How to find the best yoga studio in your location
If you live in a medium or large city, chances are there are several yoga studios in town. You may be lucky enough to live in a location with hundreds of studios around. Regardless if you have 5 or 200 studios to choose from, it’s so important to find a connection with one or two studios. Find a place you can continuously visit, comfortably afford, and where you’re free from judgment (self-judgement counts, too!).
Before you decide on the first yoga studio you step foot into, take a moment. I highly suggest taking a few months (or maybe even longer) to really feel out what your city has to offer. Here are 7 reasons why I find it helpful to “shop around” in the yoga industry:
You may not know what you actually want
Sure, you may love practicing yin yoga. But before you put all your energy and effort into yin, maybe explore ashtanga, vinyasa, or even a bikram class. You’ll notice after each class your body and mind feel drastically different. Want to change it up even more? Try a sculpt or barre class too. Want it all? There are studios that offer all of these styles under one roof.
Class styles and difficulty level
Building on point #1, you may be looking for something relaxing after a long day at work. Or perhaps yoga is your means to a healthy, fit body. Nail down a few goals for making it to your mat. If fitness is important to you, find a studio that offers hot yoga, sculpt, barre, and power styles. If meditation and relaxation are must-haves, find a studio that offers a restorative option. Again, if you want it all, these places do exist. I promise.
Corporate vs. Local
Oh, the big debate in the yoga world! I have experienced both corporate chain yoga studios and local studios - and I’m torn.
Here’s my input: corporate studios may be able to give you a little more bang for your buck in terms of studio amenities - you’ll likely see beautiful locker rooms, showers, and lobby spaces. They also may have multiple locations in your city, making yoga extremely accessible. Another plus for yoga chains is they usually have stellar teachers because competition to teach is so high. You’re guaranteed a decent class.
A yoga chain con? Sometimes studios that are chains lack personality and can lack that home-like feel (of course this isn’t always true!).
On to local yoga joints: what’s not to love about a local studio? You can meet the owner and find out why they opened the studio. You can build wonderful connections with the teachers and other students because chances are your local studio is smaller in size. The atmosphere in local studios is often inviting, comfortable, and home-like.
A downside to joining a local studio is sometimes class costs are higher. Not always, but sometimes.
Location, location, location!
This is a serious point. If you have trouble physically getting to your yoga studio, you won’t make it to class. I know this from personal experience.
Opportunity for growth
No matter where you are in your personal yoga practice, chances are you want to increase your skills. Make sure your studio has either a variety of classes to challenge your mind and body, or someone you can look up to and ask for personal help. Want to grow even more? Perhaps your studio has a teacher training program. Do it.
This could be the deciding factor for you. Please don’t blow all of your money on a fancy yoga studio if it’s not the happiest moment of your day. Decide what you’re comfortable spending on yoga and figure out what your city’s studios average for a class. In Minneapolis, most studios offer a $20 drop-in class, a variety of class packages, and monthly rates around $80-120.
That “homey” feeling
Your studio should be a place of joy, hope, and safety. It should be a place where you can go when you have the best day and when you have the worst day. Whatever you do, pick a studio that makes you happy!
All in all, take your time when finding a yoga studio. If you’re going to spend your money and time on your practice, it’s worth it to find a place you can call home. Do you have any tips for finding the best studio?
Love & Light!