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Au Revoir, Y’all

On March 29th, the world-famous Yoga Shop of Chicago will close her blue door, leaving the Yoga community of Chicago a slightly poorer tribe.

For seven years, TYS has been a beacon of quality and inclusive Yoga like few studios. We built a Yoga studio for everyone – from hard core Yogis to those who felt vulnerable or intimidated by Yoga culture in America.

TYS featured some of the most talented Yoga Instructors in the Midwest, with a simple mantra: You Belong

Intimidated by Yoga: this was what I experienced and what so many who entered our doors told me as well. That’s why we’re so proud to have welcomed students who may not have felt they “belonged” at other spaces.

I’m grateful to you and so many others who’ve loved this quirky and quality space. I’ve experienced much joy and occasional heartache at TYS. You learn a lot about human nature when you open a brick and mortar business; the good news is people are mostly sweet and kind and good. I’m biased, but I’ve met so many kind people at TYS; a lot of really sweet souls.

I’ve made a ton of treasured friends at this studio, students and teachers alike. It’s hard to adequately describe the sheer joy of teaching Yoga in your own studio or taking a class from any one of our really gifted and kind instructors.

I’ll miss that.

I hope to stay in touch with you.

I’m indebted to you, the 5,000 plus students –many of whom learned Yoga in our space – for making this all work. Frequently TYS teachers have told me, “the students at The Yoga Shop are so sweet. So appreciative.” This studio had a funky chic style all its own, but above all, it had soul. A true community of seekers who found Yoga and each other. TYS wasn’t a place to be cool, just authentically your best self.

I’m also tremendously proud of those I hired to represent this plucky studio: Lisa Hazen for getting TYS up and running, Jennifer Riser, Tami Robinson, Debby Fries, Cari Barcas, Ana Paliza-Brown, Jennifer Diamond, Chelsea Brown, Careid Surprenant, Keth Glab, Olinka Mytsuria, Rachel Meeuwse, Karen Plumley, Nancy Baird, Sylvie Schwartz, Renee Linstrom, Paula Bui, Tess Collins, Dina Lekas, my dear Ania, and last but not least to my amazing studio manager and instructor, Caroline Hennessy.

We’re taught in Yoga to honor our teachers – thank you Lori Gaspar and Gabriel Halpern.

Just so you know, we want to see you all as often as possible in our waning days. So, come in and use your packages. Bring in up to 2 friends and have them use your remaining classes … we want you to get the utmost out of your package and your mat at TYS.

Chapters & doors open and close like our breath rising and falling each minute of the day. We’ll close this one simply by quoting a great poet/philosopher,
“thank you, next.”

Au revoir,
James Cogan, Yogi/Writer/Wellness Activist