Being a yoga teacher and working flexibly.
The puns obviously speak for themselves.
But if we scratch beneath the surface, is it really a workable option for mums…or anyone looking for flexible working?
The working game is changing
In September 2016, Digital Mums (a social enterprise specialising in getting mums job-ready with in demand digital skills) commissioned the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) to examine the impact of motherhood on female careers and assess the potential impact that flexible working could have on female employment in the UK.
In this study, they found that:
- some 2.6 million mothers are out of the labour force, classifying themselves as stay-at-home mums (SAHMs).
- Almost 7 in 10 (68%) SAHMs living with children aged 18 and under said they would go back to work in some capacity if flexible working around childcare was an option.
- 6 in 10 (60%) working mums, living with children aged 18 and under, still do not have access to flexible work.
- Only 14% of mums living with children aged 18 and under felt their skills hadn’t been – or wouldn’t have to be – compromised at all in order to find a flexible job around childcare.
It seems like many mums are stuck between a rock and unemployment.
What options do mothers have to contribute to their financial independence, to their family income and to society as a whole?
In the UK, employers seem to be open to having the ‘flexible working’ conversation, but that conversation rarely turns into a workable reality.
The current options on the table seem to be:
- Work full-time.
- Work a full-time job in part-time hours.
- Not work
For most families, Option 4 is just not possible as it is increasingly a challenge to live comfortably on a one-person income.
Option 3 seems to be the most conflict-free step for both the employer and the mum. In a recent ‘Inc’ article, Jeff Haden explains:
“Hiring freelancers is becoming not only more acceptable but also more attractive for many businesses.
Fewer taxes, lower employee-related expenses, no health care, less office space: These are but a handful of the reasons many companies are seeking freelance writers, designers, marketers, and developers to help grow their businesses.”
Yoga Teacher: the ultimate flexible job
We find a lot of the people drawn to our Yoga Teacher Training 200hr course are mums of all ages.
We’ve had some women join our course as part of their maternity leave.
Other mums have seen their kids into high school and are finding their place in the next phase of their lives.
More than half of our current teaching faculty are parents who teach yoga around the traditional child-routine: some teach during the day, when the kids have nursery & school, whilst others can work on the evenings and weekends when their other half is on parenting-duty.
In our studio, we’ve found this flexible-working, freelancer arrangement has allowed us to maintain a long-term, healthy relationships with teachers.
Let’s weigh up the pros and cons of becoming a freelance yoga teacher:
- you are your own boss
- you can teach/work when and where you like (which can work around childcare and you can lessen your commute)
- you’ll be physically active all the time
- you can do something you are passionate about
- you can keep learning and training in various aspects of yoga
- financial security: if you don’t work you don’t get paid
- upfront costs including venue hire, mats & props, basic marketing
- can be very physical so need to ensure you don’t burn out and set aside time to take care of yourself
If you’re interested in our 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training course starting on 14 June 2017, why not come along to our completely free orientation day to meet the course tutor, Karen Kirkness, and learn more about how becoming a yoga teacher can provide you with a work-life balance.