The COVID-19 pandemic changed how we do a lot of things. If we allow ourselves to be honest, not everything changed for the worse, though. For example, businesses that relied on face-to-face training at brick-and-mortar locations, like yoga studios, realized that virtual classes can be as good as the real thing (if not better). According to Thinkific (one of the top online learning platforms), during the pandemic, the number of fitness online courses that were created increased by more than 200%. More specifically, during this time, the number of yogis designing online courses increased by about 300%.
In 2021, you can do more than simply sell activewear. Thanks to the advances in tech, you can also teach virtual yoga classes to virtually anyone. To help you get started or transition from your physical studio to your online studio, we’ve created this step-by-step guide and identified some software worth checking out.
Your 5-step How-to Guide to Teaching Yoga Online:
The Perks of Teaching Yoga Online
Trading your physical studio for a virtual space can be rewarding in more ways than one. For starters, depending on your setup, you can save money as you will not need to rent extra premises. Though, the rewards are more than just financial.
While yoga is synonymous with flexibility. Teaching yoga online offers you another form of flexibility. It essentially allows you to teach whenever and wherever to clients from all across the globe. Also, if you offer pre-recorded classes in addition to live classes, you can earn money while you are not even teaching yoga. So, by going virtual there is virtually no cap on how much you can earn.
5 Steps to Teaching Yoga
Identify your target audience
Consider this step as part of your warm-up routine. Skip this step, and you run the risk of injuring your business. To help you create high-quality content and work out an effective marketing plan, you need to know whom you will be targeting. You can, for example, teach yoga to kids or aim your classes at aspiring yoga instructors like yourself. Then, you also need to consider the level of skill. Will you be teaching only beginner courses? By taking the time to do some market research, you will be able to identify where the real opportunities are that can help you to set yourself apart from other online yoga classes.
Work out your fee structure
Before you start creating content, you first need to decide on the format of your online classes. There are a couple of ways that yoga teachers can make money online.
Live online classes
Rather than teaching your students in person at a physical location, you will now be teaching them by means of live streaming your lesson.
With this approach, a student will pay you a set subscription fee each month in return for new content that you will be adding on a monthly basis. If you go with this approach, there are many tools which we will discuss later in this article that can help you to manage the memberships.
Instead of using live streaming, you will pre-record yoga lessons that your students can follow whenever is convenient for them. The advantage of going this route is that it can serve as a passive income. On the downside, some students prefer live classes during which they can receive feedback.
A combination of live and self-serve classes
There is nothing preventing you from offering both live as well as self-serve classes. While this approach takes a bit more work, this way you can cater to a bigger audience.
Get the right tools
While teaching yoga online has lower overhead costs, there are still a few tools that you likely would not have needed if you offered it at a physical location. In short, you will need a space that you can use as a recording studio, recording equipment to create the content and software to manage your classes. A reliable Internet connection, good microphone, camera and lights are essential.
Plan your course and create your content
Your online yoga course should be created around your target audience’s abilities. So, identify at which level your students are and what they would like to achieve. This way, you will know which type of content you will need to create to help them realize these goals. Whether you will be using pre-recorded videos or live classes, it is important to keep the right pace. You do not want to bore your students, yet you also do not want to scare them after the first two lessons.
Once you have a good outline of which techniques to teach when, you can start to create your content. One key tip is always to rehearse first. This is even more important if you will be teaching live classes. You want to double-check that the audio quality is good and that your students will be able to see you properly.
Market your online yoga classes
Before you are ready to share your content with the yoga community, you first need to ensure that the word about your classes and content gets out. From sharing posts on Facebook to creating a landing page, there are luckily various ways that you can reach your target audience. All in all, your goal should be to post on various platforms regularly.
A good place to start is to design an event page. You can use a landing page builder to create a simple landing page where you can share your name, logo, date and time of the event and the costs.
If you already have a list of newsletter subscribers, you can also send an email in addition to creating a basic landing page. This will help your prospective students to get as excited as you about your new classes.
Alternatively, if you do not have that many contacts yet, you can focus on creating a website and social media marketing. These platforms will become the face of your brand and the go-to place where prospective students can find more information about what you offer and what your offerings can offer them.
You can, for instance, share a free class on YouTube. This way, you can give your target audience a better idea of what they can expect which helps to build their trust in your online yoga business. Other ways to build trust and keep your prospects engaged include offering tips on Facebook and creating social proof by sharing photos from a class on Instagram. Then, once you have a following, you can take it one step further and create a series that features your top students.
5 Best Software Options
Whether you want to offer live online classes, self-serve classes or a combination of both, Strydal is a great choice. You can use it to teach online classes, create a video library of unlimited videos in full HD, charge membership fees and collect one-off payments.
One of its main perks is that it offers a client privacy shield. With this feature, your students’ privacy is protected as your students won’t be able to see or hear each other, yet you will still be able to speak to individual students.
Also, Strydal plans to launch a music integration feature soon. This way, you will no longer have to share playlists with your students as you will be able to play your preferred music while teaching.
What makes IndiFit one of the best tools for teaching yoga online is that the software was designed with fitness entrepreneurs in mind. Established in 2020, it is also one of the better choices if you already have a brand and your own website as you can embed a booking directly into your brand’s website.
All in all, it is simple to use. You create your own custom profile and then list what types of classes you offer.
It is also one of the more affordable options. One of the main advantages is that you can host unlimited classes for free. The only thing that you will have to pay is a payment processing fee of 5%. That being said, they also plan to launch an IndiFit Pro subscription plan soon. With this plan, you will also have the option of paying $29 per month that will include access to premium features which still need to be announced.
While airsubs has not been created specifically for fitness and yoga instructors, it is still one of the best tools on the market. Founded in 2020, you can use this easy-to-use tool to market, host and receive payments for teaching online classes. It will give you access to a page with your own branding, a schedule with all your yoga classes and your own email list.
After you have created your account, they will help you to post your virtual class schedule, accept payments and send unique Zoom links to your students. You can either charge per class, offer a membership or sell packages. Whichever approach you choose, you will receive your payments via your bank account.
One drawback is that it does not offer a free plan like IndiFit. The cheapest plan is the Pro plan and costs $25 per month and charges a 3% fee on transactions. The Premier plan costs $50 per month, but charges only 2% for transactions. For yoga instructors who earn more than $5,000 per month, airsubs recommends the Unlimited plan. This plan costs $100 per month, but the service fee is only 1%.
Similarly to IndiFit, Salut’s app focuses on fitness instructors. With the help of the app, yoga teachers can broadcast online classes to students and get paid for their classes. Its intuitive interface makes it quick to get started. One of the attractive features of Salut is that it includes a push-to-notification calendar integration. This way, your events will automatically be added to your students’ calendars.
With Playbook, yoga instructors can create workout programs, tutorials, and classes. If you plan on offering self-serve classes, it offers a useful workout library where you can save and organize your content by category.
All in all, it is easy to use thanks to the uncluttered interface. Though, there is one rather big con. Playbook charges double that of Strydal. While you can use it free of charge, you will only get to keep 80% of your revenue. That being said, if you use Instagram a lot, you might not mind paying extra to be able to use Playbook’s Instagram-ready templates for marketing.
Wrapping Things Up
There is a definite shift in how various types of industries go about providing and marketing their services. While advances in tech make it possible to go digital, much of this digitalization of services have been in response to the plea to social distance. Whatever your main reason is for wanting to become an online yoga teacher, there is no disputing that you can make it work for you and your students. In fact, you might just find that what started as a short-term fix for a current challenge or side hustle to supplement your income has since developed into a full-time career.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can you market your online yoga business?
Your goal should be to post on various platforms on a regular basis. You can start by creating a landing page where you can share your name, logo, date and time of the event and the costs.
Other effective marketing ideas include sending a newsletter to your email subscribers, creating a website and sharing free classes on YouTube. You can also offer tips on Facebook and share photos from a class or a story about your top student on Instagram.
What equipment will you need to teach yoga online?
While teaching yoga online has lower overhead costs, you still need to invest in basic equipment. In addition to having a space that you can use as a recording studio, you will also need a reliable Internet connection, good microphone, camera and lights. Then, to help you with sharing your content and managing routine tasks, a software like Strydal or IndiFit will be a wise investment.
How can you make money by teaching online yoga classes?
There are a couple of ways that yoga teachers can make money online. These include teaching live online classes, offering yoga memberships, and self-serve classes. There is also nothing preventing you from offering both live as well as self-serve classes. While this approach takes a bit more work, this way you can cater to a bigger audience. Then, to supplement your income, you can also consider selling merch.
What are the advantages of teaching yoga online instead of in person?
For starters, depending on your setup, you can save money as you will not need to rent an extra premise. Though, the rewards are more than just financial. Teaching yoga online offers you the ability to teach whenever and wherever to clients from all across the globe. What’s more, if you offer pre-recorded classes in addition to live classes, you can earn money while you are not even teaching yoga. So, by going virtual there is virtually no cap on how much you can earn.
What is better: Strydal or Playbook?
Considering that Strydal takes only 10% of your monthly revenue compared to Playbook’s 20% commission, Strydal is the more cost-effective software. Plus, you also need to apply to become a yoga content creator on Playbook. So, it’s also more time-consuming to get started on Playbook compared to Strydal. By the time that you got approved to be a Playbook creator (if you’re successful), you could already have built a decent list of subscribers on Strydal. All in all, Strydal is better, especially if you’re new.