I Got A Raise


yoga (Photo credit: GO INTERACTIVE WELLNESS)

I don’t think much about getting paid to teach yoga. I should. One thing my teacher training instructor hammered home to us was that “People don’t value or stick with instruction that is given to them for free”, and she was correct.

In fact, I knew this from my time spent in the public school trenches – if it was free/it was a “gimme”. Anything you simply share is eventually taken for granted by the majority of people. Especially in our North American culture where so much emphasis is placed on price and the material.

But, I haven’t ever pushed to be paid at a certain rate. When asked, I throw out a few numbers based on what I know about the market and I accept what is offered. Money is fine but karma points are often much better.

This morning I got a call from the woman who hired me to teach at the community hall. She had been thinking about my rate of pay and wondered if I was happy with it.

At a minimum wage job, it would take me about half the day to make what I receive for teaching one hour of yoga. It’s not the worst part-time job ever. It’s barely a part-time job at all given that I work on average about three hours a week minus travel time, which is also pretty negligible.

“I hadn’t thought about that,” I told her.

“Well, I have been thinking that maybe we need to raise your rate,” she said. “The yoga program has been very successful here and we wouldn’t want to lose you.”

What prompted this, I think, was less the idea of losing me and more contact with fitness instructors.

The fitness program in our little hamlet has grown from yoga to include a program for senior citizens twice a week and two weekly Zumba classes.

I don’t know what the instructors of the classes charged for their services, but I can guess and it’s probably more than what I settled for initially.

However, they came from proven backgrounds and have additional communities that they serve. I was just starting out.

So, I got a raise and didn’t even have to ask for it. How awesome is my life?

8 thoughts on “I Got A Raise

  1. That’s awesome! I also teach yoga and have weird feelings about getting paid, however I must eat. I was interviewing at a gym today and talking about yoga teacher pay rates. She offered to pay me at a per capita rate. It got me to thinking that when you feel responsible for the amount of money, or rather the amount of clients pulled in, it makes you want to work because you feel like a part of it all rather than just another yoga teacher getting the base rate pay. It’s interesting to think about. Congrats on having a great following!

    1. Ownership is important.

      I am pleased about the raise b/c it feels like recognition for being the founding program. I run into folks in the nearby town who know about our program and it’s pretty amazing.

  2. I think I’m the exception here, I have spent lots of money on several courses that I never finished. Sometimes money doesn’t make a difference for the student. Or at least for me! But you as a teacher should definitely be paid for your time and knowledge.

    1. True. It doesn’t apply to everyone. I’ve had yoga students pay for classes and never come back, but I did find that when you offer to teach for free or on drop in status – you get more no shows than when they have to pay up front.

      1. You are right Ann, when classes and courses are offered for free people see them as cheap and not worth it. Our society brainwashed us well I guess? 😦

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