A guaranteed unique and challenging yoga experience - whatever your practice level.
THE SPACE: Founder and teacher Lauren Imparato leads classes in her gorgeous Little Italy loft. The off-the-beaten path location - above an Italian clam house - is a fitting setting for an off-the-beaten path experience. With big windows, a great sound system, and high ceilings, the exposed-brick, open loft studio space is spacious and welcoming.
THE CLASS: From the physical space to the opening meditation; the asana sequencing to the music...there’s something that is just kind of cool and a bit edgier about the entire experience that makes I.AM.YOU stand out from other studios:
- This class is super challenging - IMO, among the toughest in NYC. The sequences are not complicated or overly technical, but this is an extremely athletic Vinyasa class. There is typically a full 60 minutes+ of fast-paced flow that provides both strength and cardio components. You will be savasana-ing in a ginormous puddle of sweat at the end - regardless of how fit you are.
- That said, you don’t need to be an advanced yogi to love this class. There’s something for everyone at virtually every level, as Lauren provides a number of variations on individual poses. She is also cool with you holding plank, skipping the vinyasa, or whatever you need to do to tailor the class to your level.
- Lauren is a master of sequencing and it makes the class flow really quickly and easily. Her sequences repeat and gradually build, which makes them easy to follow. She’s super creative and puts together combinations of poses you’ve never seen before. And her sequences are smart and logical and they linearly prepare you for the deepest poses.
- Despite the fast pace of the class, Lauren is a stickler for proper alignment and form. She’s highly descriptive and gives great verbal cues, and makes a ton of adjustments. She’s hands-on and gives confident, strong adjustments and knows when to push you deeper into a pose.
- Resident “mixologist” = cool, inspired tunes.
OVERALL EXPERIENCE: I.AM.YOU classes are always a smart, well-conceived, complete experience from start to finish. In a recent class, Lauren somehow wove together a relevant personal story, a Disney character, and an element of Tibetan Buddhism into a highly athletic Vinyasa sequence that played perfectly into the theme of the day. She doesn’t t take short-cuts, and you can tell each and every class is carefully curated and thought-out - all the details that make a big difference.
If you’re looking for a kick-ass workout in a unique environment, I.AM.YOU is a great studio to try. (Also great for impressing friends - anyone I’ve brought or referred seems to think I’m much cooler than I actually am for knowing about this place.)