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Yoga North moves to downtown Duluth

The longtime business relocated from the Lakeside neighborhood to 310 E. Superior St.

three women stand on red yoga mats in various positions
Molly McManus, left, co-owner of North Yoga, Susan Polege, center, business manager, and Ann Maxwell, co-owner of Yoga North, do variations of Warrior pose in their new space Wednesday.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram

DULUTH โ€” After 28 years, Yoga North moved from its longtime Lakeside neighborhood location at St. Michael's Lakeside School to its new home at 310 E. Superior St.

Yoga North will begin scheduling classes and private sessions regularly in April.

"We're so excited for this new location, accessible entrance for all, proximity to the medical buildings to share yoga therapy, a lovely view of the lake during class, and visible signage on the street!" Yoga North wrote in its e-newsletter.

Women stand with sign in front of building.
Yoga North business manager Susan Polege, left, and owners Ann Maxwell, center, and Molly McManus stand outside their new space at 310 E. Superior St., Duluth, on Wednesday.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram

Yoga North is partnering with Cheryl Fosdick, owner of CF Design, to share its new downtown building owned by AtWater Group. Yoga North is accessed through the CF Design entryway.

Situated in the back of the building in Suite 125C, the 500-square-foot studio features soft lighting, 11-foot ceilings and rubberized yoga flooring. Parking is available along the street and in the nearby parking ramps.

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According to Ann Maxwell and Molly McManus, having their business more centrally located will allow Yoga North to collaborate with nearby Essentia Health and St. Luke's hospitals to offer a bridge between clinical care and self-care.

"We are excited to be in the medical district to support complementary care in the community," Maxwell said, adding that Yoga North would love to work with both hospitals through their employee wellness programs, in addition to supporting the journey of the patients coming out of treatments, as well as their caregivers.

Instructor helps yoga student.
Ann Maxwell, back, co-owner of Yoga North, instructs Susan Polege as she arches her back.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram

Yoga North began with teachers Joie Acheson and Deborah Adele. Eventually, Maxwell and McManus joined as co-owners and yoga therapists when Acheson and Adele went on to other pursuits.

Susan Polege is the business manager and a certified yoga teacher. As an athlete and runner, Polege said having 200 hours of teacher training provides the tools needed for remedy when she overdoes it.

"There are a lot of people dealing with stress and overwhelmed, and also elders wanting to live better quality of life who lean toward yoga therapy practices. People are empowering themselves to live better โ€” not just by taking a pill, but by using practices to feel better. Yoga therapy is a more up-and-coming way to deal with health," Polege said.

Maxwell has 23 years in the profession. She said practice enables her body to remain comfortable while living an active lifestyle. "I keep up with my 19-year-old son while biking and alpine skiing," she said.

McManus represents Yoga North as president of the International Association of Yoga Therapists Board of Directors. In addition to co-founding the methodology SomaYoga (a blend of somatics with classical asana and therapeutic yoga), McManus is also an Ayurvedic health counselor and chef.

With nearly two decades in the field, McManus said teaching and practicing yoga therapy, along with Ayurveda, allow for a better life and add to her well-being while living with a complex health diagnosis.

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"Ayurveda is important to note as the sister-science to yoga therapy. It provides many self-care tools," McManus said.

Yoga student lays on table in front of instructor.
Molly McManus, back, co-owner of Yoga North, talks with the other co-owner, Ann Maxwell, as she lays on the table in the new space Wednesday.
Jed Carlson / Superior Telegram

The services provided by Yoga North are unique to the Duluth area, McManus explained. Yoga North International SomaYoga Institute has been a registered yoga school through Yoga Alliance since 2004, offering three levels of training to those interested in teaching yoga therapy. To date, there have been 60 cohorts of professional teacher trainings through Yoga North.

Yoga North partners locally with In Motion Therapy and Domestic Abuse Intervention Program, both of Duluth, in addition to Tula Yoga and Wellness in St. Paul and Atha SomaYoga Therapy in Des Moines to host yoga therapy teacher training.

Yoga therapists differ from regular yoga instructors in hours of study, experience and expertise, taking on a wider scope of practice in those they work with, McManus explained.

Yoga North also provides private sessions and small group classes designed for individualized support by focusing on specific needs, such as back, shoulder, knee and pelvic floor health. Yoga therapy sessions are more individualized than a typical yoga class at the gym, not only focusing on the poses or getting fit, but on how those practicing feel inside, McManus said.

"We help people deal with parts of the body that are uncomfortable to improve function, increase mobility, stability and strength," Maxwell added. "We also work with the mind by teaching tools of breath and mind practices to help use energy better for more steadiness and resiliency in day-to-day life."

Class registration is required at yoganorthduluth.com.

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Brielle Bredsten is the business reporter for the Duluth News Tribune.

She earned a bachelor's degree in Professional Writing & Technical Communication, with minors in Advertising and Creative Writing from Metropolitan State University, in addition to a two-year professional paid internship as reporter/editor of the student newspaper.

She is an award-winning professional writer, photographer and editor based in rural Minnesota. Over the past decade, Brielle Bredsten has contributed more than 1,000 articles, feature stories, non-profit press-releases, photographs and columns. Her work has been published in several community newspapers.

Send her story tips, feedback or just say hi at bbredsten@duluthnews.com.
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