Flow Yoga Center (DC)

Flow was my yoga base for my 2.5 years in DC, conveniently located down the alley from my apartment and home to some of the best teachers in DC. (Said alley can be seen in the google street maps picture, to the right of the building). I have much fondness for this yoga community, which kept me anchored during my stint in DC. I’d even hang out after class to sit in the lounge and sip the free tea, very unlike me. My first regret: never buying a t-shirt.

Pros: best yoga teachers in DC, diverse class offerings, great location, excellent workshops, and giving back to the community seemed part of its DNA.

Cons: small, crowded, and due to diversity of offerings + my preferences had to plot my schedule carefully. Rental mats were slippery. Mat storage wasn’t dependable–my mat disappeared from storage a few times, only to reappear days later (all to shrugs from staff).

Space: Two floors, three rooms (small, med, large), no showers, standard yoga studio dark pastel color scheme, ridiculously crowded front room (oh how I wanted to get an architect in there to reconfigure the space). Cozy lounge area.

I crept into Flow anonymously in fall 2008, but by the time I slipped away in early 2011 (most) everyone knew my name. My go-to teachers were Gail, Terence, Cory, Rob, Megan, and Mike–teaching from the Ashtanga, Iyengar, Jivamukti, Shiva Rea, Anusara and Dharma Mittra traditions, respectively. The variety of teachings strengthened my practice.

Gail had a devil-may care approach to Ashtanga. My lazy ass tends to find Ashtanga too serious and type A, but she made it fun. Yay Gail! Terence was very precise (Iyengar trained) but threw in sun salutations to keep things moving. His fast-ish pace plus music made the classes more fun than other Iyengar classes I’ve taken, and through his teaching I learned so much about my body in space (my innards, my bones, my muscles). Yay Terence. Cory was (is) one of the most popular teachers at Flow. Great energy, kept the alignment with his vinyasa, dharma talks were not annoying (I mean this with the utmost respect). Megan taught mostly level 1 classes. Long holds, bandha work, a memorable laugh, she taught a deceptively tough class. Last but not least, Mike taught a sweaty, physically challenging class, and pushed me to do things I didn’t think my body was capable of doing. Serious (in a good way) and very funny. I was very happy to tun into him at Kula (in NYC) recently, where he gave me a quick download of where to go yoga-wise in NYC. Yay Mike.

Near the end of my time at Flow, I felt like I plateaued. I needed to develop a home practice. I was one of the more experienced yoga-ers among the regular Flow attendees and started to feel self-conscious. My second regret: not saying goodbye before leaving DC.

Flow felt like an extension of my apartment, and my practice grew by leaps and bounds while I studied there.

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