Long-time West Springfield resident Lynne Maloney, 59, had a thriving career for 17 years at The Washington Post selling advertising. A few years ago, she started getting frustrated as she felt The Post was turning from print to digital.
She had saved a chunk of cash and had dreams of switching careers and opening her own fitness studio that offers yoga and Pilates. So, she and husband Jim sold their home, downsized into a townhouse (their daughter Lauren was a senior in high school), and used the home equity to start up a new business.
In June 2015, she left The Post, and a year later she opened “breathe body & mind,” a 950-sq.ft. boutique fitness studio at Rolling Mill Office Park off Old Keene Mill Road. She started a second studio, about 800 sq.ft., at the Rolling Valley Office Park where she offers personal training, private lessons and weekend classes.
“I feel like once you set your mind to do something, it’s almost like the universe put things in your path and you can choose to grab opportunities,” said the Lake Braddock Secondary and JMU grad. “I feel as though I was supposed to do this and that’s what continues to power me through. I work harder than I’ve ever worked.”
With a staff of 19 instructors, today she offers personalized, small group fitness classes in yoga, Pilates, barre, core and strength conditioning. She offers nine types of yoga – from Vinyasa to Hatha to Yoga for Backs and Bones. There’s also restorative yoga and a kid’s yoga class. The Pilates focuses on core work and stretching; there’s Mat Pilates and five barre classes a week. On Mondays, she does a switch-up (Manic Monday theme) that includes POP Pilates or cardio dance -- classes not offered on a regular basis. Also, she offers weekend workshops on topics like Face Yoga, breathing and meditation.
THE STAFF is trained and certified in whatever practice they teach. Most are 200-hour registered yoga teachers, via Yoga Alliance. One is a 500-hour Registered Yoga Teacher. Maloney is a group fitness instructor and ACE-certified personal trainer now completing her 200 Registered Yoga Teacher hours. She also teaches Strength, Sculpt and Tone, and a Balance and Stretch class.
“A lot of people describe it as a cozy little cove. We limit the size. People have to sign up online so we don’t get too crowded. We max it out so people have room to breathe, so they’re not on top of each other,” said Maloney, a former Jazzercise instructor for 15 years.
As far as membership, Maloney offers flex options, including an introductory one month of unlimited classes for $30. There’s also an annual membership that charges monthly. Or eight times or four times in a month, based on agreeing to a year’s commitment. They also offer five-class, 10-class, and 20-class passes. They have discounts for Fairfax County school employees, active duty and retired military, first responders and age 65-plus.
Maloney said she was hoping to establish a welcoming place where people can look forward to coming to take care of themselves, body, mind and spirit. “The majority of our members are over 45. There are people who come who are in their 60s and 70s. We also have college kids who come back during breaks. We’ve run the gamut of age ranges,” she said.
She added: “We’re not a big corporation or chain. This is not a franchise. This is a locally owned studio. We communicate with individuals where they are in a very personal way. I think we have a more relaxed vibe than other studios.”
According to Sylvia Lamb of Annandale: “Lynne’s positive energy and attitude were immediately on display when I met her about two years ago. I felt I needed to make a change and wanted to get in shape and lose about 30 pounds. My friend, Barbra, had been doing personal training with Lynne. I joined her at Breathe Body and Mind once a week in small group (just us) training and we quickly added a second day. Lynne pushed us to get better without judging and constantly mixed it up and made it fun. Today, I am indeed 30 pounds lighter and in much better shape.”
Added Nancy Rose of Alexandria: “Lynne has created a truly unique and special place in Breathe. Lynne offers not only yoga classes for all levels of experience, but also Pilates, barre, and total body fitness classes. The instructors are phenomenal, and the classes are relatively small, so the ambiance is that of a small community. In short, Breathe is a place where one can work to improve his/her overall body and mind fitness and wellbeing. I will be a member for life.”
BARBRA GOLUB of Annandale added: “I started working out with Lynne about four years ago at a different studio and immediately felt comfortable with her. When she opened up Breathe Body and Mind, there was no question that I would follow her there. I do personal training with Lynne, and she is a great trainer; pushing me to do things she knows I can do, but knowing when to offer modifications if I complain about aches and pains. The studio itself is great. It is low key and feels more like a community of friends working out together.”
John Michetti of Springfield said, "I have taken a number of Lynne's classes and I enjoy her energetic, motivating, and fun style of instructing. I love the small class size and the studio is welcoming and relaxed. The team of instructors are all outstanding and I love the time I spend in the studio. They are caring, enlightening, and truly inspiring. They are all able to adapt and offer alternate movements for individuals that have physical limitations."
For more information, visit the website: www.breathebodymind.com or email Lynne Maloney at Info@breathebodymind.com.