One in an occasional series of profiles on South Loopers
YOUR NEIGHBORS: Jim Bennitt and James Tennant, co-owners of Tejas Yoga. In their studio’s light-filled rooms, the window panes, shaped like the frames of a movie reel, hint at the building’s past life as a film storage facility. Today, James and Jim teach both first-time and experienced yoga students.
How did you select the South Loop for your business?
JAMES: We wanted to find a neighborhood where there was a need for a smaller, more intimate studio. We both loved the South Loop, and it was still trying to make a comeback after the real estate bubble burst. People thought we were either crazy or smart for opening our studio when we did. As it turns out, it was a pretty good move.
Every teacher begins as a student. What changed in your life as you delved deeper into your practice?
JIM: I try to continue being a student, but not just on a yoga mat. I am always interested in learning from other disciplines about the body-mind connection and how to implement that into my practice and classes.
How does your studio enhance life in the South Loop?
JIM: Tejas gives our neighborhood a comfortable, relaxed, and friendly environment owned by two local residents. It’s a pretty peaceful and open-minded place to sit around and enjoy some of our famous herbal tea before or after class and visit with your neighbors. It’s mostly South Loopers at our place.
JAMES: My hope is that people find Tejas Yoga to be a sanctuary of sorts. That it’s a place they come not just to “escape” or forget about life’s problems, but through the practice and the community, find resolution.
NICE TO MEET YOU: Say “Hello” to Jim and James at the Tejas Yoga studio, 1300 S. Wabash, 2nd floor, above the BMO Harris Bank. Interested in classes? Mention Hello South Loop! and get your first class for $5, or two weeks unlimited yoga for $25 (first-time students to Tejas only). You can also see Jim and James at the Tejas Yoga annual community picnic at Cotton Tail Park on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2-6 p.m. All are welcome! https://www.facebook.com/tejasyogachicago/posts/10155659023944931
If you’d like to nominate someone to be featured in Hello, Neighbor!, write Martha Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominees should be: 1) South Loop residents with 2) An interesting tale to tell and 3) OK with having their picture appear on the Hello South Loop! Facebook page.