The yoga industry has evolved so much in the last decade. And, with the rise of social media? Forget about it! Like many industries, social media and the internet have completely transformed the way in which we can create yoga businesses both online and in person. Leveraging the online space is a great way for yoga teachers to earn a more comfortable living wage, as opposed to teaching five million classes a week to make ends meet.
I started my own yoga business 10 years ago. And it has evolved into something so much larger than I could’ve ever imagined. Not only because of the impact and number of students I’m able to reach on a daily basis, but also due to the surprising twists and turns along the way.
A huge takeaway I’ve had from my own experience of owning and operating a yoga business for the last decade, is that there’s no shortage of ways in which we can create a business from the practice of yoga. This post will share a round up of 8 yoga business ideas for all sorts of entrepreneurs out there. Whether you want to teach, film, plan events, or write- there’s something on this list for everyone.
10 Yoga Business Ideas
Before we dive into my top picks of yoga business ideas, just know that although there’s a lot to choose from on this list- the possibilities are nearly endless. Meaning, these aren’t the only options! My hope is that this post will help to inspire you to think outside of the box when it comes to leveraging your knowledge of yoga, and your 200 hour yoga teacher training.
Sure, you can always teach yoga studio classes. That’s a given! But if you want to make a career out of being a yoga teacher, chances are you’re going to have to explore other options in order to live comfortably. Because, let’s be real, yoga studio hourly rates aren’t exactly high. So, put your thinking caps on, and get those creative juices flowing- we’re going to create you a yoga business!
Private Yoga Event Company
If you read my post about teaching different kinds of private yoga classes, then you’ll know that teaching private yoga events can be a lucrative option for yoga teachers. While you can certainly do this as a freelancer for one-off events here and there, you can also create an entire business out of it. I would suggest specializing in certain events, as having a niche market will always help with visibility and growth.
For example, you could specialize in yoga classes for bachelorette parties if you live in an area where there are a lot of bach parties running through (like here in South Florida where we are). Another option would be private yoga events for corporate offices of off-site team building events that large corporations and tech companies often have annually. Or, you could go a totally different route and offer private yoga events for kids, or mommy-and-me experiences.
There are so many directions you can go with this! The most important thing is that you choose a niche that you’re interested and qualified in teaching in order to actually achieve success.
Yoga Retreat Business
You know I have a soft spot for the yoga retreat business. Because my baby, Glow Yoga Retreats, is nearly 10 years old. If you’re a yoga teacher who’s brand new to yoga retreats, highly suggest watching my How To Plan A Yoga Retreat Masterclass to get organized. And lay the groundwork for your upcoming event.
Yes, the yoga retreat industry is super saturated- but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible. People told me it was too saturated a decade ago. And that was well before the big social media boom we’re in today. Good thing I didn’t listen to them, right?
Same as before, the best way to stand out is to create an experience that’s niched and unique in some way. Whether you focus on surfing with yoga, or hiking and yoga. Or maybe it’s the actual style of yoga you plan on teaching while you’re there. Make sure to create an experience that’s more than “just” another yoga retreat. Don’t forget, if you register your retreat business with yoga alliance, then there’s an opportunity for you to offer continued education hours to your students as an incentive to join.
Opening a yoga studio is not for the faint of heart. A few of my good friends have yoga studios in various parts of the world. And I’ve witnessed firsthand how it’s truly a labor of love. One of the greatest things about opening your own yoga studio is that you can cultivate your own yoga community based on your personal views, ethics, and value within the yoga practice. Additionally, you can decide the exact style of yoga classes you want to offer. As well as choose the best of the best yoga instructors.
When you’re opening your yoga studio, chances are it will be a lot more feasible to rent a space, rather than buy and build one out. Plus, renting is much lower risk financially. Before you sign your rental agreement, check in with them on if you’re allowed to paint, add shelving, heat (if you’re doing heated classes), and what the bathroom situation is.
Make sure you have a solid business plan in place before renting to ensure that you’re able to profit even on low months. The last thing you’ll want is to be paying your rent out of pocket, on top of your own home costs. This will also force you to understand if you’ll be running the business, or teaching most of the classes. Maybe both? Remember, teaching and running a business are two different jobs. So make sure you have the time and energy for both should you choose.
Teaching Yoga Online
I started teaching yoga online in 2018 with Alo Moves. And I’m so grateful that I started before the explosion of online yoga in the Covid era, because it gave me a great understanding of the space. Since then, I’ve transitioned from Alo Moves to my own yoga app.
If you’re considering taking your yoga business online, know that there are plenty of ways in which you can do so. Perhaps the yoga studio also piqued your interest. Good news, you can combine the two by offering in-person and online classes under the umbrella brand of the studio. You can also have your own fully online studio, as well.
Providing online yoga workshops is a great way to go more in-depth with students, without the overhead cost of renting a studio. Online yoga can be everything from your own app, joining a larger existing platform (like Alo Moves, Sweat, or Yoga Glo), creating your own platform to invite other teachers, or offering a combination of movement classes alongside of yoga.
Creating Yoga Clothing Line
Perhaps you’re a yogi who’s more interested in creating products. Starting a yoga clothing line is a great option for you! Remember, you can always start small, and grow from there if this sounds intimidating.
As with most business ideas, you’ll want your product to provide a solution to people. Is there something about the current yoga clothing that you wear that you want to change or fix? Do that with your own line! Maybe that means softer material, or perhaps it’s the shape and support of a bra. Whatever it is, hone in on one area specifically (first), and make the best damn version of that possible.
Yoga Accessories Creation
We all know that there’s a lot more to yoga wear than only leggings, tops, and bras. There are so many yoga accessories to play with nowadays, which can make classes extra creative and fun.
If you’re interested in creating yoga products that aren’t clothing, you can always explore: yoga mats, yoga blocks, yoga straps, myofascial balls, inversion chairs, and so much more. Similar as before, think of a problem you’d like to solve. Do you struggle to find a grippy mat that lasts? Make one! How about the size of blocks always being too big or too small? Make your own!
Yoga Teacher Influencer
There are plenty of yogis on social media who have become influencers without even being teachers- they’re likely just flexible and strong. While there’s nothing wrong with this, I would suggest that if you want to go down the path of becoming a yoga influencer- you should at least go through your 200 hour yoga certification. This will ensure you have quality, useful content.
Being an influencer doesn’t mean you have to teach yoga classes online. But it might mean that you create short instructional videos and posts for your audience. This is a great way to attract new potential clients for yourself should you choose to also run retreats. Or in person events- as well as cultivate meaningful brand partnerships with other yoga brands you love and trust.
Rather than just being bendy and beautiful, try to create content that’s valuable to your audience, so they’re able to actually learn something from your posts. Of course this is beneficial to your audience, but it’s also beneficial to you as your engagement will likely increase as a result.
Yes, being a yoga copywriter is a job! Think about it, I could hire a copywriter to write this blog for me if I wanted to (although I won’t, because I love it too much). Or, if you want to think even bigger- you can also submit articles about yoga to publications like Women’s Health, Om Magazine, Elephant Journal, and Yoga Journal.
Let’s not forget that most yoga businesses have websites and newsletters, and they might not have the time or skill to be able to keep up with all of it. As a yoga business owner, I can attest that it’s much more appealing to work with others who are familiar with yoga, as opposed to those who aren’t. It’s like we can speak the same language, and tasks are faster and easier, because I’m not explaining with updog versus downdog is, ya know?
Yoga Photographer & Videographer
Photography and videography is forever needed within the yoga world. As someone who hires photographers and videographers for my blog, my IG, my retreats, and my yoga retreat center– I will say that I almost always only hire photographers and videographers who at least practice yoga. But, ideally, I hire yoga teachers.
The reason it’s so helpful to work with other yogis when we’re shooting content is that they can direct me in small ways like, “lower your right hip, lift your chest, activate your toes.” Yoga photographers know how the pose looks best, while also adding their own artistic flare to it. Other photographers will think whatever you do is cool, because it’s new to them. But when you look back at the photos, you might be disappointed with how it turned out, because you were missing those adjustments.
Now that Covid is super officially over, yoga festivals are back on! Actually, even while Covid was at its peak, many festivals moved online- which can also work too. However, there’s nothing quite like the in-person energy of a festival, right? It’s electric. Yoga festivals have opportunities for you to teach, photograph, or be a vendor.
If you want to think above and beyond, you can also plan your own yoga festival. This is for all my people out there with a lot of energy, who are a little bored by standard business ideas, and want to create their own world in festival form. There are a lot of moving parts, so organization is key. But it sure beats going to yoga studios day in and day out. And, the return can be huge if your business plan and organization is on point.
There you have it, my friends, you’re ready to start a yoga business today! Have fun with it, get creative, and most of all…make sure that you start authentically YOU along the way.