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Popular New York yoga studios debut boot camp classes

PXT (Photo: Pure Yoga)
PXT (Photo: Pure Yoga)

Two top New York yoga studios are turning up the heat in 2014, and not via the usual method of cranking up the thermostat. They’re launching boot camp classes that weave yoga poses and butt-kicking circuit training together.

Pure Yoga officially launched a conditioning class, PXT, at both of its uptown locations on January 2, and Chelsea’s Yoga 216 debuted Bootcamp 216 on January 7.

It’s an approach that’s steadily been gaining traction on the fitness scene. Circuit of Change weaves yoga together with martial arts and other conditioning moves, and Taryn Toomey’s The Class is a yoga-boot camp hybrid with a huge following. Erin Jacques’ intense muscle-quaking Shred class was also wildly popular until SLT stopped offering it this fall.

And while some of these classes are stand-alone methods, studios like Pure and Yoga 216 are able to add the offering as part of a holistic group of classes, keeping members on site for all of their fitness and meditation needs. (Just like the barre studios that have added cardio options in efforts to become one-stop shops.)

At Pure Yoga, now, members will still have an enormous selection of yoga classes, plus Figure 4, and PXT. “These three programs—yoga, barre and conditioning—synergistically create an elevated, cross training-integrated environment for a ‘consciously fit’ body,” says area manager Jen Zweibel.

PXT, which grew out of Loren Bassett’s popular Bassett’s Bootcamp workshop, includes “yoga, high-intensity cardio intervals, strength training, plyometrics, calisthenics, and core work,” using your yoga mat, free weights, gliders, a step platform, and more. You can expect lots of tough, compound movements and a truly challenging, athletic workout. The class is on the schedule several times a day at both the Upper East and Upper West Side locations and is offered in both heated and non-heated rooms.

Bootcamp 216 in West Chelsea combines yoga and strength and conditioning exercises to target lots of muscle groups. Participants do 30 minutes of intense, toning-focused yoga (think plank and downward dog pose with lots of pulling your knee in to meet your elbows, etc.) and then 30 minutes of more traditional bodyweight resistance training, like reverse lunges and squats. Yoga 216 is offering it twice a week, on Tuesday and Thursday nights, and it will add to the already well-rounded wellness menu at the studio, which offers services like massage and acupuncture. Founder Nicole Katz also sees it as another step in the evolution of what yoga can offer.

“We created the class to continue to evolve how we build muscle in yoga. It’s a tenet of ours that if you do yoga correctly you build long, lean, usable muscle and this class is a super fun natural extension of how we do that.” —Lisa Elaine Held