Simply Hot Yoga (SHY) opened in June 2012 in the port city of Tacoma, WA. Owner Monica Mirth was inspired to open the studio as a safe space for people to discover, explore and grow their fitness & wellness goals to help improve their quality of life.
SHY's inviting lobby welcomes students in.
MONICA’S YOGA JOURNEY
Monica got into fitness at a relatively young age, and her routine consisted mostly of physical activity in the gym such as weightlifting, cardio and group exercise classes. She was introduced to yoga later in her wellness journey, and her first hot yoga class left a lasting impression. “The class was way more challenging than I had expected but at the same time, I experienced a sense of calmness and peace in my mind and body,” says Monica. Upon taking several more classes with intrigue, she quickly began to realize the benefits of yoga on not only the body, but just as importantly, in the mind. She fell in love with yoga and how good it made her feel inside and out, and committed to her own yoga journey. Inspired by her love of yoga and its many benefits, Monica decided to open her own hot yoga studio to help spread the gift of yoga throughout her community.
In addition to heated yoga classes, SHY also offers barre, yin, and other wellness services.
SIMPLY HOT YOGA: THE STUDIO
“Our mission is to promote oneness between the mind, body, spirit, and breath. We strive to provide a welcoming, safe, diverse, clean, and non-judgmental environment for people of all levels to learn to prioritize their physical and mental well-being.”
Monica expresses that there are several aspects of SHY that draw students to the studio. “The environment at SHY is very welcoming, personable, encouraging, and non-judgmental. We embody a very close-knit community with a diverse demographic. We also have highly experienced, talented, knowledgeable, and skilled instructors who really care about the students. Our classes, although very challenging, are focused on the continued growth of our students.”
Students call Monica and Peach, SHY's studio manager, the dynamic duo.
DIVERSITY & INCLUSION
Monica shares what means to be a woman of color within the wellness space: “Being a black woman in wellness provides me the opportunity to bring awareness to the black community the importance of self-care encompassing not only physical, but also mental health. The black community is historically known to focus on physical activities in the gym, on the court, track and field, etc. Yoga studios were not typically located in black communities, so to be able to provide a facility to introduce yoga to a more diverse culture is very important and empowering for me.”
A close-knit community is a main element of SHY.
INSPIRATION & IMPACT
Monica is inspired by the need and desire to create change in this world for the better, and to help people realize their best selves through self-care. She wishes to emphasize (and in some cases, introduce) the importance of taking care of one’s physical and mental well-being.
As a studio owner, Monica hopes for SHY to be known as a sacred place in the community where people can work on their physical and mental self-care. “We will continue to promote the importance of making one’s well-being a priority to allow people to be their best selves. We also want to be able to introduce and bring awareness to the many beautiful benefits of incorporating yoga into your life."
REFLECTION & GROWTH
Monica reflects on the studio’s journey so far: “We have grown so much. While the studio has many long-standing students who have been with us for many years, the instructors have learned to teach in a manner that can still challenge more advanced students but also can cater towards newer students so that they won’t feel discouraged. We have also been able to refine parts of our business model to help serve our students more efficiently; we have also been able to collaborate and work with other businesses & organizations in the community to bring more awareness to the importance of mental and physical self-care.”
Simply Hot Yoga celebrates their 11th anniversary on June 8th.