Alumni bringing free yoga class to DDHS over break

Renee Downing

Holiday stress is a real thing. The Mayo Clinic has an article about coping with holiday stress on its website.

One way to cope with holiday stress, or any stress for that matter, is to practice yoga.

And now, you can learn how!

Delavan-Darien High School Class of 1998 alumni Renee Downing — a certified personal trainer and yoga teacher now working in Huntington Beach, Calif. — will host two classes at DDHS over the holiday break.

She’ll teach free yoga courses for beginners at 10 a.m. Dec. 26, and 5 p.m. Dec. 30, in the DDHS Dance Studio in the school Fitness Center (150 Cummings St., Delavan).

Come and unwind a bit after Christmas. The class will begin with some easy breathing techniques, followed by gentle twists, forward folds, hip openers, easy core strengthening poses and balance poses. It will wind down with seated poses, followed by a long, relaxing Savasana.

There is no fee for attending, however any donations will be greatly appreciated.

Renee’s Bio (from her website)

It’s been my experience that staying fit and leading a healthy lifestyle takes dedication, planning, and consistency, but the quality of life achieved by doing so is well worth it in the long run.

Living a sedentary life with a diet of fast food and ice cream had me, at the age of 18, overweight and very lazy. A diagnosis of Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FM) at age 16, at a time when very little was known about the condition, meant it was time to either start taking better care of myself, or accept a life of pain, fatigue, obesity and countless other health problems, and, if I continued the way I was living, disability and medication. It was time for me to make some changes.

I was told I had to start exercising and eating right or my FM symptoms would only get worse. My parents bought me a small home gym in hopes that I would become more active. Having no training with any form of exercise at the time, the gym just confused me and eventually turned into an expensive rack for drying my laundry. A major turning point in my life was when I moved from my small town Midwest to southern California at age 18.

In 2001 I got a front desk job at a gym while attending school. Working in the gym environment exposed me to a world of knowledge I was not familiar with growing up. I asked the trainers who worked at the gym every question I could think of – from how to lose the fat in my thighs that I thought was genetic, to what the difference was between “good” and “bad” carbs. I got so hooked on exercising and eating right that, after some time, I lost the extra weight and body fat I was carrying and my Fibromyalgia symptoms have been kept at a tolerable level for years.

In 2003 I became certified with Apex, then went on to become a National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) Certified Personal Trainer. I am currently studying to become a certified Yoga instructor and continue to further educate myself by attending seminars and doing research personalized for each of my clients’ specific fitness needs.

For more, visit her website at:

About ddschools

324 Beloit St. Delavan, WI 53115
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