Busby creates buzz with yoga studio
Waupaca business owner commutes from Alaska
By Angie Landsverk
Mollie Busby was interested in opening a yoga studio in Waupaca for several years.
“I would come home more wanting to be home more with my family, who lives here,” she said.
Busby grew up in Waupaca and her visits include spending time with her parents, Steve and Mary Jo Shambeau.
“I started getting to know teachers,” Busby said of her time back in Waupaca. “I looked at potential spots.”
Last August, she started thinking more seriously about the idea.
Busby said Tony Hoes, who is her landlord, empowered her to feel confident about moving forward with it.
The yoga teachers she had already met did as well.
“I never would have taken the leap without the group of teachers I have,” she said.
Busby opened Yoga Hive Wisconsin in Waupaca on Jan. 22.
The yoga studio is located at 1020 W. Fulton St., in Suite H.
Classes are being offered in the studio, outdoors and also virtually.
People may visit www.yogahivewisconsin.com to sign up for a class and see the studio’s guidelines during this time.
They may also reach the studio at 715-802-7128.
Pandemic impacts new studio
The yoga studio was closed from mid-March until June 1 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Virtual classes via Zoom and Yoga Hive Connect were launched during that time.
Yoga Hive Connect is a Facebook group described as “your yoga home wherever you are.”
By the time Busby opened Yoga Hive Wisconsin, it had been several years since she opened her first yoga studio in Montana after she and her husband Sean moved to Whitefish.
“I looked around and felt none of these (yoga studios) are my home,” she said. “I need to open my own yoga studio.”
Busby knows what it is like to feel at home in a studio.
The first time she took a yoga class was in 2009.
“I felt like an outsider, like I didn’t know enough,” she said.
Busby was working in Madison at the time after graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a double major in retail and journalism.
The next time she took a yoga class she was living in Utah.
The only person she knew after moving there was Sean.
Someone Busby had met and wanted to become friends with wanted to go to a yoga class.
Busby joined her and felt comfortable and like she could do it.
“Yoga was just something I would always come back to,” she said. “I remember telling family members, ‘I’m going to do this full-time.’”
A few years later, Busby did.
At the same time, the couple was running the nonprofit Riding on Insulin.
Sean has type 1 diabetes.
“I was running the nonprofit by day, teaching in the morning, evening, on weekends, managing employees,” she said.
She was the executive director of Riding on Insulin for seven years until Sean took over in 2017.
Busby then shifted much of her focus to Yoga Hive.
She owns two yoga studios, one in Waupaca and the other in Montana.
Busby commutes to Montana and Waupaca every few weeks from the couple’s home in Alaska.
Off the grid
The two of them love the outdoors and being close to nature.
Off-the-grid homesteads they previously built were featured on television.
In Alaska, they built an off-the-grid fiberglass igloo followed by an off-the-grid retreat center.
“It’s the northernmost yoga studio in America,” Busby said.
The plan is to bring people there for yoga retreats, while also bringing awareness to the value of preserving Alaska’s Arctic.
Training teachers is her passion and a variety of classes are offered at Yoga Hive Wisconsin.
“Anyone of any ability should be encouraged to walk through these doors,” Busby said.
It is a cashless studio. The pricing structure includes discounts for the military and senior citizens, as well as a scholarship program.
Busby is pleased with the response to her new business.
“This is for the community,” she said. “I get to do what I love, which is training and the occasional teaching of a class.”