Teaching corporate yoga is a great way to expand your clientbase and increase your earnings as a yoga instructor. But with so much to consider, it can be hard to know where to start!

That’s why we’ve compiled our top 11 tips for how to teach corporate yoga! 

Before we get started, improve your yoga teaching skills, knowledge and experience with OriGym’s Level 4 yoga teacher training course! Enquire today, or check out the full range of courses we offer by downloading our free course prospectus here

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #1- Make Practical Arrangements with the Client Before Teaching Corporate Yoga Classes

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Our first tip for knowing how to teach corporate yoga is to ensure that you consider the practicalities of your class. 

You should ensure that you have a point of contact at the company employing you, so that you can make arrangements for where, when, and how your class will be held.

For example, some practical arrangements that you will need to consider are:

  • Props– Do you need to supply yoga mats, yoga blocks and bolsters, or will they be provided by the company?
  • Space– Where will the session be held and how much space do you have? 
  • If you’re running virtual corporate yoga classes online, you’ll need to establish a date, time, and platform to practice on.
  • Pricing– How much are you charging for the session?
  • Bookings– How many sessions do the company want? You may want to consider asking companies to book in 6-week blocks, and pay for this in advance to secure their booking.

Answering these questions before beginning your sessions ensures that both you and the company know where you stand, and helps to avoid any confusion.

For instance, if you’re aware of the space that you have and the props that you need to provide, this allows you to be prepared in advance.

You’ll be all set up and ready to go when your students arrive, which helps to portray your professionalism as both a corporate yoga instructor and business owner. 

Being prepared also ensures that when it comes to running your class, you can fully focus on teaching your students, rather than worrying about the practicalities.

As a result, students will have a more successful practice, leaving a good impression with the employer and making it more likely that they will hire you again! 

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #2- Liaise with Your Client to Establish Expectations for Corporate Yoga Sessions

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Along with making practical arrangements for teaching corporate yoga, you should also establish expectations of the company you are working for from the very beginning.

This ensures that you know what they’d like their employees to get from your sessions, and can therefore plan your classes around their particular goals.

For instance, the client may want their employees to be more relaxed during working hours. You could then plan a practice which focuses on mindful, slow movement.

You can also dedicate plenty of time to meditation and reflection, and even extend the savasana section at the end of the class.

Alternatively, they may want their employees to get more of a physical yoga workout, to help build their strength, improve physical health, and let off some steam during the working day.

In this case, you could design more of a power yoga based flow to help them achieve this goal.

Your client may also have a specific goal, such as easing back pain for employees who spend most of their day stationary at a desk.

Knowing how to teach corporate yoga and adapt your sessions to the needs of the client ensures that both your employer and the employees you are teaching are satisfied. This then makes it more likely that they will hire you again!  

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #3- Maintain Professionalism As A Corporate Yoga Teacher

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Compared to teaching yoga in a studio, there are many different things to consider when teaching yoga in the corporate world.

For instance, your students may have meetings to attend or deadlines to get back to after they’ve finished the class.

In order to match the expectation of the class and the corporate setting, you need to maintain this professional atmosphere throughout the duration of the session.

A good way to give a professional impression is to make sure that you are organised before your class.

For example, plan the timings of your session to ensure that the class finishes on schedule.

This is because employees will only have a small window of time to fit in the class during their break or lunch hour. Running over can disrupt their day and ruin the professional working atmosphere!

Whether you’re teaching onsite corporate yoga, or are running a virtual corporate yoga class online, be sure to keep a clock or watch nearby.

This means that you won’t have to rush through certain parts of the session, particularly the important savasana relaxation at the end.

Skipping or rushing elements can look unprofessional, and ruins the ‘zen’ for your students!

Being prepared with timings ensures that you can be as efficient as possible for your corporate clients, and build up a great reputation for yourself as a professional yoga instructor.

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #4- Get to Know Your Students In Yoga Corporate Classes

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In a typical yoga studio, you’re likely to have regular students that come along to most sessions, but some of the faces you’ll see will change week on week.

However, in a corporate yoga class, you’ll have mostly the same employees attending every session.

Effectively teaching corporate yoga therefore means getting to know your students, building rapport and trying to create a sense of community within your classes.

You should find out:

  • Their names
  • Their role within the company
  • What this role involves
  • How they work together

As well as liaising with the employer beforehand, check in with employees during and after the first session. 

See if they have any questions, or if there’s anything that they’d like to get from your sessions. This will allow you to plan your sessions with their needs in mind.

It’s also good to know about the physical capabilities of your corporate students, such as any injuries that they may have that you need to be aware of.

This ensures that you can tailor sessions to help address their weaknesses, whilst also playing to their strengths, so that they get as much enjoyment out of the class as possible.

If they feel connected to you as a teacher, they’re likely to get more into the practice, and experience the benefits of corporate yoga! 

They’ll also appreciate the time and effort that you’ve put into getting to know them. 

Students and their employers will therefore begin to build up a sense of loyalty, giving you a good reputation as a yoga teacher. Employees may even begin attending your classes outside of work!

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Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #5- Focus Your Corporate Yoga Class On Relieving Office-Related Issues

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Working in an office all day means that your students may spend most of their time sitting down, bent over screens with bad posture.

There are many benefits of good posture for everyone, but this is a particularly important thing to consider for office workers! 

You should therefore ensure that you adapt your sessions to focus on parts of the body which do not encounter much movement throughout their 9 to 5 day.

Unlike teaching at a regular studio, teaching a corporate yoga class means that you have the advantage of knowing your client and their needs beforehand. So, make the most out of this!

Some examples of things to include in your class to improve your students’ posture are:

  • Spend time working on the hands, wrists, and forearms to alleviate pain from typing on a keyboard and using a mouse.
  • Incorporate shoulder and neck stretches into the practice, to ease any tension that may have built up here throughout the day.
  • Hip, lower back, and glute strengthening exercises to ease lower back pain. 

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #6- Provide Modifications For Poses In Corporate Yoga Classes

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As a corporate yoga teacher, you’re likely to be leading a class with a range of abilities. Some students may have practised yoga before, whereas others may be complete beginners.

This means that their flexibility, range of motion, and stability may not be as strong compared to other classes that you’re used to teaching.

You could also be teaching students with injuries that limit their capability to perform certain poses.

It is therefore important to always have regressions prepared, particularly for the more difficult poses.

When teaching a corporate yoga class, show the full pose first, then demonstrate the regression. Remind them to breathe, and explain that pushing themselves too far through intense pain can cause injury. 

To help make the practice accessible to everyone, you should also encourage students to use props, such as:

  • Bolsters
  • Straps
  • Blocks
  • Chairs

Check out our tips for teaching a beginners yoga class for more ways to adapt your class for this level. 

Keep your eye out for any students who may be performing poses with incorrect alignment, which could cause them great harm if not corrected promptly.

If you fail to offer modifications, students who can’t complete the full pose may become demotivated. 

Providing regressions therefore ensures that students of all abilities are happy, can practice safely, and helps you to continue building a good reputation for yourself as a corporate yoga instructor.

Enjoying this article so far? Here’s 3 more that we think you’ll love: 

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #7- Avoid Partner Poses When Teaching Corporate Yoga

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When teaching corporate yoga, it’s important to consider the fact that your students already spend a lot of time together during the working day.

So, it may be inappropriate to pair them up and ask them to perform poses for two people. This is particularly true if the poses involve hand holding, maintaining eye contact, or leaning on each other.

If students feel uncomfortable during your sessions, they may lose focus and be put off attending your classes in the future.

In fact, this could have the exact opposite effect of what you intended for the session by causing students to be more stressed, rather than relaxed! 

Instead, include poses that allow students to focus on themselves and their own development.

Knowing how to teach corporate yoga well means adapting your classes to the needs and wants of the client.

This means that partner work may not be off limits, especially if your client has asked you to include partner poses as a team building activity. 

You can also incorporate some partner yoga if your students have specially requested it.

However, if this isn’t something that has been agreed before you begin taking corporate classes, we’d recommend leaving partner poses out of your class plan.

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #8- Use Clear And Simple Instructions When Teaching Yoga in the Corporate World

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As we’ve discussed, a lot of employees are likely to be new to yoga. This means that they may not be familiar with yoga terminology or Sanskrit words.

You should therefore keep the instructions that you use simple and easy to understand for your target audience.

For instance, you may be used to using cues such as ‘engage ujjayi breath’ in classes at your studio.

However, employees in a corporate setting who are experiencing yoga for the first time are unlikely to know what this type of pranayama (breathing technique) means.

Instead, use simple anatomical terminology that they’ll understand to break your instructions down. 

For example, simply tell them to ‘inhale and exhale through the mouth’, and leave anything more complicated to your other yoga classes!

You should also explain exactly where they should be feeling the stretch for each specific pose.

If you make your instructions too complicated, students may feel overwhelmed with the information and get intimidated. This could make them unlikely to want to attend another session.

Talking them through each step clearly and concisely allows them to build on their skills, and feel fulfilled during your session.

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Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #9- Introduce The Spiritual Side Of Yoga Slowly In A Corporate Yoga Class

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It’s quite common for corporate clients to want you to focus purely on the physical side of yoga, and exclude the more spiritual and meditative side.

But since it is an equally important part of the practice as the physical side, you shouldn’t exclude it altogether! 

However, you may find that as employees get more and more into the sessions, they become open to learning about the spiritual side of yoga.

If they are, we’d recommend introducing this information in small doses during each session.

For instance, you can explain the concept of chakras, without getting into the history of yoga and pushing it too far outside of their comfort zones.

As some of your students won’t have practised yoga before, they may be overwhelmed if you begin introducing too many philosophical concepts at once.

Introducing spiritual awareness slowly instead gives them time to ease into your classes and become comfortable with you and the practice of yoga as a whole.

We’d also recommend explaining the benefits of going beyond just the physical asana practice, and incorporating the spiritual side of yoga into their sessions.

For instance, remind them that yoga can help them to become more conscious of themselves, handle their emotions better, and become happier in general!

Improving their wellbeing will also help employees to focus better at work, and look at life through a more positive lens.

You should always give corporate students permission not to participate in the spiritual side of the practice, if it makes them feel uncomfortable or if they have conflicting religious or spiritual beliefs. 

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #10- Explain How Students Can Incorporate Elements Of Yoga Into Life Outside Of Corporate Yoga Classes

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One of the best corporate yoga benefits is that it helps to ease stress and improve their general mental wellbeing. 

However, even if they feel these things during the class itself, they may then go back to work, and feel stress begin to build up again.

Another teaching tip for teaching corporate yoga is therefore to tell students how they can take what they’re learning in class, and use it to help them in their everyday life. 

The way that they incorporate elements of yoga into their working day doesn’t have to be as long as a full session.

Instead, give them short, practical movements or techniques that they can perform during a 5-minute desk break in the office.

This could include simple shoulder and neck stretches, or breathing techniques such as the 4-7-8 method:

  1. Breathe in deeply through your nose whilst counting to 4
  2. Whilst holding that breath, count to 7
  3. Exhale through the mouth and count to 8
  4. Repeat this 4 more times

As well as explaining the benefits of practising yoga on a more consistent basis, you could also recommend yoga books, videos, and other resources that students can use to learn more.

Providing students with useful techniques to relieve stress will not only make them happier at work, but will also show that you care about their wellbeing. 

This helps you to build a connection with your students, and provide your client with a great corporate yoga service.

Teaching Corporate Yoga Tip #11- Be Prepared For Disruptions To Your Yoga Corporate Classes

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Teaching corporate yoga means that you won’t be working in a typical yoga studio environment.

This means that you are more likely to encounter disruptions during your session, especially if the room you’re teaching in is within the same office block as the rest of the company.

Although employees may be on a break, it’s important to remember that they’re still on the clock!

You should therefore be prepared for students entering your class late, or having to leave a little early if they only have a certain amount of time for their break.

You could also encounter background noises such as phones ringing or people talking, whether you’re teaching in an office or teaching corporate yoga classes online. 

Although it may not be the exact desired environment, location, or atmosphere for a tranquil yoga setting, one of the skills that makes a good yoga teacher is to be flexible and able to get over any problems that arise during a class. 

Your job is to maintain as calm an atmosphere as possible, no matter what comes up. 

You should therefore be prepared to embrace any disruptions. Don’t get angry or upset with students, but simply continue teaching to the best of your ability, and be understanding.

Before You Go!

If you were wondering how to teach corporate yoga, we hope that our tips have given you some insight on running a successful class.

Feeling inspired? Enhance your career as a yoga teacher by becoming a Level 4 yoga teacher with OriGym! Enquire today, or download our free course prospectus to browse the full range of courses we offer. 

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About the Author: Rebecca Felton

rebecca felton origym authour
Graduating from the University of Liverpool with a first-class degree in English, Rebecca’s combined passions for fitness and writing are what brought her to OriGym. Rebecca is a keen gym-goer and specifically enjoys lifting weights. Outside of fitness and writing, Rebecca enjoys cooking, reading, and watching the football.

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