A yoga teacher’s overarching intention in any student-teacher relationship is to assist students in creating a lasting relationship with yoga, for them to cultivate a foundational yoga knowledge that eventually leads them to be their own teacher and enjoy their personal practice in their own home.
As a yoga teacher, it can be difficult to prioritize this intention—especially with the dozens of objectives we can have that vary from day to student to teaching style to philosophy. Use these four tips as a launching point to help your yogis create lasting personal practices.
1. Teach private yoga sessions.
Helping practitioners establish their own personal, home yoga practice is one of the best reasons to offer one-on-one private yoga sessions. Teaching private yoga lessons allows yoga teachers to share in this goal and also do meaningful private work that caters to the individual yogi’s needs and nuances.
2. Teach to the individual in a group setting.
By and far, the most common introduction people have to yoga is in group-led classes. Although our intentions as teachers in group classes vary and are vast, a universal objective is to create lifelong yoga practitioners.
In a group setting, it’s essential to know your students, to give them options and explanations so they can begin to create their own yoga experience, and to give them permission to adjust as needed once they’ve created a foundational understanding of their yoga and their bodies.
Create well-designed sequences that educate students on the elements of a solid yoga practice.
3. Share the benefits and the content to get yogis practicing on their own.
Sharing knowledge with your students can be done in numerous ways.
You can share the goal of creating a home yoga practice by nurturing strong yoga practitioners. You can create continuing education opportunities, like workshops, trainings, retreats, and group-led series themed on creating a personal practice (a sadhana).
You can also share valuable content with your community in the form of blog posts, audio teachings, social media posts, and email newsletters.
4. Show your teachers how to help and encourage their students to cultivate their own yoga practice.
Many yoga teachers are now yoga educators—they are sharing yoga as a discipline in foundational trainings, advanced trainings, and supplemental trainings. One of the best ways we can help students is by empowering teachers.
We can elevate our purpose as yoga teachers by returning to a fundamental goal of creating lifelong yoga practitioners out of our students.
As yoga teachers, we have the collective sankalpa or intention of elevating our students to becoming their own true teachers in their yoga practice. What considerations do you keep in mind to help keep this at the front of your focus while teaching?