Learning how to Trapeze in NYC

While I spent the last weekend in NYC cramming 12 back-to-back fitness classes in 3 days, I decided to stay an extra day to actually enjoy the city. Which means, planning MORE things to do, because that’s what I do 🙂

I’ve been wanting to try a trapeze class for the past year or so, but unfortunately, there isn’t anything in Ohio that is remotely close to it. I googled “New York City Trapeze Class,” and I found the most amazing place to learn how to trapeze. Outside. Along the Hudson River. On a rooftop. What could possibly be more cooler than that?!

NYC trapeze nina elise

So, I convinced my friend to go with me, and we spent 2 hours on a Monday morning/afternoon learning how to fly. Since I have an irrational fear of heights, I thought this would be a lot scarier than it was. However, as I clipped myself into the rigging & walked up the ladder to jump off the Trapeze platform, I told myself nothing could be more scarier than bungee jumping. Besides, you are strapped in, and if your hands slip while swinging, you fall into a bouncy net. Pretty impossible to get hurt or die!

New york trapeze

Ready to Trapeze!

To start off, we signed in, and the instructor strapped a belt around us with 2 hooks on each side. There was someone on the ground instructing us when to jump, hook our legs, swing, etc… and was also holding onto a chord that would slow us down/catch us from even hitting the net if we did fall! I’m telling you, this was a really great, super safe to practice. The staff was so energizing & so helpful, and I highly recommend going to this location specifically to learn from them! (Mario, Annie, and Travis)

nyc trapeze lessons

After explaining to the group (there was about 10 of us) what to do, we went up for 2 rounds to get the hang of it.

For the 3rd & 4th round, we could add a backflip as a dismount (see the video below!). This as a lot of fun, just like dismounting off bars in gymnastics 🙂

The 5th & 6th round, we were instructed on how to catch someone swinging on another trapeze! This looks WAY more complicated than it was… The timing had to be perfect, but it was so easy because you were queued exactly when to jump and let go! Almost everyone did it right the first time they tried.

Overall, it was a ton of fun, and I recommend everyone to try it! Only $60 for 2 hours, and you get to go up & swing 6 times. (also, don’t forget sunscreen – I got a little burnt that afternoon!) The more you go, the more skills you can learn. There is also an indoor facility in the case that you don’t want to be outside. However, I recommend the rooftop, as the views are amazing!

Have you ever taken a trapeze lesson? What other fun things are there to do in NYC that i missed?

July Free Class: Lululemon Polaris

Hi!

I didn’t realize how long it had been since I last posted… so, a quick update, as I’ve been ridiculously busy with work and everything yoga!

  • Another NYC Yoga weekend is planned for August – more studio reviews coming soon!
  • Finalizing travel plans to  Ibiza, Barcelona, and Thailand… only 2 months away!
  • Picking up a 3rd Yoga class beginning Mid-August
  • Studying for another fitness certification beginning early next year… more to come on this! 🙂

Melt Hot Yoga & Fitness (check out their new website, it is AMAZING!) is studio of the month at Lululemon Polaris… which means, I’ll be teaching a free class on July 31! Don’t forget to mark on your calendars – I’ll see you soon!

Check out the details here:
July 31, 10:30 am
Polaris Fashion Place – Lululemon
1500 Polaris Pkwy #1062, Columbus, OH

lululemon.PNG

 

Studio Review: Dharma Yoga Center in NYC

After running 4 miles, taking a yoga class at laughing lotus, then at Y7 STudio, THEN going out for dinner and drinks until midnight the day before… My internal clock woke me up at 7:30 am, and I could not get back to sleep. Yes, my body was sore. Yes, my eyes were sleepy. But, fate must have known better, because I popped open my Mind Body app and searched for yoga studios nearby with an early class. Lucky for me, there was a 10 am class at The Dharma Yoga Center with THE Dharma Mittra, and only a 10 minute walk away.

My friend is doing her 500 hour yoga training under him next year, and was talking about it before I left for my trip. So, it turns out that the universe had plans for me to check out the world-renown yoga center this time around 🙂

dharma yoga

I took an elevator up to the studio, and stepped out into a large room. The staff was pretty friendly, and they took me on a little tour of the studio, showing me where the changing rooms & bathrooms were located.

dharma mittra

Everyone seemed pretty nice, and I went into the main room where I would be practicing for the next 1.5 hours. There was a place to store my personal items, so I set them in a cubby & grabbed a blanket & block nearby. Dharma came in and started his powerpoint for class to make sure it was working, and then chatted with a  few people.

dharma mittra yoga studio

Class began with Dharma talking about Prana, and chanting mantras that connected to the different chakras. We then did a few sun salutations to warm up the body. Dharma would change the slides every time we did a different move – the slides showed the pose to do, from beginner to advanced options. Then, you held the pose. For a really, really, long time.

Finally the class ended with 10 minutes of Yoga Nidra & Savasana (Pretty sure I fell asleep), then concluded with some more chanting/OMs. I felt so relaxed after that I felt like I was walking around in a haze! For being as hard as it was (you make it your own level of difficulty, which is something I like to do), I felt amazing afterwards!

Dharma was funny, did a few of the poses with us (a 77 year old man is more flexible than me AND can stand on his head… with no hands!! Incredible to watch), and taught an amazing class.

In summary: Take a class with Dharma! He is a kind, funny, man who is an AMAZING teacher. The studio is very inviting, has a lot of space, and supplies enough props for their very large classes.

Pros: Staff was very kind. Big changing rooms = good privacy. 2-3 stalls in the bathroom. Plenty of space to move around in the main area. 2-3 studios. Lots of blocks, straps, blankets, AND yoga wheels available for use. Can store personal items in room you were practicing in. Can rent mats/towels.

Cons: No shower. No filtered water station to refill water bottle (only sink water).

Cost: $22 single class pass (1.5 hours)

Studio Review: Y7 Studio in NYC

As a hot yoga teacher, I am always looking for other studios that offer hot yoga. The studio I teach at is unique – 99 degrees, 60% humidity, dimly-lit yoga… While it’s a little harder to take a class like this, it’s also a safe/non-judgmental place to practice. It’s dimly lit to give students the chance to practice in the dark versus a bright room where everyone can stare at you. And, you can always modify & drop down to your knees at any time to catch your breath at any time.

So, when I began looking for studios to practice at while traveling, I stumbled upon Y7 Studio in NYC. I wasn’t able to make it back in March, so I made it a point to take a class my very first day visiting the city. The studio is heated, but with infrared panels. It isn’t like normal hot yoga classes where heat is blown in – basically, the panels warm you up, from the inside-out!

I arrived at the studio in Flatiron after taking a class at Laughing Lotus, rushing to get there & eating the last half of my bodega bagel sandwich on the way. I walked up a few flights of stairs – check out the quote on the steps below – and arrived. Early. SUPER early. Apparently, I had registered for the 5:30 pm class, not the 4:15 class…. oops! Luckily, even though the classes were wait-listed when I signed up earlier that week, they were able to squeeze me into the earlier class.

y7 studio

The studio looked brand new – clean & tidy, and very organized (I am super OCD about clean space!). There was a fridge stocked full of Fiji waters, and across from it was a wall filled with cubbies to store your personal items. Around the corner was a changing station with curtains, where you could also refill your water bottles with filtered water. The hallway was filled with mirrors & hair dryers, for those wanting to go out immediately following class.
[Although, there were no showers at the Flatiron location (there are ones at the SoHo location), so I assume you could just dry your sweaty hair??] Face wipes, face wash, q-tips, hairspray, dry shampoo, and deodorant were available for use in the bathrooms – super convenient if you forgot your own items.

I went into the room (only studio at this location) after purchasing a towel rental – and it was DARK. Darker than the studio I teach at – the only light came from candles that surrounded the walls in the room. I will say that I could barely see ANYTHING, and I wasn’t really told what to expect when entering the room. So basically, enter at your own risk. There were raised notches on the ground to help you find where to line your mat up, which was a little annoying, but helpful so that the space could be maximized as much as possible. I kind of looked like someone with a blindfold on, touching the ground and trying to figure out where to lay my mat.

y7sSource: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NnpmnqbPLsM

The studio infuses hot yoga, hip-hop music, and a dark, safe place to practice. The teacher came in, put on some music, and started the class. The format was:
Warmup
3 different sequences performed 3 times – the 3rd sequence was performed by yourself, and a hip-hop song was blasted really loud until you were finished**
Final stretching/backbend
Savasana (with lavender sprayed around the room)
**I was a bit confused at first, as I wasn’t clear that we were supposed to flow on our own the 3rd time around… so I just kept moving until the instructor told us to do something else, and I eventually caught on. I wish I had been told about the format before class!

After the class, I chatted with the Instructor, Courtney, who was awesome (Her cues the entire class were on-point!)! She showed me an easy way to get into chin stand (which is my least favorite pose to do of all time) and talked to me a little about her teacher training.

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In summary: If you want a good workout, head to Y7 Studio. Also, if you are a beginner & nervous about other people watching you, this could potentially be a less stressful place to practice since it is so dark in the room. I am a huge fan of hot yoga, and this is a great place to get sweaty AND flow at your own pace. Plus, it’s great for your skin 🙂

Pros: Helpful Teachers & Staff.  Filtered water refilling station. Can rent mats/towels. Hair Dryers. Personal items in case you forgot your own (hair spray, deodorant, q-tips, dry shampoo, face wash, etc). Awesome music. Awesome sweaty workout.

Cons: No showers. Wait-listed a few days before class (sign up early!)

Cost: $25 single class pass, $3 towel rental

 

Studio Review: Laughing Lotus in NYC

When ultimately choosing what studios to check out while traveling, I rely heavily on locals, friends, and my own encounters/knowledge of teachers. I generally like to let fate lead me to the right places at the right time, as it never disappoints. With that being said, back in March, a friend told me to head to Laughing Lotus for a an awesome yoga class. So what did I do? I put it off. And my only justification for that, now, is that I was meant to take 2 classes this time around – because honestly, the instructors were AMAZING and beautiful, and I learned so much from them!

First off: I chose Victor Colleti for a “Fly” Class on a Friday afternoon:
Our fearless FLY team share their secret tools for taking flight. This spicy class is loaded with inversions and arm balances! ADVANCED

Definitely right up my ally, because I do love to stand on my hands 🙂

Upon arriving at the studio, I walked up 3 flights of stairs and was immediately greeted with very, very bright colors. Orange, pink… Holy Moly. If I wasn’t awake, I was now!

I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, so I just watched what everyone else was doing – walk through the hallways to a room that opened up to the main area. There were cubbies & benches to store your shoes & things, so I took my shoes off & walked up to the front desk. Everyone was so nice signing me in, and they directed me to the changing room/bathroom area (I was in sweaty clothes from a 4 mile run I had just gone on & realllly needed to change!).

Ok. So, this is my least favorite thing about the studio – the changing room is covered by a curtain, which means, if anyone walked in & out, people outside the room would see your bare butt peeking out if you were changing. There is also only 1 bathroom. There were a decent amount of people coming in & out of there, so I guess your only option is to wait for the bathroom to open up to privately change in there, or quickly get over your fear of being nude in front of complete strangers. I chose the latter, because honestly, I don’t care. It was just super crammed in there, and I just needed more space to crawl out of my sweaty clothes.

laughing lotus

After changing, I refilled my waterbottle with filtered water & entered the room (SEE, i told you it was bright!!!). There were cubbies to my right where I stored my belongings, and I picked up a block before settling down.

The instructor, Victor, walks in – he seriously has the most wonderful long, brown hair ever, btw – instantly cheering up the class.
We started out doing a breathing exercise, and talked about Prana – it was such an amazing talk about Prana & life force, and I loved how he explained it. He smiled & laughed the entire class, encouraging students, calling them by name… and I couldn’t stop smiling! There were so many fun people in that class, and I loved performing the sequences being taught (um, super HARD but amazing!). By the end, I was super sweaty & so incredibly happy I chose this exact class to attend!

Laughing Lotus Selfie Wall

Following class, I chatted with Victor briefly and met one of the owners, Dana! She was so welcoming and wonderful, giving me a few free passes to hand out to my friends & encouraged me to come back! (yes, I will be in a few weeks!) Before leaving, I took a selfie with Victor in front of the selfie wall – because obviously, every cool studio has a selfie wall 🙂

laughing lotus_victor

Second time around: I chose to squeeze in a 1 hour class before flying back to Columbus on a Sunday afternoon:
The Lotus hour:
Our GLOBALLY-LOVED signature flow is fluid, adventurous and totally transformative. We could go on, but you need to get to class.
Get all the #lotuslove in 60 minutes ALL LEVELS

The teacher for the class was Felipe Gonzalez  (who, btw, is originally from Cuyahoga Falls, OH – something I just found out by looking on the site.. I literally find Ohio people EVERYWHERE I travel!). He has shiny, beautiful black hair  & the voice of an angel!

Class started out with Felipe chanting & playing the Harmonium – then the rest of the class chimed in. The flow was beautiful, non-stop, and the cues absolutely perfect. This man was made to teach yoga! At the end of the class, the Harmonium was brought back out, and the class finished with 6+ rounds of chanting – the room literally sounded like a choir of angels, I kid you not. This man has beautiful vocals!

laughing lotus NYC nina elise yoga

One of the Amazing Murals at the Studio!

Unfortunately, surviving off of 1 hour of sleep, I got out of there and went to grab a bite to eat with a friend instead of staying and chatting. However, I will be back to take Felipe’s class again! Seriously, so so good!

In summary: Come take a class here. The studio is bright, the staff is kind, and the teachers are amazing.

Pros: Wonderful. Colorful. Inviting. Amazing Teachers & Staff. Can store personal items in room you were practicing in. Filtered water refilling station. Lots of blocks, straps, blankets available for use. Can rent mats/towels.

Cons: Small changing room & only 1 shower (bring flip flops!) + 1 bathroom – all pretty typical for most studios in NYC

Cost: $20 single class pass

Yoga Studio Reviews + NYC Recap!

This past weekend, I flew out to NYC to take a barrage of yoga/fitness classes within a 3 day period. I do this in order to see what other teachers/studios are like, what I can learn, etc.- basically continuous education as a Yoga teacher.
The result? love. lots of love, appreciation, learning… for myself, for others, for my body… Totally unreal. Yoga in NYC is so different than Ohio… actually, just the overall energy is different. I went into each class expecting nothing but a regular yoga/fitness workout… and it always ended up surprising me, in such a wonderful way.

Below is a recap of my time spent in NYC… just to give you an idea of how CRAZY my weekend was! I’ll be writing separate reviews for each studio soon – there are so many great things I learned & LOVED about every single class I took, and there is no way I can fit it all into 1 blog post 🙂

Friday:
Fly in @ check into hostel. Meditate, then for a 4 mile run along battery park with a friend.
Grab a bite to eat at a local bodega, then head over to Laughing Lotus at 2 pm for a 1 hour “Fly”  Class with Victor Colleti –> Check out the Full Review of Laughing Lotus Studio NYC here
Run to Y7 Studio to catch a class with Courtney at 4:15 pm for a 1 hour heated flow in a dark, candlelit room –> Check out the Full Review of Y7 Studio NYC here
Shower & head out for dinner & drinks with friends

Saturday:
I woke up a little early & couldn’t fall back asleep – so, I found the closest studio near my hostel & took an impromptu 1.5 hour yoga class with THE Dharma Mittra at the dharma yoga center (There is something very exciting about watching a 77 year old man doing a hands-free headstand at 10 in the morning!)…. The best unplanned class I’ve ever taken!
Cabbed it to the East Village to eat at Raclette – See images below. No explanation needed.

I mean… just look at that CHEESE!!!!

raclette nyc 3

Headed to Ishta yoga at 2 pm for a 1.5 hour yoga class with Marco Rojas (which actually turned into almost 2 hours). The hardest, best class I’ve EVER taken in my life!
Sprinted to Equinox in Greenwhich to catch 1 final 1 hour yoga class with a friend at 4:15 pm.
After 4.5+ hours of yoga classes, a belly full of cheese, and several protein bars later, I was ready to go out! (Seriously – Yoga is moving meditation, and although my body was a bit sore, I was ready to go out!) So, shower & head to Brooklyn to hang out with a friend. We went to an outside dance party, then walked around Brooklyn looking at the Graffiti Art. By the time we got back, I only ended up getting one hour of sleep… totally normal for a birthday weekend, right??

Brooklyn

Sign seen at outside dance party: If not us, Who? If not now, When?

Sunday:
Walk (in the rain) to Cyc Fitness in Astor with Jordan – get lost – and finally make it to the class as its starting.With 1 hour of sleep, this class woke me up!
Change clothes, head back to Laughing Lotus to take 1 final 1 hour flow with Felipe Gonzalez. Amazing, amazing class to end my time in NYC!
–> Check out the Full Review of Laughing Lotus Studio NYC here

gelato

Because this is what adults do – eat Gelato topped with macaroons for lunch

Headed back to meet up with a friend for “lunch” (see above :)), then finally catch the shuttle to head to the airport. By this time, I was ready to Pass Out!

I finally landed back in Columbus around 10:30 on Sunday night… and have been walking around in a haze the past few days, trying to catch up on sleep. And my body? Finally recovering. The good news is, after all those workouts, I have a much greater appreciation for my body. It is resilient, strong, and capable of pushing past any physical limit I may think I have (I’ll just say that my body was bent & adjusted in ways that I didn’t think possible! Basically, I came back as Gumby).

So what’s next? NYC AGAIN in a few weeks -either end of June/2nd weekend of July… more yoga/fitness classes, and more time to hang out with friends. Also, looking for jobs out there, so if you are hiring…. I’m looking 😉

Stay tuned for a more in-depth recap of NYC Studio reviews!

What was your last adventure you went on? And have you ever pushed yourself past what you thought were YOUR physical limits?

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