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Class Action: Pilates Circuit at Studio Anya


We stopped by this sweet Bohemian fitness-and-healing studio on 24th Street to try out a mind-body Pilates class. Here's our report.

Fitness classes follow fashion. The city’s gyms and studios constantly launch new “It” classes. In Class Action we dish on what we’re trying, or what we really want to. And please tell us what classes you’re excited about in the Comments section, below!

Studio Anya

Studio Anya feels more like your New Age friend’s bohemian apartment than a fitness studio (read: lots of plants, knickknacks, and stocked bookcases). And it’s a vibe that fits with the mind-body movement method here. Founder Courtney Bauer trains all her instructors in it, and it runs through all the classes.

The studio offers yoga, barre, and other group fitness classes, but I zeroed-in on the semi-private Pilates Circuit with Johnson Chong, which maxes out at three students.

The class starts with traditional Pilates Reformer sequences then moves to the Wunder chair for some pedal and pike action. We finished by doing killer rows with resistance bands while holding chair pose and squeezing a ball between our legs. Yowsers!

What made the class an “Anya” Pilates class was what Chong calls the constant fostering of a “mind-body dialogue.” So while your core is burning, he’s telling you to focus on your breath and intention. (I intend to take Advil tomorrow?)

Anya instructors also want you to learn more about how your body moves and when it’s in alignment, which sounds like a good idea but can be confusing. For instance, “create space in your scapula” is not a cue I know how to follow, although maybe if I was an Anya regular, that would change.

Who’s it good for: Pilates buffs and yogis who want to branch out. The person who likes a little mind-body connection in her workout. Bohemians.

Book it or skip it: Book it.

Studio Anya, 49 W. 24th St., 8th Floor, Flatiron, $40 for Semi-Private Circuit class ($20 for group classes), www.studioanya.com