CEDAR CITY — A new fitness gym that recently opened in Cedar City brings a new twist – and a stretch – to exercise workouts.
Soul Fitness, which features equipment like bungee harnesses and suspended hammocks, is the brainchild of business partners Misty Anderson and Julia Shettell, who became close friends approximately five years ago.
“Julia and I are very business-minded people, always throwing out business ideas and working through the potential each one could have,” Anderson told Cedar City News.
A native of Holden and Utah State University graduate who has lived in Cedar City since 2008, Anderson is a local realtor who has owned and operated several small businesses over the years. She and Shettell came up with the idea of starting their own gym when they were at a playground in a park with their children.
“We had started making up workouts on the playground equipment,” Anderson recalled. “I had noted how Julia was way stronger than I was, and I needed a little help to do some of the exercises. She mentioned doing these same exercises with bungees providing some lift. We laughed for a minute and then got completely serious. I knew that day that I was going start a bungee gym.”
Since it first opened Jan. 1, Soul Fitness has steadily built its clientele, with bungee, yoga and Zumba classes now filling up the schedule in mornings and evenings. The bungee classes can accommodate up to 14 people, while the yoga classes have a capacity of 10. All classes are taught by professional, qualified instructors, Anderson said.
Soul Fitness is located at 151 S. Main St. in Cedar City, occupying the rear portion of the building it shares with Iron Axe, an axe-throwing business that opened in early November.
“It’s a way to have some fun doing a low-impact workout and do some moves you can’t do anywhere else,” Anderson said, adding that the bungee cords allow participants to bend, stretch and exercise their limbs without fear of falling. In the yoga classes, attendees suspend themselves in large cocoon-like hammocks made of stretchable silk, where they can then stretch their limbs and even hang upside down during their workouts.
Another popular offering has been the regular “Glow Zumba” classes, where individuals and families can dance together in the dark under ultraviolet light.
“In just the few short weeks we have been open, we’ve seen amazing things,” Anderson said.
“It is so exciting to watch our instructors and others getting involved to share their talents to support the community, then watching our clients leave with such excitement and a smile on their face,” Anderson said. “It’s truly a beautiful thing!”
When it comes to the name of the business, Anderson said as she and Shettell developed the idea, they realized the potential of this type of unique gym.
“It became much more than offering bungee supports to workouts,” she said. “It was the idea that we all need a support system: physically, mentally, emotionally, socially and spiritually. We had the vision of this gym becoming a place to cultivate individual growth and helping others to reach their potential. That’s where the name ‘Soul Fitness – Mind, Body, and Soul’ came from.”
Shettell, who is a native of Price with a secondary education degree from Southern Utah University and a background in sports, health and fitness, shared similar sentiments.
“I truly believe when people are surrounded by loving support, that they are much more likely to succeed.”
Shettell was a volleyball coach at USU-Eastern in Price before moving back to Cedar City last spring.
“I love helping people reach their goals and believe that Soul Fitness provides that village that we all need to be successful in body, mind and soul,” she said.
Soul Fitness classes are regularly priced at $12 per one-hour session, but volume discounts and multimonth memberships are available. For more details, visit the Soul Fitness website or Facebook page, or call 435-572-0119.
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