New York is a city full of people who are always rushing around– which is exactly why the best yoga studios in NYC are also some of the best in the country. (Busy people need a place to relax, after all.) As a result of its bustling culture, yoga is not only many New Yorkers’ workout of choice, but it’s also something of a religion here.
Many long-time New Yorkers (myself included) appreciate both the wide variety of instruction and the beautiful aesthetics of the studios in this city. Increasingly, the yoga scene in NYC showcases the best of the best.
Plus, some of the best yoga teachers in the world either already live here or are consistently stopping through to guest teach.
Meanwhile, any new clothing trends or practice techniques are first piloted here before rippling around the world. There are also are enough people to sustain even the most fringe, boutique offerings– a cool plus if you’re into trying new things.
Thus, whether you’re looking for a small studio, a spiritual center, or a boutique yoga club, New York City offers something of every size and scale. No matter what it is that you’re looking for, you can find it here.
Below, we spotlight some of the best yoga studios in NYC– specifically, the best yoga in Manhattan. (We’ll save Brooklyn for another time.) When you’re looking for a good flow, these are the places to go. Enjoy!
SkyTing Yoga (TriBeCa + Chinatown)
SkyTing Yoga is a lovely little hidden gem in TriBeCa– aka the “Triangle Below Canal”– where a mostly local group of dedicated yogi’s practice. The same is true for the Chinatown location.
These chic, greenery-filled loft spaces offer great amenities including towels, nice bathrooms, and changing rooms, as well as fridges stocked with beverages.
At the local in TriBeCa, locals used to get their CSA farmers’ market boxes delivered here for pickup. It’s that kind of place.
At SkyTing, you’ll find unique offerings like katonah yoga as well as yoga nidra and kundalini. By all accounts, this is one of the best yoga studios in New York City for practicing yin yoga. And the prices– like the teachers– are super approachable. It might not be the fanciest yoga studio in NYC, but it has real heart.
Bhakti Center (East Village)
The Bhakti Center is a cozy little walk-up in the East Village that’s known for its lively Kirtan music influence and popular Hatha-Vinyasa flow. They also offer well-attended 45-minute meditation classes led by master teachers of the Bhakti tradition.
At this studio, the participatory sound is key. Whether you’re group chanting OM at the beginning and end of your yoga practice, or doing so throughout a guided meditation, you’ll likely stretch your vocals at some point.
And if this makes you nervous: don’t worry. Shy people are welcome to simply listen. The calming benefits are the same.
The Bhakti Center School of Kirtan (a style of music that involves the singing of mantras or prayers in a call and response fashion) also convenes here, offering weekly guided classes for those who want to experience this ancient sonic art form on a deeper level.
Above all, though, it’s the small touches that make this place so grounding. They might offer a traditional Indian sweet on your way out. Or, you might be inspired by a moving quote pasted on the wall. You get the idea.
Humming Puppy (Chelsea)
Humming Puppy tends to fly under the radar in terms of name recognition, but this Australian-born studio has quickly become one of the most unique yoga studios in NYC! What sets Humming Puppy apart is both the aesthetics and the sound. Common spaces are light and airy (see above–) while the shala for yoga practice is dark and dimly lit.
A constant ambient purr of singing bowls “hums” in the background of the shala. This soundtrack was engineered by ARUP, one of the world’s leading acoustic engineers.
This humming sound, moreover, features singing bowls that were de-tuned to resonate between 7.83 hz and 40 hz, also known as the “Schumann Resonance”. This range of sounds helps yogis relax and deepens their yoga practice.
It’s very New Age-y sound technology, but it’s pretty cool and seemingly effective.
Humming Puppy’s signature Unified Hum class is open to all levels of experience. That’s a great place to start for people who already have a yoga practice and want to feel comfortably challenged.
Otherwise, if you’re new to yoga, start with a Foundation Hum class. Or try the “slow flow” of a Mellow Hum or advanced Dynamic Hum class.
Either way, you’ll be met where you’re at. Just be sure to grab a cup of the studio’s homemade tea afterward!
Kula Yoga (TriBeCa + SoHo)
Kula Yoga is another city favorite studio with multiple locations, each with its own unique vibe and patronage. Teachers at Kula, moreover, offer a very integral yoga practice with unique offerings. Their 60-minute “Kula Hour” class features live music, and their “Banded Kula Flow” incorporates resistance bands, for example.
Overall, we love their intimate, unfussy studios that incorporate hardwood floors, reclaimed wood, and natural light; each of them is like a vintage New York City loft at its finest.
At Kula’s Williamsburg, Brooklyn location (not listed above only because this guide is specific to Manhattan,) the adjoining Shanti Shack café serves excellent vegetarian smoothies, salads, and baked goods.
^ It’s an intimate, homey setting that feels like a hidden gem. Take a class, stay for lunch, and then go walk around the Williamsburg waterfront. On a sunny day, there’s nothing better.
“Sky High Yoga” at The Edge
Ok, so this isn’t technically a yoga studio. But this *is* a very special NYC yoga experience I’d be remiss not to mention! The Edge NYC is an incredible new observation deck in Hudson Yards that has sweeping panoramic views of the entire city.
It’s easily one of the best places to take in an iconic view of Manhattan– and, as of this writing, it’s also the highest outdoor observation deck in the Western Hemisphere.
Periodically, they offer limited open-air yoga classes on the observation deck, which is a truly incredible experience as long as you’re not afraid of heights. (That’s a picture of their “Sky High Yoga” class, above. It’s amazing!)
Tickets for Sky High Yoga sell out super quickly, so you’ll need to jump on it and be flexible with the timing if you want to secure a spot.
Get more info on the ticket process here, or follow @edgenyc on Instagram for the latest updates. If you’re visiting the city from somewhere else and want a bucket list experience, this is the NYC yoga class for you.
Yoga To The People (St. Marks, Chelsea, Midtown, Upper West)
Easily the most affordable yoga in town, Yoga to the People has multiple locations in New York City, but the St. Marks studio is really where the magic happens.
Not only does YTTP offer challenging-but-accessible yoga in the heart of beatnik St. Marks, but its mission is to make yoga accessible for everyone.
As a result, classes are always packed with young students, and you can feel the vibrance and enthusiasm they bring. This is the young adult yoga studio of choice, for sure. If you’re looking for lively yoga in the Village, this is the place to go.
“There will be no correct clothes / There will be no proper payment / There will be no right answers/ No glorified teachers / No ego no script no pedestals/ No you’re not good enough or rich enough / This yoga is for everyone…”
^ So goes the beginning of the studio’s mantra. We love YTTP’s 60 minute Power Vinyasa Flow Yoga (it’s some of the best and most rigorous yoga in NYC!).
We also love the fact that each class is only $10 suggested donation. On Sundays, the studio offers lovely candlelit yoga, as well. There is also no booking ahead of time– just show up 15 minutes before class, and get ready to flow. It’s quite the scene.
Kundalini Yoga East (Union Square)
Kundalini Yoga is hard to find, but New York’s Kundalini Yoga East gurdwara has been serving the city for over 30 years. According to the teachings of Yogi Bhajan, Kundalini yoga combines breath and meditation exercises to calm the body and stimulate the mind.
It is one of the more “chill” forms of yoga, and generally more strenuous on the mind than the body.
Classes last for 90 minutes and take place in a carpeted studio, so yogis don’t require mats. (Though they are available for rental, should you want one.) Expect to chant and practice “breath of fire” for many minutes on end– but you probably won’t ever do a single downward dog. For those who are more interested in the meditation side of yoga, this is a great studio to explore.
A full kundalini practice includes a mentally rigorous combination of postures (asanas), sound (mantra), breath (pranayama), and meditation. The goal is to improve flexibility through what is often a very gentle practice.
As a result, Kundalini is often classified as one of the most overtly “spiritual” forms of yoga. The people who already practice it come to this studio specifically for it.
At Kundalini Yoga East, all classes begin with the opening chant, “Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo”. This means, “We call upon the teacher within, who takes us from darkness to light”. Classes conclude with the chant, “Sat Nam!” which means “I am Truth!”
Modo Yoga (Greenwich Village + The James SoHo Rooftop)
Modo Yoga NYC came to the city from Montreal, and was actually co-founded by Sara Neufeld from the band Arcade Fire. Modo’s flagship studio in the West Village offers vinyasa flow, core flow, restorative, and yang yin yoga classes in a gently heated environment. (I like that classes are delightfully warm, but not too hot.)
Showers and towels are available on site.
Here, you can enjoy sweeping 360-degree views of lower Manhattan by the pool while you get your stretch on. If you want a unique New York City experience, what could be better?
Here, as at their Williamsburg location, Modo Yoga also offers $10 Modo Love and Karma classes each week. All funds from these classes go to charity. This is also a good budget-friendly option, especially in a city where fitness classes can get pretty pricey.
Iyengar Yoga Institute of New York (Chelsea)
The Iyengar Yoga Institute is a grounding, open, airy, environment. Much has been written about the history of Iyengar yoga, which was developed by B K S Iyengar during his 75 years of teaching Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras.
In contrast to Vinyasa-style yoga (which is more flow-oriented,) Iyengar yoga has a strong emphasis on stamina, balance, concentration, and flexibility. It’s slightly old school in that way.
At the Iyengar Yoga Institute in New York, skilled teachers guide participants through poses with rigor and intention; this is not a “gym” yoga studio that blasts pop music.
Instead, through the twin pillars of mindfulness and breath, teachers introduce a very grounding practice. Classes here honor the yogic tradition as it was practiced in India, even as it continues to evolve in the United States.
Today, IYI offers some of the best yoga in NYC, and they also offer workshops and teacher training for those who want to dive deeper into the practice. For seasoned yogis, coming here is like making a pilgrimage.
Y7 Studio (So Many Locations!)
Y7 Studio is the “Soul Cycle” of New York City yoga studios. This is the yoga chain that made “hip hop yoga” famous. As a result, it has a dedicated following in the city that invented hip hop.
Don your “Brooklyn, We Flow Hard” T-shirts and saddle up for some vigorous boutique yoga with a reliably excellent soundtrack.
With locations in Bryant Park, East Village, Flatiron, Meatpacking, Soho, TriBeCa, Union Square, Upper East Side, Midtown, and Williamsburg, there are many Y7 locations to choose from.
The vibe, however, is consistent. People– especially music lovers– adore this studio. Just look at this funky promo video!
All Y7 studios are heated to 80-90 degrees Fahrenheit using infrared technology, which encourages blood circulation. Teachers lead classes in semi-dark, candlelit rooms, with three distinct phases (warm-up, core vinyasa flows, and relaxing cooldown). It’s all very cool.
Check out their signature WeFlowHard® vinyasa for the quintessential Y7 experience and some of the best yoga in Manhattan. All the cool kids go to this class.
Alo Yoga Sanctuary (SoHo)
Alo Yoga‘s “sanctuary,” studio, and café in Soho came to NYC from the West Coast. As a result, the downstairs storefront features an extensive collection of California-inspired yoga clothing.
Shop here for everything from leggings and zip-ups to cut-offs, sneakers, bras, and sweats, all available in stylish pastel tones. The whole complex is super modern, and we love the clothes!
Alo Yoga also has a nice on-site café. Here, they serve Moon Juice snacks, a tightly-curated menu of luxe teas and coffee, and organic juice from Substance Organic Juicery. (Order the green juice!) Stop by on your way out, and order something to sip on while you shop.
Upstairs, a beautiful, bright yoga studio offers signature stretch flow yoga classes that will whip you into shape, quickly. They also offer guest classes from local fitness heroes like “The Class by Taryn Toomey” and Bodhisculpt.
If you look during class, you may even catch a glimpse of a beautiful SoHo loft through the studio windows. (People with enviable NYC apartments live right across the street.)
Ultimately, if you’re looking to experience a perfect yoga class in SoHo, this is the place to do it.
~ Honorable Mention ~
Pure Yoga (Upper East Side + Upper West Side)
With its sleek, expansive interiors, Pure Yoga is the Rolls Royce of membership yoga studios in NYC. These clean, spacious studios offer a mix of regular and hot yoga with a cult following.
Pure Yoga East offers everything from Anusara yoga to meditation classes, with an emphasis on functional anatomy. Today, they offer over 350 classes a week! If you’re looking for a trendy yoga experience, this is the place to go.
They also offer integrated, inner-thigh burning Figure 4 Barre classes that have an equally dedicated following. (Some instructors even offer private, one-on-one yoga classes on-site, for those who want to practice alone or in a small group.)
Many teachers here also lead classes at smaller studios around the city, so they attract a good mix of followers. (Certain New Yorkers really love practicing with specific teachers, and will travel to make their classes in different locations.)
At Pure Yoga West– the partner studio on the other side of Central Park— be sure to check out Hot Vinyasa classes with fan-favorite Matthew Lombardo. (He is very funny and has excellent taste in background music. I’ve been going to his classes for years.) Juan Gamboa’s Hot Power classes are also great if you’re into Hot Yoga.
Be advised that Pure Yoga is a membership studio. For those who want to get a taste for the experience, they offer complimentary trial classes. More info on that, here.
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