Where's the Best Place to Learn Yoga in Amsterdam?
6 July 2013
If you look around town you are guaranteed to see a healthy dose of yoga studios in almost every neighborhood. But from the outside it is very hard to tell if the places are going to fit your needs. We'll help you find the best place for you to learn yoga in Amsterdam.
Where's the Best Place to Learn Yoga in Amsterdam?
Well that all depends...
What are you looking for?
When selecting a yoga studio, there are several factors to take into consideration.
- How often do you plan on attending?
- What is your primary goal when taking up yoga?
- Is it more about spiritual – meditation and chanting, or do you want to learn how to be more flexible and/or calm?
- Do you want to meet other people with similar goals, or just try something new?
- Will it become your primary form of exercise, or only an addition to your weekly routine?
- Should you attend classes in a yoga studio, or a gym?
To help you see the pros & cons of each facility, see our simple infografx - Where to Learn Yoga
Yoga Style and Facilities
Some schools focus on one yoga style only, like Bikram or Hot Yoga, as they require special facilities. Studios working with multiple teachers may offer a variety of styles, giving you the opportunity to try out many different yoga styles. Some long established yoga studios will often be more spiritually oriented, and some instructors may be very serious about philosophy and reading Yogasutra and Panjali. These studios will often be more spiritually decorated, and the air may be filled with incense, creating a special atmosphere. Many newer studios may be less focused on the spiritual side of yoga and more on the fitness side. Some may even declare to get your butt whipped into shape, yoga style!
If you decide that yoga will be your primary exercise routine, you should probably select a yoga studio, especially if it is close to your home or work so you are more likely to go! It will also be the best place if you want to develop your spiritual side, learn more about the history of yoga, enjoy the atmosphere and meet other yoga-minded people. The downside of choosing a studio is that their facilities may vary, depending on their budgets. From fantastic changing rooms, super modern showers and healthy snack bars, all the way to shabby changing rooms and shared showers, or none at all.
It is common that yoga studios offer a special introduction class to get you started and some will even offer it for free. If you decide to continue classes more regularly – you will usually be offered a discount for signing up for multiple classes, often known as a ‘strippenkaart’.
Gym Offering Yoga Classes
If you decide to do yoga in addition to other exercise, a gym or sports school may be your best choice. Gyms usually hire various yoga instructors to offer different classes, so make sure to ask about all details of styles on offer. Though yoga classes in a gym will often be more concentrated on the physical aspects of yoga, it all depends on the teacher (and the students and their interests).
In gym based yoga classes, the atmosphere is likely to differ from yoga studios, and the people attending may be less focused on yoga itself, and more on exercise. The workout area will probably be more neutral in design, and you will never smell incense. Gyms will always provide all necessary equipment such as mats and cleaning products to wipe them off before and after use. Most large gyms will have very good facilities, so usually expect separate showers and changing rooms, often with private changing spaces.
When signing up for a gym, check if (and which types of) yoga are offered. Often you will be able to have a free trial day; be sure to take advantage of that before signing any sort of contract, and make sure to visit on the day your desired class is offered. Always ask for a full tour of the club before signing up, as you want to make sure that all areas are spotlessly clean and well-maintained, especially in regards to showers, saunas and the equipment. All clubs must provide cleaning products to wipe off all surfaces that you come in contact with. No, it’s not a law – it’s a common courtesy!
Do It Yourself Yoga
The most natural (not to mention, most affordable) place to practice yoga is outdoors.
There are many poses you can do yourself without any training from a yoga teacher (even though we always recommend taking classes to stay safe and make sure you practice correctly and safely). Simply search for basic yoga poses online and you will find a variety of workouts for beginners. You can easily get started by doing some simple breathing exercises, combined with stretching your body and focusing your mind. You don’t have to do a head stand or other advanced pose straight away, or ever! Just find a nice quiet spot in your local park, beach, forest or anywhere else outside, even your own balcony, and enjoy…
Here are a few quality places offering yoga classes in Amsterdam
(Pregnancy, Toddler Yoga)
(variety of classes)
(Jivamukti and Private Sessions)
(Yin, Vinyasa Flow, Pregnancy, Mummy & Baby Yoga)
(Outdoor Yoga and Events)