An Astoria yoga studio will offer classes for Spanish speakers and parents

Photo via Facebook/Yoga Agora

Yoga Agora in Astoria will soon be offering weekly classes taught in Spanish and another for parents and their babies.

The two new class options will be available at their studios (33-02 Broadway, second floor) after Labor Day, according to Yoga Agora founder and instructor Nick Velkov. The first child-friendly class starts on Saturday, Sept. 8, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. and the first Spanish language class will take place on Sunday, Sept. 9, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m.

Velkov founded the Astoria studio in 2010 after having practiced yoga since the summer of 2005. He said that his original intentions for starting yoga were the physical benefits, but his focus shifted toward yoga as a meditative exercise as he continued to learn more.

Since he opened Yoga Agora in 2010, Velkov said that he wanted his practice to be as “community-minded as possible.” Over the years, he had gotten calls from residents — on behalf of themselves or their parents — asking if the studio offered classes in Spanish. After realizing the demand, he decided that his studio should offer the option in order to “get more people to the mat” and be as accessible to the community as possible.

Velkov enlisted the help of yoga instructor Juan Gomez, who hails from Colombia and has been part of Yoga Agora since the beginning. Gomez is slated to teach the Spanish language vinyasa classes every Sunday for $8 a session. Classes will be “open level” meaning that they will be open to all regardless of experience.

Another demand that Velkov noticed was for classes geared toward working parents. He heard complaints about how difficult it was for parents to get to yoga classes after work and how classes held on the weekends cut into time spent with their families. The solution? Yoga classes that are open to children.

The kid-friendly classes will be taught by Yoga Agora instructor and mom Anna Ahlin on Saturdays and cost $20 per “family unit.” Velkov described the class as an environment that “welcomes children to be children.” Babies and toddlers are invited to practice alongside their parents but are also welcome to nap, play, color or even cry.

“Parents don’t need to be self-conscious about bringing their children,” Velkov said.

Velkov said that the studio does not offer memberships or class packages and most people drop in for classes when the mood strikes them. Classes are offered for as low as $8 and some accept donations based on what individuals can contribute.

For more information and a full schedule of classes offered as Yoga Agora, visit yogaagora.com. To contact the studio directly, call 718-626-0680 or email yogaagora@gmail.com. Those interested can also learn more on Facebook @yogaagora.

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