Within the temperature-controlled interior of what used to be a warehouse, students flow from sun salutations to standing lunges before rising into rigorous poses. At the head of the class stands the studio's founder, Julie Verhoff Pipes, relaying the athletic blend of yoga and aerobics that she personally developed from a combination of Ashtanga, Vinyasa, and Bikram yoga techniques.
Though softened by woven curtains and hanging lanterns, the studio's raw, industrial feel remains. The Spartan decor increases focus since the studio possesses no distracting pictures or traditional yoga clowns.
Open Yoga Gallery helps yogis attain endurance, strength, concentration, and flexibility through 75-minute classes held in a progressive, eco-conscious studio. The passionate, certified instructors aim to revitalize students of all skill levels—from budding benders to expert extremity elongators—through a variety of small classes. Every week, the schedule brims with up to 40 classes, including Hatha yoga, which employs traditional postures to increase balance, concentration, and breath control, and Open Level Slow Flow, a gentle practice that focuses on core strength, alignment, and breathing while saying the class name five-times fast to improve enunciation.
World Peace Yoga thrives on a sense of community. Through the movements performed in each class, instructors aim to create a feeling of connection. They believe that yoga allows its practitioners to tap into reservoirs of love and empathy and that by healing oneself, each individual is closer to healing the world. This philosophy seeps into every aspect of the studio. It starts in the studio’s roots—a diverse band of instructors who infuse their certified teaching methods with rich, varied personal experiences—and branches out to each student with sundry class offerings such as spirit-energizing Laughter Yoga and body-toning Pilates mat classes. World Peace Yoga is a part of World Peace Earth, a foundation dedicated to creating change both on a global scale and within individual habits and mindsets. The foundation aims to foster a more peaceful world through small actions such as sustainable eating habits and larger gestures such as creating a sanctuary for exploited horses.
After honing her basketball, softball, and volleyball skills in high school, Kelly Williams graduated to a new role: early-morning workout queen at the local gym. Despite this illustrious title, her love of fitness began to fade. Before long, she wondered if she liked to move at all. Luckily, hot yoga classes quelled her doubts. Filled with exercises that challenged her definition of working out, these routines rekindled her passion for exercise and inspired her to open Bikram Yoga Toledo. Here, instead of jogging and pedaling to summon sweat, yogis glisten like the sun’s diamond tiara as they pose in a torrid classroom. In addition to making muscles more pliable, the heat helps oust toxins from the body. Led by a certified instructor, each class revolves around 26 Hatha-inspired poses sequenced by yoga master Bikram Choudhury. Paired with two deep-breathing exercises, these beginner-friendly bends and balances tone muscles and push oxygen through the bloodstream to foster full-body wellness. After class, students can retire to the locker rooms, where hot showers dissolve pent-up stress and sweatbands fashioned from Fla-Vor-Ice pops.
Shape Fitness believes that since exercise is such an important part of a healthy lifestyle, people should be able to fit a workout into their own schedules. This spacious gym is staffed and open 24 hours per day, seven days per week, and clients here have access with their own key. Cardio and strength training equipment helps members stick to their fitness regimens, and group class are available for people who like to work out in a motivating, social environment. Certified personal trainers are also on hand to help train those looking to amp up their fitness routine.
Modo Yoga's signature 40-posture hot-yoga series blends standing poses with prone poses—such as corpse pose—on the studio's cork floors. That doesn't mean the classes are all identical, though. Some encourage a meditative silence, while others focus on flowing transitions between postures. Each instructor brings a personal flair to teaching, too, often setting a session-specific goal, such as building students' awareness of their breath or strengthening their core muscles.