Yoga event held in Japan's Hokkaido ahead of International Yoga Day

About 200 people practiced yoga at a park in northern Japan's Hokkaido on Sunday, ahead of the UN-designated International Day of Yoga, which is on June 21.

A group of yoga instructors in the Tokachi region of Hokkaido organized the event in Obihiro City.

The participants received a lesson from an instructor who usually teaches Japanese people at the Indian Embassy in Tokyo.

The instructor showed the participants how to do yoga poses on the stage. The attendees were advised to move their bodies slowly while focusing on their breathing.

The participants tried various poses. To complete one pose, they twisted their upper bodies while in a seated position. Another pose required them to stretch out their limbs while lying on their backs.

A woman in her 50s said it was fun to exercise in an open space. She said she also learned how to keep her mind calm.

The instructor, Sanjay Kumar, said harmony is created among people when individuals practice yoga together. He said yoga also helps people learn how to lead a balanced life.