Be Yourself But Be Consistent
When teaching your first yoga classes, youll be inclined to use your own teachers methodology. Thats normal youve just started out on this new journey. But your teachers should be a source of inspiration and you shouldnt copy them. Students will sense when your words are not your own.
Allow the class to get to know the real you. By being authentic, youll also inspire your students to open up to their true selves.
Find your own voice, style, and way of teaching. Sure, your technique might not click with all of your students, and thats okay. In time, youll build groups of like-minded yogis that attend your class because they feel a connection.
You should always keep an open mind and learn new styles and concepts. But part of your responsibility is to also keep consistency. New isnt always better. Dont make any sudden changes. If you change something in the class that youve been teaching for weeks, it can throw your students off course.
The Starbucks Of Yoga
CorePower describes itself as a mission-driven fitness company dedicated to changing lives, all while expanding to new cities every year. Since its competitor Bikram Yoga crumbled amid scandal, CorePower has climbed to the top of the yoga business pyramid.
Its co-founder, a tech entrepreneur named Trevor Tice who discovered yoga after a climbing accident, called CorePower the Starbucks of Yoga, telling a journalist in 2015 that the plan was to take the company public.
You can get inner peace and flat abs in an hour, said Tess Roering, then CorePowers chief marketing officer, in a 2016 interview with ColoradoBiz magazine, explaining the companys appeal. When CorePower was founded in 2002, yoga was more of a hippie thing the sort of thing my aunt who doesnt shave her armpits does, Ms. Roering said in that interview.
With help from Catterton Partners, a private equity firm that has also backed Equinox, Peloton and Pure Barre, CorePower became a mainstream fitness empire, stretching from suburban malls to Hollywood, where Chris Pratt and Colin Farrell reportedly have taken classes.
Early CorePower studios were some of the first in yoga to advertise showers and locker room facilities. Pictures of gurus are nowhere to be found. When teachers name poses, Sanskrit is optional English is required.
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Is It Illegal To Teach Yoga Without A Certification
Yes, it is possible to teach yoga without completing a yoga teacher certification program. It is not against the law to teach yoga without first completing a yoga training certification course. In truth, there are many yoga instructors who have not completed a yoga teacher training program . Yoga is not a completely regulated sector, which is why this is the case.
The Ability To Be Empathetic
Yoga is hard, more so for some than others. Therefore, its important that a yoga teacher be empathetic to students and patient when explaining and demonstrating poses.
A great yoga teacher will teach using intuition and emphasize the importance of how you feel in a pose rather than how you look this means that form is secondary. While principles of alignment are also critical, yoga instruction is about learning to benefit from the practice rather than achieving the perfect form.
Empathy also allows you to connect with students and better understand their challenges. The goal of instruction is as much independence as anything else. Teachers want students to feel empowered and to be able to practice at home. That wont happen if they feel awkward and inadequate during the class.
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Children Want To Laugh And Play
According to Steve Gross M.S.W., the Founder of Life Is Good Playmakers, playfulness is a superpower. In his TEDx Talk at UMass Amherst, he makes a case for play as incredibly imaginative learning. He shares, allow anything to rob you of an opportunity to engage, to connect, and to explore…thats the magic of playfulness.
If youre playing and engaging with your students, young or old, youre bound to have fun, and if youre having fun, Im willing to bet your students are too. Its a feedback loop of powerful positivity!
So teachers, I say unto you, HAVE FUN.
Demonstrate And Explain In Detail
Successful yoga teachers design a comprehensive class by building thoughtful sequences and delivering them clearly to their students. This doesnt pertain to just the asanas, but corresponding breathwork and the anatomical breakdown of the body and message behind each pose as well. Additionally, always take every opportunity to be present in your teaching, be it watching your students and offering adjustments, giving anatomical cues, or opening up about experiences relevant to your theme, etc.
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Patience Dedication And Love For Your Practice And Others
Character, patience, and love for their practice. Most of us are drawn to yoga through some hardship in our lives and are transformed through the practice of yoga. Dedication to a daily practice helps us develop the patience to endure this process of growing and it thins the ego so that we learn to soften and live from a more heartfelt place.
This is where character forms and a teacher emerges. As a teacher, were simply sharing our practice. A good teacher doesnt make it about them they make it about the practice of yoga and all the many benefits we gain when we practice yoga correctly.
Because teaching is a job where you make contact daily with people and have an interest in who they are, it helps you teach from an intuitive place where you invite them to explore their own authentic self. Yoga is ultimately about coming back to the self, and a good teacher has the ability to help students on their journey back home . Joan Hyman, E-RYT 500 Hour Yoga Alliance Certified Senior Teacher
Rehearse The Class By Yourself
Plan the sequence and rehearse it by yourself before teaching it. Talk out loud, just as if you had a group in front of you. Record yourself to detect any errors. Evaluate the tone of your voice and your use of words, which should be in-tune with the sequence.
A common mistake is to squeeze too much into the program, ending up with insufficient time. Make sure theres a natural pace for all the poses. Depending on the style youre teaching, it can be slower or faster. Alternatively, you can use the final Savasana to adjust the length of the class, by making it as long or as short as needed.
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How Teaching Yoga Makes Me A Better Leader
Ive been taking yoga classes for five years and have been teaching yoga for the past year. I completed my 200-hour teaching-training program last summer and have been enjoying connecting with students from a different perspective. An unplanned bonus: Being a yoga teacher has helped me sharpen some of my leadership skills! Here are the parallels that Ive found between leading a class and leading at work.
Goal-SettingBefore I step in front of my class, I need to sequence the poses, create a playlist, and consider any modifications for poses that may be needed. I need to pick a peak pose or goal that the entire class sequence will be leading up to. By creating an end goal, it helps to keep me focused and guides my music selection as well. Creating a goal is helpful when managing employees or overseeing a project communicating the goal to employees will help them understand how they impact the experience and motivates them to work hard.
Observation and FeedbackAnother leadership skill is being observant while teaching or leading. As a leader, you need to meet your students where they are. If a certain method or sequence does not work for them, you need to offer alternatives and be prepared to explain how/why it is beneficial to them.
Inspiration As a leader, you should strive to inspire your followers and encourage them to take risks and try out new methods. The challenge is where growth happens!
Consider Whether And How To Use Music
Used judiciously, music can uplift your students and enhance their practice. Conversely, loud or inappropriate music can interfere with their concentration, externalizing their attention rather than drawing it inward. So consider whether your teaching invites a creative soundtrack or sits better with the simple music of the breath.
I play 15 minutes of ambient walk-in music as the students arrive. Then I match the pace of my tunes to the pace of the class, as we climb to the peak of the practice and come back down the other side. If you use music with lyrics, choose carefully. I often find that English lyrics can be distracting and even irritating to students, so I typically go for instrumental tracks and Sanskrit chants.
Selecting music appropriate to the style of classfor example, flowing and rhythmic tunes for vinyasa, or ambient and spa-like songs for yin or restorativeis a great opportunity to develop your viveka and represent your own personality.
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The Way To Success At A Glance
With a clear goal in mind, persistence and passion, authenticity and integrity and trust in yourself and what you do, you are on the right track to follow in our TINT instructors footsteps. Here are the most important take-aways to become a successful yoga teacher:
Ways To Become A Better Yoga Teacher
I was called to teach yoga by a desire to share the benefits that I experienced during the course of developing and deepening my own practice.
If youre a yoga teacher, Im betting that your primary motivation for teaching is the same as mine. Almost every teacher I know arrives at their Yoga Teacher Training program with a desire to serve others by sharing the gift of yoga.
The science of yoga is describedin the Bhagavad-gita as the king of education, the most secret of all secrets, and the purest knowledge. Krishna the speaker of the Gita makes it clear that his motivation for delivering these teachings is compassion, that he speaks of this divine science out of love, and that even though he is equal to all, no one is more loved by him than one who delivers these teachings to others.
Here are seven ways you can take your experience of yoga to a higher level and elevate your unique value as a teacher:
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What Small Things Make Up Your Big Values
Your values probably look a little different to mine, and thats okay because the key to success lies in identifying whats important to you.
But despite our differences, this detail-orientated approach works for everyone it will help you to realise your values without becoming overwhelmed by them.
Do You Have To Be Skinny To Be A Yoga Teacher
There is no such thing all bodies are beautiful, and individuals from all walks of life attend yoga teacher training programs. Yoga teacher training is not need that you be a specific size or have a certain appearance, and you will find people of all shapes and sizes pursuing this career.
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Make Yourself Available Before And After Class
While I understand this might not be possible all the time , you should aim to arrive early and stay after class more often than not.
As well as giving you a chance to settle in and mentally prepare for the class ahead, it provides a fantastic opportunity to break the ice with students and introduce yourself to beginners who, probably, are a bit nervous. Plus, you need that time to discuss any injuries, health conditions or other concerns people have.
Why Do Yoga Teachers Say Namaste
Yoga practitioners commonly greet one another with the word Namaste. It is a symbolic gesture intended to convey a message of calm spirituality to the cosmos in the hopes of obtaining a favorable response in return. The majority of people say namaste as a way to express gratitude to their teachers or as a sign of relief at the conclusion of a yoga lesson.
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The Next Step Of Your Journey
For many Americans who have attended yoga class, teachers are part personal trainers and part therapists, sometimes with a dose of psychedelic trip-sitter mixed in.
Yoga teachers touch us gently when we are pouring sweat. They free us from our phones and from the rub of zippers . They inspire us to lose weight while never mentioning it. Its transcendence and transference: Youre admiring their butts, for a noble cause.
Many also teach for very little money. Part of that is cultural: Discount or donation-based classes help attract new customers, and they also fit into the spiritual ethos. At Dharma Yoga Center in New York, for example, teachers in training learn that offering donation-based classes can be a blessing on their path to the total surrender of ego.
CorePower used to ask its teachers to work for free, not just as teachers-in-training, but also at the front desk in its posh in-studio boutiques, where expensive merchandise is sold, according to a 2011 lawsuit. It now pays teachers for this labor.
The pinnacle of corporate yoga, CorePower nevertheless dresses itself up as a friendly family, calling its thousands of employees a tribe. On paper the job of the instructors is to teach. But whether they get raises and promotions often depends on how well they recruit.
Be Creative And Solution
Young Ho Kim says that the biggest challenge for him was that there was no big market for yoga when he started teaching. But instead of giving up, he used his creativity and the solution-orientedness he had gained during his studies to become a pioneer in his field and create his own market and his own yoga style.
Surely, his curiosity and experience as a former martial artist as well as his various interests, for example in Zen Buddhism, enabled him to take the best out of everything. His engineering background helped him to intelligently combine the things he loved and to solve problems.
Instead of looking for more obstacles on your way to become a successful yoga teacher rather search for solutions to overcome these obstacles.
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Dont Try To Be Popular
Ask yourself why you want to be a yoga teacher. Because you really have to say something and want to add value to peoples lives or because you want your number of followers on social media to skyrocket?
John Friend advises, Dont compromise your integrity or the quality of your teaching just to be more popular. Our mainstream culture has degenerated over the years, making yoga a superficial physical workout merely aimed at having fun.
In order to prevent the further decline of modern postural yoga, do what works best in your experience to effectively help others even if this means deviating from mainstream and the most popular way. Teach because you love the practice and so you want to share it with others, not because you think it will be cool to be idolized on a stage!, John insists.
Dont compromise your integrity or the quality of your teaching just to be more popular.
David Lurey is also sure that theres no magic pill for success since success is a relative term that is different for everyone. Measure success in smiles, personal impacts from your work and present moments realized rather than social media followers and money, is his advice.
Leave Your Stuff At The Door
You are not teaching in lieu of therapy. Ever. When you show up to teach remember that it is not about you. As teachers, we show up to facilitate experience. This means that we hold space. Everybody in your class will have a unique story and need. I tell classes all the time: “My goal is that students leave feeling better and more like themselves.” Be there to honor your students’ needs by taking your agenda out of it.
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