By Valentina Solci, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson at the Citi Habitats UES Office
Regardless of the season, many New Yorkers tend to be active yogis. With work-life taking up a lot of time within one’s week, it is inevitable that many people lean back on yoga and meditation to de-stress and unwind. When walking through the streets and waiting to catch the next subway, it is common to see people carrying their yoga mats under their arms or around their shoulders (via an adjustable sling strap). However, with the hotter months in full force and the vibrant energy surrounding the city on a daily basis, the art and practice of yoga become even more unique because of the variety of locations one can take their flow. Therefore, the following are five unique yoga studios/locations for you to check out if you are interested in bringing your practice to new grounds.
Located on the corner of Mercer Street and Spring Street, this yoga sanctuary offers a variety of class types for all levels. Alo, which stands for “air, land, and ocean”, was originally founded in Los Angeles in 2007 with the mission of bringing yoga to the world. Primarily, it is an athleisure clothing brand, but, over the years, it has proven to be much more than that. Their SOHO location, which is the only one in the East Coast, has their clothing merchandise (which is for men and women) spread out on both floors. In addition to this, they have a full-service cafe and lounge area on the first floor, and their professional yoga studio on the second floor.
Their yoga studio is open daily, offering classes from morning to evening. Alo brings in special guest instructors from around the world who specialize in a particular sector of fitness and yoga. For example, there are classes on increasing your flexibility, strengthening your handstands, quieting your mind through meditation, etcetera. Visit their website to reserve a spot and see the full weekly class schedules and offerings.
The Williamsburg Hotel
Calling all rooftop yoga lovers! This Brooklyn hotel has yoga classes by their rooftop pool everyday. From Monday to Friday, stop by for a quick early morning yoga session before heading to work. Classes start at 7:00AM and last for 60 minutes. Not able to make it at that time? No worries, the Williamsburg Hotel hosts their rooftop yoga classes on Saturday and Sunday from 8:30AM to 9:30AM. Classes are free for hotel guests, while the public will be charged $25 per session. Walk-ins are welcome, so if you happen to be in the area, swing by and unwind by their magnificent rooftop pool. During these hours, the sun is still rising and the surrounding views look magnificent; this is a class definitely worth getting up for.
Yoga to the People
Yoga to the People is a New York based company that has grown in popularity because of its easy access for all people, excellent class service, and the rustic vibe that each of their locations hold. This yoga company has studios all throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn, each offering classes like vinyasa flows, meditation, candlelit sessions, and even yoga teacher training! They are special because of their professional/welcoming service, the community atmosphere that dominates their class structure, and the way that they collect payment. Yoga to the People remains true to their goal of having yoga be for everyone by collecting payment on a donation basis. It is suggested to donate $10 per class, however, it is ultimately up to the guest to decide how much she/he wants to give. It is important to note that they only accept cash, and that mat rentals are $2 and water bottles are $1.
Because of their widespread community popularity, classes tend to fill up very quickly. Therefore, it is best to arrive at least 15 minutes early so you can choose your spot in the room and start warming up. Their classes are typically about 60 minutes long. Yoga to the People is open all day, everyday and is one of the most “walk-in friendly” yoga studios in the city.
For the most economical class option, participate in one of NYC parks’ free, public yoga classes. Similar to Yoga to the People, these classes are heavily intensive on a community atmosphere. These classes are a great way to remain active, enjoy the outdoors, explore city parks that may be new to you, and socialize with other community members. There are different class types such as the following: beach morning yoga, gentle flow, family yoga, meditation, vinyasa flow, sunrise/sunset yoga, and even yoga for kids. Check out their official website for more details on times and locations: www.nycgovparks.org
Brooklyn Grange Farm
This Brooklyn business is primarily a farm, which offers rooftop yoga classes during the warmer months. According to their website, Brooklyn Grange Farm is the leading rooftop farming business in the U.S. Their mission is to promote healthy and strong local communities through sustainability movements and green farming. They have three different locations throughout Brooklyn and Queens, however, their farm located atop Building no. 3 at Brooklyn Navy Yard is the one that offers yoga classes to the public. Brooklyn Grange Farm’s rooftop yoga season lasts until September and takes place atop the spacious, paved patio which overlooks the East River and lower Manhattan skyline. Yoga instructor Sarah Schumann focuses her class on being a “reflection of: the evolution of collective experimentation and discovery” (Brooklyn Grange Farm). Classes take place every Monday during sunset hour (6:30-7:30pm), rain or shine. Reserve your spot in advance ($20 per class) because there is a limit of 30 people, and don’t forget to bring your own mat, water bottle, and photo ID (to enter the yard).
These class locations are sure to leave you feeling present and one with the season. The warmer weather months in the city is special for many reasons, and those who happen to enjoy outdoor fitness are sure to take advantage of unique class offerings like these. If you want to stay active in other ways, check out our tips on where to Go Swimming in NYC This Summer.