With lots of windows bringing in natural light and amber-colored wooden flooring inside the studio, Corpo Yoga Studio screams relaxation. Or, rather, whispers it, with classes that emphasize both the physical aspects of regular yoga practice and its spiritual inner message. Under the direction of Cybele Chamas, the studio provides a wide selection of classes in different types of yoga as well as a yoga basics session for beginners. Regardless of which yoga style you profess to love, the studio’s emphasis is on its three basic components – poses, breathing exercises and meditation/relaxation, which are near-universal principles. Yoga classes run, 60, 75 or 90 minutes, though the studio does offer private sessions and special workshops and events.
Inside Bikram Yoga Falls's heated practice space, students of all experience levels bend and stretch through Bikram yoga's 26 postures for a challenging yet stress-relieving workout. During the 90-minute classes, instructors lead up to 50 students through a regimented series of poses paired with two pranayama breathing exercises. The classes are designed to increase strength and flexibility while decreasing the body's tension level, clearing the mind of stressful events such as catching the family dog reading your diary. The routine is performed in a studio heated to temperatures hovering around the 100-degree mark, coaxing muscles to sink deeper into stretches and ousting the body's toxins through sweat.
Dharma Studio co-owner Loree Shrager discovered the healing power of yoga after suffering from severe scoliosis and back pain. Through gentle stretching and gradual strengthening, she was able to carve out periods of relief in her life. Today, she uses her PhD in clinical psychology, her work as a therapist, and her experiences as a mother to inform her teaching. The other half of the Dharma Studio foundation, Natalie Morales, emphasizes self-discovery during her classes, which range from lighthearted Funyasa to challenging yet deeply relaxing Yoga Nidra sessions. Together, the duo promotes a family and community vibe—their children's program was featured on Univision's Primer Impacto, and their studio’s walls display the work of local artists.
To make guests comfortable, Shrager and Morales have compiled a team of compassionate instructors and imbued the studio with a warm ambiance devoid of air horns. The Miami New Times said that the "quaint one-room studio exudes peace, from walls accented with paintings of Buddha to soothing, lingering aromas of incense," and even named it the Best Place to Meet Single Women in 2010. The studio may have earned the title thanks to events such as a Saturday-night Dharma After Dark class, during which live musicians serenade students with guitars, violins, and melodic crystal bowls.
Miami heat is one thing; Bikram yoga heat is another. For Bikram, the room temperature needs to be 105° Fahrenheit with 40 percent humidity, making for a sweat-inducing session that’s sure to burn some calories. Bikram Hot Yoga Miami believes in the steamy practice and always keeps their thermostats cranked, using the heat to warm muscles so participants can stretch further, sweat out more toxins and let their blood circulate. A typical workout runs 90-minutes, with just about every muscle and joint getting a hearty workout inside this no-frills warehouse district space. Small cubbies hold personal belongings during class, and two showers let participants clean up after their warm sessions – though you should always bring your own towel and yoga mat.
Miami Yogashala's friendly, enthusiastic instructors are fully certified and know how to help students sweat and stretch until they're calm and yet still as energized as an electrical storm in a microwave filled with magnets. If you're new to yoga, this is a great chance to learn poses such as the downward dog, the upward dog, and the omniscient narrator. For experts of the art, Miami Yogashala's classes can further assist in stretching muscles, relieving stiffness and pain, increasing flexibility and strength, and improving range of motion, balance, and posture—all vital to moving up in the corporate world, seeing over the steering wheel, and slicing your morning cheeseburger.