Yoga is breath in motion. Its success is rooted in the meditative effect of the Asanas or poses, which help bring a sense of calm and equanimity. As it grounds us towards our mind-body connection, Yoga goes beyond fitness. A decade into my yoga practice, I’ve decided to start teaching again in Helsinki. For that reason I went through some of the main Yoga studios in the capital. There are several studios in the greater Helsinki district that offers multiple disciplines:
Hot Yoga is usually practiced in a room heated up to 38 degrees and with a humidity of 40%, to recreate the environment of India, where Yoga originated. Ashtanga is a fixed energetic series of postures and is the closest practice to the traditional exercise of yoga in India. The individual poses, (Asanas) are inter-woven with the breath in a synchronised string of movement. Vinyasa is a curated, modern dynamic flow of postures and is currently the most celebrated style of yoga in the west as it can easily be modified from power to gentler spontaneous variations. It allows the teacher the most flexibility to decide what area of the body to focus on and to set the atmosphere of the class if it will be slow and easy, or fun and dynamic. Aerial, is an anti-gravity play which makes primary use of hammocks to support postures that would otherwise be too advanced. Iyengar focuses on alignment, timing and props to modify and deepen into postures. To this day, it is the standard for Yoga therapy. Yin Yoga is a restorative flow that incorporates Traditional Chinese Medicine principles. It is a static, slow set of postures held for several minutes at a time and is popular for recovery and stress management.
In addition to dedicated Yoga Studios, most Helsinki area gyms are also offering yoga classes, making it the one of the most popular mat-based practice in the city.
Here is a guide to some of the studios to practice yoga in the Greater Helsinki Area.
Nicole Betita is one of the teachers of Yoga Nordic instructing in English
One of the most accessible studio in the city, Yoga Nordic has a class for everyone. Their signature class is the Hot Yoga which is especially therapeutic as winter hits.
I took Nicole’s Hot Vinyasa and I appreciated the total body workout coupled with the detoxing effect of sweating in a heated room. She brings in inversions, or advanced poses into her sequence which inspires beginners and is a welcome challenge for regular practitioners.
Outside the asanas, Nordic Yoga also offers Pilates and Barre classes.
Whether you’re a beginner who is just looking to get fit or a yogi seeking to deepen their practice, there is always an option for you at the biggest growing yoga studio in Finland. Yoga Nordic also streams classes live for those who wants to develop a home practice.
Kamppi Shopping Center
5th floor. Tel. No:
0400 – 111101
Mankkaantie 2 – 4
0400 – 111103
0400 – 111105
Iyengar is the gold standard of Yoga therapy and Purna Yoga makes it available to everyone with a more heart-centered approach. This soulful practice explores Asanas outside the alignment and poses by integrating meditation and breathe-work.
Purna, which means complete in Sanskrit, in its intermediate practice, is for more experienced yogis. Here, the refinement and nuances of the yoga poses are explored deeper which brings greater awareness and energetic flow into the body.
Purna Yoga also offers pregnancy, post-natal and fertility yoga as well as Holistic Nutrition support.
Fredrikinkatu 67 E 42, 00100 Helsinki
Mobile. No: +358 50 375 5078 (Reception) / +358 50 353 3970 (Urgent)
Oh My Goodness (OMG)
OMG offers a holistic experience to the practice of yoga outside the studio through their Bali-vibe lifestyle cafe. Students are treated to a wide array of delectable plant-based smoothies and super bowls to compliment their wellness journey. This could be the best gateway to mindful living as their Vinyasa classes are well-suited for beginners and many of them are taught eloquently in Finnish. I got to try Marinka’s Vinyasa and it was a feel-good flow which was a good night-cap for me at that time.
I ordered their Vegan Cesar Salad and I have to say that it was the richest take on a classic I have tried. Their Beet chocolate cake has just the right amount of sweetness which is interestingly complimented with a zing of ginger. It’s not supposed to, but it worked deliciously and is now my go to dessert when I want to be comforted but not feel guilty afterwards. I also like how their chia pudding is properly sprouted so that it properly hydrates instead of causing bloat and is generously topped with superfoods.
Every class in OMG is a treat as smoothies and bowls are just 5 Eu for students which is a refreshing indulgence to end a class.
Vaasankatu 14, 00500 Helsinki
Mobile No: +358 50 3007989
I’ve been practicing Ashtanga for 7 years and was thrilled to come across a studio in the hood that supports a more disciplined practice. Many are intimidated at the prospect of Ashtanga yoga but it is actually a good foundation for those just starting out as the sequence is set so it is easier to get familiar with every pose through repetition. It is also the only practice that encourages hands-on adjustments which is integral in deepening into the asanas. Pia has a quiet grace about her that endears you to the strength of her practice. Her adjustments are gentle but firm and she is very generous in demonstrating preparatory poses for advanced poses like hand stand, jump-throughs and drop backs.
Kolmas Linja 4
Mobile No: +358 40 527 4383
Restorative yoga is increasingly becoming popular in Finland for recovery and therapy. Bloom Wellbeing, formerly Studio Yin offers a spa-like experience to attendees of their Yin Yoga classes, which is a gentle flow with a focus on recovery poses unlike the usual Yang-based Hatha Yoga that Ashtanga and Vinyasa are known for.
Coincidentally, Nicole is also the one teaching Yin classes here. She makes the students hold every pose for three to five minutes. She focuses on hip openers, twists and heart expansion. Affirmations are also given during the class. I was even treated to a back and hip massage which is always a welcome touch.
My favourite yoga teacher also prints inspirational quotes for students as a souvenir during Savasana.
Urheilukatu 5, 00250 Helsinki
Tel. No: 044 571 0111
All Yoga studios have implemented special arrangements to reduce the risks of infection to Coronavirus. Disinfection of surfaces are performed more vigorously and the capacity is filled only to 60% to make social distancing possible. Students are encouraged to bring their own mats and as well as advised to wash their hands after the class. Additionally, many of the studios offer live streaming classes for those who prefer to participate in guided class at home.
Weizel Gulfan is a Nutrition consultant and TV personality who also teaches yoga in Helsinki. She runs the health coaching platform, Everyday Wellness for companies and individuals. Follow her on Instagram @oureverydaywellness.