words by Kristina Aiad-Toss
What a better way to kick off Signal Tree Fest than starting the day with Gretchen Horinger’s yoga practice at Lock 3. The free class will begin at 9 am on August 11 and will be followed by a meditation at 10 am at Lock 2 taught by Nikki Shell from Yoga Squared. Signal Tree Fest will begin at 12 pm at Lock 3 and will feature local artists, music, and vendors to celebrate Akron.
Learn about Gretchen, the yoga teacher leading the event below:
Gretchen’s love of yoga started with a passion for running while attending college at Virginia Tech in Richmond. She began practicing yoga as a supplement to running and eventually graduated from YMCA classes to attending a full-on yoga studio. Having a good teacher made her “fall deeper in love” with the physical, mental and emotional benefits of practicing yoga. After practicing for three years, Gretchen completed her yoga training at the Yoga Room with Marni Task in Cleveland’s Little Italy.
Gretchen has taught yoga for seven years at many studios including Lifesource Yoga, Yoga Bliss, Release Yoga, The Little Yoga Shop, TraK Athletics, Do Good Yoga and even had her own studio. However, today Gretchen says she found her “home” at Rock Mill Climbing as a Jivamukti-inspired Vinyasa class instructor and the Yoga + Fitness Coordinator. In addition, she teaches one class a week at the Summit County Juvenile Detention Center
Modern life can be fragmented and disconnected because technology is isolating people from authentic relationships with others and themselves. For this reason, Gretchen practices and teaches yoga. She loves the sense of connection that yoga brings and its ability to teach us to foster our inner selves.
What’s special about the yoga community in Akron?
“There’s something for everyone in the Akron yoga community. Each studio offers their own approach, their own ‘flavor’ of yoga so to speak. The yoga-curious in our city are pretty lucky because they’ve got options and can shop around to find a studio or teacher that really resonates with them.”