SIOUX CITY — Lisa Corbett believes in the health benefits of being still.

“Sometime you need to be alone in your thoughts, feel a stillness come over your body, and learn to breathe again,” the certified yoga instructor said a few minutes prior to her class. 

It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that the studio Corbett shares with her fellow certified yoga instructor Joanne Keane is called Breathe Yoga & Meditation Center. 

However, its location — inside the administrative office of the Boys and Girls Home and Family Services, Inc. at the Indian Hills Shopping Center — makes the space very unique.

Founded in 1894, the Boys and Girls Home is a nonprofit human services agency that cares for children and adults in Siouxland. 

From its beginning as a home for orphans and children needing temporary care, the agency has evolved into caring for children and adults struggling with emotional, behavioral or psychological issues.

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Yet the overall mission of the Boys and Girls Home is to improve the lives of children and families by restoring hope and becoming an innovative community leader in restoring hope and creating connectiveness.   

“We received a grant from the Delta Dental Fund to create a space that would benefit the physical and mental wellness of our entire community,” Boys and Girls Home president and CEO Art Silva explained. “A yoga and meditation studio was the perfect way to utilize the grant money.”

While the studio will eventually introduce Boys and Girls Home residents to the benefits of yoga, it is also currently the site for twice-a-week sessions that are open to the general public.

From 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. every Tuesday and Thursday, instructors Corbett and Keane offer an hour of yoga classes that stress physical health and mental wellness.

“As we age, balance and mobility become much more important to everyone,” Corbett said, adding that yoga can be a form of preventive medicine. 

Equally as important is the meditative qualities of yoga.

“So much is going on in the world and there are times when you just want to chill,” Keane added. “Only positive vibes are allowed in our yoga class.”

Silva had known Corbett and Keane, who were both longtime spa professionals before becoming certified yoga instructors, for years.

“Joanne and Lisa are wonderful for students who are beginning yoga as well as for more advanced students,” Silva said.

This is something that was important to Corbett.

“Yoga classes can be intimidating if you don’t know what to expect,” she said. “We want to be as user-friendly as possible.”

Indeed, soft blocks and pillows are available for students needing assistance in some poses. 

Plus the studio is filled with signs with the words of encouragement like “Kindness Matters” and “Do All Things with Love.”

Since it opened a few months ago, Breathe Yoga and Meditative Center has already attracted a consistent group of attendees who are following the gentle instruction of Corbett and Keane.

While the classes are free, a free will donation is encouraged. 

But Silva thinks having a yoga studio in Sioux City’s northside will help Boys and Girls Home and Family Services to better integrate itself at its new location.

“People know the Boys and Girls Home but they don’t always know everything we do,” he said, noting that its Indian Hills Shopping Center facilities has a residential treatment center, an opportunities school, family center and, even, a consignment shop on its sprawling campus. “A yoga space is just one more benefit we can offer to the community.”

“Every positive action can have a positive reaction,” she said. “If you’re willing to do good, it will be rewarded every single time.”

By Yoga

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