By DeMornay Harper
Blog Content Contributor
Walking into my first class at Namarupa, I had no idea what to expect. Now, I’ve been to my fair share of yoga classes and they tend to follow a general sequence. The Wednesday morning class I took with Jason Lobo, the owner of Namarupa (unbeknownst to me at the time), definitely did not fit into this trend.
The kind of class I attended was an “align” class, so it didn’t follow a traditional flow and that seems to be a constant at Namarupa. They do things their own way. Rather than using yoga as an escape from the outside world, it is encouraged that you use the tools you learn in this studio and integrate them into your every life.
This class flows almost like an open session with breaks to clarify poses and much dialogue. Yoga can have a definite factor of intimidation to it, but my experience was warm and welcoming. You don’t have to be afraid to ask questions or ask for help here. It is actually very encouraged!
A really awesome thing I learned about Namarupa after speaking with Jason (who is an actual gem, by the way, if I could write an entire post about him, I would) is how they compensate their teachers. Namarupa is a donation-based studio with 40% of the class earnings going right to the teacher. This bumps up to 50% once your attendance gets past a certain number. For those not well versed in yoga teacher wages, this is great!
All Lobo asks is that the teachers respect the space, respect the students and respect themselves and the talent they bring to the studio. The vision is for Namarupa to act almost like a multi-discipline yoga school, where teachers essentially use the space to spread their knowledge no matter what style practice that is. The long-term vision is for the space to evolve into a community hub where people gather and experience each other in harmony. This isn’t to say this space is afraid to touch on real life and controversial topics, but rather to do so while expressing oneself in a respectful manner.
Namarupa is a pretty funky name that I was definitely curious about prior to talking to Jason. Nama means name and rupa means form. It’s sort of like a subject object thing. Call it as you see it; call it as it is.
One of my biggest takeaways after speaking with Jason and taking a couple of his classes is literally stated on the sign in the front window of the space, “We are fun”. Namarupa is a place filled with laughter and space. There is space to move, grow and most of all be yourself.
Featured image by DeMornay Harper.