but men too. Manns said usually there are about 30 percent males and 70 percent women in a class.
“It brings flexibility, especially for athletes and it will help with hamstrings,” Manns said to encourage the men. “When you do a certain sport you overuse certain muscles. Yoga combines everything with the six movements of the spine. It’s going to bring balance.”
Even for the white-collar workers who don’t get to exercise much, Manns said Blooming Yoga could help.
“I’m sure when you are behind a desk there is stress, especially if you work on a computer, your hands, back and shoulders are tight,” Manns said. “You need that time to love yourself for one hour a day, that’s all, to release those tight muscles.”
Manns added, “We welcome anybody who wants to try yoga and I’m happy to offer this opportunity for all. The mission of Blooming Yoga is to give the student, whether a beginner or advanced a place to practice Vinyasa flows and to provide yoga in a way that the student feels the freedom to move in awe in his own body, mind and soul. It is our intention to keep the teaching of Vinyasa Flows as artistic and dynamic in accordance with the student's interest in mind. No matter what we learn or from whom we learn the real and only teacher is within.”