Another Madison yoga studio has closed, this time seemingly without notice to instructors or students.
As of midday Friday, the website of the west side’s Bliss Flow Yoga did not note the closure, and the outgoing voicemail message said that the studio would reopen at 6:30 a.m. Friday after the July Fourth holiday. But the online class reservation system indicated that Friday’s class was cancelled and the following week showed “No scheduled classes or training sessions.”
Messages to the studio’s email address generated an automatic notice of failed delivery, and Google’s business listing indicated that the studio was permanently closed.
In a Thursday morning email announcement shared with the Cap Times by a former Bliss Flow student, studio owner Jennifer Braun wrote expressing “deep sadness” about the closure, which would be effective July 4. “The bank decided they will no longer support the loan backing the studio and despite my exploring every option available, they remained unwilling to negotiate,” Braun wrote.
“Eighteen months ago, I took a leap and invested everything I had into Bliss Flow. What we built - a place to practice and learn, beautiful partnerships and deep friendships, an inclusive and accessible yoga community - does not fall away because there is no longer a studio space.”
Braun purchased the studio from its founder in January 2018 as the studio was completing its 13th year. She had been the studio’s executive director for nine years before the sale. Braun did not respond to requests for comment.
On Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, the studio’s pages appear to have disappeared. Responding to one former student’s post about the closure, students and instructors, some of whom had been with the studio for more than a decade, expressed surprise. “It’s been so much a part of my life for the last 14 years,” one student said of the studio.
“We were given NO notice. I just took a class there yesterday and planned to teach on Sunday,” wrote one instructor.
Another person said that the instructor at her Wednesday class had told her she would be teaching on Friday, “and now nothing. Just like that.”
Some expressed sympathy, noting that many local studios are struggling to survive, but others criticized the studio for not communicating more clearly amidst the abrupt closure.
“There seems like a less dramatic and shocking way to close a studio and provide closure to its community,” one person wrote.
Many complained on Facebook that they had received no information about whether their prepaid memberships or class passes would be refunded, and some said they were seeking assistance from their banks, credit card companies or the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
“I never thought I would be filing a complaint against a studio...that I cared for so deeply,” wrote one person. “The abrupt closing without any notification was not yogic in the least.”