Piper-Lori Parker, a co-owner of Zen Yoga Garage, on creating an open environment at the studio.
How did your yoga studio come about? While working as a manager for a national yoga chain, I managed to convince Bill Senne, the property owner, to try yoga . Some time later, Bill’s real estate company acquired an old Jiffy Lube station and chose to rent it out. Bill called me and said, “Let’s start a fitness studio.” I wrote the business plan while Bill managed the build out, and we opened our garage doors in 2013.
What was your vision? Teacher led, community-focused yoga that is inclusive and diverse. We seek to create a spa-like environment. Our teachers are empowered to innovate their classes with no set sequences, so no two classes are the same.
What is an interesting feature about the studio’s design? Garage doors. We converted an old Jiffy Lube service station into a yoga studio. We specifically looked to retain many of the unique elements, most importantly, the two full-size garage doors in our front studio.
What is one key to your yoga studio’s success? Our focus on the community. We employ specific strategies to keep people engaged. This holiday season, we placed envelopes around a fireplace for students and teachers to leave each other notes of encouragement and thanks.
What is a piece of advice you could give to other studio owners? It’s never about you. If you are caring deeply for everyone — the teachers, the students, and every single person who walks in the door, the choices you have to make are easy.