So you have put in hours of studying asanas, pranayama (breathing exercises ), the body’s anatomy, and philosophy or Eight Limbs of Yoga. You’ve also got a fire burning in you to teach others the wonders Yoga can bring. Now the question is, “Where do I begin?”
If you’re fortunate enough to have received your certification from a school that assists their graduates with teaching at the studio, jump right into it and offer your services wherever it’s available on their schedule. You may even have the opportunity to substitute for teachers on vacation or who are out due to illnesses.
But that can be a problem if you have a day job. So here, the opportunities are endless. You can rent a space at local gyms, studios, churches, schools, and community centers. The next question is probably where do I advertise & how much should I charge? With social media, there is an abundance of areas to advertise such as sites like Facebook & Instagram. You can also use posters in local markets, community centers, local cable TV, local papers & of course, word of mouth.
Be willing to begin by teaching for free. Personally, I rented space at a local church for a small rental fee, so I only charged five dollars to help cover the costs. But when you’re starting out, you shouldn’t be in it for the money! You hopefully became a teacher to share your passion & guide students to healthier and happier lifestyles.
1) Overcoming the jitters
One of the biggest obstacles to being a new teacher is the nervousness! The self-doubts you may be experiencing! The first thing is to just be yourself. Students feel much more at ease when you’re not trying to be somebody you aren’t. So stay true to yourself. Be confident. You devoted a considerable amount of time to become an educated teacher, so believe in yourself. Trust the wisdom you gained!
2) Stay inspired & be creative
What I do is constantly read up on as much as I can on all aspects of yoga, attend classes at various studios, & periodically take workshops. I use different aspects of what I learn by applying them to my classes so I don’t lose students.
They will keep coming back if you change things up a bit, so make sure your classes don’t become dull & boring!
3) Have a sense of humor
Works for me! I always add a little humor periodically joking a little here & there. But don’t overdo it by trying to be a comedian. A sense of humor adds a human element to your style of teaching & you don’t come off as trying to be a guru.
4) Interact with your students
This is a great tool. Before & after my classes, I interact with my students. Learn a little bit about their interests. It will also aid you when putting together your class plans week to week.
Expect to have to deviate from the class plan you had prepared. Each class, your students will vary in their experience in yoga & fitness. You may have one class where you have numerous energized students & another class where many students have various physical limitations. Always be prepared to improvise accordingly.
Overall, if you’re just starting out, believe in yourself, have patience, don’t expect instant success, be prepared, stay confident, don’t fear failure, we all make mistakes, stay passionate about the wisdom you’re sharing & most of all have fun!