The day after I arrived in France, I decided to skip a movie with friends, and take a juicy yoga class. Who needs to see a movie in your native tongue after being immersed in 10 different languages in 6 months. I just wanted to lay down my mat on a clean floor and breathe. I found a studio in central Paris that was English friendly, and I was on my way! It happened to be in July, the 15th, so I looked up the schedule online, chose a class and showed up, only to be told that that class was cancelled, there was no replacement teacher, and there was certainly no apology. It was the summer time. And though it took me another year to fully comprehend, I now get it (I think). It was vacation time, and during vacation time, Paris is a wasteland, schedules are reduced, restaurants are closed, flower shops are shuttered possibly all of July and probably all of August. It's a phenomenon, and I know your French isn't great, but call anyway, just to make sure. Just say "parlez-vous anglais" they speak English.
Months and months later, after a broken arm, many too many surgeries, and lots of pain, I finally took my first yoga class at Rasa. It was great, the teacher was kind and understanding, and spoke perfect English and French. The studio is in a beautiful space, and according to reviews, one of the best in the world. It's hidden behind a huge old French wooden door that opens to a secluded courtyard. Tranquility is part of the experience. But it's also 'one of the best yoga studios in the world' and it knows it. Once you get buzzed in and make your way to the studio, you're greeted by a serenely decorated space, with antique-y hindu deity statues, a rattan floor, a tastefully integrated yoga gear shop, a no shoe policy (didn't you know) and a Parisian at the front desk. The 2 yoga rooms are nicely sized, (one being larger than the other) clean, have lovely wooden floors, and lots of natural light. There are proper bathrooms, large changing rooms with lockers and keys, and even a couple of massage rooms for your after yoga 'detente'. It is not 'populaire' by any means, and I might expect to see a celebrity one day, if I didn't know they took private classes. But I'm certainly not complaining that I'm not next to 'that' guy/gal who forgot his/her deodorant (bath) today (this week).
Rasa Yoga (rive gauche)
21 rue Saint Jacques
+33 (0)1 43 54 14 59
Metro: St Michel (Ligne 4) or Cluny La Sorbonne (Ligne 10)
Price: 22€ a class (reduced 10 and 20 class passes available)
Yoga Styles: Hatha, Mysore, Ashtanga, Yin, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Alignment (formerly Anusara), Mommy and Me
Languages: English and French (check schedule for availability)
Changing Rooms: 2 (not separated by sex)
Secure Lockers: included in class fee
Mats: included in class fee
Showers: yes (towels for hire or bring your own)
Water: (bottled, room temp) - $$
Pros - Two practice rooms, clean, bright, amply sized changing rooms, showers.
Cons - A little musty after a sweaty class, changing rooms not separated by sex, website has teacher first name only with no bio's or links.
Former San Francisco DNA wrangler and current Paris yoga teacher and mom. Sharing. Caution: Possibly too much.
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