Currently, West River Health Services (WRHS) is renting the Armory’s old dance studio to offer yoga to both their employees and the public. With the overwhelming success of Manette Obrigewitch’s yoga class, WRHS is looking to fully utilize the Amory’s old dance studio and potentially offer more classes to the community.
“It’s a beautiful room and a great space to use for workout classes and it would be great to utilize it more,” said RN, Community Health and Wellness Coordinator Patty Ness. “It’s all still in a brainstorming stage.”
WRHS’s original intent for the room was to start a yoga class specifically for their employees. The hospital surveyed their employees and identified yoga as a class that was in high demand. Obrigewitch, a WRHS employee and certified yoga instructor, agreed to instruct the class.
“It went over well,” said Ness, “So well, in fact, that people in the community started asking about the class.”
With the positive response, WRHS agreed to open a separate yoga class to the community. According to Ness, WRHS didn’t advertise the class because it was filled before they got the chance to let anyone know it was open.
“When we saw how well [yoga] went, it became an opportunity to offer the community other classes. We started to brainstorm the possibilities,” said Ness.
WRHS hasn’t fully committed to renting the space for long periods of time because Manette Obrigewitch is the only certified instructor the hospital could find to run classes.
As it currently stands, Obrigewitch will not be offering the yoga class in the summer months, therefore, the hospital has only committed to renting out the space for March and possibly April due to the lack of certified instructors at this time.
Both Patty Ness and Anthony Larson approached the city council this week to consider options for utilizing the Armory’s former dance studio as much as possible. In the meeting, the city council expressed that they wanted the space to be utilized by the community.
City council member Curt Drolc stated, “… I hope you stay in [the room] year round.”
To resolve the lack of instructors, WRHS discussed the option of finding certified instructors in the community and letting them instruct classes when the room was available. Ness acknowledged that there would be a liability concern with this option and that the instructors would have to be certified.
“The idea is that certified instructors could contact me and we could help make [a class] happen, with the city’s approval,” said Ness.
The current plans for the room are still being discussed and considered. According to Ness, the hospital’s ultimate goal in this project is to promote good health in the community. Therefore, WRHS is primarily interested in looking for certified instructors for fitness classes.
“We want classes offered in that room regardless of who is running it. As long as the community has those opportunities,” she said.
Patty Ness stated that those who are interested in instructing a class and are certified should contact her at her WRHS office number 701-567-6177.