yoga studio review #1 – Moksha Yoga – Los Angeles

moksha yoga los angelesThis is my first yoga studio review and I have to admit it’s one of my favorite places in the city. In fact, it’s actually one of my favorite places anywhere!

Moksha Yoga LA on La Brea is my sanctuary in the city. It’s special to me because of the people who choose to practice here and the teachers who give a little of themselves everyday to the act of building up the incredible energy that permeates every part of the studio.

It’s a place I try to go almost everyday and I wish it could stay under the radar forever so that it never starts to feel different or change.This, I know, is both irrational and impossible, but I can’t help it! I’m a little selfish when it comes to this place 🙂

Here are the top 3 reasons why Moksha Yoga LA is a world-class studio:

1. They foster an environment of total inclusion and acceptance
This is the most accepting and non-judgmental place I’ve ever practiced yoga. Why I even have to mention this on a list dedicated to yoga studios is beyond me, but we all know there are places where you just aren’t made to feel included. Well, I’ve taken classes from every instructor who works at Moksha LA and can report firsthand that they don’t hire the pretentious type.

The cliquiness and competitive vibe you get from some other studios simply doesn’t live here. The instructors are welcoming, warm and genuine in their desire to be of service. In addition, the classes are full of the widest range of practioners I’ve ever experienced and everyone truly seems to be focused on themselves instead of worrying about how they stack up physically to the other people in the room.

2. You never have to endure any embarrassing self-proclaimed-guru weirdness
I get second-hand embarrassment (first-hand when I catch myself doing it!) when people move about with a sense of self-importance. I have a strong radar for authenticity and am inclined to surround myself with people who embody a genuine feeling. Because of this, I prefer teachers who lead by example and have their egos in check. I already knew this place attracted excellent instructors, but it was really reinforced for me when I inadvertently ended up in a class led by Moksha hot yoga co-founder, Ted Grand.

As I was walking into class one day, I noticed an easel set up outside the door indicating that the class would be led by Ted. I felt really lucky that I’d happened into the studio at the right time that day and settled into my mat expecting the class to be extra Moksha-y. I thought I might feel nervous about my technique under the founder’s sure-to-be-watchful eye, but I couldn’t have been more mistaken.

Ted was unassuming and humble. He opened the practice by introducing himself as, “Ted, a visiting instructor from another studio,” and that was it. No self-important, impromptu guru speech. No extra fancy language or overly serious demeanor. No awkward frou-frou yogi stuff going on. He just led a great class and clued us in to interesting anatomy things going on in our bodies during some of the more challenging poses.

3. The studio is super clean
Hot yoga studios stay pretty humid, moist and hot most of the time, so it could almost be forgiven if they were a little stinky every now and again. Lucky for me, I can save my forgiveness for the person who cut me off at Santa Monica Blvd and Westwood last Thursday, because Moksha LA keeps the studio in top form at all times.

The rooms and floors are cleaned and dried out after every class and the bathrooms are kept in excellent condition. No weird smells (except that one time I decided to re-use my towel mat when I didn’t have time to do laundry between classes. Big mistake.)

They have fresh clean towels at the wash basins, filtered taps to refill your water bottle, clean showers and toilets, and best of all, I feel totally comfortable walking barefoot anywhere in the space — no hairs or dirt on the floor.

I love Moksha Yoga LA because of the way it feels when you’re there. The energy they’ve cultivated in the space is something I’m grateful for every day of my life. I don’t feel judged or noticed in an overt way. I mean, people smile and acknowledge my presence, but I have a deep sense that my personal space and reasons for being there are respected.

I’ve been to classes where tears flow freely in response to my letting go of stresses and classes where I reach a state of bliss that I wish everyone could experience at least one time.

So on a scale of 1 to 10, I rate Moksha Yoga LA a 10. No doubt about it.

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