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GoYoga Growing

Nancy Alkire Nancy Alkire GoYoga GrowingCarrie Downey and Alissa Rodgers co-own GoYoga's studios in Columbus, Ohio. Photo by Dana Bernstein.
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GoYoga is all about growing, inside and out.

“We heard from our community,” says Alissa Rodgers, co-owner of GoYoga, “And we went all out to give them our best.” GoYoga has grown to eight yoga studios across Columbus, becoming the largest yoga employer in the city. The GoYoga team recently opened a new location in Worthington.

“When you start changing little things, big things follow,” says Rodgers. Since starting in 2011, “GoYoga has now hosted over 675,000 yoga practices.”

GoYoga started 10 years ago with an idea. “I wanted to make a friendly yoga place with that were affordable and accessible to everyone walking in through the door.”

Bryan Kest’s legendary Santa Monica Power Yoga studio was a big inspiration for Rodgers who traveled to California frequently for a corporate job years ago.

“I really appreciated the yoga culture that Bryan created,” she says. “He taught mostly in English and was so down-to-Earth and fun. He could connect with a class and change your whole day.”

In March, 2011, the founders started renting space by the hour in a karate dojo and GoYoga began.

“Harvard studies have shown that people spend so much of their time not really present — just on auto-pilot, not really thinking about what they are doing,” says Rodgers. “Yoga helps you to get fit, but also, you start making small changes in your mind that lead to awareness and connecting to the present.”

Connecting yoga students and teachers has been a major challenge in 2020. When Ohio businesses were locked down earlier this year, GoYoga created an extensive library of online programs. They kept in touch with students and teachers using social media and emails. Gratitude from their community, especially the monthly members was strong. When Governor DeWine’s ReStart Ohio program began, GoYoga was one of the first Columbus yoga studios to re-open. They offer a variety of yoga programs now including “Extra Distance” classes that have spacing beyond the guidelines suggested by DeWine’s expert panelists.

Friendliness and sharing are priorities for Rodgers and GoYoga co-owner, Carrie Downey. 

They and several other Columbus yoga studios have created an informal support network. 

“We share. It’s helpful having someone to check in with,” says Ellen Reidy, owner of Zen Yoga. Columbus’ businesses have a long history of collaborating as well as competing. “Helping each other is what yoga helps us do,” noted Chad Underwood of Modo Yoga.

“Nearly 29,000 people have entered GoYoga since we started in March 2011,” says Rodgers. “Maybe one day, we will be across the USA?!”

Visit GoYoga Worthington at 897 High Street in Worthington. GoYoga also has locations in the Brewery District, Grandview, Dublin, Powell, Upper Arlington, Westerville, and New Albany. For more information, visit goyogausa.com.

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