“Holy shit! I am alive, in this body, right now.” Ryan Toft gets it. As I was sweating my way through his challenging and invigorating 75 minutes of heated vinyasa, I found myself incredulous of our body and mind’s capabilities. As if Ryan read my very thoughts, he echoed this sentiment in his statement above. Yoga is good for the body and for the mind, and my first class at Aloha Yoga Center left me feeling appreciative of just how beautiful and precious the gift of life is.
Ryan and Danielle Toft opened Aloha Yoga in 2017, and have since gained a devoted following. They both teach in the studio along with a few other instructors, offering a wide variety of classes. There is something for everyone! I took Ryan’s Sunday morning, all-levels heated vinyasa class and I can honestly say that I left feeling reawakened and reinspired.
I’ve never been to Hawaii, but I can confidently say that Aloha Yoga Center has brought a little piece of Hawaii to Cincinnati; the studio oasis was a welcome change of atmosphere from the cold and dreary winter weather. Ryan, Danielle, and their 3 kids actually moved to Hawaii in 2016 while Ryan was in the Navy. After moving back to Cincinnati, they decided to open Aloha Yoga to bring a little piece of their beloved, temporary home back with them all while serving the community.
Don’t get me wrong, I got a GREAT workout by taking Ryan’s class. I was actually a little sore the next day. However, those who come to Aloha Yoga will receive more than just a physical workout. Danielle explained to me that people come to learn about themselves. Danielle is a firm believer in the attitude that “Everything you need is already inside of you,” and Ryan’s class instruction brought this sentiment to life.
At one point, Ryan had us in the elbow plank position. We were sweating, there seemed to be collective grunts, sighs, and heavy breathing all around, and Ryan’s voice rung out proclaiming “Just a little bit longer!” Suddenly my mind and body felt a bit more at ease. Ryan quickly followed his statement by saying, “Only 45 more seconds!” … and just like that, I was in agony once again. Ryan used this technique to show the class just how much power our minds hold over our bodies. Those 45 seconds were tough, but we all made it through a little bit stronger, both physically and mentally. And, that's the purpose of the Aloha team. "We see clients as part of our Ohana, which means family." We want to be family for our clients on the their journey to wellness in mind, body and spirit.”
Aloha's hot classes are offered with infrared heat. According to Aloha's website, "Infrared light rays heat you from the inside… it’s a deep penetrating heat that warms you, and not just the surrounding air. It’s the ultimate detox." To learn more click here.
Many people who attend classes at Aloha confide in Danielle and Ryan, explaining that they suffer from anxiety, depression, PTSD… everyone has a story, and Aloha Yoga Center welcomes those dealing with any of life’s issues with open arms. A few of the instructors are trained in Trauma Sensitive yoga, allowing and encouraging survivors of trauma to heal at their own pace. As class-goers are able to find an inner peace on the mat, Danielle and Ryan know that their mission is being carried out.
Check out all of the classes Aloha Yoga Center offers here. The class formats are extensive! And you can get your first week for just $25.
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