Photo: Megan Dattoli, owner of GROUNDWORK yoga + wellness in Belmont.
One day before she was to open her new business in Belmont, Megan Dattoli was running a bit behind schedule.
No, it was not because she overslept or was waiting for supplies to arrive; early Thursday morning Dattoli was at Boston Medical Center helping a client deliver her baby. For the past four years, Dattoli has been a birth and postpartum doula, a nonmedical person who assists a woman before, during and after childbirth.
“You have to excuse my appearance but it’s been a long morning,” the Belmont High graduate (’97) who grew up on Homer Road said in the newly-renovated studio space that is now home to GROUNDWORK yoga + wellness, located just around the corner of Trapelo Road on Maple Street (first building off the intersection on the left).
It’s that background in assisting families through the birthing experience that led Dattoli – who lives in Watertown with her two young children and husband (Belmont High class of 1996) – to consider opening a business with the emphasis on bringing a holistic view to promoting family-friendly wellness to the studio.”
“There is such a need for the entire family to focus their wellness, not just before and during a birth, but also afterward,” said Dattoli, who is a yoga instructor.
The new studio will offer yoga and pilates classes and parenting education and childhood enrichment workshops that “encourage self-care of body and mind, healthy families and a mindful community,” according to Dattoli.
During GROUNDWORK’s grand opening weekend, the studio is offering free yoga and Pilates classes, along with discounted class passes and memberships starting today, Friday, Jan. 30 and running through Sunday, Feb 1.
Belmontonian: Tell me about your new studio?
Dattoli: “The yoga and pilates classes will be cornerstone of the business but it would also be nice to having a place to offer new moms support groups and to teach my private childbirth ed classes in a place where I can have group sessions. I’ve rented spaces in the past, but it ended up being difficult conducting recurring meeting when I was moving around all the time.”
Belmontonian: What is your studio’s focus?
Dattoli: “There is definitely a family focus here. Along with yoga and pilates that are open to everyone, we will offer the family and kids classes along with prenatal yoga. And the space will be used for newborn care and other birth-related classes. I’m really excited about the parenting education because we are not as mindful in a lot that we are doing. I’m talking to [someone] who gives workshops on how kids can ‘push your buttons’ which I love.”
Belmontonian: So a typical day at GROUNDWORK will be …
Dattoli: “There will be yoga and pilates in the morning and evenings. Mid-day I plan to offer the moms and kids programs with enrichment programs in the afternoon and on the weekends between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. We will also have an experienced yoga instructor who specializes in senior yoga.”
Belmontonian: There are some great yoga and pilates studios in and around Belmont. Why should people come to you?
Dattoli: “Every studio has their area of expertise and we definitely emphasise the family and parenting side of things. For yoga and pilates, there are so many studios everywhere, that people try out classes and get attached to a teacher or the studio’s vibe. So don’t expect hot yoga here, I want a warm studio with wonderful teachers. I hope it ends up being a little community, a place where people can hang out and not just come to a class. One of my friends said she got five or six hugs every time she goes to yoga because everyone there are friends, and I hope to have a place like that.”
Belmontonian: Where would you like GROUNDWORK to be a year from now?
Dattoli: “I’d hope to have a place with a lot of offerings that people can choose from and enjoy. I haven’t packed the studios schedule because I will actively be seeking feedback and suggestions. I’m really hoping to have families follow us from the prenatal to the mom who needs a break and wants a yoga class Wednesday morning.”
For more information, please visit www.groundworkwellness.com