If you are interested in Yoga, the Shanti Yoga salon covers a wide range of classes with friendly, well trained staff in good facilities. In the pencil building, there is standard yoga, maternity and baby yoga and candle-lit yoga. The teachers and staff also organize yoga classes in 3 different temples around the city and take part in weekly yoga in Peace park on sunday mornings. The hot yoga studio is in Mikawa-cho and the Pencil Yoga studio is a few blocks away in the Nobori-machi Pencil building.
I wasn’t sure about the concept of hot yoga before doing the class as I have done many yoga classes over the years and find it well, hot enough! However, I was impressed by the hot yoga experience. The instructor led us through some simple moves and stretches at a much
slower pace than a normal yoga class, there was also a lot of pause breaks to concentrate on breathing and take time to drink water. It was very meditative and although the heat made it more challenging at times, it was very relaxing and my body/muscles felt more relaxed perhaps due to the warm room.
There are claims that it is better for joints and overall easier on the body during yoga, it is also great for the skin and burns more calories as it gives the body a more cardio style yoga workout. I was also impressed by the instructor who said she has been teaching for 7 years, she had a wonderfully soothing voice and her Japanese was easy to follow, she sometimes came around to give us small, gentle stance corrections and encouraged everyone to be aware of their breathing and go at their own pace.
When I checked in for the class I had signed up for, the staff asked me to fill in my details and signed a waiver type form which also asks for you to respect the manners of the class (no talking or using telephones during class, etc) and I paid for a “ten ken” trial lesson. You need to book the lesson at least a day in advance (by 9pm) via their online reservation service (in Japanese). Or you can stop in or call to book (even same day) if space is available. They are often fully booked on the weekends, but have more space available weekdays (20 person capacity in the studio). You can bring your own mat or rent one for 200 yen.
For the hot yoga class, you need to bring a face towel and at least 1 liter of water to drink during the session. I finished my 1.2 liter bottle 10 minutes before the end of the class, so better to bring a 2 liter bottle just to be sure. You can wear anything comfortable and easy to move in. They provide you with a towel to put over your mat (nice courtesy, otherwise the mat would be slippery with sweat), but you should also bring a bath towel and shampoo, soap, change of clothes etc for the shower after the class unless you want to go out looking like you’ve been in a (slightly smelly) swimming pool. They have 4 small, but clean and good showers to use in the (women only) changing room.
Shanti Yoga studios run classes from 10:30am to 10pm everyday of the week. Trial lesson is only 500 yen for the pencil building classes and ¥1,000 for hot yoga or aroma yoga classes. A free pass to use of both studios is ¥10,000/month. If you don’t want to become a member, individual classes are ¥2,000 for each Aroma yoga or hot yoga class and ¥1,000~¥1,500 for all other classes. The Mikawa-cho’s hot yoga studio is for women only, but men can also join classes (like the regular “Shanti” yoga class) at the Pencil yoga building (in Nobori-machi), however be advised that unfortunately there are no toilets or changing rooms available for men.
Hot Yoga Studio, Shanti shop and Vegan Cafe (¥8,000/month exclusive hot yoga studio membership)
- Hot Yoga classes (beginner, body make, self care and cleansing hot yoga classes) from 10:30am to 10pm
- 7am classes every Sunday morning in the Peace park (under shady trees) – cancelled if the weather is rainy
- 5th floor massage and Shanti yoga therapy: ¥5,000 (60 min), ¥8,000 (90 min)
Pencil Building Studio: (¥6,500/month for exclusive pencil building studio yoga membership)
- Aroma Yoga every Tuesday (19:40) and friday (14:30)
- Candle meditation yoga every Thursday (20:20)
- Laughter yoga: every 3rd Sunday from 13:00
- Maternity yoga, Mama & Kids, Mama & baby yoga classes (inquire about times and availability)
- Yokoji-temple 永光寺（Funairi 舟入）First and third Tuesdays 第１・３火曜日: 13:30-14:30
- Senkyōji-temple 専教寺（Hesaka 戸坂）Second and Fourth Thursdays 第２・４木曜日: 10:30-11:30
- Chisato-tera-temple 千暁寺（Ujina 宇品）First and third Wednesdays 第１・３水曜日: 10:15-11:15（Mother & Baby yoga also available here ベビーヨガ）: 13:30-14:30
- Shanti Hot Yoga Studio: 730-0029 Hiroshima city, Naka-ku Mikawa-cho 2-20 Mondano Bld 2F : hot yoga studio is on the 2nd floor, just above a small parking structure, 2+ blocks down the road from Parco, turn left off Namiki-dori and left again and you will see Shanti Vegan cafe and Hot Yoga salon on the right side just past Bistro Aimee.
- Pencil Yoga Studio: 730-0036 Hiroshima city, Naka-ku Nobori-machi 7-21 Pencil Building 3F : turn down off of the covered Hondori shopping arcade when you see Beams/Doutor coffee, you will see the giant concrete pencil of the Pencil bld in 2 blocks.