The enthusiastic instructors at Live in Joy strive to nurture the mind, body, and spirit of their clients through a bevy of yoga classes. Yogis spanning the flexibility spectrum can enjoy a variety of 60- to 90-minute stretch sessions designed for all ability levels. Teach an old recliner new tricks in a gentle chair yoga class, where seated asanas encourage increased mobility, flexibility, and relaxation, perfect for students who are recovering from an injury or seeking relief from awkward water cooler workouts at the office. Rigorous Vinyasa practices take students from one flowing pose to the next, pausing briefly in certain poses to help stretchers settle into deeper alignment. Instructors of yin yoga command downward facing dogs to "stay" in certain floor postures for up to five minutes to balance organ function, restore resiliency in the body's muscles and joints, and break the compulsion to mark yogis standing in tree pose.
Each visit to Royal Fitness shakes up workout routines with rows of equipment, an indoor saltwater pool, and group classes focusing on aerobics or mind and body cultivation. The center houses cardio gear from Precor and Cybex, and guests can climb stair masters or paddle away from imaginary anacondas on rowing machines. A dedicated strength-training center tones muscle groups with free weights, kettlebells and Nautilus machines, which can be used for self-prescribed workout routines or under the guidance of personal trainers. Trainers also lead more than 100 fitness classes each week emphasizing conditioning or a unification of the mind and body with classes such as tai chi. Additionally, the onsite youth center keeps an eye on tots while parents exercise or unwind with the help of massage therapy.
At Power Yoga Works, winner of the Suburban Yoga category in Philadelphia magazine's Best of Philly 2008, certified instructors guide aspiring yogis of all skill levels in muscle-toning and detoxifying classes. The studio's focus centers around the power Vinyasa style, a modality that combines deep-breathing exercises with sequenced sets of flowing poses to help to build strength, increase flexibility, release tension, and purge the mind of distracting heavy-metal guitar riffs. Fledgling flexers receive a proper introduction to the fundamentals during four-week beginners courses that teach body alignment and come with a complimentary yoga mat. The schedule boasts copious classes and meeting times, helping students to salute the egotistical sun seven days a week. A warm, spacious studio allows up to 65 students at a time to stretch and bend without disrupting their neighbors' wingspans.
Fountain of Yoga's staff focuses on motivating its clients toward complete wellness through yoga, and tension- and pain-relieving therapies. In calming, subdued lighting, the instructors lead students through Vinyasa yoga classes in which they synchronize deep breathing to a quick, flowing series of poses. In each session, students can perform more challenging or easier movements based on their abilities, and the instructors walk around the classroom to offer slight modifications to help them to perfect their technique. Furthering their relaxation services, instructors soothe clients and assuage their aches with massage and reiki services by appointment.
At Wake Up Yoga, practicing yoga moves far past the physical benefits. And while the physical benefits of yoga are significant?improved flexibility, strength, and endurance, to name a few?here, yoga is also meant to benefit the mind and heart. The studio hosts Vinyasa flow and yin classes, both of which help release anxiety and stress in different ways. Through the movements of yoga, students can take a break from the never-ending to-do list in their brains and instead focus on the breath and body.
Led by seasoned hatha yoga practitioner Valerie Rushmere, Studio 1831 immerses guests in an environment focused on fitness and spiritual health. Also a master belly dancer who performs under the stage name Valarina, Rushmere leads classes that cover the beguilingly, sinuous shimmies of Egyptian and cabaret-style belly dance as well as friendly, open yoga sessions. In addition to classes, Studio 1831 offers Art of Burlesque girls' nights out, wherein groups of up to 20 learn exotic dance moves.