Looking to get your yoga on without all of the secretly judgemental “namastes”? Dying to take a class not dominated by impossibly thin pretzel people? Welcome to The Tribe Called Sweat. Here, you aren’t expected to fit into some perfect, “ultra zen” culture (um, was it just us or did that “namaste” kinda sound like a “F#ck You”?) or to do every pose perfectly. Y7 asks you to bring your badass self on in and just do you, baby boo. This brand is the queen of the chic, edgy, non-traditional yoga class. We’ve got four words for you: hot candlelight hip-hop yoga.
This isn’t regular yoga, this is cool yoga. You’ll get the same adrenaline high here as you do from a Barry’s or SOUL class. And as if its unique style of yoga wasn’t enough, its culture says “yea, we do yoga, but don’t f#ck with us”! These studios are littered with perfectly applicable lines from hip-hop classics or phrases that pay homage to the genre. Their signature class is called “We Flow Hard” and everything from the walls to the gear they sell to the tile in the bathrooms is black. Like our soul. Ok, ok, just kidding … Our point is that this is an ultra cool experience for the mind and body that, between the bumping music and the darkness, helps you stay in the zone and not feel judged. In fact, you may find a stronger version of yourself through this type of yoga than you do in any boot camp or HIIT class. Surprised? We were too.
So what EXACTLY are you getting out of this non-traditional yoga quest? An hour long vinyasa flow style class that has three different flows segmented into three different sections. First, you go through a slow burn, breaking down each pose and holding it for several breaths. Second comes “one breath, one movement,” where you flow from one pose to the next in line with your breathing. Finally, you take the flow on your own. At this point, the music goes up and you can start to freestyle a bit by adding additional poses, headstands, maybe even a difficult toehold – whoa, living on the edge! Once you reach that final flow, you think, “oh man, bring on the savasana” (aka a beautiful mini nap for those who don’t speak yogi). But, before you can get to that sweet promised land, you have to get through what is called the “final push” or “final work”. This can range from a one-legged bridge series to an ab-crunching boat pose raise and lower to an extra long plank. Unlike a gentle style of yoga, this is a speedy yoga that would work up a sweat even if you weren’t inside a 90+ degree room.
Y7 classes are open to students of truly EVERY LEVEL, with modification options being shared like mono at a middle school dance. Plus, you don’t have to be an expert or have a dictionary guide for yoga terminology – everything is described super clearly. If you’re more advanced, there’s tons of time to work on your handstands or inversions. Oh, and did we mention that everyone ends up pretty much half naked? Being a truly no judgemental zone and that the studio is a balmy 90 degrees, stripping layers off during practice is fairly common. You’re going to want to leave the long lulus at home and consider bringing a backup tank for after class. You’ll walk out feeling like you sat in the splash zone on a log flume ride – #SweatyAF.
Amy’s voice set us at ease immediately. Her calming energy sorted of melted into our souls in a way that got us to let go of any BS or insecurities we brought in the door. We felt extremely safe to experiment and to look stupid. If we fell out of a pose, we didn’t immediately worry about what the person behind us thought. Amy’s way of teaching sort of freed us from ourselves. A lot of this had to do with the realistic mantras she shared with us throughout class. They really helped us to be more mindful than methodical about each flow.
Now this doesn’t mean that her focus on our form went out the window or that she was a loosey goosey instructor. In fact, she is really big into hands-on adjustments. This is something that doesn’t bother us, but be sure to share with her before class if it bugs ya. Her focus on positioning meant that we didn’t become complacent in slumping over on our side angle or getting lazy in our warrior extension. She she reminded us constantly about each and every little nuance of a pose. Most def a double-edged sword type of instructor.
Putting the Tribe in TriBeCa, this space is very much in line with the neighborhood that it calls home. Sure, it doesn’t look like much from the outside: small entrance, older building, very nondescript. But, once you’re inside, everything is a trendy feast for the eyes. The space for yoga practice is huge, probably one of the largest that the brand offers in Manhattan. We’re obsessed with the fact that it’s a perfect square so there isn’t really a “bad spot”. It’s also the second Y7 with showers! If there’s ever a workout you need to be able to shower after, it’s hot yoga.
We so appreciate that they have separately designated showers, changing areas, and bathrooms. Nothing worse than someone changing and holding up the bathroom line pre-class. But probably this studio’s greatest quality of all is that its locker, shower, changing, and vanity area is wide enough that it never feels like there’s a bottleneck. We don’t know about you, but we’ve definitely been owned by someone opening their locker door above our heads. We then stand up, not realizing … “Yikes, where did you get that bruise?” “Oh, my yoga studio.” *Horrified look from your friend*
There are also some super fun touches like the “A TriBeCa Called Sweat” neon sign and the “photo booth”. We use this term loosely because it’s an old elevator that has been converted into a photo booth, with a cute sign painted on the back wall to snag a picture with. Camera not included.
57 Leonard St, New York, NY 10013 Tribeca Yoga $$$
Y7 Studio Tribeca
Tribeca Yoga, $$$
57 Leonard St, New York, NY 10013
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One word: Awesome. Alex’s class has everything you love about Y7. At the beginning of class, she encouraged us to set an intention. Throughout our practice, she emphasized the importance of breath, reminding us to to “take a deep belly breath in” and “reconnect with our breath”. Her sequences made sense—each flow set us up to go deeper in the next one. More practiced yogis might call this “intuitive”. She encouraged and applauded self adjustments. Class closed with a few moments to finish our practice in a way that served our body, and a short but sweet Savasana.
Courtney’s style is to teach a more conventional flow at a lightning fast pace. Because we moved through the sequences so quickly, Courtney’s class felt more like a cardio workout than a yoga practice. Despite her rigorous style, she was incredibly encouraging throughout the entire class. When we felt like we couldn’t do one more arm balance, she hit us with a minute long plank to the tune of some gangster rap. Her class leans more hip hop than yoga, which is a cool change of pace in the hot Y7 heat.
Faye’s Slow Burn class is exactly what the body needs on a cold winter night: it’s hot, soothing and serene. She started practice with a two-minute meditation to set a peaceful tone before moving into slow-paced flow. Different than traditional Y7 classes, Slow Burn is completely instructional and straightforward. Faye’s calming and confident voice guides you through a relatively basic practice that skews to the easier side, though she encourages creativity and free form in every pose. She played slower hits from Drake, Beyonce and Bieber, all of which we hadn’t heard before (and that we immediately downloaded onto our Spotify). Faye ended her class by placing a large candle in front of each attendee and asking us to recount our intention while blowing out the flame. Of all the unique yoga classes we’ve taken across the world, this was the first time we’ve experienced something so thoughtful. Faye’s Slow Burn will have you sweating, but it’s definitely manageable after a long work day. We would recommend it to unwind, refocus and reflect.
Jenna is positively perfect. Her upbeat and encouraging energy is just what the mind and body needs after a long weekend … and even a hangover. Jenna really reads the room and we noticed when she tweaked the flow to fit the skillset and needs of the class. Her cheerleader attitude pushed us to do one more chaturanga and hold the crow a few seconds longer, even when these poses were optional. Oh and the throwback Andre 3000 beats had us dancing on our mats.
If fitness is your goal and you’re more drawn to the asana (aka the physical postures) part of your practice, Kate is the teacher for you. She integrated conditioning elements into her 60-minute flow. Think: Mālāsana squats and crunches in boat pose. Throughout class—particularly when things got tough and we got tired—she encouraged us to dig deep and push through. If you’ve never taken Kate’s class, expect 60 minutes of dynamic, challenging sequences that will strengthen your practice and your muscles.
Kendra. Kicks. Ass. Truth. Kendra’s Sunday hip hop class had us sweating so hard it looked like we went for a swim. Though she keeps with the Y7 method of cycling through yoga sequences three times – the first one a slow burn, the second fast-paced (one breath per movement), and the last on your own – her sequences were so challenging that by the third cycle we face-planted on our mats, panting. Kendra took standard yoga flows and made tweaks for that extra fitness fix. Plank, boat and chair poses were all modified with longer holds and more movement and we’re still feeling the burn days later. Take Kendra’s class for a serious workout and don’t make any plans after other than with the shower.
Kristen was all about non-traditional sequences, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, it’s kind of awesome! If you’re new to Y7, you’ll know as much as everyone else, and if you’re a regular, it’ll give you a chance to try something new and really challenge yourself. Don’t get us wrong, the regular flows are dope (otherwise why would keep going back?), but there’s something super cool about changing it up every once and awhile. If you’re in the mood for some new and different flows that are still totally Y7-worthy, sign up for Kristen’s class.
If you’re a hardcore fitness fanatic who’d pick Barry’s Bootcamp over Barre3 and certainly over yoga, then this action-packed class is for you. The vibe was more “give it 110%” than “find your center”. After our intense third flow, Sam instructed the front and back rows to face each other for boat pose and called out, “When you feel like giving up, look up at the person across from you and keep going”. While we may have signed up for vinyasa flow, what we got was a total body workout with a side of crow pose, and we liked it.