Legend: BLUE-open, RED-closed, GREEN-by donation
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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

as one door opens, another closes

is it possible that the number of yoga studios in los angeles has reached a saturation point? in other words, given the current population of practicing yogis in town, is there a maximum number of studios that can remain profitable, and have we already reached that maximum?

it seems like every time i hear about a studio opening somewhere around town, i turn around and read about another one closing down because it can't attract enough students to pay the bills.

this is from an email i received today from rick colella, owner of insight yoga in pasadena, who fought the good fight for as long as he could.

note that there's a possibility of the studio remaining open only if someone steps forward and purchases it ASAP:

Insight Yoga says farewell
February 11th 2007...

To sum up and contain the value of the last three years of Insight Yoga in a few short paragraphs is beyond my capability as a writer. And yet, I must try to express the depth of my feeling in this crucial time. So here it goes . . .

Four years ago, I decided with my business partner, Roberto Blain, to create a very special place for healing. Our vision was a yoga studio that contained an active community support network while presenting a wide range of healing practices. Healing practices, which are not merely physical, but rather the type that could help a person begin a lifelong spiritual journey by facilitating balance, wholeness, and deep inner peace.

In many ways, our dream has come true and we have been hugely successful. I have heard from so many of our students about how Insight Yoga has changed their lives for the better. How much they love it. How they will treasure it forever. Personally, it has been an incredible learning journey for me. I have grown a lot. I have learned how to communicate better and to work with all types of personalities. I have grown in my meditation and yoga practice through the teachings of our fabulous guest teachers, and I have been touched by the personal relationships with all of you that are a part of the community. Heck, I have even learned to play a little harmonium through being inspired by our Kirtans.

Needless to say, it was a very tough decision for me to list with a broker and try to sell the place as I did in September 2006. But there were tough facts to face. Due to our small class sizes, we have not been able to keep up with the rental payments and a lot of our other bills that keep this beautiful sanctuary alive. And now, even though we have yet to find a buyer to keep it going, our landlords, who have been genuinely understanding and patient for a very long time, have asked us to pay them large sums of back rent or to leave the premises in mid- February.

And so, unless there is a miracle and one of our community members steps forward to start the Escrow process and buy Insight Yoga (if you're interested call our broker Rich Schammel at 626-449-1500), we have decided that our last day of classes and our last workshops will be on Sunday February 11th 2007.

We will end our time together with one of David Elliott’s powerful healing breathing circles. And, at 8pm on Saturday February 10th we invite the whole community to gather for a little pot luck party to say goodbye to our space and to view Bindu’s incredible paintings.

As I tell more and more people about the situation, there are certain questions that keep arising. One common one is: “What can I do to help?” Well, the first thing that would help us is for you to keep coming to classes until the very end. Continue enjoying our beautiful yoga sanctuary by soaking up the atmosphere and good vibes for the next two weeks.

Another thing you can do is to consider if there is anything around the studio that you want to buy. For example, yoga props such as bolsters, blocks, mats, or straps. Perhaps CDs, or a zabuton, furniture, lighting fixtures, fax or computer- everything must be liquidated and will go for very reasonable prices. We have a reservation list at the desk and items can be picked up on Monday February 12th.

The greatest thing you can do is be understanding of our situation. We are currently making arrangements for unused series classes so that you can redeem your unused yoga classes at one of the best yoga studios in Pasadena after we close. We will provide more information as soon as the details are worked out. Another possibility is that you can exchange leftover classes for our final workshops or retail items you've been wanting.

Through February 11th, we will be selling single classes at a discounted price of $12 per class (the same price you would get if you bought a 10 class series) and offering a $50 pass good for unlimited classes until February 11th since we know you all will want to come every day to take your favorite teachers classes.

Finally, I would like to express gratitude for how all of you have enriched my life. You have touched me in so many ways. I experience heartfelt gratefulness for all the staff, teachers, teacher trainees, investors, and mentors who have given deeply and selflessly for our benefit. Words cannot convey this so when I see you I will give you hugs to express it! Also, please remember that a community is not bound by a place. That we can still be together as we keep in touch, keep our practices going, and keep our hearts open.


Rick Colella
Insight Yoga