While some people sign up for yoga teacher training to simply deepen their own practice, others plan to use the skills they learn to create a career teaching yoga.
With thousands of practitioners becoming Yoga Alliance certified teachers each year, the yoga teaching industry is becoming more and more competitive.
This article looks at the various and lucrative ways in which one can put their yoga teacher training knowledge to work and also explores assorted considerations to take when launching a teaching business!
Public group classes are probably the most common and popular way that yoga teacher trainees first explore teaching. How does one even go about this? Well, there are many roads you can take to get out there and teaching groups.
As a certified teacher you can approach the local yoga studios or gyms in your town and inquire if the company needs a teacher or to be placed on a sub list to fill in for the permanent teacher when they are ill or away.
Another option is to research places in the area where it might be appropriate to hold yoga classes but for whatever reason, yoga classes are not currently being offered. You could draw up an employment proposal and suggest that they might like to add a weekly class and it just so happens that you know a wonderful teacher who is ready and willing!
Graduates from Shades of Yoga teacher trainings have also returned home and taught classes in their work environments, sometimes simply to practice teaching, sometimes for profit. A quick lunchtime flow may be very well received and appreciated by your colleagues.
Making yoga a career
Now, in terms of making money, studios operate differently when it comes to payment and studio space. So take the following points into consideration when looking at the financial side of things.
Teaching a class within an existing studio
Some facilities may pay the teacher a set amount per class, no matter how many students show up or what day, time, or length that the class is. Other places may choose to pay their teacher based on the number of students that participate in your class. In this way, the amount of money you earn may vary greatly from class to class and your class time may also affect the amount of students who show up. For instance, the 5:30pm directly-after-work slot is likely to draw more students than the 6:00am or 8:00pm classes.
Renting your own space within a studio
Another way in which you can teach within a studio setting involves renting out a space to hold your classes. How does this work? You pay to rent out a room or area and you are responsible for finding your own students and promoting the class independently. You can then also charge whatever amount you wish. Many teachers charge a set amount for a drop in class but offer a reduced rate as an incentive to purchasing more classes up front. For example, you might charge $15 per 60 minute class as a one off but $65 for 5 classes, allowing the student to save a couple bucks per session.
Teaching private yoga lessons
Teaching private lessons is another great option, and likely to earn you a bit more money than teaching group classes.
Again, there are many pathways to get started with private lessons. You may approach studios (or the studio you may already be teaching at) and ask if you can utilize their space to teach 1:1’s. There will likely be a charge for this rental of space or perhaps the studio has a fixed price for their teachers to teach private classes and there may be something like a 70/30 split in which the teacher takes 70 percent of the class total and the studio’s company takes the other 30 percent.
Alternatively, and even better, you may have your own unique space set up in your home where your students can come to practice. Occasionally, your students may also have a specific setting in which they’d like to engage in classes with you, within their home or perhaps at the beach or other outdoor location if it’s the right season. This is another example of when you can choose to charge whatever amount you’d like.
Teaching at or holding a workshop
Say you’ve been teaching for a while now and would like to expand and grow your yoga teacher career. Do you have an important topic that you’re very passionate about? Approach a studio and offer to teach a workshop! Maybe you notice a lot of beginners coming to your classes yet find it difficult to offer 1:1 attention to each and every one of them as closely as you’d like to.
A workshop style class is a wonderful opportunity to go back to basics and spend extra time reviewing and highlighting all of the alignment principles for the sun salutations.
A smaller group allows for more individual attention to be given. Having a space of 2 or 3 hours allows time for more detailed instruction, which cannot always be given in an hour flow class.
Love traveling AND teaching yoga? Why not organize a yoga retreat in your favourite destination or on an exotic island? Yoga retreats are becoming a very popular way to holiday. Some yogis desire a combination of relaxing by the pool or ocean while still having the opportunity to meet others with similar interests. And they would love to maintain their yoga practice during their vacation. Additionally, what’s better than your holiday essentially already planned out for you so that you just show up and unwind?
Retreats are typically organized in an all-inclusive manner, with all guests staying at the same resort, practicing yoga and sharing meals together yet having free time each day to do as they please.
The option of being the primary yoga teacher during a retreat is that you get to meet people from all over the world and you typically have lots of down time yourself as the main requirement is that you teach 1-2 classes per day to the retreat group.
Have a friend who is super into surfing? Team up with him or her and arrange a combo surf and yoga retreat!
Do you want to take your teaching career to a whole new level?
Maybe you want to further share the gift of yoga with others who also want to teach? Explore the idea of setting up your own yoga teacher trainings. Design a well-rounded curriculum, recruit students, find a welcoming space to hold the trainings in, and set yourself up to teach passionate yoga practitioners how to take their interest in yoga to a deeper level so that they are prepared to offer enlightening, safe, and sustainable classes to others.
Depending on your own schedule and the current timetable at the space in which you hold the training, the training may run as an intensive, perhaps 6 days a week for 3.5 weeks or you may wish to spread the training out, meeting once a week for a set number of months.
Trainings held abroad are typically designed over a few weeks in one go. In this case, your students are likely taking extended leave from their work commitments back home and traveling to partake in your course. On the other hand, if you are delivering your training from your home studio, it may be preferable to run the course over numerous weekends so that your current students can do the training alongside their current home, family, and job obligations. You’ll have to negotiate with the studio and find time to slide your course in when the studio is not already using the location for other classes.
Running any business requires more than Yoga skills though, so dream big and skill up.
As you can see, there are ample ways to put your teacher training certificate to good use! Whether you’re looking to teach one class per week to your friends, to students in a studio setting, or devoting your life to delivering and sharing your yoga knowledge to future teachers, the possibilities are endless.
Good luck and happy teaching!