Community Yoga Classes
Community yoga classes are a great way to connect with the local community through yoga and spread the message about yoga. It is a great way to offer services to people in the community who may typically be unable to access yoga due to financial barriers. For yoga teachers, it is also a great way to create awareness of their brand and connect with the local yoga community. Yoga teachers wondering how to create some tremendous community-based yoga classes may find some answers here.
Community yoga classes are typically classes offered in public spaces like parks, churches, drop-in centers, or community centers. They differ from regular yoga classes offered at studios in several ways. The environment is typically more inviting to individuals who do not consider themselves yogis. Walking into a studio can be overwhelming and seem very different than what people may be used to. This way, they do not need to worry as much and compare the yoga pants and yoga tops that they are wearing to others in the class. The vibe of the class is more casual and inviting to the inexperienced yogi. Another differentiation is in the price.
When I teach yoga classes, I like to keep it open to pay-what-you-can. I always give the explanation that those who can pay more help to offset the costs of others. I always express that my students “presence is a present” to encourage students to attend without feeling the pressure of contributing financially. It makes yoga accessible to so many more and invites new students to try it out before making assessments about how much value they want to place upon it. As a teacher, I have been surprised to see the generosity of students and how much they appreciate the pay-what-you-can model. I also teach at a local pay-what-you-can yoga studio. They consider themselves a yoga studio and allow students to pay what they can anonymously. Teaching these classes can often be rewarding in other ways, as students are more typically experienced yogis. And it allows the teacher to explore different elements of yoga in a controlled setting.
Some of my favorite community yoga classes to teach are park yoga classes. The first thing I need is a big sign that indicates the time of the class and something that makes it clear there will be yoga. If my schedule permits, I like to arrive several hours early, so that community members see me there. I typically choose a time and day and stick to it for several weeks to gain momentum and interest. Teachers should double-check about permits and bylaws in their local area before committing. In my experience, the community really appreciates the service, and they love the opportunity to practice yoga outdoors with the sounds of nature surrounding them. Without doors, start and end times are more casual, and students can come and go more easily if they need to leave early or arrive late for any reason. Community yoga classes are a great way to serve the medicine of yoga to your local community!