DOWNWARD DOG ON AN UPWARD TREND
Yoga is big. So big that 20.4 million Americans, or almost 9 percent of U.S. adults, currently practice yoga. And of those who don’t practice, 44.4 percent say they’re interested in giving it a shot.
Is your facility taking full advantage of the new membership potential the yoga buzz creates? Teaching yoga classes that appeal to a variety of members, including current ones, has the potential to boost class participation and your bottom line.
Why is yoga so popular in the fitness world? For starters, it can improve all four components of physical health that members typically focus on: strength, flexibility, balance, and aerobic capacity. What steps do your yoga teachers take if improved balance and flexibility are not typical fitness goals for your weight-lifting crowd? Convert existing members into dedicated yogis by hosting weekly free or discounted classes for current members.
By offering discount class rates to current members, you can potentially add more revenue from additional class passes sold. Once members experience alleviated muscular pain relief following a hot yoga class, your potential to grow class sizes is unlimited.
Identifying Current Members that Can Benefit from Yoga Classes
Your personal training staff can also offer valuable insight into which members are candidates for yoga classes. Yoga is also great for members affected by insomnia, poor posture, digestive issues, asthma, anxiety, weight loss, and circulatory problems. Have your trainers suggest yoga classes to supplement training sessions based on the fitness history information they have with clients.
In addition, yoga is a noncompetitive fitness experience and can be done by people of any age, body type, and ability. Every current and future member of your facility is a candidate for some kind of yoga class, so offering a variety of class types will help build your class schedule and teacher specialties.
For your members interested in taking group classes but on the fence about boot camp, yoga classes can serve as an effective bridge. You can approach the yoga class conversation with your male members using these tips that we’ve found are useful and practical.
But what’s perhaps most appealing to practitioners is that yoga provides rejuvenating effects on the body and mind, offering the opportunity to de-stress and relax, an important benefit in today’s hyper-connected world. When you offer yoga classes in your facility, your members will look forward to a respite from jobs, family obligations, and other everyday stressors.
Teaching Yoga Classes for All Members – Where to Begin
In short, yoga meets the needs of many gym goers, so savvy gym owners are expanding their offerings to meet the growing demand and attract new members. Below, from easiest to most challenging, are some of the classes that are proving especially popular. Speak to your training staff about which classes you can offer in your facility.
This gentle form of yoga modifies poses so they can be done while seated. Chair yoga is especially well suited for mature members, but classes can also be geared toward those who spend much of their workday seated and want to learn exercises they can do on the job.
This gentle and calming yoga provides healing for the body and mind. It’s often done with props, such as blocks, bolsters and blankets, which support the body so that muscular tension can be more easily released. Great for beginners and experienced yogis alike, these classes help reduce stress and anxiety. Make sure your pro shop is stocked with a variety of mats and straps that beginner yogis will need if they make restorative yoga a weekly habit.
This type of yoga is practiced in a fabric hammock, or yoga swing, which supports the weight of the body and allows yogis to relax into the positions to achieve a deeper stretch. Practitioners can do inversions and backbends that are normally out of their reach, and they can hold the poses for longer periods of time without strain. This class offers more experienced yogis a refreshed way to practice and can help boost dwindling class participation if your yoga classes have followed the same programming for a long period of time.
Typically performed in a room heated to between 90 and 95 degrees, hot yoga allows practitioners to go deeper into poses and get a more intense stretch. Because the high temps also elevate the heart rate, this type of class provides a more rigorous workout. Make sure to keep your pro shop well stocked with water bottles and cooling towels for post-class cool down.
Barre classes have proven popular, but now more gyms are offering a barre-yoga combo class—a mixture of yoga, ballet, Pilates, and weight training. These intense classes target the core, glutes, and thighs, incorporating pliés and arabesques to sculpt and lengthen muscles. You’ll be able to utilize dumbbells and body bars with traditional poses to keep your members engaged and working on building lean, sculpted muscles from beginning to end.
What types of yoga classes does your facility offer? Are any of the styles we’ve listed on your programming to-do list? Let us know what you’d like to add in the comments.
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