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Georgia residents busting at the seams

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By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) – Georgia is considered one of the fattest states in the country.  Many Georgians suffer from weight-related health ailments such as diabetes and high blood pressure.

One group at Darton College is trying to lower that number by getting students, staff, and the community interested in an exercise program.  Yoga is an exercise that focuses on the total health of a person, emotional, spiritual and physical.  About two weeks ago, the Power Yoga Club started at Darton College, and already dozens of people have joined, proving there is still interest in getting fit.

The lights are dim in the second floor aerobics studio at Darton Student Center, and Yoga advisor Jennifer Mensink is twisting into shape.  She says there's a growing movement in the country, the state, and at the college by people interested in Power Yoga.

She said, "Yoga, especially power yoga, captures peoples interest because it's challenging once you get started on the challenge, you want to keep doing it so you can get better and better.  You get addicted to that progress."

But so many people regress.  They don't exercise and instead of picking themselves up off the floor, they make unhealthy choices about food and exercise.  Often, because they don't know where to begin.  "You have to start somewhere," she said.  "Wherever you're at is the perfect place to begin."

Chad Hudson is in his first year at Darton, and recently enrolled in the Yoga club.  He said, "Really just for health reasons."  He knows how easy it can be to get out of line.  "Fried food makes you lazy."

He says beyond the outward appearance, there's an inner reward to exercise, especially yoga.  "It makes you feel good," he said.  "I would say that's the best reason.  That's a lot of why I do it, 'cause it makes me feel better overall.  More confident."

And Mensink says Yoga can do the same for others, so long as they are willing to get a little bent out of shape to get in shape.

The Power Yoga Club is now one of Darton's largest student activities with over 35 members.  Power Yoga is open to the public and is free.If you're interested in giving it a try, go to the second floor of the student center at 3:30 on Fridays.

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