Everyone is Welcome at SoFitCo Studios on 30A in Blue Mountain Beach
30A locals and visitors alike looking to enhance their fitness have a great option in Blue Mountain Beach. SoFitCo Studios offers a bunch of different types of classes that help people improved their physical and mental fitness in a non-intimidating, personal way. Some of the classes offered at SoFitCo Studios include but are not limited to… Buti Yoga, Cardio Explosion, Hot Yoga, PiYo, Zumba, and Yin Yoga. Their classes are led by a team of highly professional instructors that have been practicing their craft for years.
SoFitCo Studios general manager CD Harris sat down with us and explained the unique story behind this Santa Rosa Beach workout hot spot. CD is a super great guy that makes everyone feel welcome and motivated to enhance their level of health. In addition, we had the opportunity to speak with Yoga expert Laura Bailey who leads classes Monday through Friday at SoFitCo Studios in beautiful Blue Mountain Beach.
Interview with CD Harris and Laura Bailey at SoFitCo Studios in Santa Rosa Beach, FL
30A Prime: Thanks for taking time to speak with us today CD. Please tell us about your role here at SofitCo Studios.
CD Harris: I’m the General Manager here at SoFitCo Studios and I also teach a class called PiYo which is a high-intensity low impact workout that we offer here at the studio.
30A Prime: Please tell us more about PiYo and what it’s all about.
CD Harris: PiYo is a concept of Pilates and Yoga blended together. It’s part of the Beachbody program so you have high-intensity work mixed with low impact, which means we’re on a mat barefoot without weights lifting merely our own body weight. From such consistent movement, from the music that’s pre-choreographed as well as the routines that are predesigned to learn, it allows for a great workout.
30A Prime: What are some of the different types of classes offered at SoFitCo Studios?
CD Harris: We offer a variety of classes such as Hot Yoga, healing classes such as Myofascial therapy also Yin Yoga. Recently we’ve added dance classes such as Country Two Step as well as some Country and Western Line Dancing classes. Along with that, we have a local tribe Laura Bailey Yoga.
Laura Bailey: My name is Laura Bailey and I teach at SoFitCo Studios Monday through Friday at 8:30 am. My class is about an hour and fifteen minutes and we’re going to move through a series of vinyasas that is different every day, different music, a different message every day. Yoga is my passion and I’ve been studying it for 24 years and it’s everything that I am and everything that I do.
30A Prime: What makes the SoFitCo studio unique?
CD Harris: One of the most wonderful things about this studio is that it’s in a quaint space in Blue Mountain Beach. Even though we have a lot of people that do come workout here, it seems that everyone feels in a nice quaint, intimate setting so that the workouts don’t feel overwhelmed with people. The studio space here at SoFitCo is enough to accommodate up to 30 or 40 people without feeling overly crowded.
Also, we have Joel Mitchell who works in the back of the studio and offers Myofascial Therapy which is a form of massage therapy. It’s really great and it balances the physical activity that we do inside of the studio, along with the healing works that come from acupressure and touch therapy.
30A Prime: How did you originally get into Yoga?
Laura Bailey: I moved to Colorado when I was 22 and I just happened in on a class and I fell in love with it. From that point on, I began to practice Yoga daily. Then I went to San Francisco and studied for a while and then I moved back to Colorado. From there I moved to Oklahoma before settling here in South Walton. I’ve lived in SoWal for nine years and I’ve been teaching Yoga since I was 25.
I love all of the locals and they’ve been my best supporters but I also love our tourists that come from all over the place. They come from Austin, Nashville, Atlanta, Dallas, New York and I love to watch the various people practice in different ways because it seems like the different areas of our Country, there are different influences in the Yoga world and when they come together, it’s like we’re all one community.
I call 30A the island of the misfits because no one is originally from here, everyone comes here for a purpose and so that brings us all together as a family. A Motley Crew of a family, but a family.
30A Prime: What is your favorite class here at SoFitCo Studios?
CD Harris: My favorite class personally would have to be the Friday Hot Hatha Yoga with Angel. The studio is equipped with green sensor heating panels that you see on the walls which allow the space to get up to 105 degrees pretty quick. So that type of sweat and circulation is really great. I also enjoy the Sunday Roots Yoga class because it offers belts as well as blocks to help support in the stretching activities and Yoga work.
30A Prime: How warm does the room temp get during Hot Yoga classes?
CD Harris: The temperature is set at 105 degrees and we can also add humidity. Then add all the students and their body heat generates its own form of energy and high temperature so… 105 degrees plus however much energy X-Number of 98.6-degree bodies are pushing out.
30A Prime: How did SoFitCo Studios come to be a reality here in Blue Mountain Beach?
CD Harris: The foundation of the studio came from SoFitCo Fitness Outfitters who are one of the leading distributors of athletic equipment in the Southeastern United States. The studio was simply a space used to house equipment and then in 2015, we decided to lay down the floor and allow space for the community to become more active. Also, laying down the floor allowed for SoFitCo workers to be able to hop in a class, catch a little sweat between the vigorous hours of sitting in front of a desk making sure that shipments and products were being moved properly.
So with that being said, the studio has been up since 2015 and we’re nearing our 3rd year in operation. We’re just super grateful to be here and to be a part of the Blue Mountain Beach community and neighborhood.
30A Prime: Let’s say I’m new to working out or I’m just trying to get back into shape. Will I be able to keep up with the classes or are they too advance for me?
CD Harris: All of our classes are available for you to scale and find your own rhythm within the class. None of our classes are so demanding that they make you have to be at a certain fitness level. For a novice, I would recommend perhaps a Yin Yoga class which is a little more gentle and slow moving. We also have a Slow Flow Yoga that is more of a healing and mending style Yoga and is a great starting point.
Lauran Bailey: I ask my new students to come in and practice at least 2 to 3 times a week for the first month and then you will notice the difference. After the first class, it kind of feels like initiation by fire. The second class gets a little bit easier. By the third class, you’re kind of like… Ok I get this. From there on the movement starts to sync by the 10th class and then you’re off and running. Once you start to plateau in Yoga you know you need to grow more to challenge yourself and that’s when you can really get deep into your practice.
30A Prime: What are the long-term benefits of a commitment to physical and mental fitness?
CD Harris: Just the daily activity alone makes a big difference. It’s understood that by raising your heart rate, by raising your level of energy at the beginning of the day, it allows space for you to reconnect with that height of energy later in the day. So over time as your muscles get stronger you can support yourself more. Obviously losing weight allows you the opportunity to carry less in your day. Putting forward that energy and exerting that energy in the morning allows for rest in the evening so that you have a better balance in your expression and your daily activities.
Laura Bailey: Laughter is the best stretch in my class. I want students to focus on going at their own pace. Learning one new thing, not 10 new things a class. Over time you progress and progress and then you blink your eyes and a year has gone by and the agility that you have, the flexibility that you have, the stamina you have has just grown exponentially.
I’d love to see you in class and practice with you. I just ask that you have an open heart, a big smile and a willingness to try something new. Just show up Monday through Friday at 8:30 am. There are lots of locals that practice with me. You’ll meet new friends and there is a really warm atmosphere here at SoFitCo Studios. Everyone is super accepting.
CD Harris: Please visit us here in Blue Mountain Beach as we’re nestled near HWY 83 and the 30A cross-section. We have a variety of classes, a variety of opportunities regardless of your age, gender and anything in-between.
You can learn more about SoFitCo Studios via their website here… SofitcoStudios.com