Four years ago I was finishing up yoga teacher training at Jewel in the Lotus. I looked around Madison and wondered, what unique offering could I bring to the already crowded yoga landscape? I thought about the donation-based studios I loved in Brooklyn and other cities and wondered aloud to other yogis and teachers and studio owners why there wasn’t one in Madison. I kept talking about it and thinking about and wondering until it hit me: THAT’s what I could do! I could create a movement of ALL donation-based classes. I could make it my mission to offer yoga classes for ALL people, especially those who can’t afford minimums, memberships, fancy pants and mats.
The peoples’ yoga collective offered its first class a week after I learned my mother was dying. The idea had been brewing in my head and heart and the planning had gone on for months before that. I thought about postponing the whole thing but students showed up that first week and week after week more students showed up. It occurred to me that growing something as my mother was dying might help balance out the universe.
Since then my mother passed away and the collective has not only grown beyond my wildest dreams, but it has been consistently filled with such soulful people I can’t help but feel as if my mother had more than a little something to do with the warm and welcoming vibe we have created.
Now, thriving in our third year, the people’s yoga collective is moving into its own studio space at 1214 Williamson St.
Our new space will have: radiant heat, cork floors and a convenient location in the heart of the Willy St neighborhood. It will also have the same collective heart and soul:
all donation, all the time, all welcome.
Thank you… all of you who showed up and practiced with us and brought friends and family and sweated and laughed and generously gave your energy to one another and came back week after week. I can’t wait to meet and greet each and every one of you—and anyone who honors us with their presence—in the new space. Keeping the collective alive and thriving feels like a small way to honor each other and our community as we continue to practice and breathe and love one another on and off the mat.
peace and love
yoga teacher, life coach, author and founder of the people’s yoga collective