London OM Yoga Show Wrap-Up

November 12, 2014

In late November, Yoga Alliance® board of directors chairman Brandon Hartsell and former board member Andrew Tanner attended the Om Yoga Show at Olympia National in London, England. The show offered a variety of free yoga classes, workshops and more than 200 exhibitions sampling what the UK capital city has to offer yogis.

Andrew’s conference presentation, “Business Plans for Yogis: The Path is the Goal,” focused on helping yoga business owners clarify their unique “dharma” or mission in the yoga world. He explained how to articulate that vision and create an action plan to achieve those goals. He also discussed several important areas of business ownership such as marketing strategy and budget-setting.

Brandon’s presentation, “What it Means to Operate a Conscious Yoga Business,” expanded on the principles of conscious capitalism and how it can be used to positively impact a yoga studio and its culture, which is to operate ethically while turning a profit. Attendees were excited by the opportunity to share ideas about how to improve the management of their studios.

As part of a panel on “The Accreditation Debate,” Brandon joined a lively discussion on yoga credentialing and how the different participating organizations impact accreditation. The panel identified some shared values: diversity (honoring all approaches and traditions of yoga), self-governance (an interest in keeping the government out of yoga credentialing), quality (credentials positively impacting teaching quality) and credibility (those with the credentials who wish it to have meaning and value to the public).

Andrew and Brandon also hosted a Community Meet-Up to hear directly from UK members how YA can better support them in their careers.

Members told Andrew and Brandon that the yoga industry in the UK is just beginning to blossom. Those in attendance at the Om Yoga Show were eager to learn more about the business of yoga, Social Credentialing and the future of yoga education. They also expressed their concerns and desires for YA to focus more resources on the international community. Adding more UK-accessible benefits as well as clarifying the difference between YA (a nonprofit organization) and Yoga Alliance UK (a for-profit organization that uses YA’s name), were brought up as key issues. Finally, the issue of grandparenting highly experienced teachers who are unable to register with YA was also frequently mentioned.

Yoga Alliance leadership was thrilled to spend time listening to UK members and is exploring an action plan to address their concerns. Look out specifically for responses to these challenges in the coming months.

Keep an eye out for more information about YA’s work abroad and on Our Calendar for more opportunities to meet members of the YA team!

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