My Yoga Teacher Training Journey: Part 6
This last post is dedicated to the BUSINESS OF YOGA, and the things we learned about teaching yoga as a profession.
Certainly, one part of yoga teaching training was reviewing how to find work and also the realities of what it’s like to be a full-time teacher.
My biggest takeaway from the lesson was that being a yoga teacher, in a lot of scenarios, requires having an entrepreneurial spirit. What I mean by this is that is it common to have to create your own opportunities in order to gain experience in the field.
One way to gain experience is by working within the community where people work, spend time, and have fun. Many businesses, schools, recreational centers, assisted living facilities and more value yoga as a part of their wellness programs. In order to find these jobs, it’s common to have to create the opportunity for yourself by reaching out to companies out of the blue.
Once you're teaching, it's helpful to have a following of students - which requires consistency in teaching, providing great experiences, and marketing yourself and your classes.
To work at studio, often you need to have prior experience and/or know someone at the studio in order to get an audition. The Denver market is fairly saturated, which can make finding work challenging but not at all impossible or out of reach.
Another option for teachers is to rent a space for an hour at a time. Yoga studios vary in terms of what they charge teachers to rent their spaces, but from what I’ve heard, $25-40 per hour is fairly common. This strategy has some risks associated with it, in that you need to find enough students make up the cost of the class before you can make any money.
As an independent contractor, you’ll need your own insurance to protect yourself in the event that someone gets injured. (To that note, it’s also good to get people to sign waivers that release you of liability.) Also, most teaching scenarios do not offer health insurance, so you’ll have to buy independently or get your insurance through a family member.
Regarding the “realities” of being a teacher, something I learned is that many teachers only teach a few classes a week. Teaching can be draining, and also with scheduling, it’s not always feasible to go back and forth to a studio (or more than one studio) a few times a week. One solid tip we were given was: If you can, it’s a good idea to know a couple of styles of yoga so that you can teach back-to-back classes.
In terms of salary, we learned that studios pay teachers a number of ways. Usually a studio either pays teachers a flat rate, or a flat rate + $ per head. Teachers often make anywhere between $20 and $75 per class on the high end if you have years of experience. However, it’s definitely possible to make more.
Lastly, one piece of advice I have for teachers in Denver is to join the Denver and Boulder yoga teacher Facebook Groups. Having been in the Denver yoga community for a few years, I’ve gotten to know and observed the teaching landscape. The Facebook Groups seem to be the best way to keep a pulse on the yoga community, and hear about teaching opportunities.
These groups are ~
Boulder and Denver Yoga Instructors https://www.facebook.com/groups/177711345627347/?fref=nf
Denver Yoga Teachers https://www.facebook.com/groups/denveryogateachers/
Yoga Teachers of Denver https://www.facebook.com/groups/246227295423199/
There is definitely a lot more to it, but these were a few of my main takeaways. 🙏
Have any questions about my experience? Please leave any questions in the comments below.