I don’t find it a coincidence that the day after I decided to embark on a 30 day meditation challenge, my best girlfriends were encouraging me to attend a ‘unique yoga experience’. I had already given my morning meditation a try (it’s hard) but was more than open to giving it another go, especially as it would be connected to movement and I needed to get a work out in. So after my morning casting I jumped online and booked a one-time class at Woom on Bowery. I was over an hour early but meandered on downtown, knowing they had an attached cafe where I could possibly down an Americano pre-chaturanga and read my Stephen King novel.
As soon as I walked up the stairs of 274 Bowery, I felt at home. A tawny brown colored mutt name Shapiro was the first to greet me in the beautifully lit cafe. After came the humans, first my instructor for the session Elian and then her friends: gentle, warm people that relaxed me almost as much as the collection of crystals, scattered greenery, and shelves of books.
I ordered an Americano that was so delicious I needed neither milk nor sugar, something I am not always used to! And by the time I had downed the cup and turned a few pages, my friends arrived. There would only be four of us during the practice and I was pleased to know I wouldn’t be one of the many in a packed class. Maybe some people feel offended when an instructor correct their poses, but I happen to prefer it, imagining I’m in some fancy private session.
The studio itself was huge and clean with a large gong waiting for us amid heated rock lamps and a little platform for the instructor’s mat, making demonstration easy. Before we began, everyone was instructed to pick up an eye mask, a band, and two blocks.
The flow that followed was challenging yet uncannily peaceful. Woom is a unique studio in that it feels holistic while still maintaining a cutting edge; a quote from an ancient yoga text is followed by trippy graphics displayed on the wall and Elian giving instruction through a headset. I don’t want to give too much away about the experience, but I will say that she finished the practice by spritzing a delicious elixir above us while encircling us with a sound machine with vibrations of the universe.
Woom offers a variety of classes from yoga flow to sound baths and breathing courses. It may sound a bit hippy-dippy, but their vibe is not exclusive but rather inclusive, comfortable and just all around chill. If I didn’t already have plans for tonight, I would definitely look into the sound bath that takes place every Friday night from 7:30-10:00.
To finish off the midday class, we were given a tonic shot that contained apple cider vinegar and a few other spices. And of course, I couldn’t leave without saying goodbye to sweet Shapiro who was curled up on the couch, wrapped in his own yoga pose.
If you’re looking for a studio that isn’t pushy in its practice or beliefs and feels personable, give it a try. Most days, classes run from 7am to 7pm so regardless of your schedule, there is always time to feel embraced in the Woom.