A pair of Ridgewood natives are looking to create a unique space in their neighborhood where people of all ages can come to express their creativity through art, try something new like a yoga class, or just get to be themselves.
Krystal Torres and Anthony Andrew opened Wild Free Yogi Studio on the second floor at 60-31 Myrtle Ave. on Sept. 5 to fill this exact purpose.
The duo have been friends for over a decade and a half, and even though their life journeys took them on separate paths for some time, they have reconnected and started this venture together to bring their shared dream to fruition.
Torres — being a certified master of kundalini yoga — originally planned on moving to California to open up her own yoga studio and grow her practice there, but had a change of heart and decided to bring her healing right to her own neighborhood.
“That’s why I started in my community: I want my community to be a healthier community,” Torres said. “Let’s get this community healthy again and where it needs to be, and that’s our goal.”
One unique way that Wild Free Yogi Studio is bringing in new members of the community is by offering an all men’s yoga class every Wednesday as a way to introduce men who may feel hesitant or embarrassed to try yoga.
“Either they feel like it’s not macho enough or they’re like, ‘I don’t want to do yoga or stretch in front of people,’” Andrew said of the all men’s classes. “But that’s why I wanted to have the class and when I brought the idea to Krystal, she thought it was a great idea.”
“It’s genius,” Torres added. “I’ve been instructing for years now and I’ve never instructed an all men’s class. So I was like, ‘Why has no one thought of this before?’ And again, it’s not for those typical yogis. It’s for people who are beginners and want to come up. Maybe [they] felt a little self-conscious and having them in a group of all men helps.”
However, yoga isn’t the only thing going on at Wild Free Yogi Studio.
Andrew and Torres offer classes in everything from yoga for all ages (including children’s yoga classes); creative arts classes where participants can paint, draw, color, or anything else they would like to do to express themselves; a women’s dance class; children’s artistic classes where the kids can work together with the adults from the arts and dance classes to create a completed project, whether it be an art exhibit or performance.
“It’s more than just a yoga, dance and arts studio; it’s kind of like an oasis,” Andrew said. “We want this to be an oasis for people, for the community, so people can come here and be free and be whoever they want to be. They can come and create; they can do yoga; and they can have a voice. You can come in and be on your own journey and work on yourself here without everybody looking at you like you’re a little different or a little weird.”
Wild Free Yogi Studio is open Monday through Saturday from 1 to 8 p.m. with different classes taking place on different days throughout the week. For a full list of classes and times visit their Instagram page at https://www.instagram.com/wildfree_yogistudio. They offer single classes and packages ranging from five, 10 or 20 classes.