RIDGWAY – Ridgway’s newest yoga studio, Shantihi Yoga at the corner of Lena and Sherman streets, is offering something no one else in the area has: hot yoga.
Shantihi owner Keri Gaddis said she’s trained and taught hot yoga for years, mostly through CorePower Yoga in Denver.
“You sweat a lot and get rid of poisons,” she said. That’s one of the benefits, releasing toxins through sweating.
“Also, the warm heat makes your muscles heat up faster and you can get deeper into your positions with less risk of injuring yourself, and it takes a short period of time to get into the depth of the postures.”
Practicing yoga in a warm room between 94 and 100 degrees and around 30 percent humidity also increases blood flow “and that oxygenates the metabolic processes of glands and organs and mobilizes toxins to be eliminated through sweat,” Gaddis said.
The studio is open seven days a week right now, Gaddis said, and a more manageable schedule will be set once she sees which classes are most popular.
“Right now we have 23 [classes] on the schedule and we will weed a few out since some haven’t had much turnout,” she said.
Hot yoga is a trend that’s already hit the West Coast and is beginning to catch on back East, Gaddis said, but some people in Ridgway had already heard of it.
“We’re getting a lot of walk-ins, and people telling us they’ve been waiting for hot yoga to come here,” she said.
But yoga can be expensive, costing $17 for walk-ins per hour-long session in Denver, so Gaddis decided to charge based on donations for regular classes, with suggested donations between $8 and $14.
“To a lot of people, $17 is expensive and I wanted to make it available to everyone, no matter how much money you have or don’t have,” she said.
The studio also sells yoga clothes and mats and puts on special events, such as last week’s kids’ Halloween party.
Gaddis said she and her husband Dan just moved here on Sept. 10, because of all the places in the world, they wanted to live in Ridgway.
“It’s been in our plan for awhile, and my husband got a job at the beginning of the year to allow us to live wherever we wanted,” she said. “We kind of had some money saved up and decided to go for it.”
Gaddis said her husband, who works in apartment management sales, is able to telecommute.
Losing no time, Gaddis opened the yoga studio Oct. 9.
“We’re hitting the three-week mark of being open and it’s actually going a lot better than we thought it would,” she said.
Gaddis, 29, said she decided to make the studio donation-based because of the bad economy.
“I was looking at the economy and I wanted yoga to be available to everyone,” she said.
She also explained some of the different methods she teachers, such as the Candlelight Flow class, which is held in a candle-lit room and employs vinyasa-flow yoga.
Flow, she explained, is moving with your breathing from one posture to another.
“In Candlelight Flow, there is a restorative flow at the end, with restorative postures,” she said.
The Fusion class, she said, combines the hot yoga style with flow added to the posture sequences.
Gaddis said she’s glad the studio has caught on so fast, and current customers are bringing in more, even though “hot” yoga is a little different.
“It works on your will power and self-control and the challenge of a studio with heat,” she said.
So far, classes are offered in Hot Yoga, Flow 1, Fusion, Yoga Sculpt (with weights), Candlelight Flow, Kids Yoga (ages 5-11), and Personal Training/Yoga Instruction for private or semi-private personal training sessions. Log onto www.ridgwayhotyoga.org for class details or call 720/299-8509.