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Chelsea Studio Remembers 9/11 With Yoga

By Mathew Katz | September 6, 2011 8:48pm
A woman does a back bend while practicing yoga.
A woman does a back bend while practicing yoga.
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CHELSEA — Like thousands of others, Alison West was in lower Manhattan when planes hit the Twin Towers 10 years ago. Now, she wants to memorialize those who died — and try to help the city move forward — with downward dogs, stretches and meditation.

The longtime yoga trainer and instructor is offering a yoga and meditation event as part of the launch of her new studio, Yoga Union, on West 28th Street.

"Remembering 9/11 and looking to what yoga is I think are natural corollaries," said West, who has been teaching yoga in New York since 1988. "It's practicing kindness and compassion while remembering those who have suffered."

The event, along with hundreds of other memorials around the country, will take place Sunday morning and begin with yogis dedicating their mental and physical energy to those who perished on 9/11.

"This is not a class in which people will come to reach new heights of physical feats," West acknowledged.

After the memorial session, West will lead students in meditation to encourage love and kindness, which she said are needed in a post-9/11 world.

"9/11 changes not just New York, but I think the entire world," she said.

"We should ask ourselves, 'How can yoga help counter these negatives?'"

The memorial begins at 10 a.m. Sunday at Yoga Union, 37 W. 28th St.