Teaching Yoga by Example: Cultivate Patience

Teaching Yoga by Example: Cultivate Patience

teaching yoga for healingBy: Virginia Iversen, M.Ed.

How can you start teaching Yoga by example? One of the most transformational aspects of Yoga “on the mat,” is how this practice transforms our lives “off the mat.” As a professional teacher, you are probably well aware of how your own practice of asanas, pranayama exercises, and breathing techniques has transformed your own life. This may have been one of your main reasons for pursuing a teacher certification so that you are able to share the profound physical and psychological benefits of this practice with others in your community.


Teaching Yoga by Example and Philosophy

You may have also enrolled in a Yoga teacher certification program, to deepen your own experience the myriad of benefits that this ancient and time-tested practice offers to regular practitioners. Additionally, you may be interested in exploring the classical Indian scriptures.

There are many resources, such as the Yoga Vasistha and Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras, that form the foundation for many of the various forms and styles that are practiced today. As you begin to explore and understand more of the layers of profound wisdom that are found in the pages of these classical texts, you will be able to offer this wisdom back to your students.

Modeling Wisdom

An important aspect of teaching Yoga classes that is often overlooked is the modeling of the wisdom of classical Yogic texts by the teacher during class. In other words, the teacher ideally models many of the noble qualities enumerated in the scriptural texts from around the world, including patience and compassion, during his or her class. For example, imagine the irony of being short-tempered with one of your students if he or she cannot stay up in Headstand for a full three minutes!

Let’s just say, that this level of impatience would certainly not be in alignment with the advice of the ancient sages and seers of India. By personally modeling the noble qualities and virtuous actions recommended by the classical Yogic texts during your class, you will provide a genuine and tangible example for your students to follow. Many of these noble qualities and virtues, such as honesty, generosity, and patience, are not necessarily valued today. Teaching Yoga by example is under-appreciated, but beneficial for students.


The Spirit of Ancient Texts

Certainly being dishonest is not valued either. Yet, getting ahead and multi-tasking at all times of the day and night are held in much higher regard today. There used to be time for slowing down enough to be patient with oneself and those around us.

Behavioral experts estimate that 93% of our communication is nonverbal. According to their research, approximately 38% of our communication is through the tone and cadence of our voice. Meanwhile, the other 55% is through our body language. A paltry 7% of our communication is through the words that we use!

As a professional Yoga instructor, this means that embodying the spirit of the ancient scriptures, including fostering an internal state of patience and compassion for your students, is of the utmost importance. Over time, your students will learn to be patient with themselves. At the same time, students learn to be kind to each other by watching the patient and kind way that you treat them.

With a consistent and dedicated Yoga practice, the wisdom revealed in the ancient scriptures will begin to arise from within the hearts and minds of your students. This will allow your students to truly integrate the practice of Yoga “on the mat,” into their everyday actions in the world.

About the Author

Virginia Iversen, M.Ed, has been practicing and studying the art of Yoga for over thirty years. She lives in Woodstock, New York, where she specializes in writing customized articles that are 100% unique.


© Copyright – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

Are you considering how to become a yoga instructor? See our selection of affordable meditation and yoga teacher certification courses.

Are you interested in Trauma-Informed Yoga Certification?

Do you want to become a mindfulness meditation teacher?

See our selection of Yoga instructor courses and continuing education courses; please visit the following link.


Click here to see our online Yoga Nidra teacher training course.

Online Yoga Course for Anxiety Relief

Are you an experienced teacher looking for YACEP credits or continuing education?

Subscribe to Our Newsletter for Special Discounts and New Products

Related Resources


52 Essential Principles of Yoga Philosophy to Deepen Your Practice

by Rina Jakubowicz.


A Relaxing Way to De-stress, Re-energize, and Find Balance

by: Gail Boorstein Grossman


by B.K.S. Iyengar

TEACHING YOGA: Essential Foundations and Techniques

By Mark Stephens

Related Posts

Teaching Yoga: The Best Methods for Observing Yoga Classes

How to Maximize Safety in Yoga Classes


Leave a Comment

Your Cart