Phase 5: Aurora Village closure

It is with heaviness that Twist Yoga announces the permanent closure of our Aurora Village location.  

We are heartbroken. 

After several months of uncertainty, exploring every option, and experiencing all the feels from hope to fortitude to deep sorrow, we have arrived at the crossroads of a necessary closure. 

Assuming Washington State’s Phase 3 happens as estimated in July, Twist Yoga’s Edmonds & Richmond Beach locations will open again. We believe our two smaller neighborhood locations will survive because overhead is half of Aurora, which we are able to carry through fall.  

The real reason, though, is because of the support of you; our people.  

You are amazing.  Thank you. Thank you. Your support and generosity brings us to our knees daily.  

COVID-19 has – and will continue to – expose some necessary truths.  

The truth being that a 4,000 square foot hot yoga studio – with its monthly rent double & triple that of our other two studios & monthly heating bill in the thousands – is no longer a sustainable business model.

If we’re honest, it hasn’t been for a while.

A second truth is that our other two studios have been supporting Aurora Village for a while. We’ve held the doors open there because we loved offering the services we did and adored the clients who joined us. The last several years saw our training & retreat programs vibrant and Edmonds & Richmond Beach locations doing very well. So the trade off of keeping AV open felt, if not financially smart, at least emotionally do-able. 

We were hopeful when we first made the choice to COVID-close before governor’s orders on March 15 that we could ride out one, maybe two, months of shutting our doors.  

But as Shelter-in-Place days ticked toward 60, with no leadership plan or realistic prediction for opening, ultimately we had only one piece of unemotional data to work with: Aurora’s checking account balance. 

And also the deep knowing that this will not end soon. 

Or, at least, not soon enough. 

The future of Hot Yoga: Not good.

Even If best-case scenario had us opening in June, it is my opinion that hot yoga is dead. 

Consumer behavior will completely change after this crisis; and I do not believe we will feel safe practicing hot yoga, where pools of sweat, stagnant air and hot, sticky breathing is the norm.

Or at least not enough of us will feel safe enough to make it viable. 

Also, the icky truth about hot yoga rooms:  In absence of a $100,000 HVAC system with few studios could afford, a room can either be 90-100 degrees OR can have fresh air circulating.  Not both.  The only way to reach these levels of temperature is to heat the already hot air or hot objects (read: hot bodies) in the room. 

Going forward, I don’t believe consumers will stand for that.  

So here we are. We gave Aurora Village a good three-year run.  We learned a lot. We met some fabulous people. We left our tears and sweat on the mat. 

As for what happens now: 

  • This Sunday morning, Ellie will host Twist Yoga’s final HH26 format class.  
  • We are still open and offering vinyasa, hatha flow, yin, gentle & restorative yoga online: Active memberships ensure access to daily livestream classes with your favorite instructors.
  • We have made the call to pre-emtively terminate all active and suspended memberships of clients who exclusively practice at Aurora Village.  
    • If we acted prematurely and you would like to re-active your membership to join us for livestream classes, please email us at hello@twistyogaedmonds.com
    • If we missed you, please email us with patience and kindness … our point of sale (cough MindBodyOnline cough) is – pardon my French – absolute shit and we are unable to sort Aurora Village-exclusive practitioners because so many of you purchased online. We located you painstakingly by hand by combing through class rosters and visit history.  We’re doing the best we can and not actively trying to be shady if we missed you, ok? 
    • Please try to remember: No matter how much this sucks and the emotions we feel, there still exists a human being on the other side of an email. 
  • Members who practiced at Aurora Village AND multiple locations, your memberships are still active UNLESS YOU EMAIL US at hello@twistyogaedmonds.com to request termination or suspension until reopening.

So, as is the cycle of all things, tonight we surrendered our key and said goodbye to the location that has hosted tens of thousands of yogis since it was born the SweatBox in 2007, followed by Yoga for Life, followed by Twist Yoga in 2017.  

Thank you. You made the last three years pretty great.