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Grand Traverse Woman

26 LITTLE ONES So here we are. Two mothers, now grandmothers to 26 wonderful grandchildren. In searching for fulfilment in our own lives, we were both drawn to yoga and mindfulness, and we knew our passion to share this with children needed a path. After receiving our RYT-200, we continued our training for a specialized certification for yoga and mindfulness in children. This opportunity ignited a fire in both of us.

CALMING KIDS The world is a different place than it was 25 years ago. It’s a fast-paced, technology-filled world of constant distraction. While we are thankful for the slower, quieter days in which we raised our children, we didn’t have the research and knowledge of mindfulness that is available to parents today. Kids today are more stressed than ever. Children as young as preschool age have drills for active shooters in their schools, and social media, bullying and grade performance are issues many deal with. It’s important to give young people the tools to handle it all. We tell children to pay attention and focus, but how often do we ask our children to pause? How often do we check in and gauge how they’re feeling? Sometimes it feels like the whole world is breaking out there, and we need to help children learn to settle themselves. Who could share these tools?

LITTLE MINDS YOGA AND WELL-BEING How about us, two grandmothers in their 50s? We took a leap of faith and started our own business, Little Minds Yoga and Well-being, to share our passion with parents and children in the Traverse City area.

Our classes use music and movement to engage and inspire. Our philosophy is to concentrate on children’s inward mindfulness in an environment without competitiveness or pressure. Not only do the children grow healthier and more coordinated bodies as they stretch and strengthen, they also learn techniques for relaxation and skills for dealing with stress and anxiety. We feel blessed to share our love of yoga and mindfulness with these beautiful little souls. Recently, Cathy’s 3-year-old grandson told mommy he needed to breathe, right in the middle of a meltdown. Seeing the peaceful calm that came over the two of them as they held hands and took a few mindful breaths together was just another confirmation of how important this work is.

OUR BIG VISION We are passionate about reaching children of all ages and abilities through yoga and mindfulness techniques. Enhancing their lives through play, imagination, music and joy, we want each child to feel free to let his inner light shine. Although we wish we had had these tools for leading happier, healthier and more peaceful lives available to us as young mothers, we couldn’t find a more beautiful community to share what we know now. Kay Epple and Cathy Fitzgerald reside in Traverse City. They teach Little Minds Yoga and well-being classes at New Moon Yoga and the Traverse Area District Library. This summer they will also teach outdoor and family classes and workshops in the Open Space and through College for Kids. Both have started their RCYT-95 hour training and will be finished in November. Visit www.littlemindsyoga.com or email info@littlemindsyoga.com.

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May/June '19 37

Profile for Grand Traverse Woman Magazine

GTWoman May/June 2019 Issue