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Bettering Lives through Yoga and Mindfulness

Ashley Goldberg of Born Yoga continues bettering the lives of children/families through yoga and mindfulness during the COVID-19 outbreak.

“I Promise to Stay Connected” was the newsletter title that Born Yoga’s students received on March 13, the day that hundreds of schools closed nationwide, millions began working from home and the toll of COVID-19 really began to escalate in the state of Michigan. The newsletter explained that there were going to be two, free family classes offered that weekend via Zoom.

“From the second I hit send, my inbox was flooded,” founder and CEO of Born Yoga in Birmingham Ashley Goldberg said. “I think I received nearly 250 emails back within a 10-hour span from parents, thanking me for taking the initiative and making such a smart decision. The emails were full of gratitude, understanding and encouragement.”

On March 12, Goldberg was teaching yoga at Detroit Country Day School - Lower School for an after-school enrichment program when she learned that school was going to be cancelled for the next few days due to COVID-19. Less than 24 hours later, Goldberg decided that she needed to close down her yoga studio, a place solely dedicated to children and families, as keeping it open was not in “the best interest of the community and her staff,” especially with the high number of pregnant moms and babies who attend classes. 

“It wasn’t easy for a number of reasons,” Goldberg explained. “I struggled with the idea of taking this beautiful, comforting and safe space away from my students, knowing that many of them consider it a second home, just as I do.”

Goldberg had always wanted to offer videos and classes online but said she had been too scared to do it. However, when her sister reminded her of Zoom, an American remote conferencing service that combines video conferencing, online meetings, chat and mobile collaboration, she knew she had no choice but get over her fear and learn quickly.

“I actually love teaching virtual classes,” Goldberg said back in March. “Not as much as much as I love being with my students, but I have found that not only am I having a great time with this, I continue to be creative and stay in contact with so many of the families who attend Born Yoga in addition to families all over the world!”

The first couple of classes had between 125-140 families tune in, and the numbers continuously stayed strong. In addition to family yoga, Zoom class offerings included some of Born Yoga’s specialty classes, including “Yoga with Your Doll,” “Superhero Yoga,” “Family Yoga in Your Jammies,” “Princess and Dragons Yoga” and more.

“I am proud to say I was one of the first studios as well as children’s activity spaces to start live classes,” Goldberg said. “I feel honored to have been welcomed into the homes of so many families from across the world and am trying my best to shine a light on a very sad situation.”

Although the virtual classes were offered for free so that every family had access to such an incredible opportunity during this new normal, Goldberg did receive requests from families who wanted to donate for her commitment and time. 

“I am grateful beyond words by those who have shown their love and appreciation through a donation as well as an email or social media comment,” Goldberg said. “In true Born Yoga style, we can’t possibly take money without giving some back. We are taking a portion of our donations and donated them to Gleaners Community Food Bank.”

When Goldberg was seven years old, she was diagnosed with osteogenic sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, which forever changed her perspective on life. With this diagnosis, she turned a negative into a positive, learning to live a more mindful, peaceful and meaningful life.

Goldberg experienced her first yoga class in 2009 and has been practicing ever since, realizing in 2010 she would like to share her love for yoga with children. In 2015, she opened Born Yoga. Her classes and summer camps are filled with fun yoga adventures, creative art projects, exciting music, fundamental social skills and mindfulness practices.

“There is something very special about the physical space of the studio,” Goldberg said. “It is almost magical. You can feel it from the moment you step in the door. I have felt that feeling every day since September 13, 2015. Children and families never want to leave.”

Goldberg said that when life returns back to normal, she will continue to film classes and looks forward to growing the Born Yoga YouTube page and adding classes that way. To check it out, visit youtube.com/c/BornYogaBirmingham.

Sidebar:

BORN YOGA

2121 Cole St, Birmingham

CONTACT

(248)-480-0452

bornyogastudio@gmail.com

bornyogastudio.com

  • Ashley Goldberg, Founder and CEO of Born Yoga

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