Review – Urban Ashram

Those of you who follow my blog have probably guessed that I’m an “early bird” I prefer to get up and get things done because once I get home from work I don’t like to leave and I’d prefer not to venture into the city centre twice in one day.

As such I’ve been looking into which Auckland City yoga studios hold morning sessions that I can go to before work because although I like doing my own thing at home, I also like the opportunity to have a teacher on hand to do “adjustments” as required.

Yoga classes seem to be either scheduled at my dinnertime, or worse, my bedtime so it’s actually not as easy as you would think to find studios that hold “early” morning yoga sessions in areas that allow me to get to work easily (and on time).

In central Ponsonby, there are two studios (that I know of), East West Ponsonby & Urban Ashram.  The former hold classes that probably suit my schedule a little better (and on every weekday) but I’ve been there twice and I think a studio is only as good as the people inside it make you feel …

Anyway I’ve been meaning to go and check Urban Ashram for some time now and this morning the stars aligned (eg the Tuesday morning HPU session was booked out and everyone turned up) so I decided today was “the day”.

Urban Ashram is located at 2/49 Brown Street in Ponsonby, it’s quite far down the road and not easy to locate in the dark. So for those of you who are slightly geographically challenged like I am, here is my descriptive “how to find them”.

Once you turn into Brown Street (from Ponsonby Road), drive straight ahead.  When you get to the junction where Fitzroy Street intersects Brown Street, there will be a large brick building on your left.  At this point slow down because Urban Ashram is located on the other side of the road opposite the car park that is at the end of that large brick building.  The studio entrance (equally hard to find in the dark) is down the end of a steepish driveway to the right hand of the small white building with the Amy’s Kitchen sign.

The studio itself is located upstairs and it’s compact yet perfectly formed!  It’s bright (even on a dark morning) with light colored walls, a high ceiling with skylights and beautiful polished floorboards.  There is a living wall near the door and I noticed fairy lights stung around the beams above my head and I’m guessing it’s stunning when lit up at night.

Urban Ashram is the brainchild of Nikki Ralston (of the Ralston Method fame) however the early morning classes are lead by Katy Carter.  This morning I was met by Olivia who was filling in for Katy, she showed me where the bathroom facilities were and set me up with a mat, blocks and blanket.  One thing I will note here is that I have a “thing” about using studio mats, I’d much prefer to use my own BUT I was pleased to see that the cupboard was full of my favorite Lululemon yoga mats, there is nothing more distracting than using a mat that moves under foot or that your hands slide off when your trying to get comfy in downward dog.

The class was small (three of us in total) and Olivia led us through a slower flow class where we held the poses for slightly longer than a regular flow class.  I still managed to get a sweat up so it’s not like a yin or restorative class where you settle into a pose for a long time.

Although I tend to enjoy trying to become a pretzel or falling on my face attempting an arm balance, I thoroughly enjoyed this class and I left feeling grounded and ready to get on with the day.   I’m just hoping with such small numbers turning up to these morning sessions that they don’t get taken off the timetable!

If any of you want to join me Urban Ashram has an introductory deal where you get three classes for $30.00, which is another reason I decided to go “on the spur of the moment”.  You can’t deny that’s a great deal!

Till next time





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