Seven Studios Brings People Downtown for Yoga, Pilates and More
If you’re looking for an inspirational story to get fit for the new year, then look no further than Julie Wilkes. She overcame a terminal heart condition at a young age that originally gave her a life expectancy of 12 years old. She’s gone on to obtain her Master’s in Exercise Physiology, has taught group fitness classes for the past 20 years, and recently opened Seven Studios Downtown with the help of the Kickstart Columbus program.
“In November of 2012, I considered opening a studio — it was always my dream,” she explained. “Then I looked at the financials that it would realistically take to open. I prayed that if I was meant to open Seven, somehow a way would be found.”
Three months later, she applied for the business plan contest and was one of two winners to receive free rent for a year, reduced rent for two more years, and a prize package to help build out the space, update exterior signage and promote the business through various marketing channels.
“I knew it was a validation that this was meant to be,” she added. “Of course, it still took work to open doors and get the studio ready, but I could not have asked for any more of an amazing opportunity than to win the Kickstart contest.”
Wilkes and her team of instructors at Seven Studios offer classes that range from yoga to pilates to barre to insanity bootcamps. She sees a growing trend in the fusion of multiple techniques as something that will continue to become more popular this year.
“Instructors who find their own way to teach a format that provides fresh energy and inspires the body and soul are always going to be popular,” Wilkes says. “Barre is a growing format, and I also see healthy activities that tie into giving back continue to grow in interest. People love taking care of themselves while also helping others.”
Seven Studios is located at 275 South Third Street, tucked inside a group of retail bays on the eastern side of the old City Center Parking Garage. This section of Downtown has been somewhat sleepy over the past decade, but other new retail businesses have been popping up nearby in the past year including Square One Salon and Columbus Furniture Revival.
“Business has been good, and building a community in the Downtown area has been amazing,” she added. “My dreams are simply that I can provide a space and method of focusing on health and wellness that help people to live their best life.”
For class schedules and more information, visit www.7-studios.com.
From January 6 – 12, Columbus Underground is featuring our Health & Wellness Week series, brought to you by the YMCA of Central Ohio. Join the Y in January and pay $0 enrollment. At the Y, we’re not a health club, we’re a health movement – committed to youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Follow us on Facebook at ymcacolumbusohio and on Twitter @YMCAColumbus. 12 locations, unlimited possibilities! The YMCA. Fit for All.