Sportsmith Blog


In today’s tight economy, even the large “too big to fail” businesses need to find new and innovative ways to get new customers and maintain the customers they already have. Gyms and are no exception. In fact, with the rise in popularity of home exercise DVDs and home workout systems, gyms have to try harder than ever to maintain their customer base.

Yoga isn’t one of those “flash in the pan” exercise programs that you hear about today and is gone in a month’s time. It’s an ancient system, over 5000 years old. Its original purpose was religious enlightenment, but today’s modern Yoga is primarily an exercise regimen. Yoga has retained its popularity through many of the new “revolutionary” exercise programs and devices. Remember the Thigh Master? Tae-Bo? The list goes on and on. Every year new regimens and equipment come out touting to be the next big thing that will reduce the time and effort of exercise while seemingly costing more and more. The beauty of Yoga is that it’s inexpensive in terms of equipment needed, and is a proven exercise method. Those things combined make it a great way to stay fit in a down economy.

One of the main positive aspects of Yoga that you can impress upon your members is its inexpensiveness. All a practitioner really needs is a Yoga mat and some appropriate clothing. Of course there are all kinds of equipment available, and any place that includes Yoga courses in its regimens should make this sort of equipment available for its members. This can either be “communal” equipment that any member can use, or you can offer certain pieces of equipment for sale as well. One popular method is to offer mats for members for free while other equipment, such as blocks and rollers, are for sale. This offers the basic equipment needed so new members aren’t intimidated, while offering other options to your existing members. Of course, after a while almost all of your members, whether old or new, will want their own Yoga mat, so you should make these available for sale as well.

Press upon your members the effectiveness of Yoga. Its low-impact style means that someone averse to exercises like jogging and weight-lifting can get a full workout without the muscle and joint strain common in many exercise regimens. Almost anyone can perform Yoga, even overweight or injured members. Perhaps put together a video montage of various athletes who incorporate Yoga into their own daily exercise (gymnasts and swimmers are particularly fond of Yoga). Of course, a good instructor is essential here, but due to Yoga’s current popularity, instructors should not be difficult to find.

Yoga’s current popularity among athletes and celebrities is also a great selling point. While you should avoid highlighting so-called “fad” exercise regimens, don’t undersell Yoga’s current popularity. Many members will always be looking for what is “in” as far as exercise is concerned, and Yoga is most definitely “in”.

Most any health club these days includes Yoga in their lineup. If yours doesn’t, perhaps it’s time to start! Everyone likes variety and options, and perhaps some of those members of your establishment would like to try something other than Pilates or Zumba. If that’s the case, Yoga’s slow pace and different mindset might make the perfect alternative.