Ignite Studio Helps Unpaid Government Workers

Fitness Studio Offers All Classes Free To Workers and Family

DULUTH, Minn.- It’s day 23 of the partial government shutdown, about 800,000 employees are either working without pay, or furloughed.

Businesses are stepping forward to help those workers with the financial difficulties.

Ignite Studio in Duluth is trying to help ease the worries of those affected by the shutdown by offering free classes so they can exercise–improving moods, boosting energy, and promoting better sleep.

“We’re really more about reaching out to the community and making lives better physically, mentally, and emotionally,” said Ignite Co-Owner, Christine Stocke.

The folks at Ignite Studio Duluth are taking steps to do just that.

The fitness studio is offering all of their classes free to government workers and their families.

An idea thought up by Evelyn Pleus, at the front desk.

“This is something that is so up the studio’s alley, and we are in a position where we can help people out, and if we are then why not?” she said.

“That was her Sunday morning thought,” added Stocke.

Within an hour the post was on Facebook: a free place to workout for anyone effected by the government shutdown.

While working out at a nice fitness studio may seem like a luxury, for some government workers exercise is a necessity.

The Coast Guard requires their members to be at a healthy weight, and be able to swim 100 meters, among other physical criteria.

Staying in work helps them stay in their job, though now the job doesn’t pay.

A situation many are familiar with.

“We’ve all been there, we’ve all had hard times, we’ve all lost a job or had a job taken away from us,” Stocke said. “And we’re really cognizant of that here, and we’re also really cognizant of the fact that people might need financial help, financial aid.”

They offer that financial aid to anyone, year round.

Stocke said they base it off income, sitting with you confidentially to go over your taxes, determining how much help you need.

She adds that working unpaid can drag you and your family down mentally, as well.

Making Ignite Studio the perfect pick-me-up.

“The fact that you have somewhere to be, and you have a group of people supporting you and laughing and jumping and having a gorgeous experience,” Stocke said.

“This is not about exercise, this is about community. This is really about people coming together and having a good time.”

Ignite is far from a typical gym.

They offer personal training, Zumba, yoga, “Be Fly” aerial fitness on silks, SHRED, a cardio workout with yoga in between, and FUSE, combining yoga, strength training, core and leg work, ending with meditation.

“In the grand scheme of things, fitness is something that may go wayside in a situation like that,” Pleus said. “People are sacrificing more at the time like this, so if we could be that person or that place to just offer that to you, and you could have that peace of mind, that peace of self.”

Another business, joining the growing number uniting to help the workers who help us everyday, pay or not.

“Anyone who can offer something like this or anything like this: please do. We are stronger together.”

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