Temporary Studio Closure (again)

I hope this finds you well and healthy.

As you know, a few weeks ago there was an announcement to close all group fitness studios. So all of us studios closed. Then the next day, most of us reopened when they clarified we could now have 4 people + 1 instructor per class.

Now, this week, a new announcement has been made. Group fitness classes are not permitted at this time due to the new measures put out by the Alberta Government. As such, all in person yoga classes are cancelled effective Friday the 26th. Further announcements are said to be made on Dec 18th as to how to proceed forward.

We kindly ask that you switch over to join our virtual live stream classes in the meantime.We know that while some are loving the benefits of live-stream, it is not an ideal compromise everyone, especially for new students. I am really sorry for all of the ups and downs of what’s been happening with all of the re-opening and closing. Unfortunately it is a situation that is completely out of all our hands. If you need adjustments made to your memberships or would like to cancel, I completely understand. Please email me at

Normally I have so many more things say (and sappy ones at that) but at this point I honestly have no words. I am absolutely exhausted and full of 999 other emotions. As a business owner where you invest your time, whole life and savings into something and 80% of our revenue comes from yoga, it’s beyond sad and frustrating and it will be a miracle if we make it through this again. It doesn’t make any sense to me why businesses like casinos and bars are open, yet yoga, the practice that lends so much to mental health is not permitted at this time. The Irony is that I just spent a fortune on special UV machines and cleaners that are recommended by AHS to kill Covid…for no reason. Aghhh. I hope these new measures do help lessen the spread of Covid so that we all remain healthy, safe and can get back to a “normal” life together one day where in person human interaction is the preferred style for everything and our lives, health and livelihood are no longer threatened by this monster.

If you’d like to support the studio in the meantime, please consider:

signing up for virtual yoga classes. It really helps us to keep the teachers working and ensures their livelihood. It also helps us to continue offering yoga online for those who greatly rely on their yoga practice;

consider making a purchase from our online retail store (we do still have some used props for sale and I will be adding more on Monday);

make an appointment with one of our massage therapists, acupuncturists or reiki practitioners. We do offer direct billing to most insurance companies for massage and acupuncture. Please know that your health and safety is our utmost priority and is reflected in all of our cleaning, intake and treatment practices. All cleaning practices and supplies are approved and recommended by AHS. To check out our covid protocols for massage, reiki and acupuncture please visit our website I am very grateful that we are able to still run these treatments at this time. It could always be worse.

We appreciate your continued love, support and patience.

I know everyone is being affected in one way or another and my heart so completely goes out to you. We are all in this together. Sending you much love and light.

Hang in there everyone



Closing + Re-Opening Confusion

Closing & Reopening Confusion

Okay. Things got a little confusing and weird there for a minute. Thanks COVID.

The government announced (with only a few hours notice) that studios were no longer able to run group fitness, so all of us yoga studios in Alberta shut down our studios to in person classes. BUT THEN the very next day, clarified that we are actually now allowed to have 4 people plus an instructor for in person classes. OY! What strange and contradicting times we are living in. You are probably asking “how does one sustain a business with 4 people in a class?” Well…It doesn’t.
However, we are going to roll with it anyways and hope that the live-streaming option is what will sustain us through this roller coaster ride.

So, while we run in person classes (with only 4 people in them), the teacher will ALSO be live streaming the class at the same time so that you can join in right from home on your computer, laptop, iPhone or iPad. All your regular passes and memberships apply to online classes. You sign up as usual through our website or Mindbody app and then a link to the class will be sent to you 30 minutes before class. If for some reason you don’t get a link, call us ASAP 780-249-9642. Thanks in advance for your patience.

To schedule your class, book now on the Mindbody app or CALL US AT 780-249-9642 or visit

If you need an extension on an unlimited pass you had when before our first lockdown, please respond to this email so I can set you up with an extension and access to live and in studio classes.

If you have an unlimited yoga membership the bonus is that you get a FREE on demand video library where you can access pre-recorded videos from our team from anywhere at anytime. We will have regular 60 minute classes but have also added some 15 minute, 30 minute classes as well as meditations for your time convenience! We’re feeling excited about that.

You will notice, I myself am not on the schedule anymore but rest assured, once I have worked out all these kinks you will find me back up there and in the Video on Demand Library.

Another good note, is that our lovely Sophia will be joining in with us from the United Kingdom to teach classes which is very exciting! We are so happy to be able to somehow have her on our team still, from afar. Her classes will be added in tomorrow.

We also have 3 new great teachers joining us, Scott, Bailey and Rian! We are sooo thrilled to have them on the team. So be sure to give them a warm welcome when you see them. We have a few more staff joining us soon, we will keep you posted.

I just want to say a BIG thank you to Terri for all of her help this week. You have truly been a saving grace. I couldn’t have done it without your support!

Thanks for everyone’s support in general and extra big thanks to the teachers for just being awesome in general but also for switching gears so fast and being willing to learn a new setup and teach online classes.

Things may not be normal and they may be hectic, but you know what? I am beyond blessed and grateful to have all of YOU (customers, staff and other supporters) written into my weird “covid movie”.

Sending all of my love and hugs your way. I wish you and your families well.

I hope to see you tomorrow in those live classes people! 🙂 ❤



Melanie and Buddha Belly xo

Temporary Studio Closure

As the province has suspended group fitness, Buddha Belly Yoga and Wellness will be temporarily closing its doors to yoga effective immediately in order to do our part in reducing the spread of Covid-19. The closure is expected to last for two weeks (November 13-27). 

Since we can’t be together during this time, all of our classes will be Livestreamed so that you can connect with your instructor and other members. Thanks for your patience while we transition over. Our schedule will be updated within 2 days.  

If you have signed up for an in-studio class during this 2 week closure, your class will be credited back to your account.


If you are in a position to support the studio, please note that: 

  1. our online retail store will remain open for easy shopping;
  2. we will remain open for massage, reiki, hawaiian healing and acupuncture at this time. Thank you in advance for any appointments booked as they do go a very long way in helping us stay afloat. Any support is greatly appreciated. We offer direct billing to most insurance companies for eligible services. 

I’ll be honest here. There are many mixed emotions that come with a 2nd closure. I feel like I just regained my barings from the last 7 months by recovering from the 1st studio shut down while also enduring my own personal crises and volcano eruptions. I was just starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. But, the good news is that Buddha Belly and I are very resilient creatures. We weather any storm (and trust me there have been many in all the years of being open) and this time will be no different! <3 We somehow managed to pull through and attempt to save and rebuild the studio the first time. I am not one for giving up, so here is to hoping we can survive round 2!  

Please know my heart goes out to you all. We all are experiencing a roller coaster of a life right now and this has affected us all in great ways and turned the world upside down. I hope you are safe and healthy and I can’t wait to see you again soon <3 I wish you all well during these challenging times. All we can do is breathe deeply and take it day by day, moment by moment. 

Together I hope to keep our community going. After all, it was the overwhelming love and support and kindness of the customers and staff that got Buddha Belly through the first time. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sticking by me this year. You mean the world to me and I have so much love and gratitude in my heart for you all. 

Take care of yourselves and each other. Please remember to be kind. <3

Xo Melanie and the Beautiful Buddha Belly Team


To Our Beloved Community,

I found a way back into the Country last night after being away for some time. It was a frazzling experience but we are now safe at home. I have been diligently trying to come up with a plan on how to move forward ever since. I’m not going to lie, it isn’t easy making these decisions from my quarantined home. I do feel rather helpless within the whole situation. We don’t have enough information to know what will happen next. There is so much uncertainty looming in the air right now and I presume there will be for a while longer.

It’s with deep sadness that I announce that Buddha Belly will be closing immediately. My hope is that in a few weeks time we will have more information as to how we proceed. Things are changing rapidly day by day. Our decisions and actions will also need to be made day by day.

Since I am quarantined, Kat is currently freely offering her time, holding down the fort at Buddha Belly and finishing final details with bells on. She is grabbing me some groceries on the way home and bringing some yoga props to my doorstep. That girl is always in service and always the first person to freely offer her heart and her help. I am so grateful to my sister at this time. Thank you to Hope and the other team mates who held strong and supported the studio on standby while I was away and to the students who have offered their time and support to the studio at this point in time. I love you.

Today my father in law dropped off bread on our doorstep as we waved to him out the window. I cry just thinking about the weirdness of it all but I could also cry thinking of how much love there is in our life.

I’ve been sitting at the computer trying to find the right words and trying to keep my eyes open all day long.

It’s all just so overwhelming. SO many different emotions.

We know that Buddha Belly is a central source of health & well being for many of you and understand that this will disrupt your daily routines. We are working on a solution and hope that we can still maintain a connection with you by reaching you in your homes soon. We are currently researching ways to potentially live-stream video classes. There are several options we have in mind & we appreciate your patience while we navigate how this might be implemented to keep us connected. Please keep an eye on your email, our website and social media pages for the most up to date information.

Now is the time where your yoga practice off the mat is vital. The mindfulness techniques, ability to sit with discomfort, and willingness to do hard things are invaluable right now.

On behalf of our entire team at Buddha Belly, our hearts are with you during this difficult time and we send you so much love. We will miss your presence greatly. Know that we are all in this together and we love you! Regardless of what happens, there is a part of me that feels so grateful and so fulfilled for all that Buddha Belly did for our community over the years and for all of the heartfelt connections that were made. What a beautiful loving community of students and team members we have. I couldn’t have picked anyone better to share + serve with. My deepest gratitude goes out to you for all of the support over the years.

There are a lot of details we need to work out and I have very limited support at my fingertips. Please know that I am doing my very best and need some time to figure out all of the logistics of this so I ask for your patience and compassion right now.

All future membership payments will be suspended. All passes and memberships will be put on hold and given extensions when we can re-open. This arrangement may change if we need to be closed for longer than anticipated. I will reach out again closer to April 15 to inform you of any updates or changes.

Small-business owners & their families are directly impacted by the daily ups & downs of ownership, but the enormity of this pandemic will certainly continue to generate a challenging shift for your local entrepreneurs. I have been brought to tears many times today when I think about what this means for you as our students, us as small business owners, and our team who rely on us for income.

As of this month our current goal is to resume the studio, if and when the world goes back to normal again. The sad reality is that there is always the possibility that Buddha Belly may not make it through this difficult time. My husband and I are both self-employed and in times like this it is quite terrifying having no income and the potential of losing all that we have worked so incredibly hard to build over the years. I lost my entire life overnight, as all of you have as well. What a surreal time to be alive.

It is with great sadness that we have to be physically separated from our community in a time like this when we need each other and the studio the most. We will do our best to stay in touch and keep you up to date as we know more and make further decisions.

I know many of us are very close and I already miss you all. Any of you, please feel free to add me on Facebook or send me an email and I can send you my cell # if you want to stay in touch.

Thank you all for patience right now as we navigate these uncharted waters.

I wish you and your families all of the safety, love, support and health in the coming weeks and months.

I am here for you through this all in spirit.

Stay strong, positive and centered deeply in your light.

We are so lucky to have social media and access to information at our fingertips.

All my love,

Melanie Cosens XO

Heres a little link to my own personal blog if you are interested in how I made it home during all this:

Make sure to use up your massage benefits before the year ends. Read on to see the benefits of massage therapy.

It’s that time of year again, when you take a look at your remaining massage insurance benefits.  We all know that most policies allow for a maximum dollar amount of coverage each year and usually expire at the end of December.  But did you know that if you do not use all of your benefits during the year, you will lose them?  Benefits are not carried over to the following year.  You worked hard for your benefit package, don’t let it go to waste! Treat yourself to some much needed relief and relaxation and book a massage.

There is no better way to enter into the cold season by cozy-ing up in a warmed up massage bed and getting all of the tension and stress worked out of you. You feel like a new person afterwards.

DID YOU KNOW WE OFFER DIRECT BILLING TO MOST COMPANIES? You just come for a massage, we will do the work!

Massages start to book up from October – December so it is recommended that you book your remaining massages in advance.

Our registered massage therapists are Giovanna, Ana Yazmin, Patrick and Jessamie.

To book:
-call 780-249-9642;
-book using the mindbody app;
-book on our website;
-or stop by to book a massage appointment in person at Buddha Belly Yoga and Wellness 6139 101 Ave NW, Edmonton, Alberta.

Check it out! Use your benefits up and get these benefits in return from a Massage:

  • Relaxes body tension
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • is a great way to have time alone & self care
  • Increases blood and lymph circulation
  • Increases range of motion
  • Reduces chronic pain
  • Reduces tension headaches
  • Stimulates release of endorphins
  • Promotes quality sleep
  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Improves productivity
  • Improves concentration
  • Provides a feeling of well being
  • Improves skin tone

JUNE – Staff farewells and Arrivals. Summer is a time for new beginnings.


It was only a matter of time before our Kitty Kat would get the travel bug again… There is just no holding down this travelling soul. Her heart was calling her back.

Writing this is particularly hard for me… I will admit I’ve cried a lot. It’s been a mixture of tears knowing I am losing her physical presence but also tears of joy for her new beginning as well as my own (I’ve had many of those this year). I am so sad to see her go as she has really been such an important part to our Buddha Belly Team. Kat has been teaching, doing workshops, assisting with managing the studio and holding up the front desk. Most importantly she has been like a sister to me. She is unconditionally loving, strong, loyal, smart, silly, conscious, self-aware, grounded, caring, trustworthy, understanding, reliable, creative and talented. I have so much gratitude for all she has done for me and I have so much love in my heart for her. I don’t know what I would have done without her this past year. It was truly an honor to have her be part of my life and our studio, if only for a while.

Let me tell you that Kat came right at a time that I needed her the most. Yes, owning a studio is fulfilling, beautiful and humbling but it is also one of the hardest roads I have had ever had to walk in my life. There is so much that goes on inside of it all that no one sees. Throughout this time, Kat always had my back. She has held space for me, stepped into places where there was need, and picked me up so many times when I was down. <3 Kat has also befriended many of you around the studio and I know that her presence and yoga classes will be very missed. So please soak her up while you can and please be sure to give her lots of hugs and encouragement as this change is also very hard for her because her of love for the studio and all of us staff and students who are part of it.

I truly honor her for listening to the strong calling that she has had to get back to India…We all have a “soul home” and India is hers. Kat says she plans to come back to us … so lets cross our fingers and hope that she does. If she doesn’t however, we will need to trust that this is what’s best for Kat’s life and bless her journey. I know its not goodbye, just farewell!

Having the studio has taught me to honor and accept departures with total ease and grace. I trust in the choices and journey of those who are leaving, and I trust in Divine that the new space that’s been created in the intricate web of life will always be filled with exactly what we need in the right divine timing.

Shauna taught me a long time ago that people come into your life for:
1) a reason 2) a season 3) a lifetime. When you figure out which one it is, you will know what to do for each person. This viewpoint has been incredibly helpful for me over the last few years.

When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed. They have come to assist you through a difficulty; to provide you with guidance and support; to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually. They may seem like a godsend, and they are. They are there for the reason you need them to be. Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered and now it is time to move on.

Some people come into your life for a SEASON, because your turn has come to share, grow or learn. They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person, and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant. — Unknown

To the students and staff: It’s times like this that I realized how blessed I am to know so many beautiful souls, no matter for how long. Students and staff always come and go but they stay in my heart forever. There was a time in my life when I felt like an alien lost from my planet. What I didn’t know, was that my soul was needing my tribe. The studio has been the missing piece to my puzzle. There is no longer something missing from my heart because my heart is all of you who are part of our community. Its the little things… the smiles, the caring, the hugs, the laughs, the love, the wisdom, the support, the conscious conversations, the rawness, the realness. From my heart to yours, you mean so much to me and I LOVE YOU ALL. This studio would not be possible without the customers who so graciously keep us running and the staff who make it what it is <3 I would be so lost without you.


The Benefits of Yoga and Massage – The perfect formula for self care

In a day and age where busyness is rewarded and calm is all but forgotten we have to make a conscious effort to practice self care. The act of yoga, deep breathing and connecting to the self is an amazing way to include self care in your life. Many see massage as an indulgence, but don’t be fooled by its feel good properties. Massage therapy can improve your game in more ways than one.  The practice of combining self care modalities is common and massage and yoga are the perfect combo. Yoga is often known as the exercise that allows your body to massage its own inner organs, which is remarkable on its own. However massage therapy can add to yoga, enhancing your hard work leaving you with amplified gains. Both yoga and massage benefit the mind, body and soul. Whether you get a massage before or after yoga will depend on your goals, but both are equally beneficial. Here are some ways you can use these complementary modalities to enhance your yoga experience while strengthening your inner connection.

Benefits of massage before yoga:

  1. Deepen your stretches: Massage therapy can break down connective tissue (fascia) restrictions encouraging easier movement in the body which allows you to reach a deeper stretch and hold in your yoga positions.
  2. It can relieve muscle tension causing pain which may be holding you back in your yoga movements. A pain free body works better.
  3. Massage decreases knots and trigger points that restrict movements. It also increases your range of motion allowing for more movement in joints, smoother transitions with movements and an overall more effective yoga session.
  4. Allows you to gain awareness of muscle weaknesses or imbalances which allows you the understanding of where you need to work more consciously in your yoga practice to strengthen, push, or hold back. This also decreases your chance of overcompensating with those muscles, or injuring yourself during your poses.  
  5. Massage helps balance out and align the muscle systems increasing your potential for more effective and consistent asanas.
  6. Massage increases circulation and warms up muscles making it the perfect precursor to your yoga session. You’ll be more than ready to begin your yoga practice the moment you reach your mat.
  7. Massage encourages deep breathing allowing you to get in tune with your body while bringing you into a mindful mental state. It can also increase clarity allowing you to leave all outside stressors and distractions behind. You’ll be mentally clear and prepared to begin your yoga session.
  8. Increases overall physical performance. Just as massage can improve an athlete’s game it too can encourage your body to work more efficiently.

Benefits Massage after yoga:

  1. Massage helps to flush out lactic acid in the muscles, helps increase lymphatic drainage in the body and increases circulation all which will help you recover from any soreness you may get from your yoga session. It will also encourage toxins to flush out of your system.
  2. A massage therapist can work on areas of tension that are hard to work out with yoga. An RMT can directly affect the muscles to release the tightness.
  3. Yoga can work as a “warm up” for the massage allowing your body to receive a deeper level of massage work along with a reduced pain response on tender areas.
  4. Prolongs the release of both feel good hormones while continuing to reduce the stress hormones. Often a deeper state of relaxation and release during this massage session is experienced.
  5. Improved Sleep quality. Massage is well known to positively impact sleep quality, however with the combination of massage after a yoga session sleep quality increases further.
  6. It allows continuum of the sacred calm space created in yoga, and prolongs the healing effects you just experienced in class.
  7. Because yoga and massage share so many positive effects to the body and mind the combining of the two will enhance the properties of each other. Essentially leaving you with a double benefit.

The power of touch is well known in both communities of science and spirituality. People have been experiencing the advantages of yoga and massage for thousands of years. The way in which yoga and massage therapy compliment each other is a beautiful dance between passive and manual therapies. The mind, body and spirit benefit from continued self care whether you chose massage before or after yoga. Whether you experience a heightened yoga session or just an overall increased feeling of well being then it has been worth it. Namaste.

We love to hear from you! If you have any questions please talk to one of our experienced Registered Massage Therapists. Email us with your questions at

Our yoga and massage studio is located in the Capilano area of Edmonton, Alberta. Our address is 6139 101 ave NW, Edmonton. We would love to see you for a massage and/or a yoga class.

Blog Author: Jessamie Zuurdeeg

Buddha Belly Registered Massage Therapists:

Jessamie Zuurdeeg RMT

Patrick Dobberthien RMT

Giovanna Husted RMT


•Position at Buddha Belly: Yoga Teacher
•Name: Courtney 
•Nickname: Court 
•Children: Son = Hunter (4 years old) 
Married: Yes (8 years)
• I met my husband at church 
•I went to College For Dance & Theatre + Personal Training (hidden talents) 
• I have been teaching a Buddha Belly for just over a year
• Favourite TV Show = This is Us 
• I am OCD organized 😂 
• Breakfast = Bran buds + Prunes + Protein Shake 
• I became an adult at 19 when I bought my first house & moved away from home to Ontario 
• Teaching Yoga = over a decade

We love Courtney, as do her regulars. She is an important part to our AMAZING warm and friendly team at Buddha Belly. What do you love about Courtney?

#buddhabellyyogaandwellness #teammemberhighlight #family #yegyoga#edmontonyoga #yegstudio

Top 10 Benefits of Hot Yoga

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1. Lower Stress Levels

We all experience stress in our lives, its inevitable. A key to living a happy life is learning to manage stress. Yoga, especial hot yoga, allows for the release of energy that causes tension within our body that can be built up by stress. As we commit and deepen our practice, stress drips away with the sweat off our brow and we are able to re-enter the world as a more compassionate and functional being.

2. Increased Flexibility

Flexibility is more then being able to touch your toes, it is also in the way we are able to gracefully live our lives. At times we encounter unexpected life changes, and being flexible supports us in coping and accepting such changes. As we are more flexible on our mat, we are also more flexible off it.

3. Improved Brain Function and Focus

Our brains are said to be the most powerful tool we have in our lives. Its claimed that “what we think about we bring about”. As we deepen our practice we also deepen our mental facility. As we focus our minds in the present moment while moving through asanas, we are training our brain to do the same when we have other tasks at hand.

4. Anxiety Relief

Anxiety has become one of the most common words of our generation and the generations after us. Hot yoga is a natural remedy that has been found to reduce anxiety and increase the necessary chemicals, such as serotonin and dopamine that have been proven to best combat depression and other anxiety-related disorders.

5. Increase Mindfulness

Mindfulness brings depth to our lives. As we tune into what is going on within us, we are able to notice more of what is going on around us and our perceptions completely change. Yoga opens the door to our core, to who we are at our depths, revealing to us blockages, our relationship to pain, our relationship to our bodies and so much more. We are so beautifully and naturally forced to raise our awareness during a hot yoga class, that mindfulness an easier state of being for the rest of our day.

6. Improved Lung Capacity

Breath. It moves through us, and yet it moves us through our lives. The connection between mental, emotional and physical health is breath. As we expand our lung capacity through the practice of hot yoga we train ourselves to use our breath in mindful ways. In our daily lives we can use breath as a tool to transport us through any exterior circumstances with calmness and clarity.

7. Healthy Weight

Though yoga can help with weight loss, it is really about the unity of our health; mind, body and soul. As we practice, our self image gradually changes to be more nurturing and accepting. Once our perception changes, our views on weight change. This is when your practice becomes about being connected to the light, living from your heart and highest potential, and being an all around healthy person.

8. Stronger Muscles and Bones

Building strength in hot yoga happens so naturally. As a practice it produces the fastest results of any exercise when it comes to an increase of overall flexibility and strength. One can notice from one class to the next strength increasing. But to add to the increase of muscle, a study was done in 2009 that found the increase in bone density in older adults that practiced hot yoga as well.

9. Release of Toxins

No matter what it is that you put into your body, hot yoga will make you sweat it out. You will sweat out the cake you had for dessert, any water that you consumed prior to class, and everything else. It goes a step further by making you sweat out toxic emotions, situations you have been holding onto and anything else that is not serving you in a very graceful and natural way. Let yourself let go.

10. Being Part Of A Healthy Community

The yoga community is one of the friendliest and most welcoming communities there is out there. No matter where you go to on earth, if it’s your own back yard or across the world, if you are looking for a sanctuary, head into a yoga studio and practice. Say hello to your neighbour. You have no idea how the relationship can blossom, but what you do know, is that you are on your mat with a similar foundation and a desire to connect with self and others.

Do we have you convinced yet as to how truly amazing hot yoga is for your well being?

Buddha Belly Yoga and Wellness Edmonton would love to have you join us and dive into your own personal practice. We would also love to hear from you if there are any benefits that you personally have experienced and would like to add to this list let us know.