The amount of money a bikram yoga teacher makes varies, from $20,000 to upward of $80,000 per year, according to myjobsearch.com. The range is wide because the factors influencing salary are so varied. These include whether or not you are a certified instructor, whether or not you own your own studio or are sharing space, what part of the country or world you live in, and how long you've been teaching yoga.
Bikram yoga is different from other forms of yoga, and not only because each 90-minute session always consist of 26 poses performed in a room heated to 105 degrees Fahrenheit. According to Forbes magazine, Bikram is a copyrighted brand of yoga that generates $5.9 billion in annual sales and requires nine weeks of training at a Bikram center in order to be officially certified to teach. Before you start counting your pay, be aware that certified teachers make more than non-certified teachers and that tuition, fees and housing during the course range from $10,900 to $15,000.
The reason the pay range is so broad is because most Bikram teachers — like almost all yoga teachers — are self-employed. Sportspeople, a company that links employers with employees in sports-related fields, reports the majority of yoga teachers make their living by conducting sessions in their homes or studios and might hold one or two classes at a gym. Some teachers charge $10 per student per class, while others charge $20 or more. While private lessons can be as high as $250 per session if you instruct in Hollywood, one-on-one teaching usually nets much lower fees.
A Bikram yoga teacher will usually make more if he lives in a metropolitan area than in a rural setting, according to Rachel Hanson, of Love To Know Yoga. That's because, Hanson says, there's a higher ratio of students to teachers in cities than in small towns. In cities there are also opportunities to teach more classes, usually meaning a higher salary.
Tips to Increase Salary
Building a Bikram business is very self-directed. Aside from becoming certified and living in an affluent area, there are ways to maximize your earning potential. Hanson recommends networking with health clubs, gyms, other yoga instructors and any outlet that might offer clients or classes. Also, teaching other yoga disciplines, such as Ashtanga, can help you add classes and clients. So can specializing in certain areas, such as therapeutic, prenatal or children's yoga.