Yoga in the District

Photo: yoginis in a hamstring stretch
Getting into a deep stretch in a Bryan Kest-led class at Thrive Yoga

Washington has a vibrant yoga scene. There’s so much going on that I can’t keep track of everything. They focus specifically on DC. Plus, someone has a great eye for photography, which makes me slightly jealous.

With so many studios, I need to impose some kind of order, and alphabetical is not going to work.

DC Yoga Community: 25 yoga studios join forces to promote yoga in the Washington area.

Graphic: logo of Active Life DC
Daily pulse of healthy exercise in DC

Another useful resource is Active Life DC (Facebook). In addition to yoga, the site covers all manners of physical activity in the District of Columbia. It keeps tabs on current fitness events so that you can catch a special offer at a studio or attend a workshop by a favorite teacher.  For those who live outside of DC, you’re out of luck: it does not cover Maryland or DC, at least as far as I’ve been able to determine. I am not sure if this is by choice or the restriction imposed by limited staff and resources.

Downtown

  • Flow Yoga Center is Debra Perlson-Mishalove’s venture near Dupont Circle. Just coming out of a major expansion, taking over the second floor. It was my preferred center downtown. I went there once or twice a week with my daughter, but since blowing out my knee in 2008, I’ve concentrated my practice to Thrive Yoga, where I have perks. Teacher training is among the best in the region
  • Transquil Space Kimberly Wilson (her blog, TranquiliT thoughts) made this center extremely popular,  with elbow-to-elbow classes, but too much of the color lavender and go-girl boosterism for my taste. All the teachers that I met there over nearly 12 months were excellent. Multiple levels of Teacher Training . Other satellite studios have been opened Arlington. I have not been there since they moved to the new location on 17th Street.
  • Boundless Yoga Studio 15th and U Street, NW. Teacher training
  • YogaDistrict has three locations and offers low-cost classes. It also has an outreach arm, Yoga Activist for providing free yoga to homeless shelter residents, trauma survivors, children at public schools, and youth in detention. Teacher training is available.
  • The Studio DC Yoga Center offers a variety of styles. It offers teacher training. It has two locations, one near Dupont Circle, the other in Adams Morgan.
  • DCYoga on Connecticut Ave, just above Dupont Circle. Teacher training now offering an initial 40-hour module towards 200-hour program.
  • Shakti MindBodyStudio: near the Convention Center, 7th and New York Ave., NW
  • Epic Yoga: another DuPont Circle studio

Colombia Heights/Adams Morgan

Red Line NW

  • Ashtanga Yoga Center (Friendship Heights). David Ingalls has decided to close the studio, and it will be missed, but there are other Ashtanga options.
  • Circle Yoga: near the Maryland/DC line, founded by Annie Mahon. She also has a Budding Yogis for kids, teens and families. The studio is experimenting with a cooperative model and is community based. It draws on multiple influences: Iyengar, Anusara, Kripalu and Himalaya, with a strong meditation and mindfulness.
  • Cleveland Park Yoga
  • Woodley Park Yoga is an Ashtanga shop, run by Faith Scimecca, who is an Ashtanga teacher authorized by Pattabhi Jois, a rare breed.
  • Be Yoga – Yoga with Krista: Kripalu-style classes, and works with kids with special needs. In the Cleveland Park neighborhood.

Capitol Hill

Georgetown/Palisades

  • Down Dog Yoga is affiliated with Baron Baptiste and his Power Vinyasa Yoga. Just off M Street, near the C&O canal. It also has studios in Bethesda and Herndon (VA)
  • Lil Omm is a community-based studio in the Palisades neighborhood (west of Georgetown). Strong on kids yoga.
  • Centered Yoga opened in the summer of 2010.
  • Yoga Del Sol is the transplant of Diego Del Sol, who had taught in San Francisco for 10 years. The studio opened this year.
  • CorePower Yoga has one studio just off the Canal, with teacher training.
  • Ashtanga Yoga Studio of DC in the Palisades neighborhood, this studio brings together a lot of the Ashntangis who flocked to the recently closed Ashtanga Yoga Center. It offers offer Mysore classes, Ashtanga classes of various levels, beginner workshops, and Rocket Yoga.

Hot Yoga

Just to be different, I’ve lumped all the hot yoga places here.

Health/Fitness

Gyms and fitness centers often offer yoga classes. Some gyms are actually recruiting top-notch instructors as attractions to their locations. The ones listed below are a cut above the average offering.

  • Mint (Gallery, Dupont and Downtown)
  • VIDA Fit, three sites  (Verizon Center, Renaissance Hotel and Metropole)
  • Results Downtown, Capital Hill and Dupont Circle

I regret the disappearance of Georgetown Yoga, Spiral Flight Yoga and Yoga House (but there are still Kundalini-style teachers in the DC-area.).

Updated on September 22, 2013.

Photo: practicing yoga
Brian Kest led a workshop at Thrive Yoga

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