If you’ve decided that yoga teacher training is for you, you might be still in the process of deciding which program aligns best with your goals. (We wrote another post with four tips for finding the right program for you.)
And we’re here to give you something new to consider:
Where does my tuition money go?
For yoga studios that offer teacher training programs, their trainings are a major source of revenue. High quality and certified yoga teacher training programs are an investment, and many for-profit studios offer them to bring in a vital stream of income. Typically, that money goes right back into the studio to help pay for studio space rent and utilities, salaries, equipment, retail stock, and a myriad of other costs that go into running a successful business. This is the norm for the vast majority of yoga studios offering teacher training programs.
How is a nonprofit studio different?
Baptiste Power Yoga Nashville (BPYN) is special because it is offered through Small World Yoga, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization here in Nashville. The organization has a home base in its 17th Avenue studio space, where it offers a full schedule of $5 donation-based classes to the public, but it started as and continues to thrive as a vast outreach initiative, bringing free yoga to traditionally underserved sectors of the Nashville community. A legion of almost 200 dedicated yoga teachers create connection in locations all over the city, including schools, women’s recovery centers, prisons, libraries, senior living facilities, and more.
The first and only of its kind in the city, Small World Yoga is funded primarily through foundations. This level of support allows the studio to offer $5 studio classes for students who may be unable or unwilling to pay $15 or even $30 for a class elsewhere—with zero compromise in quality. Additionally, this foundational support means 100% of your tuition dollars for the BPYN training program go directly back into your community. Just as students’ presence in our studio supports our outreach, your participation in our teacher training means putting a kindergartener, an inmate, a senior, a single mother, on a yoga mat for free.
It’s more than a studio—it’s a calling to connect people and create community by increasing access to yoga.
What about the yoga teacher supply vs. demand problem?
It’s true that the yoga industry is exploding across the country—you only have to scroll through Instagram to see what seems like everyone and their mother striking tree pose in front of street art or famous landmarks, or look around your neighborhood at the prolific number of studios, seemingly as plentiful as Starbucks, to see this booming industry in full swing.
Yoga teacher trainings also seem to be on the rise nation-wide. A single studio can produce upwards of forty graduates in a single program, and with that comes an inevitable question: Aren’t there more teachers than there are slots to teach?
The short answer is yes.
There is no guarantee at most studios that its teacher training graduates will be able to instruct there. But if the studio has several avenues for teaching, such as satellite studios or outreach locations, you stand a much greater chance of being able to put your investment to good use. Since Small World Yoga has an ever-expanding list of outreach locations in addition to its studio classes, it’s in the rather unique position of always keeping its doors open for more teachers. And as BPYN graduates will have already been steeped in Small World Yoga’s mission, they will be best equipped to lead in these locations.
Baptiste Power Yoga Nashville guarantees you a teaching opportunity, where you can make a real difference, after you graduate. What other programs can say that?
And all of this without a decrease in quality?
There’s a common notion that because of budgetary constraints, nonprofits have to make compromises in quality. While that is sometimes true, it is remarkably far from the truth at Small World Yoga. To start, BPYN leaders Liz Veyhl and Chris Byford are pillars of the Nashville yoga community. If your main criteria for a yoga teacher training program is that the teachers are top-notch, look no further. Their awards, credentials, and experience are some of the most extensive in the area. Additionally, BPYN is as legit as it gets. Our certified teacher training program is registered with the Yoga Alliance, affiliated with the Baptiste Institute, and is the first US-based nonprofit organization and studio affiliate of Baptiste Yoga. This program means rigorous, transformative, and meaningful work. It creates empowered leaders who impact the world.
Small World Yoga and Baptiste Power Yoga Nashville allow you to be a part of something bigger.