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Health Plus: Yoga benefits

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WATERLOO (KWWL) -- 11-million Americans reportedly do yoga.  The concept is 5,000 years old, but has a lot of modern-day benefits.

A dark and quiet room is just what Mike Harford needs to continue on his mental and physical path to better health.

"This is the least I've weighed in probably fifteen years. My asthma's better. I feel a lot better. Just a lot more active," he said.

After a 30-pound weight gain when he quit smoking, Mike stepped on the scale and decided to take action.

Covenant's Kimball Ridge Center in Waterloo offered classes like yoga, that have helped him lose sixty-five pounds.

"Guys have been infiltrating in for the last several years. I think traditional barriers are down," said yoga instructor Mary Margaret Halverson who added that the ancient method has many benefits.

"It increases your balance, strength, flexibility and improves your posture. And it's heart healthy in the way that it destresses people," she said.

Mother and daughter, Carol and Maggie Luce agree.

"I didn't know if I was going to be strong enough to do some of the poses that they do, so I started and I was hooked from the beginning," said Carol.

As for Mike, yoga has helped restore his confidence mentally and physically.

"I can actually bend over and touch my toes now," he said.

Online reporter: Tara Thomas 

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