Where: Yoga Vida, 99 University Place, New York, NY
If You Feel Like Givin' Me a Lifetime of Devotion...I Second That Emotion
Hilaria Thomas, as you might know, is not only the co-founder of Yoga Vida, but also the bride of Alec Baldwin (she was already running the yoga studio when they met). She's a popular kitty cat, so I stopped by to check out her class.
[Write a review of Hilaria's class, or check out her RateYourBurn profile.]
About the instructor
- Sexy. There's no way around it.
- Edgy vibe. Hilaria is great mix of "exotic Hispanic" and "don't mess with me bitch, I'm from New York."
- Totally stylish. I want everything she wears. She's effortlessly chic.
- Funny. She's not a goofy person, but she did crack some funny jokes. One comment was, "Only two people in your life are allowed to bend you over: your lover and your yoga instructor." I LOLed.
- Super cool, almost in a way that makes me feel uncool. She's not the kind of teacher who makes me think, "I bet she'd be up to grab a beer some time." This is not a super positive or super negative thing. In fact, I have never actually grabbed a beer with a yoga instructor. However, this too-cool vibe was greatly assuaged when she laid hands on me. It was a classic example of how touching your students makes an instant connection.
- Cele-birdy. Unless you're celebretarded like me, you already know that Hilaria is married to Alec Baldwin. Here's an overview:
In class, Hilaria talked about the beginnings of the studio. Years ago, she had been sitting in a cafe with her Yoga Vida co-founder, writing notes on paper napkins to plan for the studio. She was in charge of the studio's design, specifically the paint colors. In a stroke of bad luck, she broke her hip during the whole opening process and got a phone call from her business partner while she in the hospital. "IT'S FUCKING PINK!" is what she heard on the other line. We all cracked up as she explained to us how men are color blind, and it is clearly "champagne linen."
On the workout
- Nice sequence. The class didn't involve anything that was ground-breakingly unique, but the order of poses was nice.
- Not a high-sweat class. I got a tad toasty but never dripped sweat.
- Abs? There was a straight-up abs section in the middle. We did a sequence of yoga-crunches that came with a surprising burn. Anything that sets my midsection on fire is A-OK with me.
Her assistant was giving freaking full-body massages to people. I liked having two active instructors adjusting me. That's the way to my heart. We also did a great back thing in shavasana.
About the music
The music was great, a lot of guitar stuff. Many of the songs she played, especially the tango and electric tango, really brought back my memories of studying abroad in Argentina.
On my rating
This was a solid class. Hilaria is a sexy mama, and I liked the unexpected oblique fire. The only reason I shaved off a point was because I, personally, like my yoga at extremes, either very challenging or very relaxing (yin and strenuous vinyasa are my faves). This class was kind of in the middle. Still, I found it very enjoyable and would recommend her to those who like their yoga in the middle ground.
From the Yoga Vida website: Hilaria spent her childhood living in both the United States and in Spain. As a young child, she studied ballet, flamenco and gymnastics and at the age of 13 she began international latin ballroom dancing. She has competed and performed professionally as a latin dancer in the US, Europe and in Asia. Hilaria has been teaching fitness and dance for over ten years. In 2005 she became interested in trauma psychotherapy and attended a Somatic Experiencing training. She is also a graduate of New York University where she majored in art history and dance. Hilaria has been teaching yoga since 2005 and incorporates her dance and fitness background as well has her Somatic Experiencing training into her classes.In Hilaria’s classes you are invited to experience the body-mind union that is yoga. Through dynamic sequences you will consciously play between states of activation and release, allowing for deeper body awareness. Not only will you receive a good workout, but she also strongly stresses the ‘why’ for each movement, enabling you to take charge of your own practice and truly understand the purpose behind your yoga. Our bodies are always aware of our minds as they think—this is why we have a physical reaction to all of our emotions and thoughts. Our job as yoga practitioners is to encourage the mind to become aware of the body as it moves thus detecting and alleviating stress and suffering from our bodies. This methodology will empower you in your own body.
Read more about Yoga Vida at www.yogavida.com.
Find Hilaria Thomas on facebook, and follow her on twitter.