A Yoga Experience That’s Really Hot

Sun Yoga Hawaii provides an exhilarating experience for the mind, body and soul, and owner Michele Lowchinovscy Santos’ mission is to empower individuals through the practice of infrared heated yoga. Sun Yoga Hawaii is a local family-owned infrared studio located at Aina Haina Shopping Center, which opened its doors to the public last month.

“Yoga is my passion,” says Santos, who was born in Luxembourg and raised mostly in Brazil before coming to Hawaii at the age of 18 to attend Hawaii Pacific University.

“I have dedicated 10 years of my life to hot yoga, and I felt like I could not wait any longer to share my passion with as many people as possible. It’s just beautiful how it’s unfolding,” she says. “Right now the 4:30 p.m. class is already full of dedicated students!”

Santos welcomes students ages 18 to 80 to participate in classes as Sun Yoga offers a unique hot yoga sequence consisting of Vinyasa sun salutations, Hatha yoga posture sequence, pranayama breathing and a final-guided deep relaxation. According to Santos, students can choose between the 60- or 90-minute hot yoga sequence. Both classes are suitable for all levels, from complete beginners to very experienced yoga practitioners.

“There are immense benefits of hot yoga including overall well-being, weight loss, muscle tone, mental clarity, improved flexibility and more,” she explains. “It basically improves the function of every organ, gland, muscle, tendon and ligament. Every person who takes part in consistent practice will find more and more benefits for themselves.”

A single class at Sun Yoga Hawaii is priced at $18, and many Sun Yoga packages are available as well. Monthly memberships cost anywhere from $48 (one time per week) to $88 (two times per week) and $108 (monthly unlimited).

“I was first introduced to Bikram yoga in 2002. It was love at first practice,” says Santos, who also holds the title of Miss Latin Hawaii 1999. “I loved the challenge, and the mental strength it required. I loved the way I felt after class.

“Later I started exploring other styles of yoga; Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Iyengar and Tantric yoga. I furthered my yoga studies with advanced Hatha yoga teacher training in 2011 with Mary Rain. I then felt a calling to create my own sequence incorporating all the different components of everything I loved from all the different styles of yoga I have practiced, and that brought about the creation of our Signature Sun Yoga Hawaii series.”

It’s Santos’ philosophy to teach from the heart with compassion, yet bring out each individual’s strength from within and be completely present in the moment.

“I feel fulfillment in my life’s purpose by sharing Sun Yoga Hawaii with our community,” she says. “I want to have the wisdom to honor yoga and our generous land, to share the true meaning of yoga and aloha with our community and the world.”

For more information on Sun Yoga Hawaii, visit sunyogahawaii.com.