The Chaffee’s Got Heart Committee is proud of local businesses, organizations and individuals that have gone above and beyond during the pandemic. It recently recognized jalaBlu Collective Healing.
Jenna Pfingston, owner and founder of jalaBlu, talked about how the pandemic changed operations at the yoga studio in Buena Vista and how it adapted the way it does business.
“Though challenging, this was a beautiful invitation for all of us to look at our businesses from a different perspective,” Pfingston said.
“When COVID first hit, we flipped to an online yoga studio. A dear friend helped me completely change our website and set up an online platform for practice.
“The progression of getting everyone – teachers and students of all age groups — dialed into Zoom took some time and individual troubleshooting, but we did it together,” Pfingston said
“I also took this as an invitation to lower our prices way down so we offered an unlimited monthly option.
“Our community was so committed to seeing jalaBlu make it through these challenging times that we had remarkable online attendance through spring.
“We weren’t bringing in the money foundation we needed, but it was more important to keep people in their practice, to keep people in balance with their emotions and all they were facing,” Pfingston said.
“When we could re-open the studio, we did so in a way that kept the community safe.
“We followed distancing, masking and capacity limits, invested in an air purifier and shifted to doing all business online, including registering and paying.
“We used to have 16 classes per week, but now only have six per week. We still have a higher online attendance, but also know that some people need to come in person for that energy and human contact so we allow nine students in the studio per class and I also offer private one-on-one yoga sessions.”
She said keeping the community safe is why the studio went above and beyond.
“There was no question in my heart that the priority was keeping the community safe,” Pfingston said. “jalaBlu is a profound and significant place for people to be who they are, and to heal, so we wanted to make sure it was a safe, healthy one.”
Pfingston said examples of Chaffee’s Got Heart include how the community reached out to her and its generosity.
“They made it apparent how much they needed jalaBlu to survive,” she said. “I received so many beautiful cards, emails, and bundles of abundance from the community that helped keep me and jalaBlu going.
“I don’t think jalaBlu’s doors would still be open without all the generosity – from grants to individual generosity – it was unbelievable to me.
“I never imagined how many people would donate and it has helped tremendously. That’s the sweetness of being in a small community like Buena Vista.”
“I also need to give a huge shoutout to my teachers who really stuck with me! It hasn’t been easy and it’s not like they make a ton of money, but I would not have been able to do it without the solid core group I have by my side.”
Her biggest takeaway from the year is that it’s OK to be human.
“We are all human and this has not been an easy ride for anybody,” Pfingston said.
“We don’t always have to have it all together. We can be messy, but sometimes we feel the grace.
This year a lot of people have recognized the beauty of simplicity in their lives. It’s illuminated that we need to let things unfold.
“We may not always have the answers, but we have to have faith and trust anyway.”