Springfield International Yoga Day Celebration is scheduled for Sunday morning on Springfield City Plaza. The event is free. Bill Lackey/Staff

Yoga Day celebration set for Springfield Sunday

Springfield will celebrate International Yoga Day for the first time this weekend.

The Hindu Community of Springfield and Global Education and Peace Network event will be Sunday at the Springfield City Plaza with registration beginning at 7:30 a.m.

“Yoga means union,” Dr. Ravi Khanna, co-president of the Hindu Community of Springfield, said. “You are one with your body, mind, and spirit, and that’s when you’re at peace.”

Sunday morning will focus on experiencing peace and harmony through an hour-long yoga session led by Julie Valley and guided meditation led by Shubhra Goel.

Yoga was not always so popular, Khanna said.

“It has now become international,” he said. “At first it started out in India, but now there are yoga studios everywhere because people feel there is some sort of benefit to it.”

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Dr. Siva Vemana, co-president of the Hindu Community of Springfield, said he expects 50 to 100 people to attend Sunday’s event, but he’s hoping for more.

Vemana said he hopes to improve the health of Springfield and bring awareness to the city.

“Yoga will give you a healthier life,” he said. “If more and more people do it, Springfield will become an overall healthier place.”

Khanna and Vemana have over 25 years of experience in yoga and want to introduce others to it, hoping they see benefits and do more. They encourage people to start yoga early so they will benefit a lot later in life.

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Khanna said he hopes that International Yoga Day will be a yearly event in Springfield.

Doctors from Springfield Regional Medical Center will be joining the event, according to a release from Mercy Health - Springfield.

Special guests include Springfield City Commissioner David Estrop and Ohio State Representative Niraj Antani, the release says.

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