Editor’s note: This is the first entry in a series exploring Hawaii’s yoga studios.
Power. Yoga. The two terms seem incongruous don’t they? Like, say, “nice” and “criminal.” But if you know anything about yoga—about its precepts, dogmas, and physical demands—then the terms not only seem close. They also seem inextricably linked.
But don’t take our word for it. Here’s About.com yoga expert Ann Pizer’s description:
Power yoga is a general term used in the West to describe a vigorous, fitness-based approach to vinyasa-style yoga. Though many consider it to be “gym yoga,” this style of practice was originally closely modeled on the Ashtanga method. The term came into common usage in the mid 1990s, in an attempt to make Ashtanga yoga more accessible to western students, though, unlike Ashtanga, power yoga does not follow a set series of poses, so classes can vary widely. With its emphasis on strength and flexibility, power yoga brought yoga into the gyms of America, as people began to see yoga as a way to work out.
Pizer also notes that one of power yoga’s founders is Bryan Krest. This is the same Krest who taught Dorian Wright and Lehua Kai, owners of Power Yoga Hawaii, aka PY-HI. Wright, who’s been practicing “meditations” since he was six years old (!), is the more experienced of the two, but Kai is no slouch – she’s been plying her craft for more than a decade.
Despite the derogatory view by some of power yoga as “gym yoga,” PY-HI does more than proudly own its style. The Oahu-based studio goes one step further, billing itself as a place “where real yoga lives.”
You can bet that this is as confrontational as Wright, Kai, and the studio’s other instructors get, however. After all, PY-HI offers donation-based classes, with a portion of Wright and Kai’s earnings going to “starving children around the world.”
Power Yoga Hawaii
510 Piikoi St Suite 200
Classes offered 7 days a week, including mornings, afternoons & evenings
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