Why Too Many Yoga Teachers Are Finding Yoga An Expensive Hobby
Is yoga simply an “expensive hobby?”
How many yoga teachers do you know who are making anything like a decent living from their yoga?
Recently, I’ve been trying to build relationships with other yoga teachers in my area. I wanted to link up with other teachers who might cover my classes for me (and vice versa) when I needed it, but I also wanted to network – to look at how we might collaborate on projects and support one another. (My observance of the “Yamas” I guess).
One lovely yoga teacher I met 13 years ago when I was starting my coaching and training business, I found had opened up a yoga studio in Doncaster – which looked beautiful and I imagined was really successful.
We first spoke on the phone, then met – and, whilst her passion for the studio vision was clear, she talked of it being “an expensive hobby.” She is holding down a full-time job, a mother of two young children, teaching 5 nights a week (still at other gyms, as well as her own studio!) and feeling a little “weary” about the whole thing. The studio is struggling, and they are only just managing to pay the expensive rent – with little, if any money for their actual teaching.
They’re teaching for the love of it – that’s all.
I see numerous parallels between the coaching industry and yoga teaching.
Like yoga teacher training, coach training schools – especially 13 years ago when I was a student, were BIG business.
Coaching schools attracted literally thousands of people – all naturally caring individuals who loved the thought of helping others who were not very happy in their own current jobs – and who were looking to find another way of generating income which they’d enjoy more.
Those courses cost hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds – but whilst there are no accurate statistics, one piece of research suggested that the average coach makes less than £12000 a year from coaching. I knew LOADS of coaches like that – and many of them couldn’t survive – so they went back to their old jobs.
I realised early on that no matter how much I knew about coaching, no matter how many courses I went on to get better at my coaching – if no one knew about me, or actually wanted to pay money for how I could help them – then I’d have to go back to my old job too.
Unfortunately, you can be the best coach, yoga teacher or yoga studio in the world – but the truth is, if you can’t systematically get and keep enough students – you don’t have an income – and you don’t have a business or career. Period.
So, that means you HAVE to learn about how to get and keep students/clients – call them what you will.
If you don’t – not only do you lose out on your dream of helping others – but all those people you could have helped miss out on your teaching and skill too.
And that is tragic.
Because I’d love to see more trained yoga teachers out there – having fun teaching, whilst being fairly recompensed for their skill and knowledge.
Understanding that a systematic approach to sales and marketing is the ONLY way to build a sustainable income from your yoga business or career is best learned early on in your yoga teaching journey – or you’re at risk of it becoming an “expensive hobby” for you too.
The alternative is to teach part-time for other studios or gyms – and this might be the best option for you if the whole idea of sales or marketing makes you shiver!Are you considering investing in yoga teacher training? Not sure having read this if it’s right for you?
Take a look at an earlier article which gives you 3 simple questions you really would benefit from answering before you invest a penny in yoga teacher training.
For some of you reading this – it might be the best thing you could do!
Let me know what you think.
Actions you can take:
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