On Sunday, June twenty, Belize’s yoga aficionados will gather across the country to celebrate the International Day of Yoga for the seventh consecutive year. The day has been celebrated annually since 2014 when it was enacted by the United Nations General Assembly, signifying the importance of the practice. The day also coincides with the summer solstice, which is the longest day of the year. Today, Michelle Williams, the day’s national coordinator, said the event seeks to promote health and wellness in the jewel.
Michelle Williams, Country Coordinator, International Day of Yoga: “It’s actually a day that’s sanctioned by the United Nations that acknowledges the benefits, the many many benefits of yoga so it’s a day that’s recognized globally and it was really lobbied by the Prime Minister of India for this day to be acknowledged and for yoga to be acknowledged in this way. And so since 2015 it’s been celebrated throughout the world globally on the 21st of June which is also the summer solstice. So it’s nothing new to Belize anymore and because of that the planning has been relatively seamless, it’s been quite easy. We have our yoga instructors that are strategically placed and some were not able to organize themselves this year which is fine. You know it’s been a difficult eighteen, nineteen months so but the ones that were were able to come together and unite because this is the one day that the business of yoga is put aside and it’s when all the teachers unite and come together and show unit and show love and share from their heart with their communities. And so it’s a free event. All the yoga teachers get together and there’s a talk on the benefits of yoga so people learn about that aspect and then we do a practice that is done throughout the world and this year the theme in Belize is Health and Wellness which is very relevant to what we’ve been experiencing globally for the past almost two years now.”
Williams also noted that the event will see slight modifications as they will follow all COVID-19 protocols. She gave us a bit of what can be expected.
Michelle Williams, Country Coordinator, International Day of Yoga: “This year of course we’ll be having to follow COVID guidelines and there will be in Belize City, Placencia and in Belmopan there will be social distancing. The Belmopan event is going to be a bigger event because they’re actually doing a lot afterwards which is really beautiful. The organizer, Freeda Ramirez is really doing a great job in Belmopan to really bring the Belmopan community together and Bryce and all the teachers involved in Placencia is doing the same at the Placencia Community Center. And then in Belize City we have a large group of Belize City teachers that are coming together, some that are fairly new teachers which is really beautiful because they’re able to kind of jump right into a community event sharing to the public. Our Belize City event will be held at the Marion Jones Stadium and these events will be held on the 20th of June so the day before the actual day. There’s usually a welcome speech welcoming everybody to the event and then there’s a speech specifically on the benefits of yoga so anybody that comes will learn about all the aspects of yoga that can benefit their lives. And then we go into a yoga class that will incorporate loosening up of the joints, lubricating the joints and then standing postures, seated postures. There’s gonna be breath work which Pranayama is what we call it and then we’ll close with a nice final relaxation.”
The event will held at the Marion Jones Stadium in Belize City.