Seattle is not just a magnet for tech entrepreneurs.
Among many things, our Emerald City is a technology hotspot and a hub for green, sustainable development. As one of the fastest-growing major cities in the U.S., Seattle has become even more attractive for its innovative spirit and the people behind it.
For Kylie and Brandon Sutton, Seattle was just another beautiful weekend gateway destination from their home in Kelowna, British Columbia. But Kylie, the owner of Moksha Yoga Kelowna since 2011, and her husband Brandon had no idea that soon they would become the owners of Modo Yoga Seattle.
[Kylie & Brandon doing yoga together Photograph by Kevin Trowbridge]
“This wasn’t even a decision, it was a calling,” Kylie said. “It just came to us. We knew it, this is where Modo Yoga Seattle was going to be.”
Moksha Yoga, known as Modo Yoga in the U.S., was founded by two environmentally focused yogis in Canada, Ted Grand and Jessica Robertson. All of the studios are independently owned by certified (Modo Yoga) yogis who are committed to an environmentally conscious lifestyle. Each studio is unique, because it “reflects on the vibe of the local community and the vision of each Modo studio director.” – Modo Yoga International website states.
The cornerstone of the Modo Yoga practice are the seven pillars. These pillars represent their core value system, which they incorporate in both the practice and as a philosophy to positively impact the community.
Kylie and Brandon thought that Modo’s Yoga philosophy aligned perfectly with Seattle’s character, and so this was a no brainier. But where in Seattle? – That was a whole other question.
Kylie found a local realtor and asked to see a total of 10 spots that reflected what they envisioned for Modo Yoga Seattle: an accessible, eco-focused, eco-friendly location. After visiting nine of those locations, their last stop was where Modo Yoga Seattle stands today.
“It was ‘it,’” they said.
For many years Seattleites have referred to this spot as the “big hole” near Green Lake, which finally started to fill up in 2012. Today the “hole” is referred to as the Green Lake Village. While Kylie and Brandon were on their way to becoming business owners in Seattle, they also found out they were going to be parents. Modo Yoga opened its doors on May 1, and today the nearly-9-month-pregnant Kylie continues to teach and practice yoga. Her philosophy is that you should continue to practice, no matter what, so you do not lose the essence of what inspired you in the first place.
“You should always stay connected,” she said.
If you take her class, despite the fact that she is almost due, she is deeply engaged with her students and her attention to detail shows throughout the class. Her dialogue helps you to focus on your practice and breath while being able to effectively blur and calm the constant disruption of your thoughts.
“Modo’s yoga philosophy is to provide each individual with the necessary tools to succeed, so modifications are welcome,” she said.
Kylie and Brandon’s goal is to provide yogis with the support they need and the necessary tools that would allow them to gain strength and balance – no matter their yoga level or body shape.
One of the primarily focuses of Modo Yoga Seattle is to also be involved and to contribute to the well being of the local community. The studio offers different Karma Classes specifically designed to collect donations for local organizations. The funds for the month of May and June will be donated to the local chapter of Big Brother Big Sister. The studio’s manager Lisa Flick, who is also a certified Moksha/Modo Yoga instructor, is looking forward to involve and collaborate with the Seattle community.
Another program that Modo Yoga studio offers is their Energy Exchange Program, which works like this: You become an ambassador for Modo Yoga Seattle, you help clean the studio four hours per week, and you receive unlimited yoga classes each week. Kylie and Brandon are excited to be working with their ambassadors, who are an important part of the Modo yoga culture.
“Kylie and Brandon look forward to connecting and collaborating with the community of Green Lake and are excited about bringing a unique piece of community, a piece of peace and a whole lot of sweat,” states the message to the local community on their website.
So, the “Green Lake Village” has blossomed. Projects are coming to completion, the new 295 apartment complex is filling up, the long-awaited PCC Natural Markets store is opening its doors on June 4. Other businesses are opening as well, and Modo Yoga Seattle is at the heart of it all.
Kylie and Brandon invite you to just stop by and say hi.
1. Who is Kylie outside of the yoga studio?
Kylie: Nature lover, family-oriented, spontaneous, and passionate
2. What is your favorite pose and why?
Brandon: My favorite pose is savasana, to be able to physically and mentally let go at the beginning, middle or end of a practice is more challenging than any asana
3. What is the best yoga advice you have ever received?
Kylie: Always remain a student
4. If you could practice yoga with anyone, dead or alive, who would that be & why?
Kylie: With my 5-year-old self (she is a creative thinker)
Brandon: Bruce Lee would be such an honor and privilege to do yoga with or even just tap into some of his knowledge about the body and philosophy
5. What is your advice for people?
Kylie: Stay humble, remain curious. Use your life with inspiration.
Brandon: Live life to express not to impress. Work for a cause, not applause. Life is short so enjoy it, for yourself
Kylie also mentioned: “As I was driving one day I heard a host on the radio show to say: ‘You are the average of the 5 people you hang out the most with’ – this brought an opportunity of reflection for me.”
6. What is your advice for the yoga community overall?
Kylie: Stay open and passionate; continue to grow, shake and create change
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