Finding the Helpers: Yoga studio spends year-long closure giving back to community

More than $2,000 was raised through the series of challenges.

SPOKANE, Wash. — No matter what challenges it may have faced in the past year, a local yoga studio knows wellness comes first — and that includes in the community as a whole. 

Eclipse Power Yoga shut its doors back in March, and has remained closed to in-person classes ever since. Still, the studio adapted to the demands of a pandemic quickly. Co-owners Erin and Scott Heyamoto say, within 48 hours of closing, they had figured out a way to host virtual classes. 

While the studio was adapting, the Heyamoto’s knew not everyone in the community was seeing such success. So, they came up with the idea for a challenge. 

“We figured, when they’re [the students] practicing for someone else, it’s a little more motivating,” said Scott.   

Throughout the month of November, those students competed to see who could take the most classes. Each week of the month held a different challenge, said Scott. On Serve Week, for instance, students set out to make a difference in the community. That included feeding families with COVID and making care packages for local organizations. 

Overall, they raised $1,500, all of which went directly to non-profits like the Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery, Christ Kitchen, the CHAS winter drive, Breakthrough Inc., and Spike2Care. 

In an effort to support local, Scott and Erin also partnered with Spokane-area businesses, awarding gift cards to participating students. 

Not through with their efforts, the team set out again in January, this time raising a total of $775. Of that money raised, $500 went to Christ Kitchen; $150 to Transitions Spokane; $75 to World Relief Spokane; and $50 to Higher Ground Sanctuary. 

It’s a feat Scott and Erin say couldn’t have been accomplished without the dedication of their students. 

“We will continue to serve, and we will continue to follow local and state guidelines,” it reads in a post to Instagram. 

As for when the studio will reopen? 

“We know others are open, and that’s their right and choice,” the post reads. “We ask that you hang in there with us, and we WILL re-open when the time is right…and when we do…watch out!!