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Locals Celebrate International Yoga Day

Sunday is International Yoga Day!

Dozens are bringing out their yoga mats to participate in an event sponsored by Bikram Yoga Binghamton right downtown.

Posture, breathing techniques and meditation; it's all a part of yoga.

Vestal resident Leslie Heywood started doing yoga back in 2001 when she learned its not just about being flexible.

"I really kind of thought of it as stretching and it's so much more than that. It kind of stretches you emotionally, as well as physically. And kind of all around," said Heywood.

And officials say even beginner poses, like the tree pose, could enhance your overall health. According to the American Osteopathic Association, yoga can have a number of health benefits including lessened chronic pain, lowered blood pressure and reduced insomnia.

"They heal injuries, lose weight, the mental benefits are huge to de-stress. It's hugely detoxifying and it allows your body to get rid of all of the junk that it needs to get rid of so you can feel good," said Co-Owner of Bikram Yoga Binghamton Marc Hocking.

Heywood, who has competed in national yoga championships, says she can't emphasize her love for the practice enough.

"I think it's so important for the community and it's wonderful to have it right here downtown. And it's something everybody can do and get involved with and improve their lives," said Heywood.