The best thing about yoga is that everyone is welcome. Yes, Portland has a yoga studio on just about every corner. But this city’s yoga community makes going with the (Vinyasa) flow easy, and accessible to everyone.
And that’s especially true of these free or donation-based classes around town, perfect for those first-time and experienced yogis alike.
Northeast’s The Movement Center is a magical place. The community-driven haven provides much-needed relief from our busy lives. Once you set foot on the property, you’ll immediately feel the zen. Particularly when you walk through organic vegetable gardens, colorful flowers, and a peaceful Zen Garden. They offer donation-based yoga and meditation classes aimed to give Portlanders a more balanced, centered life. While the recommended donation is $5, no one is turned away due to lack of funds. When: Monday and Wednesday evenings, Saturday and Sunday mornings, Tues-Thurs afternoons; check their Meetup page for times and details.
A new kid on the block, Northeast’s Love Hive Yoga offers over 25 classes a week. Their $5 Happy Hive Hour is a healthy swap for your after-work happy hour (and probably a lot cheaper, too!) Love Hive provides yoga teacher training, which is good news for us. Their Yoga Foundations classes are taught by teacher trainees and are completely donation-based. Give what you can and enjoy this all-levels flow. When: Happy Hive Hour Mon-Thurs at 4:30pm, Yoga Foundations Friday at 4pm and Sunday at 1pm.
This Meetup is something every Portland yogi should know about, yet few do. Let’s change that. Free Yoga for Adults provides 100% free yoga and does not accept monetary donations (although they do accept yoga equipment if you have any to spare). They’re on a mission to bring yoga to everyone. All levels of experience are welcome in their classes, which take place all over town five days a week. Sign up ahead of time on their Meetup page to secure your spot. When: Sunday 4:15pm, Monday 6pm and 7, Wednesday 10am and 6pm, Thurs-Fri 6pm; sign up for classes and view their calendar here.
Northeast Alberta’s Full Lotus is a completely donation-based studio. The studio provides a “place to share and learn avenues to bliss.” Classes are offered daily and include Hatha, Vinyasa, Kundalini, Forrest, and even more yoga traditions to boot. There’s also meditation, deep relaxation, and restorative classes for a more gentle practice. Attached to Carioca Bowls, you can get an acai bowl, wholesome dinner, or organic smoothie after class. When: Daily; view schedule here.
“All people, paths, and peculiarities welcome.” This studio was specifically developed for those that wanted to practice yoga (and receive all its wondrous benefits), yet felt yoga was financially unattainable. The studio offers over 50 classes a week at their three locations–NE Killingsworth, NE Alberta, and SE Belmont. All-levels Recovery Yoga is free every Sunday night (donations are appreciated). This class provides a healthy space for those in recovery or affected by addiction. Otherwise, TPY classes are affordable and they offer a variety of discounts, including their Yoga Scholarship Fund that provides financial assistance to those in need. When: Recovery Yoga Sunday evenings at 7:30pm.
Downtown’s Yoga on Yamhill “simply believes that yoga is for everyone who wants to participate.” This is why they have made their studio 100% donation-based. Suggested donations are $8-$12, but they do not want to keep anyone from practicing yoga due to financial restrictions. YOY is a perfect studio for newbies, offering plenty of beginner classes and free yoga mat rentals. But don’t worry, there’s literally a class for every yogi here, including Hatha, Intuitive Healing, heated Vinyasa, therapeutic, restorative, prenatal, and Curvy Yoga. When: Daily; view schedule here.
Southeast’s Yoga Union Community Wellness Center is just that–a supportive, community-focused oasis dedicated to well-being. Yoga Union offers several free and $5 classes. Completely new to yoga? Try the free Yoga Foundations class and learn the basics when it comes to postures, breath-awareness, and flow. There’s also $5 meditation, Vinyasa, and Chair Yoga every week. Gentle Chair Yoga is a perfect way for anyone with limited mobility, injuries, or pain to practice. Plus, their eco-friendly building has it all, from child care to naturopathic healthcare to the healthy cafe, Fern Kitchen. When: Free Foundations Class Tuesday at 2pm and Saturday at 12:30pm, $5 Chair Yoga Monday 2pm, $5 Vinyasa Wed-Fri at 2pm.
SE Division’s Unfold makes it a point to “unconditionally welcome” every yogi (or aspiring one) whether your body is small or large, young or old. And whether you’ve been practicing for a while or you don’t even know how to pronounce “shavasana.” Unfold offers the all-levels free Recovery Yoga class every Saturday morning (donations accepted). Unfold also offers several free programs, such as Mindful Informational Sessions and specialty classes such as Chocolate and AcroYoga. Yum. When: Recovery Yoga Saturdays at 8:30am; current free classes and programs here.
ShantiOm provides a healing space in North Portland’s St. Johns neighborhood. The studio offers several Community classes weekly. Try Slow Flow, restorative, Hatha, or meditation on a donation basis. These affordable, all-levels classes ensure that anyone can get their om on, regardless of finances. In addition, the studio provides scholarships and financial hardship discounts for those who need it and a work-study program. In this program, you receive one free class per half-hour of work you do, from signing in students to cleaning the studio. When: Community classes daily Mon-Sat; schedule here.
North Portland Yoga is a sweet little sanctuary nestled alongside Northeast’s train tracks. This studio is perfect for anyone who wants to practice yoga, including the scared, skeptical, tired, or injured. And there’s a donation-based or sliding-scale community class every single day. Try the All Levels Community class on Fridays at 6pm to get your weekend started off right. When: Donation and sliding-scale classes daily; schedule here.
Located in the heart of Southeast Portland, The Bhaktishop Yoga Center welcomes anyone who is looking to lead a healthier, more balanced life. Come experience the vast benefits of yoga, from therapeutic to physical to spiritual. Their Yoga Passports make classes under $10 each, which is a good deal in itself. The studio also offers $7 classes (Vinyasa at varied levels or Yoga and Aging Gently), donation-based foundation classes, and the Bhaktishop Hard Times Benefit Scholarship, providing yoga to those in financial need. When: Donation Yoga Foundations Fridays at 4pm, $7 Vinyasa Mon-Thurs at 4pm (varied levels), $7 Yoga and Aging Gently Mondays at 2pm.
South Portland’s DAYA Foundation stands for Delivering Accessible Yoga Alternatives. They do this by making yoga accessible to everyone, both financially and physically. Their vision is to enrich their student’s lives through the practice of yoga. And this can be done for anyone, whether you’re disabled, struggling with addiction, drowning in medical bills, or suffering from anxiety or depression. What’s awesome is that they provide scholarships to those in need or those who are dealing with medical conditions. Community classes are also offered on a sliding scale from $8-$15. When: Sliding-scale Community Amrita Class Tuesdays at 6pm and Saturdays at 10am.
The Yoga Space has two locations in Portland. The Northwest location is nestled inside a historic chapel, while the Southeast spot is sandwiched between healthy eateries (Canteen, Laughing Planet) and shops aplenty. Weekday Happy Hour classes are just $7 and provide a great Vinyasa flow. TYS states it’s your typical, mindful Vinyasa class, “except it’s cheaper.” These classes are suitable for all levels, and mats and props are free for use. When: Mon-Thurs 4pm at NW; Mon-Fri 4pm at SE.
Bethany Village’s Santosha Yoga is breaking down all the myths and fears that keep us from trying it. Think you’re not fit or flexible enough? Too old? Not skinny enough? Hogwash. Try a class here $free.99, or attend one of their donation-based classes. Family Yoga is offered every first and third Saturday, and Vinyasa Slow is ideal for leisurely Sunday mornings. Both these classes accept a suggested donation of $5-$10. When: Family Yoga every 1st and 3rd Saturday at 12:30pm, Vinyasa Slow Sunday at 10:30am.
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