With backgrounds in Bikram, Vinyasa, and Yin yoga styles, Xplore Yoga's collection of passionate instructors helps students of all experience levels further their individual yoga practice while honing healthy bodies and minds. The studio’s seven-day schedule boasts 27 heated classes each week, including traditional Bikram yoga sweat sessions. During the 90-minute Bikram practice, students perform 26 postures and two deep-breathing exercises in a room heated to more than 100 degrees to promote detoxification, flexibility, and the deep understanding that comes with walking a mile in a camel’s shoes. Vinyasa flows take mat mavens through a series of continuous postures, adding an aerobic element to the practice that helps build lean muscle and increase endurance, and Yin yoga utilizes strategic stretches that target the body's connective tissues around the hips, thighs, and lower spine.
There is strength in numbers at Bikram Yoga Fremont—flexibility, too. The studio’s staff of 10 certified Bikram yoga instructors schedules more than 30 classes per week–some in the morning, some in the afternoon, and others at night. Each class takes place in a 105-degree studio and teaches students the breathing exercises and 26 postures of Bikram yoga’s creator Bikram Choudhuy. The staff’s handle on Choudhuy’s techniques, paired with their enthusiasm for maintaining a healthy lifestyle, was recognized in 2009 when readers of the Freemont Bulletin voted the studio Best Yoga Studio.
Hot Box Yoga's cadre of yogis, some of whom have earned their 200-hour certification or spent time learning the art in Asia, helps students foster emotional poise and physical strength. Instructors guide their charges through a schedule packed with yoga styles, including core-forging Ashtanga and time-tested Hatha. Within the studio's 2,200 square feet of stretching space, hot yoga sessions usher toxins out of the body by harnessing the flexibility-boosting powers of warmth in the sun-soaked studio. Those gestating tiny humans can build strength, flexibility, and bottle-juggling skills through gentle prenatal yoga classes.
The instructors at Bikram Yoga Santa Clara take Bikram very, very seriously. During the run of their 90-minute sweat sessions, students cannot leave the room or speak, and they keep still between asanas. Cell phones and other external distractions stay outside. It's this intense focus, concentration, and pursuit of self-control that distinguish this style of yoga.
As sweltering heat engulfs the room, instructors encourage students to explore the limits of their body and mind by guiding them through 26 postures and two breathing exercises. The poses are simple enough that even yoga initiates can perform them, but at a humid and challenging 105 degrees, the body begins to sweat almost immediately. As the class progresses, heart rates speed up and the flow of the poses demands every ounce of mental energy to maintain focus. Eventually, toxins flush out of the pores, tension stretches out of the muscles and ligaments, and the heat begins to enable practitioners to perform deeper movements with a diminished risk of injury.
Bikram Yoga Santa Clara has onsite showers for a postworkout cooldown. Students are encouraged to bring plenty of water, a mat, and a towel.
Smiling terra-cotta statues, forever posing, and potted orchids caught in a heliotropic stretch mirror the stillness and intensity inherent in Yoga at Cindy's challenging sessions. Skilled yogis guide groups of fewer than 30 students through hot-yoga classes, sweating out toxins and loose change caught in pores in the 98-degree rooms. Practitioners of all skill levels bend their way through a variety of poses in the 60- and 90-minute sessions as the heat helps to keep muscles malleable, improve blood flow, and promote detoxification. Classes include heated Vinyasa-flow that focuses on the synchronization of breath and movement, more vigorous power-flow courses that tone muscles, and specially designed classes for recent mothers and mothers-to-be. In between classes, the studio is cleaned daily, and deep cleaned every other week to avoid the notoriously judgmental eye of the full and half moons.
Lavender walls evoke a tranquil dusk sky as students and yogis make the transition through the ancient poses of the Hatha, Ashtanga, and Bikram traditions. Here, experienced teachers guide groups toward states of intense focus and increased physical fitness with a series of stretches, bends, and deep-breathing exercises. An emphasis on safety abounds as the instructors help students align their bodies properly, and padded, Zebra floor coverings absorb joint pressure that would otherwise build up in knees and backs until it took over bodies and forced them to be spokespersons for aspirin.
The schedule of classes meets students of all skill levels where they live. Easy-going Vinyasa classes weave poses and breaths into a graceful, dance-like sequence, and more demanding Bikram sessions explore 26 classical poses in a 95-degree room, which helps loosen muscles and oust pent-up toxins. After class, students retire to an ADA–compliant changing room, where they can bask in showers and relax like a kitten reclining on a pillow made of sunbeams.