yoga for all

Namaste a while at Karma Yoga’s 10-year anniversary on July 13 from 7 to 8:15 p.m. on the Southminster Presbyterian Church lawn, 799 Washington Road. The event is for yogis of all levels and abilities.

Coordinator Beverly Gray, Lebanon Avenue, promises a gentle yoga class for people of all ages. While the event is free, donations will be collected for Dress for Success Pittsburgh, an organization that provides professional clothing to women who cannot afford to buy it themselves. The organization helps women find and keep a job.

Karma Yoga is for everyone.

Gray, a teacher’s aide at Washington School and a yoga instructor at the Himalayan Institute on Beverly Road, says she’s taking over the day’s coordination from event creator Janet Tant, who now spends her summers in New England. Gray is hosting her first benefit after helping out for several years, and loves combining yoga and charity. “It is a little overwhelming, but I am so excited about it,” Gray says.

The event always supports a local charity, reinforcing its namesake karma. “It is always a wonderful thing to help others,” Grays says. “Karma is about action and giving to others.” This year’s event-goers can give to Dress for Success Pittsburgh.

Gray, who began practicing yoga 10 years ago after experiencing death in the family, says yoga helped her grieve. “It has changed my mental state, my life,” Gray says. “Through practicing, I have become more aware of my body, my breath and more in touch with myself.”

Gray, who has two sons, Turner and Jackson, at the high school, has been teaching for three years and practices Hatha yoga, which focuses on breath and body awareness. She took her first yoga classes at the Recreation Center, and now teaches a weekly class for Mt. Lebanon teachers. “The event is near and dear to my heart,” Gray says, emphasizing that it is “so wonderful to practice yoga outside and do a good thing for others.”


Photography and video by Sam Oshlag