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Grand Park lunchtime yoga extended through March

By Hayley Fox
Published: Monday, January 14, 2013, at 08:58AM
Javier Guillen

Free yoga classes take place every Wednesday and Friday until March.

The free lunchtime yoga program in Downtown's Grand Park has been extended through March, organizers say, after the winter sessions attracted an outpouring of participants.

The program, which takes place every Wednesday and Friday in the performance space between Hill Street and Grand Avenue, attracted about 50 people per class when it first began during the 2012 holiday season.

Yoga teacher Christel Joy Johnson leads the free, 45-minute class which goes from 12:15 p.m. to 1 p.m. twice a week. She described the classes as a type of "gentler" yoga that focuses more on stress relief and relaxation than cardio fitness. Johnson said she expected about 10 people to show up to the first class and was "floored and so happy" to see five times that number.

"There's definitely a need and a want," Johnson said in December.

Although there are a limited number of loaner mats available for each class, Johnson encourages people to bring their own if they have them

Julia Diamond, director of programming at the Music Center, helped organize these yoga classes as well as other events at the expansive DTLA park. She said her intention was always to create programs that would "activate the lunch hour" for Downtown residents and employees.

The lunchtime yoga classes will continue until March 8.

Also coming up at the park is "Hail to the Chief" -- a concert taking place on January 21 to celebrate the presidential inauguration and Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The event goes from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is meant to "commemorate dreams and hopes of past, present and future."

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