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Mad about Yoga: Courtney Thorne-Smith

In between tapings of Ally McBeal, the 32-year-old actress turns to yoga at least four times a week to keep herself sane and happy.

By Dya Englert

For 10 years, yoga has been an integral part of Courtney Thorne-Smith's (Melrose Place, Ally McBeal) life. "Yoga and meditation keep me sane and happy. They keep me balanced when all around me is spinning out." The 32-year-old actress, who also runs and lifts light weights, commits to yoga anywhere from four to six times a week. "Nothing feels as great as a yoga class," she says. "I just love being in a room full of people that are all striving to be better." When Thorne-Smith does yoga at home, she often battles her three dogs. She laughs, "They are fascinated by my doing yoga. When I am in Down Dog, I've got a dog under my Down Dog." Her first encounter with yoga was when she was 5 years old. "My mom was doing yoga with Lilias [Folan] on PBS," she recalls. "It brings back memories of not being able to knock on her door for half an hour because she was in Headstand." Since committing to her own practice, Thorne-Smith learned that "if I take care of myself properly, I am more available for life in a positive way." She believes that if she doesn't spend that hour in the morning doing yoga, she has "23 hours of being more closed off, more anxious, and more afraid."

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