Truckee Yoga Collective Acts Quickly, Sees Immediate Support from Students
With no time to prepare, Truckee Yoga Collective co-owners, Meghan Ruiz and Hawley Kobayashi, adjusted to guidelines of the pandemic as they prioritized the health of their students and staff.
“It all went very fast from encouraging social distancing to the mandated shelter in place,” Ruiz said.
Initially, they began working ideas for limiting class sizes to keep six feet between students at all times. They meticulously cleaned the studio including props, floors and common areas after every class until Monday, March 16, when they closed to the public and reopened the next day online.
Strategic Pivots in Operations
Truckee Yoga Collective hosted their first virtual yoga class on Tuesday, March 17, as a way to continue serving their new and existing membership.
They hosted the same high-quality, thoughtful yoga classes using Zoom Video Conferencing and reduced their pricing: drop-ins for $10, community classes for $5, and virtual 10-class packs for $80.
“We were so happy to see our students immediately join us online. We have had feedback that they are really enjoying being able to join a class virtually,” Ruiz said.
After switching to a virtual platform, they saw members joining multiple classes per day and students that visit their studio when they are in town attending virtual classes from a distance.
Moving classes online as soon as possible saved their business in the sense that they lost very few members after closing the studio. Those who did not renew memberships did so for financial reasons, not because they couldn’t access the studio.
Tips for Small Business Owners
Build Up Savings & Take Advantage of Resources: We never know when disaster will hit. Avoid taking out loans or accruing debt, if possible. There are so many resources available to us right now. Take advantage, so that you can reopen for your customers when you’re able to.
Be Transparent with Staff & Students: Reach out to your students and let them know what you need – whether it’s maintaining membership, donations or other ways to sustain during this time, like using gift certificates. People want to help!
Looking Forward: We're in this Together
Prioritizing wellness and self-care during challenging times isn’t always easy. Virtual classes made yoga more accessible to more people more often, some students began practicing more than ever.
“We hope students will see the value in their regular yoga practice even more so during this time and feel more dedicated once this all ends,” Ruiz said.
They’re considering continuing virtual class offerings for their membership after resuming in-studio operations after receiving such a positive response.
“We have always prioritized our membership. Looking forward, nothing will change in regards to how we take care of them.”
Since implementing Zoom classes things continue to run smoothly online. As a teacher, Ruiz says it makes her so happy to be able to do what she loves during these uncertain times.
"I am so grateful to still be able to teach, it is keeping me centered and connected to my passion."