Kula Yoga Project (NYC)

Oh Kula, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

1) Intelligent. Teachers are articulate, precise, and don’t dumb things down.

2) Sweet combination of flow + alignment.

3) Creative. The sequencing is unique to the teacher and always enlightening.

4) Challenging. Oh how I sweat. And ache. And feel like a beginner, all the time.

5) Inspiring. How awesome is it to practice next to people that can float into handstand and defy gravity, and know that they are students just like me?

Ok, there are some bummers: no showers at the Tribeca location, a cramped changing area, hardly any philosophy and no chanting — but the asana and pranayama is so kick ass it doesn’t matter. I’m getting the yoga through my breath and my body.

I am hesitant to name specific teachers because they are all solid. But I must give some shout outs to as many as I can, including: Jillian, alignment goddess, Anusara inspired (not in the official trademarked sense but in the lots of study sense); Schulyer, studio founder, bandha work like no other, stealthily develops a theme with such thoroughness I do the apex pose with never before found strength, flexibility, awareness, ease; Kevin, in his Sunday night qijong/yoga class, gets me so out of my head by the end I feel golden light pouring out of my chest; David‘s Vesica practice is intensity-dot-com, as a friend would say, but in the best possible way, he’s the type that would attract rich ladies as private clients (not because he’s a perv but because of his presence); Nikki C is steeped in knowledge–of the poses, the texts, of everything–she teachers Iyengar and is an “old soul” according to my other teacher Dana Flynn; Nikki V co-directs the Williamburg Kula and is also a master of sequencing; who else–Angie, Marisa, Alex, Ariel, Aarona, everyone–they’re all great.

What to say to a prospective Kula student? It’s challenging but accessible if you give your ego the afternoon off. Bring a towel. Overlook the less than swank facilities. The teachers are some of the best around. Don’t expect any dharma talks; if there is one, it is subtle.