By Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, YACEP
You must have a deep passion to teach if you are considering Yoga instructor certification. This is because you will be required to lead students through Yoga classes and help them find their inner peace. In order to do this, you must be able to make a connection with your students and understand their needs. You must also be able to create a safe and welcoming environment for all students.
About Lesson Plans
Firstly, some styles teach from templates, which are prearranged sequences. As a matter of fact, I am fine with teachers who work from templates. However, some veteran teachers don’t want to stifle creativity. There is a belief that “Before you can teach a yoga class, you need to develop a lesson plan.” In fact, lesson plan development is a personal exercise in creativity. In fact, lesson plans determine, which poses to include, how to sequence them, and how long each pose is held. You also need to decide how to adapt to different student abilities. Once you have a lesson plan, you can start practicing to perfect your technique. Developing a lesson plan is an important part of your personal growth as a Yoga instructor. A good lesson plan will help you keep your students engaged and make sure that they are learning and growing with your class material.
Stages of a Modern Class
In the first place, modern Yoga classes revolve around fitness goals. Therefore, it is important to start with an opening, then a warm-up, then move on to the main body of the lesson, and finally end with a closing. Additionally, the warm-up should be designed to gradually get the students’ heart rates up and prepare their bodies for the stretches and poses that they will be doing. Likewise, the main body of the lesson is often focused on teaching the students the poses and stretches that you want them to learn. Then, the cool-down should be designed to help the students relax their muscles and bring their heart rates down.
Why Do We Become Teachers?
There are many reasons why we teach Yoga. For some of us, it is a way to share our love of Yoga with others. We want to help people experience the joy, peace, and benefits that yoga can bring into their lives. For others of us, teaching is a way to deepen our own practice. Therefore, by instructing students, we also focus our attention and connect with our breath.
Helping the Next Generation
It is important to encourage the next generation of Yoga students. There are many ways to do this. One way is to get certified as a Yoga instructor. This certification will allow you to teach Yoga classes to students of all levels. You will be able to show them the depth of Yogic knowledge, and you will be able to help them improve their practice. Another way to encourage the next generation of students is to set a good example. Show them that you are committed to your own practice, and offer them advice and encouragement when they need it.
© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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Teaching Yoga Students about Attachment
By: Virginia Iversen, M.Ed
How do we begin teaching Yoga students about attachment? According to the Buddha, attachment is one of the primary causes of human suffering. Attachment can come in many forms. We can be attached to romantic partners, to a Guru, Yoga teacher, and even to our own internal image of ourselves. The level and depth of our attachment is like an intricate spider’s web.
As the cherished internal image, dream of the perfect career, spiritual teacher, or romantic partner fades into the distance, depression and despair may rapidly ensue. By offering your Yoga students some of the timeless wisdom of the Yoga Sutras and other classic spiritual texts during class, you will help to enable them to sail through the shifting tides of their lives with less anguish.
This is one of the critical inner practices of Yoga. According to the Bhagavad Gita, one of the antidotes to attachment is generosity. If we pause to contemplate our attachment to objects, goals or other people, it makes common sense that expanding our inner state or bhav through the practice of generosity will ease the bonds of attachment.
Stages of Personal Growth
For example, if you have a student in your class who is a solid intermediate Yoga practitioner and wants to take a yoga instructor certification course, you may have to gently persuade your student that he or she needs some more practice before engaging in an advanced training program. This may be quite easy, understandable and come as no surprise to your student.
Generosity of Spirit
In this case, recommending that your student be generous with time, by allowing his or her practice to deepen and expand at a natural pace, will help to alleviate the suffering of being overly attached to signing up for an advanced level Yoga teacher training program, right now! Truly speaking, the root antidote to attachment begins with a sense of ease and generosity towards ourselves as Yoga practitioners in all areas of our lives. Practicing this sense of ease and generosity of spirit with ourselves can help to loosen the bonds of attachment, ease suffering and fill our hearts with joy and unconditional love. With that said, teaching Yoga students may be the most rewarding work of all.
© Copyright – Virginia Iversen / Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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