Santa Monica satisfies yogi stretches

Aside from the beach, the weather and the restaurants, one of the less obvious pleasures of living in Santa Monica is the countless yoga classes and studios it has to offer. Along with the physical benefits of yoga, the Mayo Clinic states that yoga also helps reduce stress and anxiety.

Some well-known types are bikram, hatha, vinyasa and iyengar.

Figuring out which style fits your lifestyle best may help you get the most out of your yoga routine.

Hot 8 yoga studio, located on 1422 2nd street, offers many discounts for students interested in hot yoga.

Deanna Ainsworth, the director of Hot 8 yoga, says: “Doing yoga in the heat is very detoxifying and cleansing. We’re massaging into the organs, and it gives a deep relief. Also, you are not as sore afterwards.”

While taking this type of yoga, employees at Hot 8 say it is important to prepare yourself before practicing hot yoga.

It is recommended that prospective and practicing yogi hydrate thoroughly and monitor their electrolyte and trace mineral levels with a healthy diet.

“A lot of time, students think ‘Oh I don’t have time to work out, only study.’ But you do have time, you just have to choose it and make time for it,” said Kaitlin Huwe, a UCLA student and an employee at Hot 8 yoga.

Donation-based yoga studios are helpful to those unwilling to commit to one studio. Bhakti Yoga Shala studio presents one such opportunity.

“Bhakti yoga is a path of yoga. It’s the path of heart, love and devotion, combined with vinyasa flow, a yoga where we connect our breath, movement and body,” said Tracy Sachs, a Bhakti instructor.

Another donation-based facility, Bryan Kest’s Power Yoga, has two studios, one at 1410 2nd St. on the first floor, and the other on the second floor at 522 Santa Monica Blvd.

Classes at Bryan Kest’s Power Yoga is directed towards yogis into physically-challenging and fast-paced yoga. “I like it because it really gives me a really good workout.

It has a lot vinyasa, which is breath with movement,” said Keyling Sabillon, a student at Power Yoga.

Like many other Santa Monica yoga studios, Yogis Anonymous offers a $17-drop-in rate.

You can also look into attending classes on campus that offer the same benefits as local studios.

“I used to be easily distracted before, especially when I would be doing my homework,” said International student Vaimiti Herlaud, a communications major at Santa Monica College and a certified yoga instructor.

“Since I’ve been really into yoga, it’s helped me keep my focus and control my stress," said Herlaud. "I learn to focus my breathing during my practice to really get into it, control it and challenge myself. I use this technique in my daily life and school now, and it seems to work very well.”