On The Mat, Outside The Box: Boost Your Yoga Income With A Little Creativity


by Chris King

A couple of weeks ago, I read yet an article published by MSNBC, entitled “Yoga Teachers: Overstretched and Underpaid.” I’ve read so many articles with similar titles that I feel it’s important to offer another perspective. You can make a great living teaching yoga.

It’s just very difficult to make it by teaching public classes alone. Ten or fifteen years ago you could. Why? Because simply being a yoga teacher made you a star. To be a star today, you’ve got to think a little outside the box.

Try this idea: Your public classes are marketing opportunities for you, which you get paid for. Public classes help you build a following of students who like and trust you and then come to your workshops, private sessions and other more financially-rewarding offerings.

To use your public classes to your best advantage you’ve got to have something stellar to market. You’ve got to deliver something exceptional. You’ve got to create, brand and market yoga that sets you apart from the crowd. And that’s what I hope you’ll learn from Yoga Business Revolution.

To truly take your career (and your bank account) to a new level, you need to get creative with your offerings and incorporate your unique flavor (your brand) into everything you do. Don’t rely on your public classes alone. Get into your place of inspiration and let the creative juices fly!

Here are three examples of out-of-the-public-class offerings that could up your game (and your income):

  1. Lead a Four-Week Immersion into the Yoga Of Devotion. Create a compelling package of practices you lead a group of students through every weekend for a whole month. Start these live sessions with Kirtan and Mantra, incorporate a devotional theme into each asana practice. Then send emails each week on Wednesday with a devotional teaching. You’ll take your students deeper than ever before and they’ll happily invest in the process.
  2. Start a Sunday Group Workshop for Moms and Daughters. Host the workshop at a student’s home—the host gets yoga for free and will love hosting a sacred gathering for their friends each week. Ask everyone to bring a dish to share after the practice. The moms will treasure the chance to spend time with their daughters, connect in community and learn from you in an intimate, informal setting.
  3. Offer Private Sessions, but not in the same, boring, one-off way that most people do. Sell these sessions in packages of 4, 6, 12 or 20 sessions. Bundle them with an MP3 recording of the session—which you can easily create with your smartphone—a take home practice sheet designed specifically for them, a special discount for all your workshops and retreats and other creative gifts you dream up. Your private packages will quickly set you apart while adding tremendous value to your students’ experience.

We all need to think creatively about our careers and act. If the standard model isn’t working, instead of letting these negative articles get to us, let’s write new articles for our community—articles of support, abundance and creativity!

Let’s write a new story for what it’s like to serve as a yoga teacher.

Entrepreneur turned yogi, Chris King, founded Yoga Business Revolution in 2012 with one intention: to wake up the planet with yoga.