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Body And Brain Coming To Mineola

 Yoga facility opening on Hillside Avenue

Joyce Peprah was inspired, inclined to proceed with a vision of holistic healing through the power of yoga after suffering a leg injury. 

Rather than rely on prescription drugs to help with the pain, she pushed through the agony with spiritual discipline that originated in ancient India.

The idea sprung while working at her current job. She is a nurse at the Cornell Medical Center in New York City. 

However, the plan is coming to fruition in Mineola.

Peprah’s Body and Brain Holistic Center For Yoga will open at 365 Hillside Avenue after being approved by the Mineola Village Board on Wednesday, Jan. 9. The Uniondale resident has taught yoga since 2009.

Peprah holds a masters degree in midwifery and women’s health. Her work in the newborn intensive care unit in Manhattan keeps her humble and balanced.

“I had a problem with my right knee and left shoulder,” said Peprah. “I had the choice to go see my orthopedist first, but I chose to do yoga. Within three weeks my left shoulder was fine and my right knee is better. Then, I decided to train and teach people what I learned.”

With her background in physiology, Peprah thinks of applying yoga as an alternative healing solution. She plans to train up to eight people at a time during class sessions in the village, which could run five days a week.

The primary benefits of yoga include pulse rate decreases, cardiovascular efficiency increases, joint range of motion increases, and  eye-hand coordination aid, among other health related improvements. Peprah plans to apply all facets of the exercise routine.

“Everything that you do originates from your thoughts and emotions,” she said. “As a person with a medical background, I can understand that. We as people have feel-good hormones and then we have the hormones that create fight-or-flight [issues]. If people are constantly under stress, you are constantly being affected by fight-or-flight. Through yoga, we teach you to relax, to stretch and by the end of the day, you’ll feel better.”

Peprah plans to continue her position in Manhattan, but she feels that what you focus on will always grow. If the business takes off, she may hone her craft on the late 19th century callisthenic.

“If I want to help people, then I’ll have to [leave nursing],” said Peprah.

The approval process of the business was smooth, but saw slight opposition from neighboring residents. Jean Keeler, a 22-year Foch Boulevard homeowner was happy to see the center replace a mortgage broker,  but is concerned about parking issues.

“I think the enterprise you’re engaging in is a noble endeavor,” Keeler said. “Most of the parking [in the area] is on the street. Some of it is used on Foch Boulevard where we live. As a resident, I’m concerned about the flow of traffic coming to an already congested area.”

Keeler was also critical of the condition of the street, which she believes hasn’t been paved since she moved to Mineola. Peprah may encourage patrons to use a nearby municipal parking lot if no space is available during operating hours.

“We have a lot of U-turn situations happening, though having nothing to do with this business, but because it’s a through street to a main road, there’s a lot of traffic going through that area,” Keeler said.

The village currently has a road-repaving project in the works, according to village officials.

“I think this is a step above a dance studio, because some dance studios have kids in classes who need to be dropped off successively,” Trustee Paul Pereira said.