There are few moms out there who aren't stressed out nearly
every minute of their waking day. And even babies can use some
"om." So we went on a quest throughout Chicago to find the perfect
mom and baby yoga class to satisfy our calming needs-and those of a
2 ½-year-old girl. Read on to choose the class that suits your
stress level and parenting style. Because schedules change, we
recommend calling ahead.
Details 4663 N. Rockwell, (773) 463-9642,
Class sampled Parent & Tot yoga, Fridays at
Class description Crawlers up to age 2 are
welcome at the class, which is aimed at teaching mommies yoga while
the babies hang out and play with provided toys. It's an extremely
basic yoga class just for mommies, but some babies took the
initiative and tried a downward dog.
Best for parents with good-natured babies The
class is 60 minutes, and aside from toys, the children entertain
Fitness level for moms Not too hard. If you can
master a downward dog, you can survive the class.
Fitness level for babies No fitness for
Om level You'll have to keep an eye on your
child the entire time, but the great stretches at the end provided
a tiny relief from parenting.
Cost $16 per class, $70 for five classes or
$235 for 20 classes plus $1 mat rental.
Self Centered Yoga
Details 2201 W. Belmont Ave., (773) 388-8010,
Class sampled Toddler yoga, Fridays at 9:30
Class description Exploration of yoga poses for
toddlers, plus crafts to go along with the yoga move of the
Best for 3-4-year-olds The class is taught in a
really fun, accessible way for children, who will learn downward
dog via the "donkey pose" and other moves through fun animals.
They'll also do songs about the moves, plus a craft.
Fitness level for moms None. You can do the
moves along with your child, but they're not difficult at all.
Fitness level for babies They're doing yoga
moves, but it's more play-based than strenuous.
Om level It's a fun class for moms and babies,
with a 30-second rest time at the end of class. But it won't calm
either of you down if you're stressed.
Cost $75 for a six-week session.
Soulistic Studio & Spa
Details 805 N. Milwaukee Ave., (312) 226-7685,
Class sampled Mommy & Me Yoga/Pilates, see
website for times.
Class description For moms and babies age
newborn-3. It's a pretty typical mix of yoga and Pilates for
mommies. Babies can roam around the room and watch-or take part if
they feel the urge.
Best for infants There were no toys provided
for the children, but the infants were happy to lie on their
mother's lap while mom attempted to work out.
Fitness level for moms Medium, not too
straining because you take many breaks to entertain your child. But
if you didn't have a baby with you, it would be as straining as a
traditional yoga class.
Fitness level for babies None.
Om level The sun-filled room was very calming,
but babies screaming is never a great "Om" factor.
Cost $20 drop-in and five classes for $90.
Details 1550 S. State St., (312) 674-0001,
Class sampled Mommy and Me yoga, Wednesdays at
Class description Newborns and up are welcome.
The children choose from a huge assortment of toys to play with
while the mommies take a yoga class. It's taught in a barebones
room-no mirrors, no fancy equipment-but the teachers are excellent
and the classes tend to be tiny, with just two or three moms per
Best for mommies with calm children It's a very
relaxed class, but your child will need to entertain himself while
you do your yoga practice.
Fitness level for moms Straining. The teacher
wants you to get a good workout, but if you need a break, no one
will bat an eye.
Om level If your baby is well behaved, you may
be able to relax. But you'll have to block out the other screaming
babies surrounding you.
Cost $10 per drop-in class or $8 per class if
you pay for the full 12-week session and register ahead of
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