Yoga is a popular past time, which means that it could be a profitable business for you. If you want to open your own yoga studio, you should carefully plan in order to make the business a success. If you've never started a business before, you may want to consider opening a yoga franchise, as you'll likely receive additional business training in the process. You need more than just a yoga teaching certification to start a yoga studio. While local regulations may vary, some of the basics remain the same.
Decide on a unique concept for your yoga studio. This is especially important if there are other yoga studios in your area. Choose whether you want to specialize in a particular yoga discipline--such as hatha or bikram--or whether you want to offer customers a choice.
Do market research to make sure there is a market in your area. You'll lose money if you open your business only to find that no one in the area is interested in yoga. If there are other yoga businesses in the area, you know that there is a demand. If not, you may want to hire a market research company or conduct your own research. To see how much interest there is in your area, you could send out a mailing to area residents, take a survey at a gym or health food store or place an ad in a local newspaper.
Look at several spaces to find one that works for you. The location of your yoga studio is important. Look for a place that has one or more large rooms to hold classes. You should also consider whether you want to have locker rooms and showers for your customers. Choose a place that is easily accessible.
Secure funding to help you get started. A business loan from a bank can help you to open a yoga business. You'll need enough money to rent the space, purchase equipment such as yoga mats, mirrors and a sound system, remodel the space to look like a yoga studio and pay the salaries of your employees until the business starts turning a profit. Look for an SBA loan, which can offer lower interest rates. Find a link in Resources.
Hire certified yoga teachers. Look for teachers who are experienced and qualified. The Yoga Alliance is a nonprofit standards organization for yoga teachers and schools. You can be sure that a teacher who has registered through them or gone through a program that the Alliance approves is qualified. Having teachers that appeal to your customers is going to keep your customers coming back for more classes, so be sure to reward popular teachers with higher salaries.
Offer an incentive to get new customers to take your classes. A great way to bring new customers in the door is to offer an incentive, such as a reduced cost for the first few lessons or a free yoga mat for signing up.
Maggie McCormick is a freelance writer. She lived in Japan for three years teaching preschool to young children and currently lives in Honolulu with her family. She received a B.A. in women's studies from Wellesley College.