We had the good fortune of connecting with Mel Tello and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Mel, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I started BEYOGA with the passion for leading trainings to others about yoga and pilates. I am a passionate student of movement, anatomy and the resilience of the human body. When I came to Houston and learned that all the many wonderful programs, none do what we do which is give people all the tools to lead a balanced, creative class to lead all levels. I can proudly say we have one of the best, well rounded and well regarded programs in the city. Our method of teaching works because of the way we lead content and we limit our programs to a smaller number of participants so everyone gets the attention they deserve.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
After college I landed a job in one of the most prestigious Investment Banks in NY, Goldman Saches. As a kid from a lower middle class suburb I was swept up with the excitement of finance. I learned after 10+ years that what you learn to be good at isn’t the same as finding your passion. I am a creative spirit with a love for movement and creating classes that keep your body guessing. I have always loved the way movement makes me feel, from dancing to spin class to yoga. After moving your body you feel like a big burning ball of positivity and I wanted to learn how to share that. As scary as it was to take a HUGE pay cut to teach, I did! I started teaching at the first franchise, Define Woodlands and then Define Houston. A few years into teaching, I joined the training team and that’s where I found my true passion. I found that people were paying good money for Yoga Teacher Training and they were not given the tools on “how” to deliver the information they learned. A idea struck to make a 20 hour yoga immersion program that birthed BEYOGA with a small studio space and a 200 hour teacher training and soon will offer a 300 hour teacher training. It has been a rough first three years with losing my business partner and then COVID hit and even with hardships, at times wanting to give up, I can say I am still SO FLIPPING excited about where BEYOGA is as a team and business. In January this year we moved into a much larger space, boasting two large rooms, lockers and lots of beautiful natural light on the 2nd floor in heights mercantile. All I can say is when you make plans, god laughs – so my biggest learning this past year is work on what you can control – which is your attitude. The banner that hangs in my high school in NY is “attitude equals aptitude”. This I try to live by.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If my best friend was visiting Houston, first we would go to some of my favorite restaurants because I love sharing food with people. Some of my favorite spots are Collinas on 19th, Taqueria Laredo (get there early bc the line is LONG), Alma Latina for breakfast, Plonk for cheese and Wine and Vibrant. We would head to the arboretum at memorial and walk the trail in Rice village. I would of course bring them to Heights Mercantile and we would bike the trail. Houston has the most amazing trails. Last we would head downtown to Discovery Green or Midtown park, both are amazing!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would love to give recognition to my lululemon community – Sydney Gerbracht in particular, she is always a cheerleader and supporter of all I do! She is the store manager for lululemon local and she was a big part of growing me as a lululemon ambassador.
Billy Morquecho photography