Like most naturally athletic people, Meredith Feinberg was accustomed to being good at every sport. And yet when she took her first yoga class in 1992, she just couldn't seem to make her body do what she wanted, so she gave up after a few weeks. Then she suffered a debilitating injury that prevented her from participating in other sports. Determined to keep moving, she gave yoga another try, and kept at it until it became easier and easier. She loved it so much that she founded her own studio, Yoga Svana.
Here, she teaches Vinyasa-based classes that combine traditional exercise and yoga and pump up clients with energetic music spanning several decades and genres. Her homey, welcoming studio also offers more than 30 classes a week in Vinyasa flow, prenatal, Kundalini, and Dharma yoga. Yoga Svana even offers kids yoga classes, helping youngsters achieve the level of flexibility necessary to fold themselves up and hide in their lockers during boring school assemblies.
In 1977, Maritza Detz ventured into the health-care industry. As a licensed practical nurse, she ameliorated injuries, softened the effects of trauma, and cemented her desire to help others live fuller lives. This career laid the groundwork for her next occupation as a certified Bikram-yoga instructor. Since 1988, she's been practicing Bikram Choudhury's 26-posture practice, helping students of all athletic abilities and fitness levels recovery from injuries, strengthen their bodies, and expel harmful toxins accumulated during family reunions.
Owner Rosa Santana had the privilege of learning directly from BKS Iyengar, the Indian founder of Iyengar yoga. She was so inspired by his unique approach to yoga—which combines poses with props such as blankets, bolsters, blocks, and straps to develop proper musculoskeletal alignment—that she began to devote her life to the restorative practice, becoming an instructor in 1995. Today, she shares her passion with students in her a soothing, pink-hued studio. She and a team of equally fervent yoga teachers work with students of all abilities during the 60- and 90-minute sessions, shepherding students through a tapestry of postures and prop-fortified movements. With enough practice, Santana believes that students may see an increase in strength and flexibility, as well as a decrease in stress and spirit-animal freak-outs.
Lifelong dancer Carmen Garson chose the goddess as the symbol of her fitness studio and boutique because it represents a loving, feminine energy. She aims to channel that energy throughout each of her belly-dancing, flamenco, Bollywood, African-dance, and yoga classes, helping earn her establishment the Hollywood Gazette’s Best Place for Yoga award. Within the wood-floored studio decked out with creations by local artists, she and her team host 33 dance and fitness classes a week.
Garson also opens her space for monthly art and poetry events where women come to share their creativity and boast about how many arms their inner goddesses have. She stocks the on-site boutique with exotic clothing and jewelry, as well as with spiritual books, essential oils candles, and incense.
Yoga One houses a team of friendly, experienced yogites who help students sweat and stretch until they're calmer, more energized, and more revitalized. Hatha, Vinyasa, and Anusara classes are offered throughout the week for beginners through advanced practitioners, ensuring that patrons of all experience levels can find a comfortable place to pose. The various classes are packed with a multitude of benefits that will help students subdue snappy muscles, relieve stiffness and pain, increase flexibility and strength, or prepare for future laser-limboing cat burglars.
• For $39, you get a five-class studio package including spin classes, ultimate classes, yoga-stretch classes, and the ultimate ballet-barre workout class (an $80 value). • For $49, you get a five-class Pilates-FIT package (a $105 value).