Most people think yoga is yoga, ie: the yoga is the same as it is anywhere, however that is not entirely true. Ask any yogi who has done both, and see what their response is. Most if not all shout “a yoga studio” is the best place to learn yoga. Over the years I have taught in both, and this is my findings……
If you are coming to yoga because of frazzled nerves, the gym is not for you. Most gyms share spaces with bikes, or other classes, and the atmosphere is not the same. How can you find any peace with someone grunting and dropping weights next door?
Most teachers at gyms teach a “watered down version of yoga”. Most of the time it’s not due to the lack of teachers knowledge, but the requirements of your boss. When I taught at a gym I was reprimanded for chanting “OM” at the start and end of class. Any type of spirituality was discouraged. BTW: Did you know chanting OM sound opens up the root chakra, and runs up the spine creating a sense of wellbeing? It’s a very good thing.
Teachers at gym often have their hands tied behind their back. Most don’t have the props needed to access deeper spots in the body, nor do yoga teachers have availability to senior yoga teachers who can share a vast knowledge of yoga.
One class fits all is often the type taught at the gym. A yoga studio knows a combination of all types of yoga, vinyasa, yin, restorative, hot, aerial is what is needed to fully heal.
Often studios have workshops or classes to deepen your practice, aka speciality yoga.
Studios have wonderful yoga teacher training programs. That is how I got started going to a studio, and wow, what a difference; I’ll never step foot in a gym to practice yoga again.
But most of all the biggest difference was how it felt at the studio vs. the gym for yoga. When I stepped into that studio, my body was started “singing”. The vibration set by teachers was HUGE. You can feel that, even if you don’t know what it is or can name it. Here is a quote from an article on Heathline explaining Vibrational Energy,
“Proponents believe it’s possible to speed up or slow down the vibrations that occur at the cellular and atomic levels by changing our thoughts, behaviors — and even our surroundings.
Changing those nanovibrations, it’s thought, could ripple outward, affecting our mental state and physical health.”
And that my friend, is the best reason to give a studio a try.