Everyone is always looking for that safe place that they can turn to when times get rough, when they’ve been battered or bruised, or the world gets a little too cold—a haven of comfort and peace, and that is exactly what Marci Sliman seeks to provide for the good people of Tupelo and surrounding areas. Haven Studio officially opened on May 1, 2017, offering unique instructions in Pilates, Yoga, and Barre with certified trainers and instructors that can help you recover after an injury, work on getting that bikini body, building strength, or whatever your fitness need might be. Sliman wants to bring that haven to the community.
“The community has been so supportive, and we even have people that come to our studio at various times of the day from counties all around,” Sliman said. “We have a great fitness community and so many offerings in the area, and I hope to just fill in that niche of what some people might need or be searching for.”
Originally from Tupelo, Sliman was always into fitness. From tennis to aerobics to running, working out and fitness have always been major components in Sliman’s life. But for Sliman, like so many people, working out means more to her than just staying in shape. It allows her a chance to center herself and get ready for any challenges that might meet her during the day.
“I have always enjoyed working out, and I have found so many benefits from it,” Sliman said. “It definitely is a way for me to release stress and relax and get recharged. I like to think that it’s my ‘reset button’ for the day or week.”
Through the years, Sliman has been involved in almost all aspects of the fitness arena, ranging from the Jane Fonda aerobics craze of the 1980s to training for marathons and triathlons, but all those years of major trail running took a toll on her knees. That led her to seek low-impact classes to help her maintain strength and flexibility without the major stress on her joints. Essentially, that is what led her to these types of training, and she hopes that others receive the same positive effects that she has received.
“It is my hope that others will find the same benefits through yoga, barre, and Pilates classes that I have discovered,” Sliman said. “Hopefully, we can be that haven for those in need of our help, and we can guide them with proper instruction and training.”
Sliman seeks to provide that sort of “reset button” for visitors to Haven Studio so that they can feel rejuvenated for whatever the world throws their way. Sliman admits that owning her own workout studio was not always a dream of hers, but she realized that there were some fitness routines that she missed and considered that others might be missing them too, such as yoga, Pilates, and Barre programs that help to strengthen both the body, mind, and soul.
“I guess you could say the stars aligned, and this space came open,” Sliman said. “Seeing that as a sign, I thought I would take a chance and bring this service to the community, and we have received so much support and encouragement that it has been so overwhelming. I really can say how much we appreciate that. It is so much fun coming in here because you feel such a great energy and excitement from everyone. That has truly been a joy for me to experience.”
But anything that Sliman does is never done halfway. This Ole Miss alum and Harvard grad studied and trained to become a certified Pilates instructor. She said that her training opened a whole new world for her, and she is showing that same devotion to her customers by providing professional instructors that are certified and trained in these particular forms of fitness to provide the appropriate workouts or training to meet each individual’s needs.
Tupelo native, Lauren Reddot is excited to help bring these services to Haven Studio. Growing up, Reddot was always active in dance, gymnastics and cheerleading, and has future plans of owning her own retail store one day. But for now, she is happy to offer her assistance to Haven Studio.
“I am excited to combine my two passions while working at Haven Boutique,” Reddot said. Besides teaching Barre classes at the studio, she will also work in boutique which sells workout materials, clothing, and environment-friendly water bottles in the beautiful, calming atmosphere of Haven Studio.
It is important to Sliman to provide only top-notch training for her customers. “We want to provide the best strength and cardio training that is best for each person and fits their needs and into their schedules,” Sliman said. “Each person is different, and their physical training or goals are different, and we hope to provide the program and training that is best for them. We just want to offer our own little niche in the fitness world in Tupelo to go along with all the great fitness programs and facilities that we have in this area.”
It seems that Sliman has been successful at her goal so far. Even after being open for only a few weeks, Sliman has been overwhelmed at the success of the studio and hopes to keep offering only the best and highest quality training and facilities for the community.
“We just want to be a positive outlet for the people of Tupelo and surrounding areas,” Sliman said. “It is our hope to brighten the lives of others.”
By Judy Smith