The fitness industry is everchanging, and yoga isn’t any different. Mindful Studio sat down with two studios to discuss the trends they saw this year and their predictions for 2020. 

Bethany Lyons, the founder of Lyons Den Power Yoga in New York, New York

Mindful Studio: What classes are the most popular in your studio? 

BL: Generally speaking, classes that are one hour with music have the most draw in a yoga studio. Specifically speaking, classes that are masterful in the delivery of our methodology and the practice of Baptiste Yoga are the most attended. That kind of waitlist/popularity situation comes not from dope beats, but from the front line: our incredible instructors and the real connection they create with our students. 

MS: What makes a class popular?

BL: Results, experience and a student feeling like they were seen and matter. 

MS: What trends do you think will be popular for 2020? 

BL: Yoga is going up and up and up. I see more people practicing yoga in 2020 than ever before.

There will be more cross-over of athletes and students trying many different types of classes instead of only doing one thing. 

Fashion and fitness are blending to a place where sometimes it’s hard to tell if it’s “for a workout.” I love this trend.

More different and engaging ways to share on social media platforms and yet-to-be-released ways. Our attention span nowadays is that of a gnat, so we must adapt.

More diversity, inclusiveness and options to simply do you and be the healthiest version on you — and have it be celebrated.

MS: What are you looking to try/test out/implement? 

BL: A few things: 

Modules and intensives for regular students, not just teacher trainees. 

Teen and pre-teen targeted yoga classes. They need this practice. 

Up-leveled delivery of classes with music through mastery, exact timing and ways to better use music to move people. 

What we also are into is marketing and interactive trends — engaging with our students on many different platforms and making our staff and teachers visible to them. 

MS: How do you decide on what trends to try? 

BL: A trend has to resonate with our mission and what we say we are for. We are not going to do something simply because it’s trending. A fun way to engage trends is through social media, special events and branded retail, without changing the core of who you are. 

We are not into “trendy yoga” per se, but upping our game in providing a better experience in 2020 than our students may have had in 2019. A high-quality product is a trend that isn’t going anywhere. 

MS: Why is it important to keep on top of trends? What is a good way to test them?

BL: The world keeps turning and you either move with it or get left behind. Growth and the ability to change are imperative to success. 

MS: Tips for other studios?

BL: Start small. See what has traction and what doesn’t. Ask your people directly. Go through social media platforms, surveys and in person — what do they want to see? Be passionate and choose your choices all the way. Delivery is key to finding out if the idea has legs. 

Stephanie Harmon, the owner and director at Hustle and Flow in Portland, Maine

Mindful Studio: What classes are the most popular in your studio?

SH: At Hustle and Flow, Hustlercise is our most popular class, followed by SheBang and then Beat Drop Dance Fusion. Hustlercise is a follow-along dance cardio workout with a fast and loud playlist to help get you pumped. SheBang is a mix of dance, strength, isolations, yogic sequencing and anything else that feels good at the moment. It’s the whole package. Beat Drop Dance Fusion is a choreography dance class inspired by hip-hop, lyrical, West African and contemporary dance. 

MS: What makes a class popular?

SH: The accessibility for anyone to jump in and move their body with no pressure, the challenge and satisfaction of learning choreography, and having such a fun time you forget you’re working out.

MS: What trends do you think will be popular for 2020? 

SH: I’m a big advocate for fusions and it seems like combining class types is still on the upswing. Fusions are fresh and innovative, and they can really let teachers shine through with their talents. I love repeated dance sequences as a moving meditation, and I look forward to a hard-hitting workout with a hands-on mindfulness piece added in. 

MS: What are you looking to try/test out/implement? 

SH: Personally, I have been on a more hands-on journey with loving touch and Reiki. I believe deeply in the transformative power of human touch and connection. I plan to bring more of that into my classes that seem like a good fit. 

MS: How do you decide on what trends to try? 

SH: I ask and listen to my community, the students and the teachers of Hustle and Flow, but we don’t teach any specific fitness program. We have worked really hard to put our own flavor into the classes we teach. We may do something similar to a trending class, but it will most likely be a fusion or spinoff.

MS: Why is it important to keep on top of trends?

SH: It’s important to listen to what your students are asking for. It’s important to follow trends that match your vision. If a trend doesn’t align with the studio it won’t make sense for the students. It’s important to change with the times to stay relevant, but it’s most important to be authentic to your studio and do what feels amazing for you. Trends are fun and can definitely bring in more business, and if they seem like a match, that’s great. 

MS: What is a good way to test trends?

SH: At Hustle and Flow I have a time slot open at the same time every week, that I put a different workshop or pop-up class in. This gives all my teachers a time to try something new and unique or offer a class that is on the schedule on a different day that not everyone has a chance to get to. Students know there will be a different offering weekly at this time and it feels special for all of us. It helps me see what students are attracted to, how many new people it brings in, what works in a certain season, etc. This is also a great time to invite teachers from afar to come and share their talents with the community. It has proven to be a great way to mix things up.