When I walked up the steps to Rooted Yoga in Covington, I was greeted by gentle music playing low in the background and soft, warm hellos of people coming and going. The lights were dim, and the windows to the outside revealed light snowfall. I took a deep breath of fresh air, purified by the luscious plants lining the wall. What a feeling.
Rooted Yoga opened their doors in October of 2016 and is both a yoga studio and a community focused space. The room is divided by a half-wall: one side is where yoga is practiced, and the other is space to meet and chill. Morgan, the instructor for the candlelight class we took, offered us hot tea or sparkling water, and welcomed us to bring our beverage of choice to our mat. Mer and I have been to our share of yoga studios (we’re both trained instructors, and love a good yoga sesh). This studio has an amazing vibe. You literally feel better by just walking in. Keep reading, but spoiler alert: this studio would be good for you if you are looking for a chill, nonjudgmental, non-regimented, community focused practice.
Morgan started out class by reminding us that yoga is an individual practice and she, as the teacher, is there simply to guide and make suggestions. She later explained that her teaching style is to “teach on contradictions”. She knows that each and every body is unique. Squared hips can look entirely different from person to person, and each body has its limitations, opportunities, and strengths.
Morgan guided us through a series of hip opening and balancing poses, and a handful of suggested vinyasas (keyword: suggested), all taken at our own pace. The music playing was nontraditional yoga music (read: no chanting). We later learned that the studio always stretches and flows to chill jams, and plays local artists’ music during classes. So. Cool. (You can follow them on Spotify here.)
After we were officially zened out from this 60 minutes of bliss, Mer and I sat down with Morgan, and the studio owner, Jessica, to hear more about how the origins of Rooted.
I have learned over years of practicing yoga that people come to their mat for different reasons. It turns out that Jessica was in a bad car accident when she was in college. She found yoga after this as an outlet to help deal with the pain and to ease her back into mobility. She earned her certification at the Lexington Healing Arts Academy. She began teaching as both a way to personally strengthen her body and mind, and to bring the healing powers of yoga to others.
A Covington resident, Jessica has always been focused on bettering her local community. In 2015, she founded Yogi and the Farmer, an “urban farming and community wellness initiative” that cultivates green spaces around town, converting them into urban farms. Produce from the farms is donated to underresourced populations in Covington. Jessica also teaches yoga and meditation in the gardens and at Covington community centers, all at no cost for participants. More to come on Yogi and the Farmer this summer.
Jessica’s classes in the gardens began attracting people of all walks of life. It was then that Jessica realized the demand for a warm and uplifting community environment and Rooted Yoga got its footing.
Rooted aims to fill a void in the local yoga scene. One distinct difference between this studio and others is that there are zero mirrors in the room. Rooted exudes positive body image and wants those practicing to focus on the feeling of the pose versus how they look in the pose. Rooted classes are fit for all shapes and sizes, and the instructors guide to accommodate all levels of experience. After all, their slogan is “Yoga for Everybody and Every Body”. As an example, hanging on the wall are turquoise (Mer’s fav. color) chairs that are available for anyone at any point in case they need to take their practice from the mat to a chair. Again, Everyone. Is. Welcome.
So, if you are looking for a community or are maybe hesitant about practicing yoga, Rooted may be the perfect studio for you. They attract newcomers who have never practiced before, as well as experienced yogis that are simply looking to feel a sense of community.
Rooted hosts a variety of events in their space, as well as pop ups in the community. The last Wednesday of every month, they host “Yoga Unplugged”, which is a class lead by live singer songwriters (see photo below from their event at The Frock). Mer and I can’t wait to check it out soon.
We’ll be including these special events on our events calendar.