U.S. Markets close in 5 hrs 14 mins

How a boutique fitness startup is shaking up the $12 billion yoga industry

McKenzie DeGroot
Production Assistant

The size of the yoga industry has nearly doubled in the last decade, generating annual revenue of $12.1 billion in 2019 according to IBIS World.

Y7 Studio is one company gaining from the industry push, nearly doubling its studio count in 2018, and projecting to increase the studio count by another 50% in 2019.

“It’s been driven almost purely by demand,” Y7 CEO Sarah Larson-Levey told Yahoo Finance’s YFi PM. “It’s been really incredible to look at this boutique market that we’re seeing trending up in the city, and around the country, and to be a part of that has been really, really special.”

Perception

When it comes to yoga, the perception tends to differ by the individual.

“Yoga has been traditionally thought of as something that comes with all these prerequisites, right?” Larson-Levey said. “‘I have to be flexible, I have to be spiritual, I have to have all this time to devote to the practice,’ and that’s not what we do at all.”

She described what makes her company Y7 Studio different than what one would typically expect from a yoga-focused platform.

“All of our classes are 60 minutes, they’re heated, they’re in the dark, and you’re moving constantly,” she said.

How one startup is shaking up the $12B yoga industry (Courtesy: Y7 Studio)

Fitness Space

The fitness space as a whole is very competitive, but Larson-Levey isn’t too concerned.

“What we’ve done with Y7 is make sure the experience is really really consistent,” she said. “We offer two types of classes only, so every client who’s coming to whichever studio is closest to them, they know what they’re getting exactly.”

“The space is definitely getting crowded,” she added. “There are new studios popping up all over the place, every day there’s sort of a new concept, and I think what we’re going to see is the ones who don’t have a clear point of view and authenticity, kind of fade out”.

In 5 years, Y7 Studio has opened 12 locations, with further expansions planned across New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Close to 1,500 people taking their classes every day. The yoga platform has also seen a 20% increase in comparable studio revenue in 2019.

“What we’ve done with Y7 is make sure the experience is really really consistent,” Larson-Levey said. “We offer two types of classes only, so every client who’s coming to whichever studio is closest to them, they know what they’re getting exactly”.

McKenzie DeGroot is a producer at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @degrootmckenzie

Follow Yahoo Finance on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Flipboard, SmartNews, LinkedIn, YouTube, and reddit.