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Yoga Instructors: Would you like to network with fellow teachers worldwide? Here is a resource to find answers for every possible question regarding continuing education, improving your classes, student safety and much more.

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Questions About Yoga Training for Instructors and Teaching Yoga Sessions
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Forum Posts: 8
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April 27, 2015
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June 22, 2013 - 9:15 pm
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Q: I started doing shoulderstand (5mns), plough (1minute) and headstand (1.5 min) 6 times a week in tha last few weeks. After that I had a feeling of sore neck and needed to do neck roll more often to release the tention. What helps the most is hot water bottle though. Could I possibly develop thoracic outlet syndrome if I continued that way?

A: Yes, it is possible that these inversions are causing compression in your spine and possible thoracic outlet syndrome.

To verify this, you need to see a physician, chiropractor or specialist as soon as possible.

It makes sense that heat would help in the recovery from this injury.

Neck rolls should only be performed slowly on the front part of the circle.

Safest of all are linear neck movements without force.

The back tilted neck circle can pinch nerves in the spinal column and cause more problems.

Q: I asked three independent yoga teachers and they approved the way I perform all the poses. How many times a week do you think I should perform the poses to not harm my neck?

A: If you stop practicing these inversions, and you have a full recovery, what does that tell you?

If these Yoga teachers are qualified to give you a medical opinion based upon an examination, MRI or an Xray, you may want to listen to their medical opinions.

Anyone can perform an inverted asana correctly and still pinch nerves in the spine.

You should stop inversions that cause compression, until you are pain free.

There are many inversions to choose from that don't pinch the nerves of the spine.

Downward Dog, Dolphin and Wide Legged Forward Bend are good options, but don't put your head on a block or the floor, while practicing these asanas.

Let your head hang free and there will be no compression.

When you are pain free, you could experiment with mild compression by using blocks in the above-mentioned asanas.

However, a medical opinion and an examination is needed to find the exact source of the problem and I am reasonably sure that any physician of sound mind would ask you to stop inversions that cause spinal compression.

Q: Many people ask me to do one to one yoga sessions. Do you have any advice on that? I worked with one lady who turned up not to be reliable (she cancelled lesson 10 minutes before the due time etc) and at the end I stopped giving her lessons. Do you use any type of 'contract' to make sure people don't use your good will?

A: The best way to insure that new students show up for private lessons is to establish a policy where deposits are required.

Some Yoga teachers request new students to make a prepayment of 25, 50, or 100%.

Regular clients, who are always responsible, and show up on time can come without a pre-payment.

However, some students will never respect your time unless they make a prepayment.

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Forum Posts: 8
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June 22, 2013 - 9:22 pm
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Q: I have chosen Yoga and depression as my essay topic. Since I do not have any first hand experience with yoga and depression, all my knowledge comes from books and articles that I have read on effects of yoga on stress and depression. When I write my essay, is it ok if it is not based on my own experience or opinions, but on research that I have read? I will, of course, site all my sources.

A: That will be fine and we completely understand.

Q: Please advise what is the most common way to send you videos electronically? Is there any website on which I can upload the videos?

A: Third party data transfer services are the best option.

Two of best of them are: http://www.dropbox.com or http://www.yousendit.com

You can upload all of your exams, papers and video together, which prevents any confusion on our end.

If you send exams by Dropbox, please be sure to enable your files to share with my Email address.

You upload to them and they will contact me.

At that point, we will download them from our side.

Q: I am able convert my questions and answers in PDF.

A: This is fine.

Q: Also, I would like to know how much time it takes to evaluate and receive the certificate? I am very excited to start my new career, my company is already looking forward to my completion of this course and start my beginer's sessions.

A: It will take three weeks for grading, if we receive an exam today and then we mail it.

Average time for First class mail to Australia is and additional 10 to 14 days.

We do have an express grading option at: https://www.aurawellnesscenter.com/store/White-Glove-Services/

Q: Which companies in Australia can give me insurance?

A: Our Australian graduates prefer the following two insurance companies: https://aon.com.au/australia/ and https://www.iict.com.au/

Q: I understand that after finishing this course, I have to take CPR course and insurance before I start my journey as a yoga teacher?

A: You don't have to take CPR, but I would advise it because you are working with groups of people.

Some health clubs may require it before hiring you.

Q: Is there any insurance company which protects us worldwide or each comapny is country specific?

A: I wish there was a insurance company that covered Yoga teachers worldwide.

Lloyd's of London has the largest reach, but they under write for other companies on an International level.

From what I understand, insurance law is complicated and there are many differences from one country to another.

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June 22, 2013 - 9:35 pm
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Q: Do you have any advice for me? Maybe a series of postures to do, or to avoid? I have asked my local instructor and her advice is to not do what hurts... Well, that answer just didn't work for me. I am determined to not let this hold me back.

A: Firstly, I feel that your teacher gave you sound advice.

However, determining the difference between joint pain, pain due to pressure on a nerve, and muscular pain, takes time, study, and some painful personal experiences.

The point is to determine the exact cause of your pain and proceed from there.

Has anyone mentioned that what you describe sounds like sciatic nerve pain, which is often caused by pressure on the sciatic nerve due to the baby's growth?

This usually starts in the second trimester and sometimes once a nerve has been pinched it can cause sporadic pain afterward.

I'm not saying this is the exact reason, but it does fit the description.

Therefore, you should get the opinion of a local chiropractor or doctor who comes highly recommended by other women.

Additionally, I have a few questions:

1. Which postures cause you serious pain?

2. Have you ever tried a hip opening sequence for relief?

https://www.yogajournal.com/practice/2753

2a. If so, what were the results?

I would think the Yoga Journal hip opening sequence might help, but need your feedback, because they are worthless if they create more pain.

You may want to start out with a handful of asanas and work around the series until you find the precise asanas that make you feel great.

Here are some resources that you may find useful.

https://www.webmd.com/back-pain/ss/slideshow-visual-guide-to-sciatica

https://www.massagetoday.com/mpacms/mt/article.php?id=14379

Lastly, I have two points:

1. A consultation with a local chiropractor or doctor is likely to result in finding the exact cause and I my hunch about the exact cause may be completely wrong.

2. A Yoga teacher who knows how to work around pain and who knows it's time to get off the mat and make adjustments instead of hurting herself is extremely wise.

We are all human and we learn from some of the most painful experiences.

Life would be so easy, if we could learn from the pain of others, but that's not the way it works.

Learn from your experience and develop your own compassionate teaching method.

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June 22, 2013 - 10:00 pm
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Q: I will be attending the ACSM Annual meeting for my Clinical Exercise Physiology Registration and wondered if any of those credits would transfer?

A: Yes, absolutely. The industry standard for Yoga is 10 hours of continuing education per year. You can definitely carry this knowledge into your teaching.

Q: Also there is a Adhikara Kula workshop with Gabriel Halpern in my neighborhood coming up which is 20 credits and $450 (for me very expensive right now). I would love to get your input on if you have any knowledge or experience with this and if you think it would be worthwhile.

A: Gabriel Halpern has a good reputation. He has over 40 years of Yogic knowledge and studied with BKS Iyengar in Pune. He also has a diversified background in healing and philosophy. My feeling is that you will learn a lot. If you attend, learn all you can.

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