Tracy Dolliff: The catalyst for Yoga for Intellectual Disabilities at MBS…
Tracy Dolliff could see the benefits of yoga for her daughter, Madison. Not only did Madison love it but it was a calming and relaxing experience for her. After Madison had practiced yoga at her high school a couple of times, Tracy tried to start a yoga program at her pediatric speech therapy nonprofit, The Madison Center. Unfortunately, staffing the class was a challenge yet the girls they serve at nonprofit center loved yoga so Tracy was determined to make something work.
Living near MBS, Tracy says she had often driven past and eventually saw a flyer advertising our adaptive yoga classes, which are geared towards physical disabilities and mobile impairment. Seeing an opportunity, Tracy reached out to see if we might consider starting a class specifically for young adults with cognitive disabilities. Never shy about looking at ways to expand the scope of our work, MBS set out to come up with a plan to make this request a reality. After securing a teacher and agreeing on a trial period of the class with Madison and a group of her long-time friends, the class was underway.
Now two years later and the class is proving to be a great success! Tracy says, “The classes are very popular and loved by the kids. I think it’s a calming space for them in a crazy world. They always enjoy getting together as a group and the social aspect is just as important. It’s time for them to be independent from their parents and have their own group.”
The benefits of this class extend to the parents as well. Having an hour to catch their breath and re-group is incredibly important, says Tracy. Everybody also benefits from the weekly schedule. This consistency means that both the parents and kids have an activity to look forward to each week. While Tracy admits she doesn’t practice yoga herself (but quickly adds that she should!) she remains grateful. “We are so grateful to MBS and the instructors for making this possible and having an open and accepting culture… the experience is wonderful for the group and the parents.”
We currently offer this class on Tuesdays at 5 pm and Fridays at 9:45 am. Check out our adaptive yoga offerings here. Through the generosity of our donors and friends, all of our adaptive yoga classes are offered at highly subsidized rates in order to make this practice accessible and available to all. Your gift makes a difference and helps more students living with disabilities access the healing benefits of a yoga practice. Consider making a gift today to support this work. Thank you for your support!