Yoga is supposed to take place in a quiet, secluded studio with peaceful music, right? Maybe not in St. Louis. Lately, yoga groups have been meeting in breweries, on paddleboards and under the Gateway Arch.
Yoga Buzz STL introduces yogis to local craft beer and wine, and introduces beer and wine fans to yoga. It is an hour-long all-levels yoga class followed by a tasting at the brewery.
“I think a lot of people, when they get intimidated by the prospect of doing yoga, they think they need to be a certain way. They can’t do yoga if they eat meat, or they need to be thin, or whatever it might be,” said Elle Potter, founder of Yoga Buzz STL. “But what I’ve found is a lot of yogis like beer and a lot of yogis really enjoy a glass of wine, and so I’m creating sort of a bridge between these two communities that are both really enthusiastic.”
Yoga at the Arch started from a similar philosophy.
“We’re hoping to get people that practice yoga to then re-appreciate the outdoors,” said Ann Honious, a supervising park ranger at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. She manages Yoga at the Arch, which is in its third year.
“Sometimes people are afraid they can’t do yoga because they aren’t flexible, but all you have to do to be able to do yoga is breathe,” said Kathy Whaley, a YMCA yoga instructor and one of the Yoga at the Arch instructors.
South City YMCA yoga instructors lead the one-hour classes at the Gateway Arch, which start at 9 a.m. Saturdays through August 30th. Yoga at the Arch is free, but participants are asked to make reservations at ticketsforthearch.com. A reservation comes with free parking at the Arch Parking Garage.
Potter also teaches a class on stand up paddleboards floating on a lake.
“Being on a paddleboard, period, is very challenging because of the balance you have to find side to side and front to back and yoga on solid ground can be really challenging, so putting the two together is definitely a unique experience,” Potter said.
“It’s a great way to exercise your body, calm your mind, and open your spirit,” Whaley said.
Yoga Buzz STL at Morgan Street Brewery
6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 26, 2014
$20, which includes yoga, beer tasting and a brewery tour
721 N. Second St., St. Louis
Purchase tickets at yogabuzzstl.com
Yoga at the Arch
9 a.m. Saturdays through August 30th
Gateway Arch grounds
Starting August 25th all yoga classes at all YMCAs throughout the association will be free.
The Outdoor Yoga (in and around) St. Louis Facebook page is way to find free outdoor yoga classes in the area.