Restorative Yoga Classes at the JCC Indianapolis
JCC Indianapolis offers a variety of yoga classes, including restorative yoga, a style of yoga that encourages physical, mental, and emotional relaxation. As the name suggests, this style of yoga restores the body to its parasympathetic nervous system function, which, in turn, helps the body rest, heal, and restore balance.
Restorative Yoga Benefits
- Increased relaxation: Deep breathing calms the nervous system to promote relaxation.
- Better sleep: The more relaxed you are, the better your chances are of getting a good night’s rest. Yoga helps increase melatonin, the hormone your brain produces in response to darkness, and reduce hyperarousal.
- Improved well-being: Yoga practices, in general, are commonly associated with improved physical and mental well-being in the general population. Restorative yoga has been found to be a good resource for those with cancer, noting improvements to psychological well-being. As well, it can decrease depression in cancer survivors and help alleviate symptoms of anxiety, depression, and pain in cancer patients as well as people in general.
Appropriate for all levels, restorative yoga is practiced at a slow pace, focusing on long holds, stillness, and deep breathing. It will leave you with an overall sense of calm and well-being. In our class, we use restorative yoga props or provided accessories to support students in passive poses so the body can experience the benefits of a pose without having to exert any effort.
The benefits of restorative yoga are similar to the many benefits of other styles of yoga, including:
Who Benefits from the Class?
- Busy professionals, men and women ages 25-54, who have highly stressful jobs or who are under stress at work or at home.
- Baby boomers, men and women ages 55-73, who would benefit from the increased flexibility and decreased blood pressure that restorative yoga provides.
Yoga classes appeal to all ages and abilities. This class is best suited for:
What to Expect in Restorative Yoga
Restorative yoga classes are restful practices that are all about slowing down and opening your body through passive stretching. If you take a restorative yoga class, you may hardly move at all, doing just a few postures over the course of an hour. Expect dim lights and soft music.
The Pescovitz Dance Studio is located in the north area of the facility.
Dress comfortably. The J has yoga mats available, but many people prefer to bring their own. Please bring your own water bottle.
$12 per class (purchase at Welcome Desk) or $40/month for unlimited access to this and all yoga/Pilates classes.
Please note that Yoga/Pilates is a benefit of membership and is for JCC members only.
About the Instructor
In addition to teaching yoga, Cara George is a personal trainer. Previously, her clients have ranged from DOJ attorneys to members of the U.S. Marshal Service. She also served as a trainer for the White House Athletic Center. Simultaneously, Cara was a yoga and strength instructor for the Jewish Community Center in Fairfax, VA, as well as a prenatal fitness trainer for the Women’s Crisis Pregnancy Center in Washington D.C. Cara is dedicated to her students/clients and receives no greater joy than seeing them attain their goals and be able to maintain a healthy lifestyle long after she has stopped training them. Cara graduated cum laude with honors for excellence in Health Promotion from Liberty University with a Bachelor of Science in Health Promotion and Exercise Physiology.
About the Instructor
In addition to teaching yoga, Ashley Kay Zeller teaches Pilates Reformer/Mat Pilates, and is a Reiki Master. She is a certified yoga instructor (E-RYT® 200) with over 20 years of teaching experience. She formerly managed two wellness studios and was the Wellness School Manager at the JCC of Indianapolis for four years.
Her personal testimony of using the healing arts to ease anxiety, depression, and physical pain brings raw authenticity to her teaching style. Whether teaching Power Vinyasa or Restorative Yoga, Ashley’s classes always have a basis of healing, freedom, and play. Ashley’s students are often reminded to truly be still. She encourages students not to pass judgment on any challenges within or around the body—it is essential to accept contrast by asking what can be learned. Participants are encouraged to set their own pace and listen to their own bodies. All levels are welcome in every yoga class.
Ashley’s first formal training was with the founder of All People Yoga Center and creator of Heartland Yoga Therapy, Nancy Schalk in 2005. She spent the next seven years mentoring and training with Master Yoga Teacher, Linda Marques and Grand Master Yoga Teacher, Jean Pierre Marques at Coronado Yoga and Wellness Center in Coronado, California. She later studied Reiki with Christine Eartheart in Bloomington, Indiana. Ashley also studied PHI Pilates with Susan Holewinski in Indianapolis, IN, and with Christine Romani-Ruby in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Ashley not only offers services onsite but can provide a yoga class, workshop, or Reiki session to your workplace, home, retreat, or event.
Fitness Is a Core Jewish Value
At the JCC, fitness isn’t just something we do; it’s who we are. Although exercise is not mentioned in the Torah, taking care of one’s health is. In fact, while other belief systems advocate for the healing power of prayer, Judaism encourages people to look after their health and seek counsel from medical experts. In Judaism, good health is not a goal in itself. Rather, it is a means to an end – to serve the Creator.