I think the problem with yoga and barre in general, is the fact that many people are simply scared to go into a studio. The cult-like following, the lingo, the fashion and the strict rules can make the everyday person totally shy away from these two very worthwhile forms of movement. But when you go to Yoga Treat in the Bay Area, you don’t have to think twice about feeling out of place.
One of the things I love most about my job, is the ability to visit tons of different fitness classes and studios as an objective eye. Over the past month, I’ve been a regular attendee at Yoga Treat in Concord, California and have been so incredibly pleased with what I’ve found out.
If you live in the Bay Area and want a welcoming, informal and unassuming studio to practice yoga or barre, then you’ll want to read this and consider trying Yoga Treat. And if you’re a studio owner or instructor looking for inspiration, you’ll want to read this as well, because this studio has some awesome signature offerings …
HOW DID YOGA TREAT GET STARTED?
Yoga Treat is the brainchild of a beautiful woman named, Anya Litvinova. Anya used to teach tons of classes-a-day around San Francisco at various studios and finally realized, with the help of her mom, Alla, that she could open her own studio and cater to her own crowd just over the bridge in the East Bay. More than a year ago, the two of them created Yoga Treat, combining their various expertise, and they haven’t looked back.
WHAT CLASSES ARE OFFERED AT YOGA TREAT?
Yoga Treat offers yoga classes, Yoga TRX classes, barre classes, barre/TRX classes and even Tae Bo kickboxing and teen fitness classes. All of the classes are suitable for people of all levels.
WHAT IS DIFFERENT ABOUT YOGA TREAT?
You don’t have to “fall into line” at Yoga Treat, like you do at some of the larger, busy corporate yoga studios and barre studios. It’s much more laid-back and informal. You take your time, go at your own pace, wear what you want and work at your own level.
Anya has created a signature class called “Barre Treat,” which includes elements of yoga in a barre workout. There is extra stretching between blocks of work, as well as a “happy hour” in the middle of the class, in which you roll out and massage your legs on the barre — perhaps the coolest thing ever. In addition to that, all classes end with you laying on your back, relaxing in yoga’s final meditation pose. And if you’re lucky, Anya will walk around, put some essential oils on her hands, push down gently on your shoulders and even give you a scented eye pillow. I mean … what a treat. Every time I’ve walked out of that studio, I have felt renewed, refreshed and energized, which is a beautiful thing.
WHAT ARE THE INSTRUCTORS LIKE AT YOGA TREAT?
Because Yoga Treat is a boutique, one-off studio, individually owned, you will find that most of the classes are taught by Anya, the owner, or her mom, Alla. There are a couple of newer yoga teachers on the schedule, as well, who are supposed to be very good and each have a different flair. Anya and her mom have totally different teaching styles, but both are sure to give you a great workout. Alla is an elite runner and brings her training style into class; she is in amazing shape and will help you get there too. Anya is a skilled yogi and former dancer, who is absolutely elegant, graceful, yet strong at the same time. I love watching her move, because she does so with such ease. It’s worth taking her class just to see her in action.
HOW HARD ARE THE CLASSES AT YOGA TREAT?
I really do believe that all of the classes are for all levels of people. My favorite class of course is Yoga TRX, and this class is one that you can do no matter what your current fitness routine is because it includes stretching, strength and balance. The class is taught as though everyone is new, yet there are always options to make each move more challenging. The same goes for the barre classes and yoga classes. I don’t think that the barre classes are as physically painful as some other studios, and I find that to be a good thing. Not all working out has to be incredibly strenuous. Yoga Treat finds the perfect balance of challenge and “treat.”
In a typical barre class at Yoga Treat, you’ll not only use a barre, but you’ll also use small pink dumbbells, gliders, mats and even yoga blocks — all of which you can select from the handy equipment area, shaded in mostly purples and pinks.
If you want the opinion on the classes of someone who doesn’t work in fitness, I talked to some loyal members of Yoga Treat taking class alongside me, and one woman said she has been coming to Yoga Treat for months and was able to rehab some injuries through the movement. She feels challenged, but yet still enjoys how it feels. I would totally agree. In the barre classes and barre/TRX combo classes, there are definite moments of intensity, but nothing too extreme.
WHAT DO YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOGA TREAT?
- You can wear what you want, but you don’t need shoes for any of the classes.
- The studio is tucked away in a converted warehouse behind a shopping center in Concord and is absolutely adorable. Towels, mats and everything you need is provided. And there is even free childcare.
- The drop-in rate for classes is very reasonable (and lower than most other Bay Area studios) at only $18 per class. If you purchase monthly or automatic renewal packages, the price per class decreases.
- The studio offers classes Monday through Saturday, with sessions in the mid-mornings and evenings only. Anya may add lunch-time classes one day, but for now the schedule is a little less robust than other studios.
- If you’re intimidated by yoga, barre or big-box gyms, this is the perfect place for you — there’s just no chance at all that you can be lost in the crowd, because the personal attention in the small classes is great. Give Anya a call and she’ll even work with you privately, because she’s also a personal trainer. (And she can help you perfect your dancer’s pose for an Instagram shot too!)
- Your first class is free, so treat yourself! What do you have to lose?
If you plan to go to Yoga Treat, I suggest that you take Anya’s yoga, Barre Treat or Yoga TRX class. In fact, you can take all three-in-a-row some nights. Follow Yoga Treat on Facebook and Instagram for the latest.
When you teach as many group fitness classes as I do, it feels totally awesome to get to spend time as a student doing something different. For the last month, I’ve looked forward to my time at Yoga Treat. Every single class has made me feel better than the last.
If you enjoyed reading this review, pop on over to my Fitness page for more class reviews on both Bay Area and national group fitness studios and programs.
*Please note: This post is not sponsored, nor was I compensated. I received a free month of membership in exchange for truthfully reviewing the studio, and these are my opinions. I loved experiencing Yoga Treat, and I can’t wait to go back. Thanks for supporting Yoga Treat!