500 hour hatha yoga teacher training intensive programBy Sylvia Borden

Creating a focus for a yoga class can help to keep the students, as well as the instructor, engaged throughout the class. Many ideas, that surround our lives, can inspire and translate into great plans for a yoga training session. Changes in the seasons, something that happened recently in the world, or to the instructor, and life’s challenges, are all great areas to start with building a theme. A winter solstice, for example, could be used to challenge the body, mind, and spirit to a change, just like the change in the season. Taking thoughts to paper, and then destroying the piece of paper that holds those thoughts, can allow for a transition during the class that can be carried away long after the class had ended.

Lesson plans can give students a fulfillment that they may not receive from another form of exercise, and it also helps them have a personal connection to their Yoga school and teacher. This bond helps to promote a pattern that the student will take with them and encourage them to continue to come to practice.

Other thoughts on theme creation could be the use of props or poses. Using blocks and straps can help students, especially beginner yoga students, to move into a more challenging pose. The lesson plans for classes can also be based on a series of poses that focus on opening a certain body area. Hip openers and back bends are very common themes for a yoga class, since many people struggle with these areas, and the release can be very rewarding to the student. Keeping the classes unique and increasingly challenging can also lead to better attendance, as the student looks foreword to each class unveiling a new theme.

Although some yoga instructors opt to have a music free environment; music is another powerful way to set a theme for the class. Music playlists can even change throughout the class to have a multiple themes. Beginning with a more relaxing approach, and then steering towards a more intense music selection, can help a student with confidence in their practice. Music can also help to bring students out of their comfort zone, and allow them to freely enjoy the class by moving with the music.

Lesson plans can also be built on one another. After a class, there may be yoga student comments that will help to generate new ideas for the next class. This is a great opportunity to be experimental, and open-minded, to exploring new theme areas for the students, as well as for the yoga instructor.

© Copyright 2013 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

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