As a new mother, Tanya Rose Bordner found herself suffering from the severe headaches, hormonal imbalances, and emotional lows that often accompany motherhood. She knew she needed to take better care of herself and decided to try Bikram yoga. Though skeptical at first, she found herself hooked after one class when she discovered that she felt better physically, emotionally, and spiritually, and she eventually decided to become a Bikram-yoga instructor.
Now, Tanya and her team of certified instructors—all of whom have trained for several hundred hours—strive to share the benefits that Tanya felt in that first class with others. Using two breathing exercises designed to circulate oxygenated blood, these instructors lead students through 26 postures that carve out toned muscles and pump up flexibility. The classes take place in a 105-degree room with a recently renovated rubber floor, and after each session, staff members encourage students to press an ice-cream cone or the provided frozen lavender towels against their heated brows.
For students of The Studio, flying is not only possible—it's therapeutic. Instructors in beginners’ acro-yoga classes lead guests through the basics of gravity-defying poses and partner work, helping them balance upside down and infuse their yoga practice with trust and playfulness. During these and all classes at The Studio, the emphasis is on acceptance. The staff maintains a judgment-free atmosphere, where burgeoning yogis can feel comfortable attempting new postures without making everyone nearby crawl headfirst into a sleeping bag. The two classrooms—one heated for intense Vinyasa sequences and one kept at a standard temperature—are as calming and open as the minds within them, bordered by walls of large, panoramic windows. Under the supervision of certified teachers, most of whom have undergone hundreds of hours of yoga training, pupils hone their sense of body and breath awareness.
This welcoming ambiance helped The Studio earn the 2012 award for Best Yoga Classes in the Reno News & Review. However, the center is not solely focused on classes and views them instead as one component of a total-wellness regimen. Backing up the sessions, massage therapists untangle muscular knots in two private rooms with Thai stretching techniques or other classic modalities. In the lounge, plush floor cushions support patrons as they sip complimentary tea and peel clementines. Owner Rachelle often stands behind the raw-food and juice bar, prepping wholesome meals for lunch and keeping fruit from getting too full of itself.
The expert yoga instructors Studio Eight Yoga foster deep mind-body connections as they shepherd students through various yoga styles with verbal communication and hands-on guidance. Beginners and advanced practitioners alike can explore fundamental poses, yoga philosophy, and core alignment in traditional yoga styles, such as Ashtanga and Vinyasa while evicting calories from their subdermal hotel rooms in the power yoga class. Iyengar yoga allows students of all levels to practice poses tailored to their individual needs, making this class helpful for students recovering from injury or those with physical limitations. Alternatively, students can enter the studio’s space for some quiet time to engage in solo bending sessions, sip chai tea, relax in the comfortable sitting area, or study pose charts on the studio walls. Hardwood floors steady student posing, and the decorative drapes admit only the most tranquil of sunbeams to enter.
Founder swami Vishnudevananda created the nonprofit Sivananda Ashram Yoga Farm to foster a community of students and instructors interested in introspection, self-discovery, and their holistic health. Located within an 80-acre expanse of the Sierra Nevada's foothills, the secluded farm enfolds visitors with oak- and pine-filled hills, three nearby rivers, and enough wildlife to stage a cartoon musical.
Under the tutelage of three swamis, a staff of volunteer instructors uses the peaceful setting to help focus students? attention on personal growth and bodily awareness during traditional outdoor yoga classes and specialized workshops. They faithfully teach the five points of yoga?proper exercise, breathing, relaxation, diet, and meditation?as they lead students down the four paths of yoga. Through the path of action, the path of devotion, Ashtanga, and the yoga of knowledge, they help their students forge a union of body, mind, and spirit. They weave specialized psychology, philosophy, and spirituality lessons into their asanas, which are bolstered with wellness programs and treatments such as massages with herbal oils, nutrition and detoxification programs, and ayurvedic therapies. To further unite their students with the world around them, the yogis promote sustainability with well water, solar-power systems, and an organic vegetable garden with which they can learn permaculture strategies.
The farm has onsite accommodations, including tents and heated cabins that overlook a pond. To keep their guests well-fed, a team of cooks whips up organic vegetarian cuisine following yogic and ayurvedic dietary principles, which means that meals are free of meat, fish, eggs, onions, and caffeinated beverages.
The 17-strong staff at Sattva Yoga, Pilates & Ayurveda brings an abundance of experience and certifications to each class, whether yoga, Pilates, or Barre. KCRA awarded the wellness emporium the title of Best Pilates Studio in 2010 and nominated it as a finalist for Best Yoga Studio in 2011. The team gears its yoga classes toward helping participants achieve tranquility, while directing their Pilates focus toward strengthening core muscles both in clients and in apples. They also teach two variations of Booty Barre, one meant to augment a Pilates regimen with its cardio component, and one that builds on both yoga and Pilates with long, fluid dance movements.
At East Wind Yoga, instructors have options for every skill level. Basic classes ease newcomers and returning students into the body mechanics of yoga. Flow classes improve their breathing and cardiovascular endurance, and yin classes combine postures from hatha yoga with deep stretches to address any joint compression and misalignment. Held in a room heated to 105?110 degrees, hot yoga classes help purge toxins after a long day of sleep-testing sarcophagi. Intense Yosu yoga targets balance through the use of soft and rubbery BOSU balls. Each of the studio's two locations offers a welcoming interior of paper lanterns, exposed brick, and stacks of colorful yoga mats for rental.