Even in the quiet mountains and valleys of NorCal, life can get pretty hectic. Drop off the kids. Prepare that report for the boss; lunch with colleagues, back to work, pick up the kids; now, what’s for dinner? Life can deliver more than our share of stress and confusion if we let it.

   Every day we all deserve a little peace and quiet, time just to relax and reflect, in a place that is calm and totally away from the stress of the day. Perhaps your desire for peaceful meditation is coupled with one to build strength, stay fit or regain an active lifestyle. I know I have somehow let most of that go the past few years in exchange for working longer hours and feeling stressed. Now my age is making me seriously reconsider my commitment to fitness.                                               

   I decided to take a look inside Mountain Yoga, a brand new studio in Susanville to find out what they offer. The good news is there is help for all fitness levels, even mine. From relaxing yoga and meditations to PiYo and Cycling, I found some serious fun and inspiration for getting centered and getting moving!


   In a separate room, a state-of-the-art cycling studio holds twelve shiny, new stationary bikes all lined up for the cycling experience. The lights go down; the music takes over motivating riders while the instructor leads a virtual ride, through intervals, sprints, climbs, rolling hills, surges and jumps. 

   Challenging strides are built into the programs but each rider controls the bike they’re on, with gears and speeds to meet any fitness level. I was assured that a Cycling Instructor, will be there to assist, and on the first visit, helping you get familiar with the equipment and any special set-up you might want to try for your fitness level. These classes are meant to motivate with fun and that they do with enjoyable group rides. Cycling Instructor Stephanie Preston also teaches private Cycling and Yoga classes and offers nutritional counseling. She is indeed an inspiration to her philosophy that anyone at any fitness level can find the power and drive within themselves to realize their personal goals. I am hearing it. I’m inspired and in need, no doubt.


    Piyo, combines the muscle sculpting of Pilates and the flexibility of Yoga with nonstop, fluid movement. Piyo instructor Joelle Gentry offers a high-energy class designed for muscle toning, strengthening the core and building cardiovascular endurance. There are no weights involved just an innovative workout suitable for all fitness levels. PiYo is noted for delivering high-intensity results with low-impact moves.


   Mountain Yoga Manager, Prairie Rose Burt showed me around their well-equipped studio. She has been teaching Yoga for 18 years and greatly enjoys sharing it with others. Mountain Yoga offers props you can use, including mats and bolsters. Fresh towels and blankets are also offered. The Yoga area is spacious and private with plenty of room for all. Five different types of Yoga are offered in classes promoting benefits from increased circulation, greater mobility and stress reduction to strengthening the nervous system and balancing the glandular system.

Classes offered cater to all fitness levels from Gentle Yoga and Restorative Yoga to faster pace classes like Flow Yoga. She explained how moves can be modified to fit the special needs of any participant and added that the instructor can help you with modifications.

   Mountain Yoga shared with us a bit about each type of yoga they offer, what to expect and a reminder that beginners are welcome and moves can be modified to meet your fitness level.

Restorative Yoga

  A series of easy and supported poses held for a long time is the key to tip the balance from “fight or flight” mode into maximum relaxation. Positive effects are reported on heart rate, blood pressure and brain activity. The emphasis is on total muscular relaxation and comfort in order to achieve quiet state of mind and body.

Hot Yoga

   This is more of a heated class focusing on posture and breath at a faster pace. Heat is used to move you deeper into poses accelerating detoxification and the lengthening of muscles. Level is similar to Flow Yoga.

Gentle Yoga

   As it sounds, this is a calming class emphasizing breathing, gentle flowing movements, with passive and supported poses. A great class  for beginners and those working with limited mobility, or injury or those just wanting a gentler, softer approach to yoga. This is a lso a great class for learning the fundamentals, technique and alignment.

Kundalini Yoga

This practice of using rhythmic movements along with breathing techniques to generate and organize energy in an effort to achieve a greater state of awareness, where benefits named include strengthening the nervous system, balancing the glandular system along with purifying the body and cleansing the. mind.

Flow Yoga

   This faster paced class is recommended for those who feel confident through yoga moves. Using breath and movement, this class is designed to build heat and strength. Benefits claimed inclued increased circulation, greater mobility, stress reduction and a clearer state of mind.