Yoga studios more often than not are designed to be calming and relaxing to the students who are coming there to take classes. Many owners will credit their businesses as having a “spa-like atmosphere.”
Some studios have gone as far as actually melding the two worlds of yoga and spas together by incorporating both offerings into their business model. Taylor Shoebridge, the owner of North Ridge Studio and Spa in Toronto, Ontario, offers massage offerings at her studio.
Shoebridge’s decision to bring massage and facial treatments to her studio came from a realization that she was spending time at two places very frequently: at her masseuses’ house, and at her studio.
“I got to thinking about how I was going somewhere to get a monthly massage and I realized that if I was doing this, then it was likely many of my students were as well,” said Shoebridge. “The massage therapist I used was operating out of a room in her house, so it just made sense to meld the two together. We had an extra space we used for storage at the studio, so we simply made that into an area for her, we got a SkinAct massage and facial table, and have made the room very high-end for our clients.”
Shoebridge explained it’s important to consider offering this at your yoga studio simply for the fact it is an added health benefit for your students and another revenue stream for you. And in terms of marketing, it should be simple to pitch the benefits it will add to the health of your students.
“A lot of our yogis who practice here have a tendency to push themselves very physically in class,” said Shoebridge. “As they build strength, they need massage to help reduce fatigue and improve their performance. If this offering is in the same building where they spend a large amount of their time, there should be no reason they wouldn’t take you up on your [massage amenity].”
Once you have clients on board with the massage and spa-like offerings, it’s time to decide what exactly it is you want to offer. There are a lot of wellness trends that can be offered in spas — massage, acupuncture and cupping are just a few. According to Shoebridge, it’s best to start small, with one to two offerings to gauge interest before adding various options.
“There aren’t two clients who are going to want to do the same combination of wellness offerings, so that is why it’s important to start with a simple list,” said Shoebridge. “Massage is a great area to start with — just offer wellness massages or hot stone massages based on what styles the massage therapist you hire or contract out is skilled in. I would start with one technician as well, so clients don’t have another choice to make. Make it as simple as possible for them to get started.”
Having spa offerings is also a great revenue booster for your yoga studio, as many clients who come for a massage, or travel over with the masseuse, are likely to give yoga a try after spending time at your studio space. Shoebridge explained each month she sees new members who come to their first yoga class after coming in for a massage or facial.
“I try to always make note of when someone will be in the space for a facial or massage who doesn’t practice yoga with us,” said Shoebridge. “I will make it a point to introduce myself or a teacher to them, because people feel more connected with you if they have facial recognition. It makes it harder for them to say ‘no’ when I ask them to give one of our classes a try or explain why yoga and massage pair so well with each other.”