For decades, yoga institutes were for earnest practitioners wanting to break from the 200 hour certification mills and other corporate shenanigans driven by the biggest players in the fitness industry.
But just because something may be good in Goa, perfect in Pune or brilliant in Bihar does not mean it will be great in Britain.
Trading laws are different in each country, no matter how 'transnational' academics like Mark Singleton tell us they think yoga is today.
Many institutes have been trading for some time. In the UK, it is the job of Companies House, the United Kingdom's registrar of companies and executive agency of the UK governments Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to enforce rules that prevent companies from trading as institutes without the proper checks.
After a review, the gap in regulation has been closed and there are now possibly no yoga institutes left in Britain.
Notes for editors:
The following companies have recently been refused permission to use the word 'Institute' by the companies regulator in the UK, Companies House:
- Minded Yoga Limited (formerly 'The Minded Institute') No. 10111652. Directors: Heather Mason
- Yoga For Healthy Lower Backs Ltd (formerly 'The Yoga For Healthy Lower Backs Institute') No. 08169257. Directors: Anna Semlyen, Alison Trewhela
- Clear Mind International Ltd. (formerly Clear Mind Institute) No. 10437963. Directors: Cathy-Mae Karelse
- Iyengar Institutes (Avon, Bradford and District, Cambridge, Dorset and Hampshire, Dublin, East of Scotland, Foyle Northern Ireland, Sussex, Kent, Liverpool, Manchester, Midland Counties, Munster, North East, North East London, Oxford, South West, Surrey, Maida Vale, Birmingham)
Approval to use the word 'institute' is normally only given to organisations that typically undertake research at the highest level or are professional bodies of the highest standing. Factors include:
- A good reason for establishing the institute;
- whether the activities are regulated or unregulated;
- Relevance and nature of support from other organisations;
- Offering its own qualifications, training or activities that support qualifications provided by other bodies such as universities or colleges;
- Activities supported by or associated with a government body;
Written views of one or more relevant bodies are required.
- In February 2013, as part of Business regulation and Company law reform, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills conducted a consultation, and the outcome on Company and business names, called the 'Red Tape Challenge' was that all respondents agreed regulation is required in this area to protect the public from possible harm. The majority agreed that, although regulations could be simplified and the ‘sensitive’ words list reduced, following consultation, the word, 'INSTITUTE' was retained on the list.