Welcome to another episode of the Startup Junkies podcast!
In this week’s episode, Jeff Amerine, Caleb Talley, and Morgan Scholz talk with Nicole Calhoun, Ph.D. ERYT, owner of ELXR Yoga Lounge. Nicole has her undergraduate degree in biology and her Ph.D. in molecular genetics, and she got her yoga teacher certification as a passion project. After teaching yoga part-time for a few years, she opened her studio in 2018, and she pivoted to yoga full-time after being laid off due to the pandemic in March 2020. She talks with the startup junkies about creating a unique yoga experience in NWA, how her scientific background influences her business decisions, and what is next for ELXR Yoga Lounge. You don’t want to miss this inspiring episode!
(1:15) Introducing Nicole Calhoun and ELXR Yoga Lounge
(7:08) Creating a unique yoga experience in NWA
(11:44) How Nicole’s scientific background influences her business
(17:44) What does the future look like for ELXR Yoga Lounge?
(23:57) Embracing social media
(33:20) Starting a business in NWA
(36:20) Nicole’s experience owning a yoga studio as a Black woman
(45:51) Advice for the younger self
(47:59) Wrap up
“I kind of felt like I had something to say within the world of yoga, and like, watching all the yoga teachers over the years and how influential they could be and how mindful that they were with the way that they live their lives, and their ability to really help people was super impressive to me. And so, I decided to go to yoga teacher training.” (2:34)
“I rented the space, came up with the brand, the marketing, the teachers, everything, the design of the studio, what we wanted to offer and how we wanted to offer it, and put it all together in about a month. And then we opened about 30 days after I signed the lease.” (6:04)
“I’m actually very thankful that I have a background in the sciences because science is very analytical and it’s very facts-based. So, you don’t really do science or run experiments or projects off emotion – it’s all based off facts. Like these are the facts, and I’m not going to try to massage the facts to fit my narrative. I’m going to find out the facts and then find out the narrative.” (14:50)
“You don’t have to fight over clients. You can create new clients and convert new clients from other forms of workout.” (43:16)