Finding the right venue for your Yoga class can make or break its success.
Whilst a dedicated Yoga studio might be the dream, that’s not always possible, and anyway, sometimes thinking outside the box can open up your classes to a whole new demographic.
Here are a few tips for things to consider when choosing your next Yoga venue.
Start at the beginning, the location of your venue is the first thing to consider.
A city centre location means a busy area with good transport links, but it could also mean you’re in competition with lots of other classes and the cost of hire could be more expensive. Consider what you have to offer that’s unique, consider different times of day, different yoga styles, or a novel idea – like puppy yoga, which might help you stand out.
If you look outside a city centre, venues may be considerably cheaper. Consider what other classes are running in the local area and whether the area can sustain more than one. Also consider transport links and parking facilities to ensure your classes are accessible to as wide an area as possible.
If the area is ideal, how are the facilities in your chosen venue? Is it clean? Does it offer a sound system? If it’s a dedicated Yoga venue, do you have use of mats, belts and bolsters?
Consider whether the venue offers storage. If you provide spare yoga mats or blocks and bolsters for students then not having to carry them back and forth to the venue every class could be very useful.
Other things to think about include the buildings accessibility, toilet and changing facilities and the availability of refreshments.
When organising a Yoga class the ambience is vital. Check there is enough space for the number of people you expect. You don’t want 5 students to rattle around in a hall meant for 50, or 10 students crammed into a space meant for 5.
The other businesses around your venue can also affect the ambience, noise from a busy bar or strong smells from a takeaway can easily have a detrimental effect on evening classes.
Also consider the lighting. If your class is at night is there a lower light option or will you be stuck under fluorescent strip lights? If it’s during the day is there natural light available?
Consider the people you will be working with at the venue. If it’s a dedicated Yoga venue, are there teachers that can step in and cover your class while you take holidays, does the ethos of the community fit with your style? If you teach a more energetic style of Yoga and the venue focuses on the spiritual side then will it be a great fit?
If you’ve selected a venue that isn’t Yoga specific then consider how supportive they are of running Yoga classes. Do they understand the need for a peaceful venue or will they book a children’s party in the next room? Are there other classes running from the venue and have they run Yoga classes before. Are the staff easy to get hold of in case of any problems?
If the venue offers a variety of different classes are they complementary to the practice of Yoga? A venue that offers classes such as Mindfulness and Pilates may have an existing client base that’s more suited to Yoga than one that offers Zumba and Street Dance classes, for instance.
Lastly, it’s important to consider the support that a venue can offer in marketing your class.
Venues can offer support by listing your classes on their website, promoting it to their mailing list and adding flyers and posters inside and outside the venue. Make sure you ask if this support is available as it can be key to ensuring that your classes are well attended.
As well as marketing, is the venue willing to offer admin support in booking the classes and answering enquiries from potential students. Having a venue that provides this kind of support can make a difference if you are not available all day to answer calls and queries from potential students.
Think outside the box
Our last piece of advice is to think outside the Yoga box.
Village Halls and existing Yoga studios are common places to hold classes, but broadening your search could open up a whole new market. Dance studios and gyms may have a fitness-oriented crowd looking to try something new. Schools often have dance studios that can be used for Yoga classes and older students and parents could be a new market to reach. We’ve even heard of Yoga classes being held in pubs and nightclubs, so don’t feel restricted to the usual venues.
At the end of the day, it’s important to trust your instincts. Inspect potential venues carefully, and get a feel for how you think it will work for you and your students.
Have we missed anything? Let us know in the comments.