10 Ways to Elevate Your Yoga Teaching

A yoga teacher’s role expands far beyond leading asana (physical practice).

 

Teaching yoga is about connecting with your students and guiding them on a journey to wellness, both physically and mentally. As yoga teachers we hold space for our students, meeting them exactly where they are in the moment they walk into class.

 

This can be a big responsibility, but by connecting with the inner teacher & wisdom that lives within all of us, we can foster nurturing, supportive containers and create sacred space for healing & awakening.

 

Here are 10 ways to elevate your yoga teaching:

 

1. Deepen Your Practice

We are always students. To be a better teacher, you must be a dedicated student first. Delve into your own practice regularly, exploring different styles, poses, and philosophies. This personal growth will reflect in your teaching.

 

2. Embrace Continued Learning

The yoga world is vast and ever-evolving. Keep attending workshops, courses, and retreats to expand your knowledge and stay up to date on your yoga education. We offer continuing education courses in meditation, prenatal & postnatal yoga, ayurveda, yoga philosophy and more. If you are a RYT-200 with the Yoga Alliance, you have to complete a continuing education requirement every 3 years but it can be beneficial to enroll in a continuing ed class at least once a year!

 

3. Get to Know Your Students

Each student is unique, so take the time to understand their abilities, limitations, and goals. Tailor your classes to suit their needs, offering variations and adjustments when necessary.

 

4. Effective Communication

Develop strong communication skills. Practice your cueing, use simple language, and offer meaningful cues to guide your students’ alignment and breath. It may be helpful to record yourself teaching (either in class or by yourself!) to fine tune your word choice and cadence. These might seem like subtle details but they can completely transform the space you hold for your students.

 

5. Create a Welcoming Environment

Make your yoga space a haven of peace and positivity. Foster a sense of community, where students feel safe and supported in their practice. Learn about how to use trauma informed language and sequencing in our 15 HR Trauma Informed Yoga Teacher Training.

 

6. Practice Mindfulness

Encourage mindfulness on and off the mat (for both your students and yourself!) It is easier to teach your students to be present, to listen to their bodies, and to cultivate self-awareness when you are embodying this in your own daily life. Yoga is an eight-limbed path after all, and involves so much more than the physical asana.

 

7. Be Patient and Compassionate

Not every student will master a pose on the first try. Patience and compassion are your allies. Offer encouragement, and remind them that yoga is a journey, not a destination. Yoga is also about meeting our body wherever it is moment to moment, and not being attached to the outcome! Channel that vairagya 🙂

 

8. Adjust and Modify

Learn how to give gentle adjustments and offer modifications. These small gestures can make a world of difference in your students’ experience. If you’re giving hands-on adjustments, be sure to always ask for consent beforehand.

 

9. Share Wisdom, Not Just Poses

Yoga is not just about physical postures. Incorporate yoga philosophy into your classes, sharing insights on life, mindfulness, and self-discovery. Connect with your authentic teaching voice and share what feels real to you — speaking from personal experience is a plus!

 

10. Self-Care is Key

As a yoga teacher, remember to take care of yourself physically and mentally. You can’t pour from an empty cup!

 

Remember, the path of a yoga teacher is an ongoing, ever-evolving journey. We are always students. Try and embrace your yoga teaching journey with an open heart and an open mind ❤️

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