By now we can all admit that the changes and the uncertainty in our daily lives can bring upon us a vast amount of stress. From the 24-hour news cycle, jobs, to school, and not to mention the family dynamics of being cooped up, this stress and anxiety that we are carrying around can be damaging on a daily basis. But, how do we quiet our minds during a lockdown? How do we regain calmness during a storm?


For Allison Falkenberry from the Otium Savannah Yoga studio, the answer was one word: yoga.


“Otium is a Latin term that stands for “personal sanctuary” – a safe place to come together, sweat together, and feel the beauty and love captured within our walls and our communities,“ said Falkenberry.


Yoga is believed to have originated in India over 5,000 years ago. Derived from the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit, the term yoga means “to yoke” or “unite.” Yoga practice involves a joining of the body, mind, and spirit. Meditation, visualization, and focusing on breathing can help with letting go of worry and fear. One of the main concepts in yoga is being non-judgmental towards yourself, which is a powerful tool for stress relief since much of our stress comes from us being hard on ourselves.


The entire world at this moment is in their “otium.” Whether we want it or not we are all sequestered in our personal sanctuaries waiting for a virus that is invisible to the naked eye to dissipate. Until then how do we dig deep and find peace?


“This is why we are bringing online yoga classes as well as free meditations from The Perry Lane Hotel,” Falkenberry said. “The free meditation are scheduled for Thursdays at 9 a.m. and you can watch them on our Instagram channel, streamed live from the roof of The Perry Lane Hotel. It is also available on their Instagram account.”


“We are also streaming two classes a day during the week at 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. via Zoom, and Saturday and Sunday at 10:30 a.m.,” she said. ”We have also included a ’sound healing class’ on Tuesdays at 6 p.m. via Zoom. We support the good, which is reflected in the studio’s intention — artfully designed classes, consciously curated clothing, and a welcoming space for good movement, good music, and good mood. We bring that same intentionality to our virtual studio series, moving together keeps us anchored when we’re surrounded by separation."


Sound healing therapy uses aspects of music to improve physical and emotional health and well-being. While many people are only just discovering it, sound healing is a return to ancient cultural practices that used chants and singing bowls to restore health and relieve pain.


“Otium will be adding and announcing a virtual home retreat with The Perry Lane Hotel this month to include yoga classes, journaling, meditation, sound healing, and sacred space building,” Falkenberry said.


“We know that moving beyond the analytical mind into a state of meditation can improve countless aspects of our well-being, including sleep, decision-making, and emotional intelligence, but research also shows that turning our attention inward can increase feelings of social connectivity and wholeness, which is particularly important in our current window — there are fascinating studies on how meditation can actually raise our collective coherence, and now we have the time to read them.”