By Kimaya Singh
How important is a home yoga practice for yoga teachers? Most aspiring yoga teachers were introduced to the practice through a local yoga studio, and their enjoyment of the experience led them to become a teacher of the art themselves. Practicing yoga in a group atmosphere is an enriching thing that many people come to depend on, but future yoga teachers must make a point to maintain a daily practice of their own, in private.
Some people have more social skills than others. These more socially inclined people are the most likely to depend heavily on the support and routine of their group to get them through their yoga practice. Social people are also some of the most likely to feel compelled to share the healing and health that yoga has to offer with the world by becoming a yoga teacher themselves. This is a noble desire that has served to bring yoga into almost all areas of the world. A weakness that these individuals usually need to work on is their own solitary practice, and for many of them this will prove to be somewhat difficult at first.
When you take a yoga class from a local teacher, you learn what their brand of yoga is. Students follow their teacher through the poses and techniques, and the teacher imparts their own unique understanding of what yoga is to their students. As the students learn and grow under their teacher’s influence and guidance, the seeds of their own yoga begin to take root. Once this takes place, students begin learning from each other in the class as well, and everyone learns and grows together. This warm atmosphere of a mindful community and fellowship is what draws so many people to take the path of becoming a yoga teacher, and it is a beautiful thing.
So why must aspiring teachers practice alone, if group yoga is such a good thing? The reason is simple; when the student becomes the teacher, they will teach a yoga style that is all their own. If one only knows how to practice with their teacher, they become students of their teacher’s yoga, not masters of their own. When one takes up the responsibility of becoming a teacher of others, they must look deep down inside and find their own unique expression of truth. It’s the essential quality of a teacher.
This is why so many people fear practicing a on their own. They don’t know where to start, or they fear somehow doing something wrong and failing. Home yoga practice compels teachers to see themselves plainly for what they are, while taking possession of one’s practice. As a result their form of yoga becomes more genuine, and that is what students are often be drawn to. In many ways they aren’t seeking asanas at all; they are seeking the unique expression of the Divine Source that is in you. For this reason, independent home yoga practice is essential for the principles of all teacher training courses to take hold.
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