Lyons Den yoga gets a leg up from Barstool Sports

Dave Portnoy’s Barstool Sports — the blog about eating pizza (kidding — it’s a very large media company that covers sports and pop-culture and has a massive cult following) — has chosen Lyons Den Power Yoga as a recipient of its Barstool Fund grants for small businesses. I haven’t heard just what the amount is, but it was enough to make Bethany Lyons’ voice crack when she got the news. (Thanks to N. for forwarding the tweet.)

“We’ve been so frustrated and so ignored,” she tells Portnoy when he pops up on a Facetime call to announce the gift. “Not even a mention when they mention gyms — it’s like they don’t even care at all, that they don’t even recognize that we’re a business, and there’s no recourse.”

The Barstool Fund has raised $20 million, starting with Portnoy’s seed money of a half million, and they have made 90 grants so far to businesses across the country who submit an application by video. Portnoy calls the winners himself, and adds them to his Instagram and Twitter feed. “Hearing these stories, it’s enraging,” he tells Lyons. “It’s why we got involved. And it’s why we are calling people and putting the faces to the stories.”

Lyons founded the studio here in 2013 after a decade of teaching yoga in the city and as one of SoulCycle’s first instructors. From that one room and one employee on Church and White, she expanded to another floor here and a studio in Chelsea and a payroll of 50, with plans to expand to a third studio this year. That was all derailed with the pandemic (there was also a fire in the building in February that damaged her business and the former Baked space) and she is now just trying to keep one location afloat (hopefully it’s ours).

“We were on track to do close to $2 million in revenue this year and now we are totally in debt,” she told Portnoy.

In the video, Lyons mentions what I have heard many business owners complain about: lack of guidance, support and consistency from government. “We are not being allowed to work hard. Why do some people get to open? Why do some people get to go on planes? There’s no reason why we should go under. We are 100 percent something that is needed now. We know how to do it — and we just had it pulled out from under us. No one will work harder than us. So bet on us.”



  1. This was such great news for a woman (and her team) who have been dedicated to continuing to re-invent their business throughout this pandemic and do what they do best for the community. No one works harder and I am so happy that they have been recognized and supported. Thanks to The Barstool Fund and “high five” for Bethany and Lyons Den Digital.

  2. Congrats Bethany and Lyons Den! Well deserved for an amazing person.

  3. This makes me so happy. What a deserving business and recipient.

  4. This is wonderful.

  5. I am so flippin proud of this woman and all that she represents on so many levels!!