[caption id="attachment_19025" align="aligncenter" width="600"]<img src="https:\/\/pocahontastimes.com\/wp-content\/uploads\/sites\/25\/2018\/01\/Yoga.jpg" alt="" width="600" height="308" class="size-full wp-image-19025" \/> Yoga instructor Alison Flegel, left, leads the beginners yoga class at Green Bank Observatory last Thursday. Flegel also teaches a more rigorous class on Tuesdays. Students, pictured, from left: Elaine Sheets, Jan Jonese, Lynette Otto and Kim Shinaberry. S. Stewart photo[\/caption]\r\n\r\nSuzanne Stewart\r\nStaff Writer\r\n\r\nCommon New Year\u2019s resolutions are to get in shape or to exercise more, and more often than not, those lofty goals get kicked to the curb long before spring.\r\n\r\nFor those looking to improve their physical and mental health \u2013\u00a0yoga is a great start to a new beginning.\r\n\r\nCass resident Alison Flegel has taken on the task of continuing the yoga class formerly offered by Joanna Yates at the Green Bank Observatory. Flegel has added a new beginners class, as well.\r\n\r\n\u201cI picked up Joanna Yates\u2019 Tuesday evening power class,\u201d Flegel said. \u201cShe moved to Arizona, and I started teaching the class because I think it\u2019s really important to have it in the community. I didn\u2019t want to see it fall away.\u201d\r\n\r\nFlegel added a Thursday afternoon class geared toward beginners and those seeking a low-impact workout.\r\n\r\n\u201cFor this class, I knew there were people in the community that power yoga kind of scared away, so I wanted to offer more of a beginner-friendly class that would be more accessible to a wider range of people,\u201d she said. \u201cThis class is just to stretch out and get yoga brain.\u201d\r\n\r\nThe new class has attracted between 13 and 18 participants with varying levels of expertise. It\u2019s a laid back class where there is always time for jokes and jabs in between the many yoga poses.\r\n\r\n\u201cYoga is very beneficial \u2013\u00a0not only for your body, as far as flexibility and body awareness\u00a0\u2013 but also it can help you control your mind,\u201d Flegel said. \u201cIt relieves stress. It relieves tension.\u201d\r\n\r\nAs Flegel said, the class is much more than just a workout for the body and mind, it is also a way to connect with people in the community.\r\n\r\n\u201cYou can already see, it\u2019s a connection with like-minded people or people in the community,\u201d she said. \u201cPeople are coming out to do something. We all have our stuff \u2013\u00a0maybe someone\u2019s here to loosen their hips up or someone\u2019s here for back pain. Maybe someone is just here because they want to experience this connection, and they\u2019re seeing yoga really affect their lives on a day-to-day basis.\u201d\r\n\r\nThe classes are in the old touring center at the GBO. The higher level course meets Tuesdays at 4:30 p.m. and the beginners class is Thursday at 4:30 p.m. There is a $5 donation charge per class. \r\n\r\nPocahontas County Parks and Recreation is sponsoring the classes at the GBO, as well as Thursday classes at the Community Wellness Center in Marlinton at 4:30 p.m. and Friday classes at Allegheny Springs at Snowshoe Mountain Resort at 5:45 p.m.