For nearly twenty years, Candice Baggett worked in the field of music education. After earning a bachelor’s degree from the University of Indianapolis and a master’s degree from Butler, she owned a home-based piano music studio providing voice and piano lessons, worked as an accompanist and singer in various churches, and taught as an elementary school music teacher. It was the last ten years spent teaching 900 students per week in a struggling public school that prompted her to seek more out of life. Yoga, which began as her outlet for stress, eventually became a new career.
In 2014, Candice enlisted husband Ryan Baggett’s marketing and editing skills, creating the website IndyYogi.com as a hub for all things yoga in Indiana. Last January, after seeing continued growth of the website, they decided to expand from web to print, and Indiana & Yoga Magazine was born. Similar to the Indy Yogi website, the new magazine seeks to educate Hoosiers about the benefits of yoga and meditation. The goal is to demystify yoga and show how everyone can benefit from living a multifaceted mindful lifestyle. Indy Yogi aims high: to make Indiana a healthier, happier state.
More about Indy Yogi:
1. What was the biggest challenge starting up your business?
When creating a brand new print publication, during this age of dying print, it was challenging to sell advertising in something that did not yet exist. We knew our core yogi-audience (and advertisers) would appreciate the old-school, tactile qualities of touching a physical paper publication, turning the page without electronic devices, and reading in meditative silence without interruption from Facebook notifications or text messages. Now that there is an actual finished product, in a beautiful, high-quality print format, more and more people and businesses wish to be a part of it. And for those who like digital, we created a quality digital edition of Indiana & Yoga Magazine too.
2. Indy Yogi is more than just a magazine - tell us about everything Indy Yogi encompasses!
Indy Yogi began as an online magazine (avoiding the term “blog”) for the yoga community of central Indiana in December of 2014. Yoga studios, organizations, independent teachers and other related businesses can create a listing on the directory and post events on our calendar. Readers can then search for local teachers and studios. On the website we publish a wide range of articles, including food and recipes, personal stories, news and local events, philosophy, instruction on physical yoga practice and meditation. Our writers are from across the state, experts in yoga, nutrition, physical therapy, psychiatry, meditation and many other fields.
We love to set up our big, bright orange tent and introduce yoga to diverse crowds. We participate at fundraisers such as TURN Festival which raises money for the Paramount School of Excellence; Free to Breathe’s 5k Run/Walk, which benefits lung cancer; and I.W.I.N. Foundation which helps women actively undergoing breast cancer treatment. We have also been part of the planning committee at Monumental Yoga, where over 3,000 people lay down yoga mats every June 21st, to celebrate the summer solstice at Indy’s largest free yoga class. We love being face-to-face with people, finding those curious about yoga, and letting people see that this is not exotic or weird. Not only are we uniters of the various studios and teachers, but we seek to open this yoga community up and welcome the entire state.
3. Tell us about your journey in the yoga community from participant to educator/uniter.
I began practicing yoga in 2000 as a stressed-out college student. After I graduated, I continued to practice at home using books and DVDs to learn all that I could. After years of off-and-on practice, I began training for triathlons and found a regular class that focused on strength and stretching. During those months of regular practice with the same teacher, I was hungry to learn more, so I applied for yoga teacher training.
It was during teacher training that I realized there were many wonderful teachers around the state of Indiana doing amazing things to help make Indiana a better place. Like Nancy Schalk, whom we wrote about in our first issue, who provides free trauma-sensitive yoga to veterans. Or Jerri Lee Lucas, who teaches yoga at the women’s prison and sees positive transformations in the inmates who participate.
When I sought out more classes, it quickly came to my attention that to find classes and workshops that were unique and interesting, I had to search google forever and then scroll through the website of every Central Indiana yoga studio. With such a unique community where everyone seems to know everyone, it seemed obvious that there should be a communal sharing of knowledge. So we made it happen. The feedback has been amazing. The emails continue to come in from readers, and they usually say something to the effect of “it’s about time!”
4. Where can we find your magazine?
The Indiana & Yoga Magazine is distributed through yoga studios and related businesses throughout the state of Indiana. Currently there are over 140 independent yoga studios in the state of Indiana, and you can find the magazine in over 85 of those studios. Other locations include health food stores, all Global Gifts locations, Lululemon, Lucy and Athleta and any business that I walk into and ask nicely.
5. What are your plans for growth over the next year?
Indyyogi.com begain December 21st 2014 as a website. We published our first print edition magazine in June of 2016 and began with 10,000 copies. Subscription service for home or office will begin in November. In early 2017 we will begin our podcast series, Mindful Midwest. Later in 2017, look for new health and yoga-related events in our state hosted, organized and/or promoted by Indiana & Yoga Magazine.
6. What advice do you have for other women thinking about starting up a business?
We have been fortunate to have connections at Launch Terre Haute, who have put us in contact with other organizations including the Startup Ladies, and women in business who have supported us on this venture. Shelley Klingerman has been a huge support, not only contributing, but seeking out connections for us to collaborate with. Attending some of the Startup Ladies meetings has been a powerful and positive influence to keep moving, and to know that we can do this.
Connect: LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/candicehbaggett