In a city like Seattle, which boasts an especially active population that's full of adventurous folks and adrenaline enthusiasts, it's no surprise that even yoga studios here come with a nontraditional, unique twist. Thanks to Samantha Danielle – owner and instructor of Levitas Studio in Fremont – yogis of all levels can now experience some acrobatics off their mat.
As Seattle's first antigravity yoga studio, the welcoming, nontraditional space combines elements of dance, Pilates and gymnastics, allowing participants to benefit from a hybrid mind-body exercise while suspended in a supportive, cocoon-like hammock.
Visitors to Levitas Studio are indeed high on life — Photo courtesy of Samantha Danielle / Levitas Studio
Danielle was first introduced to antigravity yoga as a solution for chronic back pain, and she stands by its effectiveness in increasing strength, mobility and overall agility.
“Everyone can reap the benefits of antigravity yoga. It’s not just for practicing yogis, dancers or flexible athletes," says Danielle. "Each class is designed to take you through a series of poses, some inverted, that decompress the spine, release pressure throughout the body and give you more flexibility over time.”
Students will likely walk away feeling taller and lighter.
Tucked away along Fremont's main drag, the intimate studio proves a warm and welcoming space, with dark wood floors and a floor-to-ceiling, forest-themed mural that brings the beauty and Zen of the Pacific Northwest indoors.
Levitas Studio also focuses on Vinyasa yoga, or flow yoga, set to music, like invigorating reggae beats, for example. Vinyasa means "breath-synchronized movement," and this practice involves a series of poses that move students through the power of inhaling and exhaling.
Vinyasa movements can be described as "smoothly flowing and almost dance-like," and, like all styles of yoga, this practice comes along with wonderful mental and physical benefits.
The studio highlights traditional yoga for inflexible male clients, too; male-specific classes place emphasis on the hips, hamstrings, shoulders and lower back.
Other unconventional yoga classes are in the works at Levitas as well (Think indoors stand-up paddleboarding classes.), so be sure to keep your eye on the ever-evolving schedule.
First-time clients can access helpful information on the studio's FAQ page. For example, if you're wary of heights, instructors promise that, during an inversion, you will be only three inches off the ground. (Also, during 75% of the moves, you will be distributing weight between the hammock and the floor.)
Depending on the class, students can sign up for an entire series or they can simply take advantage of drop-in rates.