Getting Down At YogaHop On Montana Avenue

Thursday, 19 Jan 2012, 1:23:00 AM

Sallie Oto

YogaHop is located at 1612 Montana Ave. in Santa Monica.
Courtesy image
YogaHop is located at 1612 Montana Ave. in Santa Monica.

On a recent morning visit to YogaHop on Montana Avenue, I did Downward-Facing Dog to Juvenile’s “Back That Ass Up.”

Now, if the idea of fixating in Warrior Two to 50 Cent makes you cringe – this probably isn’t the place for you.

But here’s the thing: sometimes, I think we yogis take ourselves too seriously. Sure, I’m all for the meditation, mindfulness, and “letting go of my thoughts” – but a few times every month I honestly wouldn’t mind silently rocking out while breathing in to Crescent Moon – and YogaHop is just the place for that.

Pleasantly, YogaHop’s classes go by really quickly. While the idea of juxtaposing pop music with a yoga practice might sound like hubris at first and hilarious at best, it’s actually truly brilliant.

The analogy between regular yoga and yoga with heart-thumping rap is something like having a cookie, or having a warm cookie with a glass of chilled milk.

Granted, the sonic distraction is not for everyone, but if you’ve ever experienced a dead iPod half way through a run and felt like somehow you either got slower or the course got longer – you will appreciate YogaHop’s promise of that much-craved “distraction” we all want when we work out.

Granted, it’s much more awkward if you start singing along when your favorite song comes on - but then again, being sweaty and contorted in braided positions inches away from your neighbor is always treading on shameless, so why not add the cherry on top.

Don’t get me wrong; while I’ve sung high praises of YogaHop, I still haven’t mentioned the best part, which would be the location on Montana Ave (right across from my favorite cakery Sweet Lady Jane).

With the baker’s dozen of coffee shops and restaurants up and down the street, you have plenty of options to pick and choose how you make your morning/evening following your class.

YogaHop’s Angle: If you are okay with possibly finding yourself doing The Plow to “Bottoms Up” (Trey Songz), then this is the yoga studio for you. Self-described as “flowing yoga,” YogaHop will take you through the typical Power yoga series while swapping the usual meditational soundtrack for, well, music that will make you want to dance.

What: Fitness and Recreation, Group Classes

Who: A-traditional yogis who like hip-hop, rock, and pop

Cost: Five classes/$90, 10 Classes/$150, 20 Classes/$260, Unlimited options available (see website for details)

Bring: Yoga mat and water (if you don’t have one or neither you can rent/purchase at the front desk)

Reserve: Your spot in class online. Ever since a mention in “Self Magazine” and a local Living Social deal, most of the classes at popular times are sold out.

YogaHop

1612 Montana Ave, Second floor

Santa Monica, CA 90403

310.829.5000

www.yogahop.com

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