Student Stories

 

 Ember K- My Student Story

Love Gulf Coast Yoga!!!

Hot Yoga with Linda is always my favorite part of my day. She makes sure you are doing the poses correctly so that you are receiving the most benefit. There is no other workout where I sweat and stretch EVERY muscle as much as I do in Hot Yoga!

Happy mind, body and spirit!

When I walk out of the studio after a class, I feel like a brand new woman. It is not only beneficial to your body, but your mind will thank you as well!

Gulf Coast Yoga also offers warm Pilates!!! Sudi the instructor makes this 60 minute class fun and upbeat. Love the music, mermaids, puppy dogs, and working on our butt smiles 🙂  I can feel a difference in my core especially during yoga!  The Pilates is a great addition to the Hot Yoga and I am so glad it is part of the weekly schedule. Thank you Gulf Coast Yoga for helping my body, mind, and spirit!


Jessica D.

Wow! What can I say…..Gulf Coast Yoga has been a total life transformation!

Rocking her new T Shirt!

I have always been an active person, but plagued by nagging injuries throughout my endeavors. Never before have I found something I enjoy and frankly crave. Linda and David are amazing and the yoga community they have built and continue to build has become an extension of my family! Speaking of family, my family and friends have not only noticed a physical transformation, but an overall transformation in the way I deal with each day! I have only been at the studio since September, and feel amazing each and every day! From being able to deal with “stuff” of life better, to feeling better and getting some of the feel good things I felt I had lost forever after the most recent injury really changed my life I can not say enough about how excited and thankful for Gulf Coast Yoga and the wonderful people at the studio!!! Jess D


Traci W.

It is hard to believe it has been one year since I first walked through the doors of Gulf Coast Yoga.  A year ago, I had never taken a yoga class much less a HOT yoga class.  I was definitely apprehensive, but I was excited to give it a try.  I am an active person and avid exerciser, so I wasn’t expecting too much other than to sweat a lot.  I envisioned a lot of sitting on my mat, some stretching and trying to figure out what this meditation stuff was all about. 

Celebrating One Year at GCY!

Boy was I wrong.  This class was a challenge both mentally and physically, but of all the things I have done in my past, this has been the most rewarding and helpful for both my body and my mind.  There are people of all ages, all shapes and sizes and everybody works at their own pace with their own body.  There is no competition and no pressure.  Linda and David are absolutely wonderful and inviting.  They are patient and encouraging.  I look forward to coming back every time and continue to work on what I now understand will be a lifelong practice.  My body feels better.  My flexibility has improved tremendously.  My patience and energy outside the studio have gotten better.  This is the best thing I have done for myself in many years, and I would encourage everyone to give it a try.  It won’t be easy, but if you keep coming back you will see results in all aspects of your life.  Thank you, Linda and David.  I look forward to many more classes and years at the studio.


Ann P.

“2 yrs ago I tried the 30 Day Intro. I really had no intention of continuing after the 30 days. I showed up 5-6 times/wk during the first 2 weeks (I was going to get my money’s worth). I could not believe how much better I felt overall. During my 3rd week I knew I wanted this HOT Yoga to be a part of my life. I went from taking otc pain meds 2-3 times a day to 1-2 times a month. I have not had a migraine headache in two years.(I had them 2-3 times a month) I have more energy. I am less anxious.
When I walk into the studio I feel like I’m at home!

Thank you Linda and David. I’m ready for year 3!”


Malena C.

GCYV  Rocks!

After serious injuries to my spinal column, GCYV has helped me strengthen my back, reduce pain, and regain flexibility.  To feel my body “working” again, giving me the ability to do the things I enjoy, is truly freedom. malena-vacation1 The teachers are helpful, fun, experienced, and interested in your journey to a healthy body and mind.  The studio is nicely set up, something you’ll appreciate as you convince yourself that you too are a yogi even though your postures are not Cirque du Soleil material!  Rounding out the experience of your yoga practice, is the bonus of meeting other students, and getting to share how yoga is a unique adventure and yet the same class for everyone.

Get your mat out today at GCYV😊

Namaste, Malena


Adrienne G.

“So thankful to have Gulf Coast Yoga in Venice. After a 10-year hiatus from Bikram yoga, I’m happy to be back at it. Already enjoying the benefits to mind, body, and soul. Linda, the studio, and the other practitioners are all terrific.

Smiling, happy Adrienne!

Smiling, happy Adrienne!

At Gulf Coast Yoga, when going through the poses they often explain the benefits, for example the tremendous tourniquet effect when holding the pose, and then release from the pose to allow high speed blood to flow through your body. This instruction helps to visualize the healing and cleansing happening in the body. When I took up hot yoga again last month, I had a very sore and swollen elbow. After a few classes with Gulf Coast Yoga, I noticed a remarkable difference in the pain level, and now, three weeks later, the pain has complete subsided.

I am enjoying my body’s transformation and look forward to the changes yet to come. Through my 10-year hiatus from Bikram yoga, I tried other forms of yoga, and other forms of exercise; but for me Bikram is the best and most effective form of exercise. Period. And Gulf Coast Yoga is the real deal.

<3 Adrienne”

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Janet A.

I have been practicing at Gulf Coast Yoga since October 2015.   I used the 30-day offer (3-4X/week) because I felt (and hoped) this would be beneficial for me.  As a cancer survivor at 66, I’m aware of the need to keep active for my health and well being.

Perfect Form Janet!

Initially, my balance was clearly a big challenge.  I would also go home after a class and sleep for several hours.  Then I began to notice improvement.  Some small but some more significant.  For example, the Camel pose was one that hurt to just think about it.   Now, I can do it without a problem – and it’s one of my favorite poses.  I’m now invigorated after class, have energy, and simply ‘feel good.’

Gulf Coast Yoga studio in welcoming to everyone and is a wonderful community.  Linda is a master instructor who guides and assists during class.  David and Mark instruct as well, each with a special style.  They are all available to help at any time.  So special!

Thanks
Janet

*** One Year after her first class Janet added this:

It’s been a year now since I took my first hot yoga class at Gulf Coast Yoga.  That first class was so loooong and I wasn’t sure I’d make it.  I was 65 and thought I was fairly limber and in relatively good physical condition.  I was humbled.  Something said to keep going because I would benefit from hot yoga, so I continued, and now after a year, I can definitely say my life and my body is better in ways I cannot even describe.  I’m able to do poses that I thought I’d never do, I’m more limber, my balance is better, my body feels better, and I think my overall health is vastly improved.  A lot of the improvement is subtle.  I don’t notice it all of a sudden one day, but it adds up over time.  I was recently given the ‘all OK’ from my oncologist after 5 years from diagnosis of Stage III colon cancer.  I’m going to continue hot yoga for my health because this is positively the best thing I can do for my body.  It’s my gift to ME.  Gulf Coast Yoga is the best!  Thanks Linda and David

Hugs,  Janet


Marcie R.

It has been eight weeks since my first Bikram Yoga class at Gulf Coast Yoga Studio and I am hooked…period.  Why? Because after just a short period of time there is an enormous difference in how my body moves as well as in my mindset.             A snapshot of my background…little to no flexibility in my back (since childhood) combined with an auto accident which resulted in a case of severe whiplash.  Years following, I was in pain 24/7 specifically my upper back, shoulders and neck until a manipulative osteopath put me back together again; literally one rib at a time! The result was no pain, but the inflexibility of my lower back was now combined with an even tighter upper back, neck and shoulders. My saving grace is that I am athletic, though inflexibility certainly inhibits the level of play.  Gulf Coast Yoga offered an introductory month long trial and I signed up. I wanted to see if this might make a difference and I was determined to give it my full attention. I went to class 5 to 6 times each week. After just one week, I noticed a difference…ONE WEEK! After a lifetime of not being able to move, my body was slowly opening up…UNBELIEVABLE!

Half Moon June 2016

 

 

Linda & Dave are the owners. They are welcoming, patient, kind and fun and truly have a commitment to their students and the studio. Mark is a teacher at the studio and he possesses these same qualities.

Some days I have a terrific practice and others not quite as good, but no matter the outcome, I am there and I am working as hard as I can. They say that we are to practice with perseverance, precision and patience with no attachment to the outcome. Heed these words as they apply to so many things.

I feel better, stronger, more focused and proud that I am doing something really good for myself.

I am still a newbie (9 weeks) and plan to practice for a long time to come.

 

***UPDATE: 5/1/17 Marcie’s One Year Anniversary!**

Arms touching with the ears!

It is one year (today) since I began practicing Bikram Yoga and it has honestly changed my life. Bikram yoga is truly remarkable…it not only improves your physical condition in ways standard exercise cannot, it expands your mind. No matter your mood or condition when you enter the studio (and some days it is tougher than others😱 ) you always feel rejuvenated, calm, energized and ready to take on your day when you leave.

The staff at Gulf Coast Yoga is terrific. They care about the students and want each student to get the most out of the experience as possible. The studio also offers complimentary practices including WARM Pilates and WARM Yin.

A smiling, happy Camel Pose

 

I was taught by one of the yoga instructors to “Practice with perseverance, precision and patience with no attachment to the outcome”. This is not only brilliant advice for the 90 minute Bikram session it is excellent advice to approach what I do outside the studio. My most sincere gratitude to Linda, David, Mark, Margie, Marsha, Jeannie, Sudi and countless others who have added more than I can express to my life.

 

 

 

 

 


Guillermo O.

“Hi Linda & David,
I just wanted to share a little experience about “Hot Yoga”. When moving from Texas to Florida about 2 years ago, I started to have a very bad neck pain. My initial thought was that it was something temporary, but after four months the pain never stopped and my neck was felt stiff, so I decided to go to the doctor. Some X-Rays were taken and this was the diagnostic: “Moderate to severe degenerative arthritis sickness in cervical spine at disks C3-C4, C5-C6 and C6-C7 levels. Possible solution: surgery.

It was about that time when I realized that there was a Hot Yoga studio, which I was already familiar with, in Venice. So, without hesitation I signed up and started to practice. The happy ending of this little story is that in less than 2 months of Hot Yoga at Gulf Coast Yoga, my neck pain and stiffness were over and I have felt great ever since!
I am very grateful for this practice and this studio that welcomed my wife and I so “warmly”
Best,
Guillermo Olarte”

 


Claribel P.

clabel tree

check out those guns!

“Today is my 1 Year Anniversary of doing Bikram Yoga with Linda at Gulf Coast Yoga. To summarize my experience I can wrap it all up in 1 sentence NEVER IN MY LIFE have I been physically and mentally FIT. This Yoga will improve ALL areas of your life body, mind, and soul. BIG Thank You to all the teachers for their positive impact in my life. CARPE DIEM!!!”

 

 


 

 Tina T.

strike a pose tina1

Half Tortoise Pose and Tortoise!

I have been running for many, many years. I told myself if I ever ran a half marathon in sub 2 hours I would retire my running shoes but the older I got the slower I got. It was time to add something new to my routine and yoga seemed to be the best choice to increase my flexibility and concentration.   I joined a 30 Day Introductory special at Gulf Coast Yoga with a friend. After the first class we both thought “what did we get into?”! After the third class we realized we were having fun! Two weeks later I ran a 5 mile race at my fastest pace in years. I started to run less and go to yoga more often even though I had a half marathon coming up in a few weeks. A week before the race somehow I pulled a muscle- but I continued to go to yoga. The morning of the race I told myself I just needed to finish without injury and not to worry about my time. I never felt so unprepared. At the starting line I stood behind the sub 2 hour pacer anyway. I will try it. The gun went off and I heard Linda’s voice in my head, “concentrate, focus one spot, relax your shoulders”. So I relaxed and focused and focused on the sub 2 hour pacer just in front of me. Before I knew it we were at mile 8 and I was still strong! I can do it! At mile 10 someone said just a 5k to go! I focused on everyone’s positive energy and comments. The pacer turned to me and said, “get in front of me and don’t let me pass you!”. I took off! I will do it! I ran hard with the help of my co runners I stayed in front of the pacer and crossed the finish line before her. I did it! Not only did I finish in less than 2 hours I also shaved 11 minutes off my fastest time half marathon time! Thanks to Linda at Gulf Coast Yoga and my co runners! Without them I know I wouldn’t have been able to do it!   So am I hanging up my running shoes? Nope! Not when there is a 1:45 pacer to follow at the next half marathon and hot yoga to keep me going!

***3 months later Tina has this to say, “Thank you Linda, David, Kelly and Mark! You’ve put the fun back into my run! You have helped me concentrate, relax and enjoy myself again. Not to mention you woke up muscles I forgot I had! I’m running less but racing faster. In just a few months I’ve placed 3rd in a 5k, took Grand Master in another 5k and finished 2 half marathons in less than 2 hours. I got my happy back! Thanks again!**

** Another update from Tina after practicing consistently for just over 2 years**

It’s hard to believe its been two years since I walked into the yoga studio. My goal was to gain flexibility and strength to improve my running. Did it work? Absolutely! But the unexpected benefit was to my mental well being. Hot yoga sweats out my stress so there is none left for the little things! Life has become more calm and enjoyable. Thank you David and Linda you have changed my life both physically and mentally! I am a Yogi for life.
Live in peace and peace will live in you.
Namaste


 Cheryl W.

“I’ve been doing Bikram Hot Yoga for 3 months now. This has been strengthening my core and greatly reducing my lower back pain. Because of this I was able to paint my bathroom AND iron for over 2 hours yesterday and I’m not in agony today! I’m looking forward to a good stretching this morning to get all the kinks out before I tackle painting the other bathroom!”strikeaposecheryl3

4 MONTHS LATER Cheryl had this to add:  “I had an amazing experience today. I’ve been practicing for seven months (mostly 4 times a week) and haven’t been able to do the sit up. Not once. This was due to lack of strength in my core and pain in my back. I had been in pain for well over 10 years! Today I was able to do all of the individual sit ups! It was emotionally overwhelming. Every time I did one, I thought, “I did it again!” I’m looking forward to getting stronger”

Gary C.

Awesome place, positive energy galore, excellent and easy to follow instruction. If it works for my inflexible body, it can work for anybody…

 

RENEE M

Ten years ago I tried hot yoga. I’d been practicing yoga for years, but never tried hot yoga. I was so disappointed. The hour class was too intense, the changes from pose to pose were too fast, the Sanskrit names were the only ones used, and the teacher didn’t offer help. I tried it twice and thought it was an accident waiting to happen.
Last December, a dear friend gave me a 30 day introductory coupon to Gulf Coast Yoga. So, I tried it. It was Amazing! I love it!
I have attended classes with Linda, Kelly, Mark and David. They are conscientious, attentive, and encouraging teachers who make everyone feel safe.
My fellow classmates range from career men and women in their 20’s & 30’s to retirees 70+ and everyone works within their fitness level.
Each class has been challenging and is so rewarding during and afterward. The bonus for me is that each hour and half class is also a meditation; it’s the only time during my busy day that my mind is clear of chatter. Its heavenly. I strongly recommend Gulf Coast Yoga.

 


Deb B.

Healing, challenging, friendly…A group of people working at their own ability to heal and become the best they can be. Thank you Linda Dave Mark and Kelly your stuck with me

***Deb recently added this to her  story,”I have been practicing hot yoga at Gulf Coast Yoga with Linda, Dave, Mark & Kelly for 4 months. ( with no medication) my thyroid TPO has gone from 462 to 347 T4 8.9 to 6.5
There is still work to be done but for the first time in 7 years I am heading in the right direction !!!!!!!!!  I also credit Yoga for regulating my blood pressure 5 years ago 156/118 today 100/80 no medication  THANK YOU, D***

 Judy M.

“So this morning I attended my first HOT yoga class at Gulf Coast Yoga. I did not know it was a HOT yoga class until about 20 minutes before I was headed out the door. First of all, I am against most forms of exercise. Secondly, I pretty much am against most extremes of temperature – whether hot or cold. Then, I get there and find out that the class is NINETY MINUTES long!! Wha?? LOL! But, I have to say – it went by pretty quickly and I managed to make it to the end – only stopping and “sitting it out” a few times (5 or 6 or 7 or 8?? – lol). The best part of it? Linda Hewins is an AWESOME instructor! She NEVER made me feel bad for “sitting it out” when I felt I couldn’t do certain poses – or just needed a break. She NEVER singled me out and told me I could do better or stretch farther. She always tells everyone to push only to what they feel comfortable with – a good stretch – but not to hurt themselves. For anyone who, like me, doesn’t care for exercise – I urge you to give it a try. I feel like I accomplished something and I did it within my own “boundaries” – LOL! For anyone who already thinks they are “in shape” and Yoga is easy – ha! You’re not really “in shape” until you can do ALL 26 poses!! I challenge you to give it a try too! wink emoticon I didn’t realize how much stress I’m holding in – I started to cry at one point during the class (I hid it from everyone) – and being a former massage therapist, I know that this is normal – it’s called a “release”. People often will cry during massage as their stress is “released”. I know that I will be going back – because I know that I NEED to. And also, I WANT to. Thanks Linda and David Woodfield for making me feel so welcome.”

Maatha K.

Best thing I have done for myself in a while. I walked in the doors of Gulf Coast Yoga with preconceived notions of hot yoga. Didn’t think it was for me. I just finished my first week of classes. I am so glad I chose to give it a try! I feel cleansed (inside & out) and more “open”. My body seems to run more efficiently. Linda runs a very clean and happy studio. I find the classes very challenging, but I don’t mind. Linda is a great motivator with compassion. Thank you Linda & co.

 

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