Elizabeth Bridwell

After having her first daughter, Elizabeth Bridwell was feeling isolated living on five acres in Huger, northwest of Charleston, and longing for a place where she could pamper herself and feel like a woman again.

Filling that need for other women became her concept for Breathe Pilates Studio & Spa, a zen-like escape where women can take a break and take care of themselves, if only for an hour or two.

“I’ve had moms come to the front desk crying, saying, ‘I was reminded that I need to take time for myself,’” Elizabeth says.

Elizabeth is a business owner, the mother of four girls and wife of Band of Horses singer Ben Bridwell, who at the time was about to return after being on the road for five weeks. She knows something about leading a busy, sometimes stressful life.

Picking up her iPhone that’s sitting beside her on the bench in her studio lobby, Elizabeth says, “It’s nice to have these, but they tempt us to put a lot more on our plates than we should.”

Elizabeth confesses that she loves to sleep and that time management is not one of her strengths. She says, as a studio owner, she sees that women often double-book themselves. She’s happy when they choose to spend their time at Breathe.

A woman recently told Elizabeth that Breathe is her “happy place.” Elizabeth says that makes the hard work of running a business worthwhile. “It makes me a better mom, a better wife,” Elizabeth says. “It’s my happy place, too.”

She says she likes that her girls see that she is happy to go to work and that she’s passionate about what she does. She prides herself on savoring her time with her children and being really present when she’s with them.

At night, after the girls go to sleep and she gets some time to herself to unwind, Elizabeth likes to take a warm bath with her favorite bath bomb.

“I definitely try to practice what I preach, or try to — breathe.”