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Local yoga studio expands its offerings

staff writer

Published: Thursday, February 21, 2013

Updated: Thursday, February 21, 2013 12:02


LOCALS MEDITATE at Tanaka Balance studio. SAMANTHA BEHL photo



It’s one thing to start a business. It’s another to start four. 

Larry Tanaka, owner of Tanaka Balance on 34 Federal Avenue, is starting something new. 

“Balance is a natural health wellness center,” he said. “We market health.”

This company has a full commercial kitchen, a retail store, two therapy rooms and a yoga studio.

Esther Thomsen, an employee at Balance, said the business is like a one-stop-shop. 

“Larry has really combined a lot of the elements for health,” she said. “It doesn’t feel like work. It’s just fun.” 

Tanaka said he started Balance in a backward way. He worked professionally for many years when his boss decided to lay him off. 

“I thought ‘That’s OK. I’ll just find another job,’” Tanaka said. “So I went nine months, ten months, and I thought, ‘I’m not going to get another job.’” 

During this time Tanaka became certified in foot zoning, an in-depth foot massage method, and began to practice yoga. While talking with one of his yoga instructors, Tanaka discovered there were no yoga studios or health retail stores in Logan.

“I was in shock when I came here and there wasn’t a yoga studio,” Tanaka said. 

He decided to start Balance to fill the niche market.

“Balance is ahead of its time, and I think in Cache Valley it’s even more ahead of its time,” Tanaka said. “We have to let the community develop on what it really is. It will get there, and we’re trying to provide all of that.”

Balance opened its yoga studio last summer with a full class. Class sizes are limited to 20 people. 

“Once class sizes get so big, you lose your quality,” said Tanaka

Balance offers many types of yoga. Classes range from beginning yoga to more advanced classes such as vinyasa and ashtanga to yoga for weight loss. A full list of classes is available at 

“It’s probably the best place you can do yoga in Cache Valley,” said Chantelle Dana, a yoga instructor.

She does yoga for the peace and energy it gives her. 

“I really like the calmness you get, but you’re still exercising,” she said. 

Chantel Gerfen, another yoga instructor, teaches for the brightness it puts in people’s eyes. 

“It’s bringing that peace and serenity and that energizing feeling,” she said. 

“It makes you feel good and it’s fun,” Tanaka said. 

Alongside the yoga studio, the rest of Tanaka’s project has recently opened. There is retail store, a kitchen and two therapy rooms. In the future, Tanaka wants to offer certain nights, like a sushi or pasta night, and have people come to Balance. 

“Up front we’re going to put in a local art display, and we want to have musicians come in and play,” Tanaka said. 

Balance offers vegan and vegetarian options, but when the kitchen is fully operational they hope to add gluten free meals as well as add more choices similar to their current menu. 

“If you don’t eat the right food, you can’t have good health,” said Tanaka. “You can exercise an hour or two hours a day, but if you eat a bad diet you’ll never get healthy.”

When it comes to getting healthy, Tanaka said having a smoothie is one of the easiest ways to get started. Balance offers a smoothie they call “go juice,” a green smoothie loaded with nutrients. 

“When you drink it, it’s like three cups of coffee,” said Tanaka. “You can get that rush with a green smoothie and never get that crash.”  

Drinking any smoothie in the morning, he said, is an easy health choice to make.

Tanaka said a lot of the therapy deals with food, so along with a kitchen to provide healthy food, Balance also offers two therapy rooms, the Hawaii room and the Jungle room, to practice many types of therapy from theta healing to foot zoning. 

“You can do a lot of stuff in one location and it ties in together, so you can get a foot detox and then go get a smoothie,” he said.

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