Perfect Your Practice at Horizon Hot Yoga
Perfect Your Practice at Horizon Hot Yoga
Community is the cornerstone at Horizon Hot Yoga in Frisco. But beyond the camaraderie, they offer a wide variety of yoga classes, special workshops, nutrition training, and massage therapy.
If upping your yoga game in a supportive environment sounds right for you, tune into this episode of the Frisco Podcast and get to know founder Mary Von Ahnen and instructor Sally Scott. They’ll give you the full picture of what to expect at Horizon Hot Yoga.
[00:47] Starting Horizon Hot Yoga
[02:07] The community experience at Horizon Hot Yoga
[03:23] How Horizon Hot Yoga is different than other yoga studios
[05:18] Styles of Yoga
[08:54] Rocket Yoga
[10:05] Getting to know the instructors
[11:03] Special workshops and becoming a yoga champion
[12:48] You can become a yoga instructor (or just enhancing your yoga knowledge)
[14:45] Why Mary wanted to open Horizon Hot Yoga
[15:45] How Sally became a nutritionist and yoga instructor
[16:53] The nutrition program at Horizon Hot Yoga
[20:00] Massage therapy at Horizon Hot Yoga
[21:12] Hot is their Bikram class and other class temperatures
[20:20] Yoga Nidra (yogic sleep/meditation) class
[24:00] Pricing, packages, and options (including options for kids)
LINKS & RESOURCES:
- Horizon Hot Yoga Website
- Horizon Hot Yoga on Lifestyle Frisco
- Horizon Hot Yoga on Facebook
- Horizon Hot Yoga on Yelp
- Horizon Hot Yoga on Instagram
Connect with Lifestyle Frisco on:
Welcome to the Frisco podcast. I’m your host, Scott Ellis. And today we’re gonna stretch out a little bit and we’re going to talk about yoga. We have Mary Von Ahnan, sorry about that. And Sally Scott from Horizon Hot Yoga in the room. Welcome to the show. Good to have you both here. Uh, my wife is a huge yoga fan. In fact, Sally, she was in your class this morning and I’ve done a little bit of yoga myself. I don’t do it as consistently as I should, but I’ve always enjoyed hot yoga. It’s hard, but it always feels good. Um, first of all, why don’t we start off talking just a little bit about Horizon and how that got started. When did you come to Frisco and what made you want to do the yoga studio?
So we started our business in January of 2018 and my husband and I had been searching for something that we both enjoyed and could do together. I’ve practiced yoga since 2007 and Mike, maybe just a few years after that, started his yoga practice. And I think Frisco was such an attractive growing community and also just a community that embraces small business. Um, we really had a vision for our studio to be inclusive of anyone and we love it that we’re living that dream. Um, Sally, we’ll talk a little bit about her perspective on our community as well, but we do feel like we’re a place for, for anyone yoga should be for everyone. So we offer a number of different styles so that you can come and find your style. What really fits you? Um, our community ranges in age greatly. Um, race, body type. I mean we, we are inclusive, so, uh, that was really important to us to have a community that made everyone comfortable.
Yeah. Yoga definitely is one of the those fitness slash wellness areas that seems to really foster community a lot. People kind of get into it, they get into it together and everybody’s there to learn and improve their practice and, and do well. So I’m glad to hear you guys are having success with that. Yes. Um, Sally, did you want to talk a little bit about the, the community itself at Horizon? What’s it like? What’s the experience? What is the community experience like for somebody that comes to Horizon and think of it as somebody coming for the first time, what would they expect
It is like no other. And I can just say that it started with great owners who had this great vision, great vision for teachers who love their students. Um, and when you walk into the doors, you are greeted. You are more than likely hugged. We tend to be a little touchy, huggy, loving community. Um, but they just, I think the moment that they walk in, they, they feel it. They’re greeted, the teachers love their students and they keep coming back. In fact, they, they, they might stay a while each day. They might take several classes every day and they, they feel it and you become, you become friends. I became just like, you’re a new family. But that is truly the feeling that you get when you come to horizon. How long have you been teaching yoga there? Since we opened the doors from the beginning. Right out of the gate. Okay, good. Glad to hear it. Best decision ever.
So, Mary, what are, what are some of the things beyond just the community aspect of it that you feel make Horizon yoga unique compared to other yoga studios?
Sally touched on it. I do feel as if we, we pay hand picked our teachers. I’m very careful about hiring experienced teachers, um, that really understand their, their, the depth of their style. We offer multiple styles. I think I counted 10 plus. We have two rooms and so we, you know, and they’re each built out differently. So our, our hot 26 classes kind of, it’s the classic beat from yoga and it’s a very different room, a very different type of yoga than classic Vinyasa for example. So I D I do feel like having multiple styles where you can get different needs met in different classes. I mean, Wendy would tell you that, you know, she’s taken three or four different types at our studio. Um, normally you go to a studio and you get the type that they offer a, we also try really hard to bring in world-class workshops. You know, we, we feel like infusing our students and even our teachers with people who bring experience from different places is very important. Um, we offer a nutrition program and massage, so we feel like we’re really a holistic studio where students can get all their needs met.
Yeah. Interesting. I don’t think I’ve ever heard or known of a yoga studio, at least not one that I’ve been to in the past that did the nutrition and massage part as well. So let’s, we’ll dig into all of those things a little bit. Um, let’s start off with the variety. Um, again, most studios that I’ve been to in the past usually have one or two different styles I’ve done [inaudible] before. I know that’s kind of like the grandfather of hot yoga, um, for you. Yeah. But it’s a specific like regimen, right? With the from, and there are kind of offshoots of that, of people that do hot yoga, but it’s not strictly Bikrum. Right. So you guys do Bikram. And then what other styles of yoga and classes do you have there?
Sally, talk a little bit about her Vinyasa and sculpt classes and then I can pick up with some of the other formats. Okay, perfect. So, um, I teach a Vinyasa, which is just more of a flow stretching balance. It’s not in as hot of a room as big room, but it is still a hot practice. Um, it, it, it, it incorporates balance, strength flowing meditation. And then I also teach a sculpt class which incorporates yoga, but we will mix it up with medicine balls. Um, free weights, dumbbells, bans, blocks, little rubber balls. So you get like full strength training. Okay. So that’s the one my wife did this morning, wasn’t it? Yeah, cause she came home just dragging. Yes. Yes. It’s awesome. But like you get, you, do, you become addicted to it because it just, the, the after feeling is just amazing. And then the Vinyasa is more on the stretching side.
Yes. It’s more flowing. I wouldn’t say it’s so, I mean it does involve stretching, but um, we have some really strong students, but it’s for everybody. Beginners can come to it and work their way up. Okay. I will say to our community, um, kind of likes about kicking and we’ve learned that at the time. So we started out when we first opened, having a slow flow and having, and we really realized that, that most people come in and they want to work. And so even the Vinyasa, yes, it’s a flow and yes, they’re stretching, but it’s a pretty good workout. And I think there people have a couple of different mindsets when they do yoga. I personally prefer a fixed series. Um, I have rheumatoid arthritis and I’ve had some injuries and so I really kind of have to prepare my body for exactly how to do postures.
So a class like B crumb or like a Xanga, which is a fixed series, it’s the same every time is more comfortable for me to practice. Some people absolutely love the variety of a Vinyasa or a sculpt or even a rocket yoga, which is kind of like Ashtanga, but it mixes up the postures. They get bored with the set series. Some of our classes, like the beach crumb or the Ashtanga does not have music. Other classes like Sally’s sculpt. And the Vinyasa classes do have music. So that’s why I say it’s, it’s interesting and nice for students to just try different things. We also have a year in class, which is very much focused on stretching. Okay. That’s probably the one that I shouldn’t be taking because I am well you’re invited. Flexible at all. Thank you. I will take you up on that sometime soon.
I flexibility has never been my strong suit, so when I do yoga and I should stick with it, it’s definitely a good thing for me. But um, so it sounds like you’ve got a good variety of classes as well for all different levels of people. So there’s a, which ones were, had been JASA was one you mentioned that was good for beginners. Um, what are some of the more advanced things for somebody like my wife that’s been doing yoga forever and really wants to go get after it, what are the best choices there? And I would say the only class that we encourage people to have taken some yoga before would be rocket yoga. And it’s because it’s largely arm balancing. But one of the things that is so wonderful about our teacher team because they are all soaks, aren’t so experienced, is that they are able to cater the class to all levels. And so if you walk in and we’ve had this happen, a number of people just come in and say, I’ve never tried yoga, I want to buy a month. Um, you can walk into any of our classes and feel comfortable. If you’re advanced like Wendy is, you can also go in and feel like the teacher can, can cue you to do more advanced things. Rocket yoga sounds like fun. That’s a great name. What you described it to me cause I’ve never heard of rocket yoga before.
So it is, it’s a fast paced version of Ashtanga and Ashtanga is a set series, kind of like the Beacom series, but it does focus a lot on what we sometimes call arm floating or arm balancing. There’s a lot of inversions handstands. Headstands gotcha. Yes. So Sally, you may want to expound a little bit on that. Yes. So if you’re it, anybody can do rocket yoga, but if you are more advanced and you want to get into inversions and those are balancing poses, that’s a class for you to go to and try out.
Definitely sounds like one that would require upper body strength. A lot of upper body strength for that. So, okay. Yes. So if you’re still working on the upper body strength, maybe start with something else to kinda work up to that.
Yes. Or you can do it or you can just try it and see what happens. I’m not afraid to fall on my head. Okay. Take what you need. I like it. I think I’ll start with the easier ones though. The stretching stuff. Perfect. I have good upper body strength, but yeah, I haven’t done that in awhile. So, uh, so let’s now talk and shift gears a little bit and talk about the, the teachers or the instructors that you have there. You said you focus on hiring experienced yoga instructors, right? Um, do you also bring instructors along? Do those instructors get additional training? What sort of instructor training things I guess are also happening to, so we actually, yeah, that’s a great question Scott. We actually do require that instructors pursue continuing education because in Sally can talk more, but it is, it is pretty common for an instructor come to kind of get in a rut and teach their particular format and not ever reach out. It actually is one of the reasons too that we bring in people from the outside. For example, just this weekend we had Henry Winslow’s, the raining men’s yoga champion of the world. We had him do a whole weekend of workshops for us and a lot of the instructors, our instructors took advantage of that. So it wasn’t just for students. It’s said that instructors can continue to go deeper and learn from people that are even more experienced or have a different perspective.
Okay, good. Now let’s talk about those workshops cause that sounds interesting. First of all, how does somebody become a yoga champion? That it, in my head, I don’t reconcile that.
So there is a yoga, a competition every year and you’ve start by submitting a videotape. And then out of those videotapes are called people who are actually going to be contestants in the yoga championship. And so Henry runs low, won the world men’s division. Um, so it’s, it’s actually a thing.
Wow. How do you, I guess, what are you competing on? Is it like how long they can hold a pose or [inaudible] and I think the different poses that they can do, it’s the advanced stage of the posture. You get certain points if you pick a more difficult and more advanced posture, you get more points for that. Um, sticks in a way. It is. Yeah, exactly.
Interesting. Yeah. I have no idea. I’m not that ambitious, but it sounds interesting. So what are some of the other workshops that you guys have? Um, just examples of other workshops, maybe your other guests that come in and do things at Arisun? So we had, um, earlier this year we had been Sears who actually hails from the serious dynasty, but is nothing like his corporate family at all. Um, he had developed a yoga called sacred geometry Vinyasa and he came in and did a weekend of workshops for us and we sold that out. It was really fantastic. Interesting. Um, we had a lady and had a Ripley in and she’s very famous in the beacon community. Uh, we try to keep it kinda balanced and offer different styles and different experts. Um, we have, we’ve had Carson clay Calhoun in the studio. He was a huge success and he’s, he’s quite famous internationally acclaimed and he’s actually the one doing our very first teacher training coming up in February.
Oh, wonderful. Yes. So, okay. So on that front, can anybody like, that’s a new wants to become a yoga teacher. Can they come and take that training? I’m gonna let Sally talk to this. Absolutely. The best opportunity. Um, I have already been through yoga training, but I am going to do it again to be with Carson. He will be in our studio for an entire month. Um, great opportunity for anybody and not necessarily wanting to become a teacher, but wanting to learn more about yoga. Um, and he’s a perfect one to come and, and teach us and take us through that. He’s phenomenal. So you could go through the training, even if you don’t intend to become a yoga teacher, if you just don’t really want to go deeper on your practice, this would be a great way to do it. Absolutely. Absolutely. A lot of people that go through teacher training aren’t necessarily, I was one of those people, I just, I I’d love to yoga, I wanted to learn more about it and I thought, I’m never going to teach and you’d hear you on yet.
So it’s a great opportunity and we are so fortunate. I just have to, I have to say this because Mike and Mary do such a great job of bringing in these well known teachers and as a yoga teacher to have that right in our studio and take advantage of that and learn. I mean you just, you just grow and learn so much. We’re really excited about Carson. Um, because he is going to be focusing heavily on rocket yoga and by Xanga and rocket Jaeger has specialties and normally a rocket yoga is just a workshop teacher certification. But he’s really going to go deep in that format and I’m actually one of those ones who am going to take it. But I’m not planning to teach. So you know, it’s very unusual to have studio owners not be teachers. Um, neither Mike nor I teach, but I realized just being full time in the business for a little while that I really want to go deeper and I want to understand more and have the language of yoga more kind of close to my heart.
So I’m only benefits you as a business owner to have that level of knowledge even if you’re not one of the teachers. But if you’re, if you didn’t start off teaching or you haven’t been a yoga teacher, what made you want to open a yoga studio to with how did that happen? Just because yoga changed my life. You know, I was such a gym person. Um, hardcore corporate America type, definitely type a, um, and I was working out, yes, I’m Wendy and I’ve had this conversation too, but I was working out with a personal trainer and she recommended there was a [inaudible] opening in Oh seven, right across catercorner to the gym. And I literally never went back to the gym. So I feel like I, I went in first for exercise and I kind of came out a year later is truly somebody who had been changed, you know, much softer around the edges, much more patient with life, just, you know, more Zen.
I mean it sounds very cliche, but it really happened for me. It does. Yoga has that effect on you. It really kind of helps you calm your mind a lot. And yeah. You know, for, for someone such as yourself with the corporate background, myself included, you can really use that often during the day. And Sally, what about you? What was your, what were you doing before you became a yoga instructor or do you do still do others? I know I am pretty much strictly yoga in nutrition and um, I was, I was a head Hunter back in the day, corporate headhunter and was having serious back issues and almost to the point of having surgery. And I had a great doctor who’s like, you know what, I really want you to try some yoga first cause you’re young. Back then I was, you said try some yoga.
Chiropractic and I got into yoga and Pilates and yoga literally changed my life. It changed my body. Um, I have had a healthy back for years now with no kind of surgery, no injections. Um, the strength, I’ve never, I’ve never had a lot of strength in my body. I found it through yoga. You’re, you’re using your body and you can hold your body up. You’re, you’re working some strength there. So it, I just, I never looked back and I went through teacher training and just kind of started teaching and then I keep doing it and I love it. Wonderful. Yeah. So I’m glad you brought up the nutrition aspect of that. So are you the, I guess the resident nutritionist or at Horizon? Okay. And so we have a great nutrition program and it strictly is nutrition. So it is working one on one trying to find what works for you as an individual person based on your weight, your height, your age, um, your activity level.
So we’re trying to get your fat down, get your muscle up, find foods that work for you, work on foods that might cause inflammation, take those things out. So it’s, it’s for, it’s for anybody. It’s not necessarily you have to be overweight, but if you’re lethargic, not feeling good, you know, work, get with a nutritionist, find out what’s causing all that in your body. Um, so it is, it’s a great program. I love it. [inaudible] is the nutrition aspect of that something that comes with the membership or that something that people pay for additionally? They pay for additional. Okay. I would’ve thought so, but I just wanted to ask you that. You get, you sign up for nutrition, you get, um, a month of yoga free to, okay. So you kind of have a package deal that you can get you to do at all. Yeah.
And it really helps to have that exercise component and the nutrition component to work together. And Sally got into nutrition a long, long time ago, but she got into it to solve some of her own problems. And I do feel like everyone at our studio is very authentic, so we’re not, we’re not trying to sell something we don’t personally know something about. So I, I mentioned earlier that I have rheumatoid arthritis. My yoga practice back in 2010 or 11 helped me tremendously to get through the struggles of that disease. And I feel like if you talk to each one of our teachers about what they do specifically, they have a very authentic story to tell about why they got into yoga, why they got into nutrition. Um, which I think makes a difference to our community know. Absolutely. It feels like you are with a community that, that really, we practice what we preach, if that makes sense.
It does. And I think it’s, it’s phenomenal that you have someone like Sally on board that can help with that nutrition component. For those that want to go down that road. I feel like we’re at to an interesting intersection in time right now where the nutrition science has advanced a lot. Our understanding of how nutrition affects our bodies has advanced a lot even just in like the last like eight or 10 years. Right. It’s really come a long ways. Um, and I know it’s something that I’m, especially as I’m getting older now, I’m 47 something I’ve started paying a lot more attention to, you know, when I was younger, working out and trying to eat semi healthy had a lot more to do with, you know, vanity, right? It was wanting to look good and feel good. But now it’s really just about trying to stay healthy and feel my best and be able to function for as long into my life as possible.
And that you can’t do it without the nutrition component. So that’s super important. Anything else about Horizon that we should let people know? Where are you guys located? Let’s start there. We’re at Preston in Stonebrook. Okay. So we’re in the same people always identify us as, Oh yeah, you’re with Aldi. Okay, gotcha. It’s really centrally located. Um, like I said, we were pretty holistic. We offer all a lot of different kinds of yoga and massage is something we haven’t touched on, but we have a great massage therapist on site. Oh yes. And we actually offer massage less as a way of actually making money and more as a way of complementing our services. It’s really inexpensive with Christina, she’s wonderful. So we find a lot of students pair massage with their yoga practice and it’s a great combination. Notice somebody has to be a member if they want to come in and get a massage.
Okay, good to know. Yes. I’m glad you, I’m thank you for reminding me about the massage part. I’m sure that that can be very helpful, especially as tight muscles and all those kinds of things that can come along with exercising and especially when you’re first getting started. Yeah, I would imagine the heat helps with that somewhat though in some of the high classes though too, doesn’t it? Yes, very much so. Yeah. It’s been a long time since I’ve practiced in a cold room. Um, I started my yoga practice with [inaudible] and so I, I’ve always kind of practiced in a hot room. But now if I’m in a cold room, it really feels like I might injure myself. I mean I truly believe in not just the detoxification that the heat will do and all of that, but also just the support of safely practicing yoga.
From a muscle perspective. How hot is the crim class? Cause I’ve been at different studios at different times and some of them were hot but tolerable. Others when I went to down in Dallas a long time ago was so bloody hot, I couldn’t stand it. Like I just, we, I would finish the class in the summer and walk outside when it was literally 99 degrees and it felt like an ice. Like I would just walk into a freezer cause it was so hot in the class. Um, that speak grim. Yeah, it’s one Oh five in there. It’s hot. Okay. And it’s not for everybody. I mean if someone says I like hot yoga, but I don’t love the heat that much, I won’t recommend the beacon class. Okay. Sally keeps her sculpt. What around [inaudible] around 90 okay. So it’s warm, but it’s, that’s definitely much more.
Yes, and not as intense as that be [inaudible] and I would say most of our classes are more around the 90 range classes, like the yen class, no heat. So we do have a few that are low or no heat. Our movement flow, for example, that Joshua teaches, he doesn’t, he’s not a fan of the heat. So his class will be, you know, 80 78 ish. Okay. You know, warm enough to not be cold. Right. But not hot. Right. Is there just a Sebastien mCLASS massage? Right. We actually have a class of very interesting, it’s called yoga nature and we offer it once a month and it truly is yoga and sleep. And I will tell you, I am not very good at meditation. I never have been. I try, but yoga Neidra put me in a state that is, it’s not sleeping, it’s not waking. It’s kind of this InBetween in between and it’s delicious.
It’s a whole hour. You lie on your back and sh it’s a guided, thank you. I’m glad I asked because it sounds like exactly what I was really kind of phasing. This could be the first class. Yeah. Yeah. I’m actually a huge fan of meditation. It’s something I started a few years ago and it always sounded kind of hokey to me, but it hit a point where I was very just stressed out all the time, high levels of stress, way too busy. And I found that for me it was, uh, it helped me want to get out of bed in the morning if I knew I had a really busy day, you know, there’s that temptation to just say, Oh, I’m going to sleep 30 more minutes and avoid this for as long as I can, which wasn’t always healthy either, so I would get up. But I, it was much more relaxing to get out of bed knowing that I was just going to go sit in a chair.
And then 20 minutes of meditation was how I was going to start. And I use an app for guided meditation. Uh, but I just fell in love with it. It really does kinda help get you off on the right foot. So in the end, people, people are never still anymore pulled out, ever shut down. So meditation can be a little scary and it’s, it’s, it’s difficult. But once you get past that, it’s so rewarding. Yeah, absolutely. Second window at yoga Nadirah October 27th at five o’clock. Yoga. Neidra okay. I’m going to remember that. I love it. And we announced the date for each month, the previous month, so, okay. Yeah, it’s quite an experience. So let’s talk a little bit about the options people have with Horizon Hot Yoga. Do they pay for a package of classes? Is it monthly? Is it one off? How do you guys price things?
And so for people that want to come out and check it out, hopefully sign up, what are, what do they have? So our introductory month is $79 and it’s unlimited yoga. Um, we do have class cards, so we have a 10 class card and the 20 class card, um, that you can buy if you feel like I might go once a week or something. Um, our kid’s class, a lot of the kids buy class cards because they, they only come once a week. I just ages five to 11. Okay. You have kids yoga? We do and they are adorable. They love it. I’ll bet. And if you can believe it, we do get them into a meditative state at some point during that class. I know a lot of parents are gonna come sign their kids up right now. No, I’m sorry. What other packages and things do you guys have then?
If you want to stay after the $79 intro, which most people do, um, you can pay on an auto pay every month and that’s one 15. Um, so you just, we just charge your credit card as you go. We don’t have any contracts or anything like that, so. Okay. Uh, we have a three month package, a six month and an annual. And obviously the annual is the most cost effective, but some people just can’t afford to pay that upfront. Right. So, but you can also go month to month if you want to do it that way. Okay, so the one 15 is that a month? A month. Right, right. Okay. So if somebody does the $79 they love it. They want to keep going one 15 a month and it’s all you can eat. Yup. Yes. Okay. Any other classes? Right. Okay. Yeah. I can stay all day long.
Yes. And some do. Yes. And like Sally said, we’ve had people that stay for two or three classes. Wow, that’s amazing. I had a, the really hot yoga studio that I was talking about that I went to for a while. How to, I went with a couple of buddies and one of them decided he was going to try to do marathon yoga and he’d do a whole bunch of classes back to back in like B crumb. And after, I think the third or fourth class, they had to like cardinality. You just, you can’t, I know you’re not doing this anymore. He just, he was so drained, it was terrible. So I can’t imagine doing that many classes back to back. But if you mixed it up and it wasn’t all hot, then maybe that wouldn’t be so bad. Right, right. Funny. I love it. So.
Okay. Um, and as far as class times too, just to comment on that, we have more than 40 classes a week and we do offer early, early morning 5:45 AM because there are a lot of people that they just, they’re not going to get it in if they don’t do it. We have a noon class that does well for professionals too. And then Sally teaches in several teachers teach kind of mid mornings for mom classes or for stay at home dads, even eight 39 45 time ish. And then we have the evening classes, 6:00 PM in both rooms. So can you pretty much whatever time works for your schedule, you can find a class at Horizon. And how late did they go again? Um, the, the yen class is seven 15 on Tuesday, Thursday. And then we have an Ashtanga class at seven 15 on Wednesday. Okay, good. So there really is a time that should work for just about anybody. Yes. Yep. Okay. Six PMs every night and website. Can we find more information online? Horizon Hot Yoga.com that’s easy. We’ll link, of course. You guys have a, I think a business page with us and we’re going to link all that up in the show notes for this, so we’ll make sure that everybody can find all that information just fine.
Yeah. All right. Well guys, thank you very much for joining us today. This has been fun and you do have some interesting classes. I was kind of joking about the whole Savasana thing, but uh, what was the name of that class again? [inaudible] Yoga Neidra. All right, I’m going to go sign up for that for sure. It’s a good place to start. Great. Well thank you guys very much. And everybody, if you want to go get your Zen thing on, check out Horizon Hot Yoga and maybe ask for Sally. She does some good classes. Go do some rocket yoga if you’re ready for that. And, uh, thank you all for tuning in to the Frisco podcast. Appreciate having you guys here and for all of you listening in, be sure to subscribe. We are on iTunes, Google play, Spotify, Stitcher, any place you’re listening to a podcast, you’re going to find it. So please go out and subscribe. We really appreciate it.