For Root Yoga, utilizing its own community of yogis to raise money and awareness for nonprofits has always had a local focus. Studio owner Lauren Turnage says that while she often sees others in the yoga community raising money for global issues, Root's mission is to harness the power of its students by partnering with local foundations in need.
For the last three summers, the yoga studio has hosted its "Yoga on the River" outdoor summer class series and tonight's final installment for the 2014 season is raising money to support local integrative therapy non-profit The Chanda Plan Foundation.
"We have a great community in Denver that needs support sometimes," says Turnage. "Our philosophy is that we all need to work together in order for everybody to thrive. We decided to partner with some like-minded local charities to benefit and enhance the health and wellness of our community."
The Chanda Plan Foundation has been a partner all three years of this series for Root Yoga and has welcomed the support. Founder Chanda Hinton Leichtle, who Westword profiled two years ago, says that on top of doing the work her organization does on a daily basis with the long-term disability population, raising money to do so takes a lot of time and energy. Any help from like-minded folks in the great community benefits her clients.
"When opportunities like Yoga on the River come forward and offer to do something like this on our behalf, it is really amazing," says Hinton Leichtle. "The more the community becomes more aware it, the more opportunities we have to connect with people who tell us they believe in what we do and love what we do."
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Plus, since yoga is an integral part of what The Chanda Plan Foundation offers its own clients, Root Yoga is an ideal partner. Along with adaptive yoga as part of its integrative therapy approach, Chanda Plan offers acupuncture, massage, chiropractic services, cranial sacral and adaptive exercise for those with long-term disabilities and chronic pain.
"Integrative therapy is a big word that can be defined so many ways," says Hinton Leichtle. "With the Chanda Plan, we're strategically making people integrate their overall wellness by using what they already use in terms of the the medical model -- they have a physician and prescriptions and things like that and they can continue to do those things. But Chanda Plan's goal is to (get clients) not over-utilize those things, but rather blend them with acupuncture, massage, adaptive exercise, adaptive yoga. Our idea of wellness for people with longterm disabilities is that they integrate the Eastern and the western modalities to make a healthy individual."
Root Yoga's Yoga on the River goes down at 7 p.m. tonight outside of the Root Yoga studios between the Commons Park West buildings.
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Hinton Leichtle's sister, Crystal Hinton, will lead this evening's outdoor yoga class along with fellow teacher Angela Arnold. Live music will be provided by Japadapta. Anyone is welcome to join the class, you do not have to be a member of Root Yoga. There is a suggested donation of $15, but no one will be turned away. For more information on the class, visit the Facebook event page; for more on The Chanda Plan Foundation, see the non-profit's website. A post-class gathering will go down at Paris on the Platte.