Eco Fitness and Blue Turtle Yoga?s fleet of trainers and instructors believe that the best way to lead people to a sustainable, healthy lifestyle, is to point them toward as many routes as possible. To that end, they keep an impressive schedule of classes that includes yoga, cycling, barre, group fitness, and personal training. To give parents peace of mind during workouts, and to let youngsters blow off steam, Eco Fitness invites kids to romp through the 4,400 square-foot kids towne. There, children ages 8?12 shake off calories, excess energy, and clingy imaginary friends in bounce castles, play tag, and work on arts and crafts.
Jeffrey Cohen and Andrea Boyd know that yoga's lessons stretch far beyond the reach of the studio mat. By applying Jivamukti tenets to all aspects of their lives, these advanced certified teachers endorse continual compassion, self-awareness, and Satsang—the practice of gathering with those who inspire you. Beneath their physical teachings lie lessons on character, which promote behaviors such as humility and compassion. They also demonstrate the power of generosity by holding annual "Help Send a Student to Teacher Training" fundraisers. As they strive to extend yoga's core values into their everyday lives, they and their students hope to become "agents of change in the world," an underlying goal highlighted in their 2008 Yoga Journal feature.
This holistic approach to yoga is evident in their classes, in which they blend breath work, meditation, chanting, and philosophy into innovative formats. They fuel posing sessions with soundtracks that range from Led Zeppelin riffs to spoken-word stanzas and use hands-on assists to support guests who suddenly decide to crowd-surf.
Diagnosed with a disruptive neurological condition at age 10, studio founder David Kiser discovered Bikram yoga while he was seeking alternative treatments to help alleviate his chronic neck and back pain. After his first Bikram class in 2003, David noticed moderate relief of his symptoms, and after that day, he dedicated himself to continued practice, earning his teacher's certification three years later. David credits his pain relief to the two breathing exercises and 26 standing, seated, and hula-hooping postures of Bikram yoga, which promote healthy organ function by circulating freshly oxygenated blood throughout the entire body. During each class, instructors crank the practice space's temperature up to 105 degrees with 40% humidity to promote physical well-being. In the sultry atmosphere, students’ bodies safely sink into each stretch, flushing toxins out of freshly opened pores. Afterward, onsite showers and locker rooms allow students to recompose themselves while planning a class field trip to the nearest glacier for some postclass relief.
Savannah Yoga Room's instructors focus on traditional Hatha styles, creating classes accessible to newbies and challenging enough for yoga veterans. In addition to teaching pupils to center their thoughts with a slowly linked sequence of poses, they introduce the basic breathing techniques needed to blow out a centenarian's birthday candles during Hatha Flow Level I sessions. In Hatha Flow Level II, they quicken the pace to ensure a more dynamic practice and incorporate meditation.
After nudging up the studio?s thermostat to around 85 degrees and setting off a miniature supernova to heat the space, they enlist strong Ashtanga postures during power yoga, harnessing the radiating heat to engage muscle groups across the entire body without sacrificing the style's mindful focus or four-part om-ing harmonies.
Students glide slowly across the gleaming wood floors of Columbia Tai Chi Center, their controlled purposeful movements sihouetted in natural light from a window. Wesley Adams, the director and head instructor, leads students through the moving meditation that is Tai Chi, helping students find balance and peace as they learn the ancient discipline. Wesley also offers Q-Ex Mindful Movement classes, a contemporary fitness program that draws on the ancient practices of Tai Chi and Qigong to help build strength and reduce stress. All his classes are small, with a 10:1 student-to-teacher ratio to ensure all students can benefit from personal attention and no one student hogs all the relaxation.
Located in the historic town of Summerville in a quaint red-brick building, Summerville Yoga and Wellness is a newly opened yoga studio dedicated to helping its clients heal and relax. Its certified instructors believe that all yoga styles are beneficial, so the studio offers hot classes, Vinyasa-style sessions, and Intro to Yoga classes in a spacious, light-filled studio with hardwood floors. Every class is both a physical and mental workout, with a focus on relaxation and proper posture.