By Sanjeev Patel, CYT 500
What is the best advice for new yoga teachers? When all the training and preparation is complete, the final step to becoming a full fledged yoga teacher is to successfully teach that first class. Even with all the groundwork laid out, the first classes can be daunting. Paulji once told me, “Embrace this moment, soon you will be so busy teaching your students that you will forget to be nervous.”
The first thing is to keep the focus on the students, not you. At the end of the day it’s not about you; it’s all about them. By keeping the right attitude and paying the utmost attention to being of service to others, a lot of pressure to perform perfectly is eliminated. This leads to classes that are satisfying and fulfilling for the students that will hopefully make up your long term clientele.
Advice for New Yoga Teachers – Be Yourself
In addition to always keeping your focus on being of service to others, also strive to be genuine. There are lots of yoga classes out there and the thing that’s going to set yourself and your class apart is the unique perspective and style that you as an individual yoga teacher have. No one sees your students in quite the same way as you do, and for some people your insight and perspective is going to fit their physical, spiritual and emotional needs perfectly. Not everyone is going to find your own personal brand of yoga to be a good fit for them, and that’s okay. You want to attract a clientele of students who are like minded and share the same goals and style as you do. You can’t make a class fit everybody, and if you tried, your teaching style would be generic and uninspiring. Be yourself, and let your students do the same. This builds up a clientele that’s like a supportive community!
Gentle Advice for New Yoga Teachers and Interns
As a new yoga teacher, you may feel like you need to always have all the answers all of the time. Instead, view teaching as a learning opportunity for yourself as well. Looking at your time with each student as an opportunity for learning keeps teachers from becoming rigid and makes them more open minded. It also makes the teacher seem more confident and capable as well, because only those who are confident and self-possessed will be open to learning from their own students. You might be all nerves inside, but your students will see you as a confident and capable instructor who is self-assured and secure in their knowledge. Talk about getting off on the right foot!
Completing your yoga teacher training is not the end of your educational experience by any means, and as a new yoga teacher your first classes will be rich opportunities for learning and growth as an instructor. This part of your career only happens once, so be sure to live in the moment and enjoy it! If you’re having a good time, you can bet your students are too.
© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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Thanks for this valuable guideline.