It’s the still season—that time of year when the cold, crisp air (not to mention overstressed holiday schedules) make us more inclined to snuggle up then hit spin class. But, hey, moving matters—especially after indulging in gravy-slathered turkey, salty, sausage-laden stuffing and the abundance of cookies, cookies, cookies that will be coming to a party or seven near you for the next couple of months. It’s a beautiful time of year on the South Fork, but it can also take its toll on your mind and body, too.
Self-care isn’t something to put on a wish list. It’s essential. Sure, carving out time is hard, but drowning in stress is a lot harder. Setting aside time for yoga—be it restorative, hot, hatha, Ashtanga, power or Vinyasa—is an excellent method of relieving stress when you feel stretched too thin.
“Yoga is so important in learning how to regulate the mind and body when it comes to stress,” says Nikayla Mendoza Russell, the studio owner of Doza Yoga in Westhampton Beach.
That’s not marketing speak—it’s science. A 2021 study showed that yoga was an effective way to cope with stress, anxiety and depression during COVID-19 lockdowns.
Russell and other yoga studio owners and founders agree that this same evidence can be applied to the holidays when stress increases.
And the really good news is no matter where you are on the South Fork, there’s a studio near you. Many Hamptons yoga studios are open year-round, so locals, shoppers and staycationers alike can book a class. Here are 6 soothing South Fork yoga studios to get your ohm on (and your stress off!).
Doza Yoga, 132-6 Main Street, Westhampton Beach; 631-567-4500
Doza Yoga is a hot yoga studio. “The heat…allows you to focus on your breath, and reconnect the mind and body,” Russell says. The studio offers classes for every experience level, including Hot Beginner Vinyasa, which involves gentle poses to ease into a practice. Warm Yin and Restore is also beginner-friendly and highly focused on the breath. Hot Yoga Sculpt mixes in strength and toning exercises, like squats.
Hamptons Yoga Healing Arts, 8 Moniebogue Lane, Westhampton Beach; 631-355-1855
Another Westhampton Beach favorite, Hamptons Yoga Healing Arts, has been a popular place to say ohm for nearly two decades. The studio extends to the beach, where sometimes even paddleboards serve as yoga mats during the summer. In the winter, classes retreat to the studio, and private offerings are also available for people looking for personalized assistance with their practice. Hamptons Yoga Healing Arts offers classes focused on Jivamukti Yoga Method, which combines Vinyasa and vigorous poses. Private healing arts sessions, including Thai bodywork, which includes treatments like blissful massage, are also available.
One Ocean Yoga, 2357 Montauk Highway, Bridgehampton; 631-0537-5522
Located on the second floor of Bridgehampton Community House, this yoga studio builds a community through small, 18-person classes. Reservations are required. There are also virtual classes for people who need to breathe but can’t get to the studio. Find Vinyasa for beginners and experienced yogis, led ashtanga (steadily paced but rigorous yoga) and restorative classes that infuse aromatherapy and Reiki. Meditation and private lessons are also available.
Hamptons Hot Yoga, 2415 Montauk Highway, Bridgehampton, and 85 Jobs Lane, Southampton; 631-537-YOGA, 631-500-YOGA
This two-location studio emphasizes hot yoga, as the name implies. Classes include Vinyasa, Hot 26 (Bikram method with receptive sequences of posture) and basic classes for newbies. Reservations and arriving early are recommended. Classes fill up year-round.
Ananda Wellness and Yoga Center, 39-41 Windmill Lane, Southampton; 631-204-1219
Step into this dimly lit relaxation hub and your mind will immediately be at ease. Private and group classes are some of the most popular offerings. The signature Ananda Bliss class places a premium on relaxation through gentle movements. Specialty offerings include prenatal classes, as well as a free one-hour class for cancer patients with medical clearance. Beyond that, people can also book acupuncture and chiropractic sessions that also relax the body and mind.
Yoga Shanti, 32 Bridge Street, Sag Harbor; 631-725-6424
Co-founded by the author of Yoga for Life, Colleen Saidman Yee, one of the world’s most notable instructors, people from around the country make it a point to stop at Sag Harbor’s Yoga Shanti. The welcoming, modern instruction style, coupled with deep-rooted yoga traditions emphasizing alignment, breath, grace and mindfulness, is a major draw.