Betsy Davis and Christine Gatti met at a yoga class in Manhattan, and both area residents were commuting into New York either for classes or, in Davis' case, to teach classes. They got to talking about how there was not a stand-alone yoga studio in Millburn-Short Hills. And thus Bhakti Barn Yoga Studio was born.
The two women co-own the 8-month-old studio, which is located on Spring Street in downtown Millburn. Davis has been practicing yoga for 12 years and teaching for 10.
“I was going through a major transition in my life, and recovering from a breakup," she said. "I found that yoga helped me.”
The other six teachers at Bhakti Barn have all trained under Davis. They practice Vinayssa yoga, which is a style of yoga where movement becomes meditation through breath.
The studio is offers an ongoing four-week course called “Absolute Beginners,” which is a series of classes that Davis calls the "ABC’s of yoga." Additionally there is always a basics class offered each day. Clients can attend classes or receive private instruction if they would like more individual attention.
“In the beginning our classes had anywhere from zero to four students, so very often in those early months it was as if the students were getting a private lesson,” Davis said.
Over the past 8 months business has increased, primarily through word of mouth. “We’ve had steady growth since we opened which makes me pretty happy,” Davis said. “We’ve had great feedback from clients and have had many referrals.”
Davis and Gatti have plans to add more classes including Harmonium lessons, and children's and teen classes. They are also planning on expanding into instruction. Said Davis, “We’re going to begin teacher training in the fall, for students who have been training with us for some time and want to take the next step.”
For those residents whose New Years’ resolutions include getting back in shape Bhakti Barn has an incentive for you: “We’re offering a 10 percent discount to new clients until Jan. 15,” Davis said.
Information and class schedules can be found at the Bhakti Barn website.