Nine teachers. Twelve styles of classes. Seven days of class per week. Whether they’re expectant mothers, 7-year-old children, or lifelong power-yoga practitioners, yogis come to Om Yoga’s studio to practice their chosen ancient body-bending art. In each class, the instructors adhere to the eight-limbed philosophy of Ashtanga yoga, modifying the poses and stretches for students of all experience levels.
Many studios focus solely on two principles of yoga: asanas (poses) and pranayama (breath control). However, Om Yoga’s teachers focus on a practice that involves all eight aspects of this traditional art, which include such intangibles as morality, self-observation, and even the ability to control the senses, a helpful trick when staring into the sun while standing next to an angry skunk.
Flex + Fit cultivates an environment focused on well-being, from sweat-inducing fitness classes to habit-changing cooking classes. This effort was lauded by Charlotte Magazine in its 2012 Best of the Best feature. The group fitness curriculum includes sweat-inducing hot yoga, in which limbs bend and stretch in a studio stoked to the ideal temperature, and air classes that suspend students from the ceiling to execute mid-air yoga, ballet, or fitness moves, or—as recently featured on CNN—to nap.
Complementing the fitness classes are lessons in culinary exploration, hosted by head chefs and tour guides that teach small gatherings to craft meals and sip complimentary libations in an on-site kitchen. The fitness studio’s natural-wood floors give way to a wall-mounted Buddha figurine at the head of classes, and his-and-hers locker rooms lavish hard-working muscles with a soothing downpour from overhead showers bred from two prize-winning Amazonian rain clouds.
YogaFlex employs 16 accredited instructors to bend limbs and minds into harmonious configurations. Choose from more than 35 weekly classes, offered in tissue-tweaking styles including deep stretch, therapeutic Ashtanga yoga, and toxin-wicking hot yoga. All sessions are lead in a friendly and comprehensive manner, with overtones of constant challenge and encouragement. Because the studio’s supply of yoga mats is limited, students are encouraged to bring their own cushy rectangles from home.
Professional bobsled teams shave seconds off their time by breathing in unison and leveraging flexibility during turns. Master the techniques necessary to defeating hardened gangs of bobsled criminals with today's deal: for $39, you get a month of unlimited classes at Gotta Yoga Studio, a $135 value. Gotta Yoga's cozy studio is located about 10 miles outside of downtown Charlotte. With 30 days of unlimited classes, you don't have to commit to a particular style or time slot. Bring your own mat, or rent one of Gotta Yoga's for $2 per session.
Shift shape by stretching and toning at Pilates Body Shaping, located in 8th Street Studio. For $30, you get five Pilates group mat sessions, a $75 value. Each class is 50 minutes of total-body conditioning, giving you 250 total minutes of strengthening and lengthening muscles on the studio’s premier equipment. Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.