At Kupuri, I attended the 90 minute Monday morning 9 am class taught by Paul. The studio was clean, spacious and airy. This was the first time I had attended a studio with a tile floor and I found it a refreshing foundation for my practice. I enjoyed Paul’s teaching style…he used very unique phrases such as “this pose is psychedelic” and “rock-n-roll your hips back”. Paul’s class started with a very gentle warmup and he employed gentle transitions and flow. Although the class was not “geriatric yoga” it was definitely “vacation yoga”, as Paul clearly states and several of the poses we did were “yinnish”. At the end of class, we were given the choice of either a seated meditation or Savasana. The only element that I found that detracted from my practice was the amount of street noise. The studio is on street level and there was construction work being done across the street. Overall, I truly enjoyed my experience at Kupuri and would recommend this class to any level of student. Seriously, who doesn’t want a teacher who recognizes the “psychedelic” nature of certain poses?
At Davannayoga, my mother and I attended the Morning Yoga class on Tuesday that was taught by Sam. This studio is located close to the Malecon in downtown and is the smallest of the three studios I went to. When we arrived at class, the teacher had already set up the mats and props for the class in a circular arrangement so that we were all able to be aware of everyone in the class. Sam did a great job of bringing awareness to our breath, our foundation in each pose and our drishti (gaze). Personally, I felt the class was just a warmup for my body (which I think was the intent of the class) and after the class was over, I really felt ready to embrace the day. In savasana, Sam gave each student a massage with an aromatic oil on the forehead that was very invigorating.
The classes that I took in PV never felt physically challenging to the level that I experience in the studios I attend in the Seattle area. This could be due to the demographics of the students in PV, or the culture, or perhaps I just didn’t attend the classes that were intended to be more invigorating. Overall, I was very pleased with my experiences at all three studios and would invite everyone to try them.
This was my first long trip where I was seeking to find yoga. Everywhere I looked there was something: a buddha statue or picture, a menu with a yoga reference, an awareness of the need to connect to the body (there are literally massage parlors on every block). Puerto Vallarta has a small but strong yoga community and I look forward to returning soon to get to know it better!