Some start 2018 with free yoga or snowy hike


SCRANTON (WOLF) -- A lot people are getting a jump on their New Year's resolutions to get healthy.

Some people in Lackawanna County were choosing polar opposites when it comes to exercise. We take you inside a yoga class and along for a hike in the snow.

"Take a deep breath and reach your arms up toward the ceiling," says Mission Yoga owner and instructor Kelly Bedford.

More than 20 people showed up for a free yoga class at 9:30 a.m. on New Year's Day off Capouse Avenue in Scranton.

They were taking turns between relaxing- and painful-looking poses. All the classes here are free through Sunday.

"This is a special thing for this year, because we've been open for six years and we just really wanted to celebrate that," says Bedford.

Bedford says the classes usually cost $15 for drop-ins. They come with calming music.

"It changed everything about me and made me a better person and I always wanted to give that back to other people," says Bedford.

"Take a deep breath in," she instructed the class. "OK, and stretch your arms up toward the ceiling."

"We seem to see a lot of new faces which is really great, some regulars," says Bedford.

It was warm in the yoga studio, but others decided to head out into the cold, for a first day hike at Lackawanna State Park at 1 p.m.

"I've never seen snow before," says John Snyder, 15, Orlando, Fla.

A teen visiting his aunt joined the annual mile-and-a-half hike, which used the Ranger Trail. They trudged along on the snow.

Snyder has also tried snowboarding on his trip.

"Normally when I come, it's during the summer. I never really came during the winter," says Snyder.

"I saw it on the internet, because I signed up for e-mails from the state park and I found out that way," says aunt Florence Snyder from Scranton. "And, I know he likes to go hiking."

Florence waited inside because she wasn't up to it, as hikers quickly crossed through a tunnel under the road, and onto the trail.

"I think it's a great way to start the new year. It gets you up and moving and resolved to keep yourself healthy and fit and utilize our beautiful state parks," says Lackawanna State Park environmental educator Angela Lambert.

DCNR says Pennslyvania started taking part in the national First Day Hikes initiative in 2012, and nearly 2,000 people hiked last year statewide.

Lambert planned to have people look for animal tracks in the snow, such as those from deer, birds, mice, voles, or squirrels.

"It seems to be pretty good turnout considering the cold, so there's a lot of hearty souls out there," says Lambert.

Meantime at the yoga studio, Bedford says the free classes are filling up, so anyone interested should sign up on their website first.

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