Lydia Maglathlin, an Air Force veteran and franchisee of YogaSix in Lake Ridge, VA is an excellent example of a veteran who has seamlessly transitioned from military service to entrepreneurship. Maglathlin attended George Washington University where she majored in International Affairs and participated in Air Force ROTC. She commissioned as an Intelligence Officer and served on active duty for four years, later transitioning to the Air Force Reserves as a Defense Attaché in 2006. In 2008, while on assignment in West Africa, Maglathlin met her husband, a combat veteran and U.S. Army Special Forces Green Beret who retired last year after serving 25 years on active duty.

While still very involved in the Air Force Reserves, Maglathlin began working in government contracting with Kingfisher Systems Inc., where she currently serves as a Vice President. After her time in the military, Maglathlin sought a fitness modality that would match the rigorous workouts she performed during her military service. She discovered hot power vinyasa yoga, which helped her become stronger, manage back pain, and maintain her fitness level. 

Yoga has helped Maglathlin in many different ways throughout the years and In 2020, while juggling four children between the ages of 17 and one, as well as her considerable corporate responsibilities mid-pandemic, her husband encouraged her to return to yoga to help manage stress. That’s when she discovered YogaSix, a boutique yoga brand with a network of almost 200 studios, offering a diverse range of heated and non-heated yoga classes, boot camp-style fitness sessions, and accessible meditation practices. The transformative effect that Maglathin’s first class had on her physical and mental well-being inspired her to develop her own yoga studio and bring the invigorating YogaSix experience to more Northern Virginia communities. Lake Ridge, with its deep military ties, is her first development target given the especially life-changing benefits yoga can have for military populations. Those who served typically suffer physical and mental distress at a higher rate than the general population, as evidenced by the veteran suicide epidemic.

Not only was Maglathin drawn to YogaSix because it could serve her personal commitment to veterans, but she saw how committed the brand was too. Since 2022, YogaSix has partnered with the Veterans Yoga Project (VYP) to support America’s heroes through the holistic practice of yoga. Veterans who have participated in VYP programs have reported improved sleep, enhanced concentration, and mental clarity, better anger and aggression management, and a greater sense of comfort within themselves.

As part of this meaningful collaboration, YogaSix has taken on the role of ongoing sponsor for VYP. Furthermore, YogaSix is committed to supporting VYP’s mission by hosting donation-based classes across its network of 200+ studios nationwide.

Aside from catalyzing an entrepreneurial journey, Maglathlin’s YogaSix experience has also vastly improved her fitness and helped her reconnect with her body after giving birth to a second child in 2019. She also introduced YogaSix to her husband, who suffers from physical pain and other stressors from his years of military service, as well as her oldest stepson, at the time a decorated high school wrestler. 

“Yoga has served me in different ways throughout my life. It’s always been there. In my 20s, it helped me increase strength and achieve fitness goals. Later on, I used it as a way to relieve stress and rehab injury. After pregnancy, it was my pathway back to exercise and allowed me regain my strength and confidence. Yoga always meets you where you’re at,” said Maglathlin. “But what I love about YogaSix in particular is that the instructors and classes are truly top-notch and the brand is dedicated to making yoga accessible to everyone. It provides people of all fitness levels with a community where they can find relief, achieve personal growth, and reach their fitness goals.”

While starting a business can be a long and challenging process, Maglathlin has seamlessly transitioned into ownership thanks to her military experience and strong work ethic. YogaSix in Lake Ridge opened its doors in July, and despite still Meglathin still working full-time, the new studio has quickly made a remarkable impact on the Lake Ridge community, earning enthusiastic reviews from its members. What sets this new studio apart and contributes to its success is the diverse range of members it attracts. From individuals who have never tried yoga or engaged in regular exercise to seasoned practitioners with years of experience, the studio has become a welcoming space for everyone to discover the mental and physical benefits of yoga.

Maglathlin aspires to sustain this positive momentum by exploring the possibility of opening additional studios in the Northern Virginia area. Given the enthusiastic reviews received by the Lake Ridge studio and its swift, positive impact on the community, there is no doubt that potential future studios could also thrive. Coupled with her remarkable work ethic and business acumen, Maglathlin remains committed to offering community members a space to work out and alleviate stress, all while fostering new relationships among individuals from diverse backgrounds.