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Yoga Mala today helps usher in 2011
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Michele Flores is celebrating the change of season.

She teaches Hatha Yoga.

“We celebrate the summer and winter solstice or any change of season including the New Year,” Flores said on Thursday.

In this case, the long-time Manteca resident will ring in 2011 today with a Yoga Mala consisting of 108 sets of 12 poses at Yoga Soul and Jiu-Jitsu, 159 W. Yosemite Ave.

She’s been at that location since May.

From 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Flores will lead her regulars and any newcomer interested in starting the New Year off on the right foot in the two yoga sessions.

She’ll have “sun” salutations running simultaneously with the gentle poses in the 3,000-square-foot studio. In all, Flores is estimating about two hours to complete the 108 sets of the Yoga Mala.

In a Yoga Mala – defined as a “garland of yoga practice” in Sanskrit – each of the 12 poses must be accomplished in a flow.

Flores has taught yoga for the past 10 years but has been studying the discipline since the 1970s. She’s been the yoga instructor for the City of Manteca and City of Tracy, teaching at various senior and assisted living facilities.

Flores was certified by Vasanthi Bhat.

The word “Hatha” comes from combining the form of two Sanskrit terms – “ha” means sun and “tha” means moon.

She’s been conducting the Yoga Mala for the past three years.

“Our intention (for those participating in the Yoga Mala) is to make 2011 a fruitful and healthy year,” Flores said.

Cost is $10 for adults, $7 for those over 50, and $5 for anyone under 12.

For more information, call 209-239-3464.