When you consider all of the aspects to learn during a Yoga teacher training course – the case could easily be made that becoming a masterful orator is secondary. After all, there are so many subjects to cover, when considering postures (asanas), yogic breathing techniques (pranayama), meditation, stage-by-stage relaxation, chakras, bandhas, philosophy, anatomy, and so much more. How could anyone think that communication is so important?
Once you graduate, and face your students from the front of the Yoga class, communication, in its many forms, becomes very important. Students learn in different ways and at different paces. Some students will favor learning by sight, sound, or touch. No two students are exactly alike.
Your demonstration, cueing, and assisting skills, will be challenged to their very limits, when facing a group of individuals who want to learn every detail about Yoga. So, now you see that communication is very important, but where do you start? How do you reach a group of students, and make each one of them feel as if you are addressing them personally?
It should always be remembered that each Yoga teacher began as a student. The same can be said for public speaking – a good orator has taken the time to study the craft and refine the skill. It is also worthy of note to understand that throughout history, great orators have been very educated people.
Public speaking and communication require the complete unity of mind, body, and spirit. Eloquence requires practice, refinement, and the joining of all natural resources from within. The same can be said for public speaking skills.
To communicate effectively with a group, class, or a room full of people, is one of the highest forms of demonstration in our quest for self-mastery. It is one thing to amaze a crowd with Yogic feats of physical prowess. People gladly pay to watch elite athletes on display in stadiums and coliseums.
It should be noted that people will also pay to listen to an eloquent public speaker. Each person, who envisions teaching a Yoga class, primarily as a demonstration of his or her physical feats, is missing the opportunity to help students become the best they can be.
Teaching your students to attain self-mastery can only be achieved through effective communication skills. Class time is specifically reserved for student needs. A Yoga instructor should always be a shining example of how to put one’s ego aside.
© Copyright 2008 – Paul Jerard / Aura Publications
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