By Denise Oliveira
We’re all told that doing yoga is one of the best antidotes to the crazed pace of New York life. But when a class costs as much as $20 a pop, it’s just not feasible for many people. The good news is, there are studios around the city that help you get Zen without going broke. Here is a sampling of yoga studios that offer pay-what-you-can, donation-based classes.
Before you show up, here are some tips: Check the studio’s website for any schedule changes; If you own a yoga mat, bring it with you, because many studios charge an extra mat rental fee; Some of these classes fill up, so call the studio before your first class and ask how early you should plan to arrive. And of course, bring a water bottle to stay hydrated.
Yoga Vida, 666 Broadway, Noho, Manhattan
The donation-based classes take place Monday through Friday at 2pm, and Monday through Wednesday, plus Friday at 7:30pm. Whether you can donate $1 or $50, they’ll take it. Half of whatever you donate benefits an organization called Every Mother Counts, which works to reduce maternal mortality.
Bread and Yoga, 5000 Broadway at 212th Street, Inwood, Manhattan
This studio offers yoga as well as cooking and nutrition classes. Their donation-based yoga class is on Mondays at noon. They suggest a $10 donation, but you can pay what you’re able. They also offer free yoga in the park during the summer. It’s on Tuesdays at 6:30pm at Indian Road Lawn in Inwood Hill Park, starting on June 24.
Yoga to the People, various locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn
Yoga to the People has locations around the country, including several locally. Each location has its own schedule and pricing, so check their website for details. Some classes are priced at $5 or $8, and their donation-based class is a suggested $10, but you can donate what you’re able.
St. Bart’s, 325 Park Ave., Manhattan
St. Bart’s is an Episcopal Church in midtown that offers a variety of programs throughout the week, including free yoga on Tuesdays at 5:30pm. It’s open to the public and you don’t have to be a member of the church to attend. Donations are welcome, to help cover the cost of instruction by certified yoga teachers.
Awakening, 607 Manhattan Ave., Williamsburg/Greenpoint, Brooklyn
Awakening offers a variety of healing treatments as well as classes. There is a donation-based yoga class practically every day, including on weekends. Times vary, so check their schedule for details. They welcome any donation amount.