When Sharli Kiner-Ziebarth was pregnant with her daughter a few years ago, she noticed that she had developed sciatic nerve pain.
Kiner-Ziebarth also noticed her body was most responsive to more natural methods of treatment — especially yoga.
“I took a class and it really helped elongate my spine,” she said. “It’s a whole-body experience, and I started practicing it regularly.”
These days, if Kiner-Ziebarth doesn’t do yoga every day, she sees a big difference — physically and mentally.
“Yoga has really been there for me through every hardship I’ve had,” she said. “I believe in it so much — this is how I can imagine helping people to the fullest.”
A little less than a year ago, Kiner-Ziebarth, 28, started developing a business plan for her own yoga studio — something her previous work in the mortgage trade helped her accomplish.
But Kiner-Ziebarth didn’t really want the location, now called Limber Tree Yoga, to be all hers.
“It’s a cooperative space,” she said. “I just wanted to provide it for everyone.”
By “everyone,” she means the many practitioners in the Billings area who started using the new studio for classes earlier this week.
“Organically, a whole community of people came together,” Kiner-Ziebarth said. “I just jump-started it.”
Because there are so many instructors at Limber Tree Yoga, it takes Kiner-Ziebarth a minute to list them all and their specialties:
Aimee Carlson, Nia (pairing yoga and movement with dance moves);
Dakota Cheyenne, meditation, vinyasa flow and sun salutations;
Deidre Sivertson, yoga;
Krista Marshall, Ultra Barre pilates;
Elizabeth Klarich, yoga and her assistant, Kari Khoe;
Randi Plouffe, massage, apothocary and herbalist;
Sharon Forman, Dance Alive and yoga;
Sharon Winnett, massage;
Crystal Beattie, yoga tone and flexibility;
and Lisa Knowlton, teen and yin yoga.
Kiner-Ziebarth plans to teach partner and Aerial Yoga.
“I’ve only been teaching for about a year, but as I teach, I learn from students, too,” she said. “I have a lot left to learn, but that’s something you never stop doing.”
From the ease at which her studio has come together, Kiner-Ziebarth has no doubt the project is meant to be.
“I know this needs to be here,” she said of the newly renovated space at 212 N. 29th St., which used to be Downtown Subs. “People have been here every single day, volunteering to help me.”
Picking a spot in downtown Billings was Kiner-Ziebarth’s goal.
“We have gyms that offer yoga, but there was a definite lack in the downtown Billings community,” she said. “There’s nowhere that is especially focused on yoga as a lifestyle.”
With the help of Tony Newman, a contractor and commercial realtor, Kiner-Ziebarth has gutted the former sandwich shop and rebuilt it with components from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore and other vintage materials.
Kiner-Ziebarth named the studio after a tree called the Limber Pine. She said it’s a strong tree, but it’s so flexible that the branches can be tied in knots.
“But it still maintains its strength and flexibility,” she said.