Working in the Yoga/Fitness Industry

Careers Fitness Pros/Cons Yoga

I have worked in the Yoga/Fitness Industry since I was 22, so for almost 10 years. I have worked in many different types of fitness (yoga, pilates, bootcamp, personal training, etc) and different studios/gyms in Massachusetts and California. I love my job and couldn't see myself doing anything else, but it is not for everyone. Every job and career has its own set of drama and pros/cons.

Are you thinking about moving into this field part time or full time? Part-time is much easier than full time because you still have income from another job to support you. Full-time is not for everyone because it is easy to get burnt out. It is also not a job where you are raking in tons of money. You have to do it because you love it and you love helping others. Here is a list of Pros and Cons to think about before working in the Yoga/Fitness Industry. 


1. Pay/Benefits/Taxes. Your income often depends on your class attendance. Class attendance can vary depending on the location, time of day, and how well the studio markets their classes. You will most likely also have to market yourself and your classes. At some studios you will be an independent contractor and at others an employee, depending on how the company is set up. (Make sure to save money for taxes either quarterly or at the end of the year if you are an independent contractor.) Your pay is including the driving time to and from the location as well as being there 10 mins before class to set up and a few minutes after to speak with students. Another thing to keep in mind is the lack of health insurance and benefits. This will be an added expense for you. 

2. Driving. Most likely all your classes will not be at the same place and the schedule may not be stacked. You will have to drive to multiple locations to make enough money to be a full-time teacher. Occasionally studios will hire people full-time but your schedule will still depend on peak class times which are mornings, evenings, and weekends. 

3. Drama. This happens in all jobs. There is drama between the owner/manager and the teachers. Drama between teachers. Drama between students and teachers. And worst of all competition between studios. The best thing to do is learn how to handle the drama politely and respectfully and learn how to let it go. It can easily eat away at you and sometimes you just have to move on. Every studio owner handles things differently. Some are more hands-on and others are hardly ever there. You have to remember they are people too and some are more emotional and let their emotions effect how they handle their teachers and clients. 


1. Flexible Schedule. When you are a new teacher, you have to take whatever class times you can get. It is important to get experience for your resume and to become a better teacher. Eventually when you have more experience and classes on your schedule, you can be choosier about your schedule. You will still have to work mornings, evenings, and weekends, but maybe only a few nights a week and maybe only one weekend day. Keep in mind there are usually no vacation or sick days, so when you want to take time off plan accordingly. 

2. On Your Feet. Desk jobs are the number one problem for neck issues and tight hips. Sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day is terrible for your posture. Working in the yoga/fitness industry will keep you on your feet all day and keep you moving. 

3. Comfortable Clothes. Wearing stretchy pants and tank tops all day is super comfortable. No high heels and button up shirts in this career. 

4. The People You Meet. I have made so many friends throughout my years teaching yoga and fitness. In your classes, you meet a wide variety of people that you might not normally meet. Some of my private clients have given me ideas and help with my business and career as well. I have clients who are interior designers, graphic designers, lawyers, accountants, school counselors, psychologists, etc. 

5. Rewarding Career. It is amazing how many people out there hate their jobs or careers. When working in the fitness and yoga industry you have to love what you do. You do this job because you love helping people achieve their goals and educating them about yoga/fitness. It is a very rewarding experience to see students progress over the years. You truly have to be passionate for this career to work for you. I do this job for my students and clients. Not for the owners/managers, not for the pay, not because it is a "fun" job, but because I love watching my students progress and helping my clients achieve their goals. 

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  • Gayle Mccue on


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