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  • Writer's pictureOnward

Turning Stress to Sweat

This week's post comes to us from Samantha Scupp, founder and owner of Heatwise, a heated Vinyasa yoga studio which just opened its second New York City location in Park Slope Brooklyn. Heatwise offers a judgment-free and stress-free environment for beginning yogis to more advanced practitioners. Yoga and meditation can be wonderful anxiety management tools following a breakup. We encourage you to try a class at Heatwise or your friendly neighborhood studio.

I had anxiety at an early age. When I was very young, I didn't want to talk - period. I was extremely shy, and you could list on one hand the number of people with whom I would engage.

Heatwise Yoga Studio (Brooklyn Heights location)

I came out of my shell here and there and developed meaningful relationships throughout my youth, but I have remained considerably self-conscious well into adulthood. I found ways to push myself, like when I took a huge leap and moved to Japan for two years to teach English, despite speaking zero Japanese and having never lived that far away from home and friends. But I challenged my anxiety the most three years ago, when I decided to quit my corporate job and open my own hot yoga studio - while simultaneously getting pregnant and preparing to be a first-time mom.

I know it can sound silly to paint myself as an insecure, anxious person - and then casually drop that I quit my stable job for the complete unknown. But the fact that I was aligning myself and my future with something as calming, relaxing, and restorative as hot yoga made the decision much easier. By diving headfirst into the health and wellness space, and working my ass off to create a welcoming, luxurious, judgement-free studio, I try to channel my (still active) anxiety into expanding and improving my product so more people can relieve stress in my spaces.

For me, nothing comes close to the feeling of a hot yoga class. It’s my ultimate escape to blow off steam, let go from stress, and reset my brain. And most importantly, it ​feels good​. If I go too many days without it, I am noticeably more frantic, more anxious, more irritable.

I created Heatwise around a mission to help people feel good. The studio is hospitality-driven - every touchpoint from signing up to checking in to the class itself to the post-class cold towel is tailored with an eye towards helping everyone feel comfortable and taken care of. Whether New Yorkers are anxious by their very nature, or whether they're trying to negotiate through the rush of commuters in the 9-5 grind, everyone can use an hour a day to treat themselves to a well-deserved break. I have jumped into incredibly anxious territory with the belief that what I’m doing can help others feel better. Every time a person comes out of a class glowing and smiling it reinforces my belief in what I’m trying to put out there - and helps relieve a little bit of anxiety knowing that I’m on the right track.

Samantha Scupp is the founder and owner of Heatwise. You can find Heatwise in Park Slope (203 Ninth Street, Brooklyn, NY 11215) and Brooklyn Heights (163 Remsen St, Brooklyn, NY 11201), and online at @heatwiseyoga

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