I'm not very flexible - how can I possibly do yoga?

First of all, don't worry! Folks new to yoga can be needlessly concerned about their flexibility (or lack of it) because all too often, yoga books and videos feature “people pretzels” in very acrobatic positions. Here's the real deal: if you’re stiff as a board, you’ll benefit tremendously from practicing yoga - and your flexibility will definitely increase over time. Just do the best you can at each class, don't force any movement, and you'll see.  Remember, beginners are welcome at every class.  Start where you what you can.  We will always encourage you to choose the degree of challenge that feels right for you.

What actually happens in a TYP hot yoga class?

Hot yoga classes at The Yoga Pioneers (TYP) consist of a series of yoga postures and breathing exercises, always performed in the same order.  TYP offers hot yoga classes in 60- and 90-minute formats; see the Class Descriptions page for details.  You'll  become familiar with the class structure after just a few sessions.  All TYP's teachers have extensive experience in hot-room yoga instruction.  Your teacher will lead the class verbally rather than by performing the postures, in order to focus entirely on YOU and your practice.  If you have any injuries, medical conditions, or concerns about performing certain movements, be sure to let your teacher know before class begins.  We are happy to help you modify postures to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.

Why is the room heated?  And how hot is it, anyway?

The Yoga Pioneers’ "heat philosophy" is simple: a moderately hot environment is an excellent setting for physical (hatha) yoga.  When you practice in an appropriately warm not overheated! – room, you’ll find you are able to safely stretch more deeply, and breathe more mindfully.  You’ll sweat freely, and that’s a good thing.  Sweating is a natural, healthy bodily function that helps release toxins through the skin, your body’s largest organ of elimination.  TYP’s Hot Yoga classroom temperature averages around 105°F.  Room temperature will vary slightly from class to class, as will humidity levels.  Along with the friendly, penetrating radiant heat, our 1200 s.f. practice room’s unique design – featuring natural cork flooring, filtered fresh air circulation, and soft lighting – is especially conducive to relaxation and meditation.  If you’re new to the hot room, give yourself a few classes to get used to it.  You might feel a bit dizzy or lightheaded at first; it’s quite common as a beginner, and with regular practice will go away soon.  Should you need to rest between postures or skip any of them, that's perfectly all right: sit or lie down on your mat, breathe slowly and deeply.  Then, resume practicing when you’re ready.  Once you’ve acclimated, heated-room yoga is (healthily) habit-forming!

Do I need reservations?  How early should I arrive?

We do not take reservations* for regularly scheduled classes.  All TYP hot yoga classes are filled on a first-come, first served basis.   Sign-up opens 30 minutes before and closes 5 minutes before class start time. Latecomers will not be admitted. 
For your FIRST visit, please arrive 20-30 minutes before class starts, regardless of which class you attend or your experience level.  You'll fill out TYP's registration form and receive a brief orientation from your teacher.  First-timers who arrive less than 15 minutes before start time will be allowed in class only at the instructor's discretion.  

*Reservation exception:   When you have a membership or purchase a promotional package from one of TYP's partners, you must make a reservation for each of your classes at TYP in advance using the partner's  reservation website. Call the partner program's customer support for assistance with their booking/reservation process.

How should I prepare for hot yoga?

Yoga is best practiced with "an empty stomach and an open mind."  Ideally, allow at least two hours between finishing a meal and starting your yoga practice.  However, if it's close to class time and you're hungry, have something light, such as a piece of fruit.  Stay well-hydrated by drinking plenty of pure water both before and after class.

What should I wear to practice hot yoga?

TYP’s practice room is heated to an average temperature of 105°F, so dress lightly and comfortably.  Women generally choose tank tops, sports bras, or teeshirts with shorts or tights.  Men wear swimsuits or shorts (teeshirts optional).  Yoga is practiced in bare feet.  
To ensure a safe and pleasant experience for all, do NOT chew gum in class, and please do not apply perfume, cologne, or scented body products prior to attending class — some students are sensitive and/or allergic to odors.  

What do I need to bring with me to class?

No special equipment is required for TYP’s hot yoga classes.  If you have your own yoga “sticky” mat, bring it with you.  Bring drinking water, a large towel (bath or beach-size) to cover your mat, and a small hand towel.  A second bath towel is good if you plan to shower at the studio.  For your convenience, TYP rents (and sells) yoga mats and towels, and sells bottled water.  
What NOT  to bring: flavored sports drinks, soda pop, coffee or tea.  Plain water is best for hydration. Consider leaving your phone at home.  Cellphone use, including texting, is not permitted anywhere in the unplug  for an hour, and  enjoy life!  (If  you absolutely need to bring a phone in with you, it must be shut off and stored in the dressing room.)

Have a question not answered here?

The Yoga Pioneers welcome your questions.  We also love feedback, ideas, suggestions, and comments.  To get in touch, go to the Contact Us page.  We look forward to hearing from you!