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Love Harry Potter? Grab your wand, yoga mat and head to the park

Wands will be available for participants at Harry Potter Yoga in the Park event, Saturday at Emerson Park in San Luis Obispo.
Wands will be available for participants at Harry Potter Yoga in the Park event, Saturday at Emerson Park in San Luis Obispo.

An enchanting new fitness craze is coming to the Central Coast: Harry Potter yoga.

Harry Potter Yoga in the Park, being held Saturday at Emerson Park in San Luis Obispo, will feature yoga poses based on J.K. Rowling’s best-selling fantasy books and the popular film franchise they inspired. Local yoga instructor Ash Rexford is organizing the free event with her friend Lauren Avjean Parzanese.

“It will be a fun way for Harry Potter nerds to get their yoga on,” said Rexford, who teaches at SLO Yoga Center. “I’m excited to see what other people bring to the table.”

For Saturday’s session, which runs from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Rexford has put together a spellbinding sequence.

Participants can channel their inner Wizard Warrior or practice poise with a Whomping Willow pose, modeled after a tree pose. There’s even a version of downward facing dog named after Fluffy, the fierce, three-headed fido from “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.”

“I’m hoping to be able to play with some dueling spells,” Rexford said. “For poses with outstretched arms, we will be holding wands in our hands.” (A few wands will be provided for those who don’t bring their own.)

Rexford encourages participants to wear their most magical apparel, but advises leaving robes and pointy hats at home.

If you don’t know a sun salutation from a Slytherin, don’t worry. Harry Potter Yoga in the Park is open to all ages and experience levels — although young wizards must be accompanied by adults.

For more information, go to www.facebook.com/events/765561133600663.

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