The city’s newest yoga studio, Atelier Yoga, has a cool, old-school New York vibe. It’s hiding, without a sign, in a building of artist lofts in Union Square. And it’s so tiny that everyone else in America would probably consider it a closet. But the small space comes with big ideas.
“I don’t want to own a yoga studio, I’m a yoga teacher,” says founder Carolyn Christie, who is billing the studio as a “collective” of Iyengar instructors. “I think a lot of teachers just want to get together and teach yoga.”
And for the Iyengar community, Christie is filling a real need. Since it takes several years of study, mentoring, and exams before Iyengar instructors are officially certified, devotees of the discipline often have trouble finding places to teach when they’re starting out. (They don’t have the 200-hour certificate that larger yoga studios require for employment.)
Many of these teachers have already started holding classes at Atelier, where students hang from the rope wall and practice chair-assisted shoulder stands in classes of six or less, with a looming view of the Empire State Building through a gorgeous sloped glass roof. (Atelier also has an in-house dog, Ginger, who does some pretty decent doga.)
And while you won’t find amenities at Atelier, you’re likely to reach a new level of personal alignment.