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How Much Do Yoga Instructors Get Paid

Is It Worth It To Become A Yoga Instructor

How Much Does a Yoga Instructor Make? More Than You Think!

If you truly love yoga and dont care about income or are happily making money elsewhere, yoga teaching is very fulfilling. If youre looking to expand your yoga practice I dont really think a YTT is worth it, unless youve got plenty of time and money to spare.

Heres How Much I Make As A Yoga Teacher In The Us

Amber ScrivenYoga Teacher, Acupuncturist

Yoga teacher, acupuncturist, herbalist and writer View more

When I first started teaching in Marin County, California, I was broke and miserable. The cost of living is pretty tootin high around here so I had to move into my friends spare bedroom, and eventually, my boyfriends parents house. I was exhausted from teaching over 6 classes a day, 7 days a week. My body hurt, I was grumpy, my bills were past due. It had to stop. This was supposed to be my dream job!


All of that changed when I sat down and realized a few basic business truths about teaching yoga as a career.

Is It Taboo To Talk About Making Money Teaching Yoga

Money is a taboo topic in yoga, as many yoga teachers get uncomfortable talking about their salary and earnings. Significantly, this comes from the fact that teaching yoga is an act of service. Many yoga teachers found their path in a strong desire to help others, and as such, earning a high yoga teacher salary can challenge our core values and emphasize making money feel wrong. The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali touch upon greed in the Yamas: Aparigraha, or non-hoarding, seems at first glance to be in direct opposition with an instructors desire to make money teaching yoga!

The opposition of yoga as a spiritual practice and the materialistic world represented by money is another source of discomfort. Many will refer to traditional Indian teachers , offering their knowledge freely. However, we need to understand that this model involves a whole societal structure. Because they hold a prestigious position in Indian society, the community supports the yoga teacher through donations and services. In our modern times, yoga instructor salaries and wages have since replaced the support system and donation basis. Things change, and we have to be okay with changing along with them.

Also Read > > > How to Become a Yoga Teacher?

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Balance Your Books As A Yoga Teacher

So what can you expect to make as a yoga teacher? It all comes down to your market research, your drive, and your business acumen.

  • Salaries for yoga teachers range from $20k to $60K and up
  • The local market plays a role in your pay
  • As you expand your experiences and add services, youll make more per hour
  • Grow your business by raising your rates and finding new leads
  • Protect your business with insurance

Follow these steps along with the eight-fold path and we have no doubt youll be well on your way to a balanced lifestyle and rewarding career.

Sell Classes Through Your Site

Yes, You Should Get Paid to Teach Yoga

Are you comfortable being on camera? Perhaps its time to film a guided meditation or a few classes. You can provide these lessons through your site!

Pro tip: Offer a free lesson in return for joining your email list. This is the most effective method to create relationships with your readers no matter the distance, which will eventually help you sell your service or product.

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Learn To Create A Website For Your Yoga Business

  • Lake advantage of technology by creating a website
  • Learned how to market themselves online
  • Leverage email marketing
  • and then went on to diversify their income

Learning how to make money as a yoga teacher should really be taught in every teacher training program. However, thats just not the case which is why Anne and I created The Yoga Nomads

Alright lets dive into how to make money as a yoga teacher.

Pin me first? Then keep reading!

Mentor New Yoga Instructors

More than 15,000 yoga instructors get certified each year in America alone, and that figure keeps rising day after day.

Do you remember when you began teaching yoga? Imagine how helpful it would have been to work with a mentor? You could partner up with yoga instructors or even develop an online yoga course that advances the learning from the usual yoga teacher training programs.


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One Last Thing About Money

Most people didnt get into teaching yoga for money. We already got into the sad state of average yoga instructor income above.

However that doesnt mean full-time yoga teachers should be living on the street. Rather, yoga teachers should be able to make a decent living as long as they diversify outside the studio. Is that too much to ask for?

Mentor New Yoga Teachers

How Much Money I make as a Yoga Teacher

Over 15,000+ people become certified to teach yoga each year in the US alone and that number is only growing by the day! Remember when you first started teaching? Imagine how helpful a mentor would have been! You could work 1×1 with yoga teachers or even create an online course that continues the learning from YTT programs.

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How Much Do Yoga Teachers Earn Data

To come up with real data, I gathered figures from Indeed, Glassdoor and Payscale, and then married them with the results from the Yoga in America Survey. The analyses are there to help you make sense of it.

51% of yoga studios serve less than 100 students a week.

Analysis: Most yoga studios are small.

67% of yoga teachers work less than 10 hours a week. A full 37% work less than 5 hours a week.

Analysis: The vast majority of yoga teachers teach yoga part-time.


47% are independent contractors

Analysis: Independent contractors are the preferred way to classify yoga teachers.

70% of yoga teachers are paid a flat fee.

Analysis: Read the Standard Pay Models section below to see how this affects you as a yoga teacher.

Two: Sit Down Be Humble

After you become a certified yoga teacher, whats next?


But theres something else.

Know. Your. Worth.

About a year after completing my yoga teacher training course, I took a job working as an assistant teacher at a yoga and meditation retreat center. The yoga teacher salary wasnt flashy, but it was enough to live simply.

I worked long days assisting yoga classes, deepening my personal training on the meditation cushion, refining my yoga teaching skills, and holding space for people all over the world.

Holding space. As in offering your complete presence, hosting your energy in the present moment, and ensuring a comfortable learning environment for the students who came to the retreat center.

Yet, what shocked me the most? Other yoga teachers attitudes toward this sacred task.

Freshly-minted yogis would arrive at the retreat center and turn their noses up at tasks they deemed unimportant or below their standards. Hello, Ego.

Whether it was tidying up the props, waking up early to complete a personal yoga practice, or making an effort to connect with guests, these instructors said nope.

The lesson here? As a yoga instructor, you dont get paid so you can breeze into the yoga studio five minutes before the start of class, rattle off a list of yoga poses, and waltz off after 90 minutes.

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Factors That Impact Yoga Teacher Salary

Many seasoned yoga teachers insist that how much youll make as an instructor is all up to you.

While your hustle plays a huge role in your yoga teacher salary, there are many other factors that impact it. Some are in your control, and some are outside of it.

They include:

Location Yoga is a competitive industry, and some cities are full of free or by-donation classes. Its hard to get paid even $25 an hour when the teacher down the street is offering classes for free! Research average teacher salaries in your area before you commit to being a full-time teacher.

How youre paid Some yoga studios pay teachers a flat fee per hour of teaching . Others pay based on attendance .

Education & experience A yoga teacher who has 500 hours of teacher training including specialized training can charge more for group classes than a less experienced teacher.

What you offer While group yoga lessons are an essential stepping stone on your path to a full-time job as a yoga teacher, other services pay more per hour. Consider adding the following to your repertoire:

  • Private lessons and duet sessions
  • Private group classes
  • Workshops focused on advanced yoga concepts and poses
  • Teaching in a yoga teacher training program
  • Online classes, workshops, and series

Reputation Some yoga teachers are successful on a bigger regional or national scale. As you build your reputation, you can start to secure brand sponsorships, guest teaching spots, and other high-paying opportunities.

The Size Of Market Model

How to start a home yoga practice

There are A, B and C Markets

Another factor not often talked about is the market you are in. There are different size markets with different pay rates. For simplicity, Ill call them A, B, and C.

A Market

San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York are A Markets. There are lots of opportunities to teach, and the average wage for a yoga teacher is higher than in any other market. You can absolutely make a living in a market this big. One other bonus is you have access to some of the very best yoga education anywhere. The downside is the cost of living is high. The average cost of 1 bedroom apartment in San Francisco is $3513. With an abundance of yoga teachers in this market, meaning lack of scarcity, youre going to need skills to teach at the best studios.

B Market

What unites yoga in Sacramento, Austin, and Minneapolis? They are all examples of B markets. You have populations that practice yogaa lot, and yoga studios to serve their needs. Can you teach full-time and make a living here? Never say never, but its more difficult than in a larger market. Youre going to have to hustle and be creative.

C Market

The market youre in goes back to our initial inquiryis being a yoga teacher worth it financially.

The pay rate answers only part of the question. You need to know the economicsis there a demand for yoga teachers? Are there opportunities to teach?

And are those opportunities increasing or not?

The winner in 2015, the only year Thumbtack did it, was Nashville.

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Yoga Teacher Salary Survey

What is the average yoga instructor salary in the United States?

$25.00*

What is the average yoga instructor salary in California?

$36.00

What is the average yoga instructor salary in New York?

$44.00

Where does this information come from?

Indeed.com is an aggregator of jobs posted online. It analyzes job postings to get title , pay, and location. Size matters. Indeed has more data points, in this case individual yoga salaries, 1649 and 270 respectively. This gives a more reliable figure for the U.S and California. The New York number is not as reliable, with only 47 data points.

Glassdoor.com features more self-reports from employees, so their sample size is not necessarily representative as it can be skewed by the people choosing to report. Payscale.com uses surveys to compile information. Both can be used as a check of how realistic Indeeds number is.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is part of the U.S. Department of Labor charged with measuring labor market activity and has a wealth of information on various occupations. Again, its another verification source.

The challenges of relying on online sites.

Online sites annual salaries assume youll be working a traditional workweek, 5 days a week, 8 hours a day.

Only thats not how most yoga teachers work. They work by the class. You need to know the hourly rate to make this more relevant to how yoga is compensated.

To get it, use this quick rule of thumb. Divide any annual salary you come across by 2000.

2019: 251

State Income Taxes For Yoga Instructors

Each state sets an individual tax rate, and you have to estimate the payroll tax based on your state tax rate. States exempt from income taxes are the following: Alaska, Florida, Nevada, South Dakota, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming.

Income tax exemption doesnt mean employers dont have to pay for other payroll taxes. The state might impose additional taxes on state infrastructures, such as transportation taxes or school taxes.

Pro Tip: Once youve registered your business with the IRS, the IRS will automatically check which statements and rates apply to your business, and you will know in advance how much you owe.

Moreover, you can hand this statement down to your accountant and have them organize payments and handle all your paperwork for you. They can also help you with frequency reporting and making timely payments.

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Know Your Worth As A Yoga Instructor

I always coach my students to earn an income as a yoga teacher right from the beginning. Why? First, I want them to be in a position where they have to give themselves the best and not see their work as a practice ground. Second, I invite them to honor the efforts in time, energy, and money they invested in becoming a yoga teacher.

And finally, I want their students to be committed to their practice so that their instructors stay motivated to teach. As a general rule, people dont value what they receive for free. Just think of the number of freebies cumulating dust in your house vs. how much you use the same items when you have paid for them! By paying for your classes, your students will put more value on your work, be more motivated, and therefore you will serve them better. And youll increase your teacher salary per hour, which means everyone wins!

And while it is possible to make a livable wage as a yoga instructor, it can take time to build your yoga teaching business. If you have another job, it might be wise to keep it for a while longer, as you gradually build your career and increase your yoga teacher salary. For many years, I held a corporate job and taught a few classes each week. While it took me longer to earn a sustainable yoga income because of my day job, I felt I could strike a good balance.

I Want To Be A Yoga Instructor How Much Will My Salary Be

Getting Paid for Teaching Yoga Online

This article was published more than 7 years ago. Some information may no longer be current.

Job: Yoga instructor

The role: The primary role of a yoga instructor is to lead a class through poses and positions that help to improve a practitioner’s strength, flexibility and mental focus. The job requires a deep understanding of the mechanics of the human body, as well as the various pose modifications that can be made to accommodate each student’s experience and skills.

“They have to teach the appropriate class, and they have to teach and cue appropriately for who’s in the class,” said Dina Tsouluhas, co-owner and teacher at Moksha Yoga Montreal. “Depending on whether it’s a bunch of beginners or seasoned practitioners, their cues will be different.”

The role of a yoga instructor also extends beyond the classroom. Instructors need to constantly update their skills through regular anatomy and modification training. Furthermore, instructors are responsible for taking time before and after class to set up the room, make sure it’s at the right temperature and answer any questions the students might have.

“If you’re interested in teaching, then you can start investigating schools to get your training, but first practise it,” she said, adding that those who complete the programs are still not ready to begin teaching right away. “They have to do a lot of practice teaching until we feel they’re safe to teach a class, and that might take another year.”

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Which Yoga Is Best Beginner

Hatha yoga originally meant the physical practice of yoga, the poses rather than the breathing exercises. The term now is often used when a few yoga styles are combined to create a simple class thats good for beginners learning to do basic poses. Anusara yoga is a modern system of Hatha yoga.

Is Yoga A Good Career

Yoga is a great career choice as it is an ancient art and a natural way of remaining fit and healthy. It also helps in improving mental and physical health. A yoga instructor not only teaches various yoga postures and breathing techniques , but also acts as your guide to help you reach eternal harmony.

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Corporate Group Yoga Classes

Its becoming quite common for companies to offer yoga as a perk to their employees. Ask your local network to find out which companies would be interested. Most successful teachers in this space charge a flat $X/class . Anne does this in Minneapolis.

Related: How to Find a Job Teaching Corporate Yoga

How To Know When To File Taxes

What to Do If You

The tax filing period depends on your payment frequency. If this is your first year running a yoga studio, you can determine when you want to pay the taxes by consulting with your accountants or the IRS).

Most yoga studio owners file their taxes monthly. Still, its possible to file your taxes in shorter periods, such as quarterly, weekly, or twice per week.

Note: Pre-arrange your monthly payroll payment schedules, or you will have a monthly depositor status. This status assumes youre paying your employees monthly, and youll have to pay the taxes accordingly. Publication 15 includes information about possible schedules that you can arrange with the IRS.

In practical terms, the IRS will assume youre going to file your taxes on the 15th of each month. It is standard for most businesses throughout the country. However, its possible to file taxes quarterly if you choose to do so.

Each deposit you make with the IRS must include your contribution to the yoga teachers social security as well as their share .

Once the tax year comes to an end, the IRS updates their payment frequencies, and if nothing changed, they notify business owners. Hire an accountant to keep up with the changes.

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