My Fitness Facility will be upgrading from 65000 sq. ft to over 110,000 in the next 18 months. I am the Fitness a Director and have a virtual clean slate to begin planning my areas which include 6500 sq. fit ctr., spin studio, yoga studio, 2 group ex rooms and a strength cond. area. Looking for new, exciting and must haves.
I think you need to focus on some good group fitness programs. Les Mills makes really high standard programs which produce great results. I have taught general kickboxing before in group fitness. It does not even compare to the “Body Combat” program they offer.
The spin program they offer is amazing too. They are at the front of fitness and have just started to release something called “Immersive fitness”. Check it out!
They really are the best group fitness programs out there.
I’ve taught yoga in a host of different venues…. indoor and outdoor, in home, in fitness center, in yoga studio, hotel, conference room…. Sometimes one has to be flexible (ha ha) about things that are not perfect…. but if I were starting from the ground up, and could have anything there are definite things that I would have.
No ceiling lighting…. in supine positions they can be distracting, and make shavasana particularly difficult. Lighting that can be varied is ideal. Some sort of sparkly lights, or smaller hooded lights in the corners are good… and if you have the capacity to change bulbs you can do black light classes, which can be really great for Friday night. If you do not have insurance for candles having some of the industrial sized electric candles are really nice, particularly if you want to do meditation.
Wood floor is the best, in my opinion. I’ve taught on carpet, but all you need is a bit of dampness and it gets an unpleasant smell.
I don’t care so much about a fancy sound system, as I carry an ipod dock if there isn’t one available, but I really like the system one of the places has, where you can switch between ipod and disc (and even cassette tapes, which I like, as I have a couple of hundred left from teaching through the 90s)
It is useful to have a separate heating unit so that you can offer heated classes, but dial it down for non heated, or for core work. It is also good for the heater not to be too loud, as yoga music, when music is used, is not usually really loud.
It is also nice to have an area with shoe cubbies at the entrance. What I find is that quite a lot of people who come do yoga then leave, and like to bring their stuff to the class, rather than going in and out of the locker room. It also leaves your locker room more space, which is nice… but then you have little piles of bags, and jackets, and shoes and so on. A couple of benches for people to put their shoes back on, and some cubbies really make things much smoother.
It is also really good to have a door that closes.
It is better not to be under the weight room (been there…. once had a light fixture fall out and hang by its cord when someone dropped something really heavy). It is also better not to be next to the spin room (very loud music). It is REALLY better not to share a room with spin (any class where you lie on the floor after other people sweat on the floor is not going to be ideal).
If one can have shelves to store props that will keep them in good shape longer, and make the room look nicer as well: straps, blankets, blocks… I would have spare mats at the sign in desk where people could rent them, if the studio does not want to have mats. And for core work small balls, rings…. actually I would have some small hand weights also. Sometimes I use them. Even in core work a little variety is nice.
One might also decide whether one’s area has a market for anti gravity yoga, and if so you might want to look into a space for that, but of course you need to have a room that has a ceiling that can take the weight.
I would also have a couple of nice small rooms for massage, or reflexology, or reiki, or other therapeutic treatments (which could provide rental fees) near the yoga room.
Good luck, it sounds awesome,