When I hear the word co-op, I think about the pre-war real estate rat race up in NYC or farmer co-ops. So, when I found out that South Florida was getting its very first Yoga co-op, I had absolutely no idea what that even meant. But I love yoga and the communities that yogis build when they get together, so I was excited to learn more from co-founder Danielle Lepore – a passionate yogi of over 10 years.
Having visited yoga co-ops in other parts of the country, Lepore dreamed of bringing such a place to her home town of Fort Lauderdale. She partnered with Rachel Raab, founder of Buddha Pants, to create a space designed to not only create such a community, but to also promote the success of both yoga instructors and their students alike.
“What’s unique about the co-op is that all instructors of the co-op have a vote in the running and decision making for The Buddha Farm,” says Lepore.
Instructors work like independent contractors – they set their class schedules themselves and have the freedom to teach their classes in their preferred style of yoga. The teachers also keep proceeds from the class, minus a flat fee of $50 that goes towards the operating costs of The Buddha Farm.
Students benefit from the co-op’s style of operation as well, as class prices are able to be competitively priced. A single class costs $15 and a class pack of 10 is $120 with classes offered daily. Ranging from beginner’s classes to the more challenging, The Buddha Farm’s instructors have backgrounds in various yoga practices, including pre-natal and acro yogas.
The Buddha Farm’s facilities also feature an outdoor courtyard – a space available to its members want to hang out, relax, and to connect with other members. It’s also available to be reserved for special wellness & holistic events, which are frequently hosted.