I started teaching right away. You don’t want to wait and wait for a good offer to knock on your door. Instead, you need to create your own opportunity. Teaching is a skill that needs practicing, beyond the asana part when you become a yoga teacher. Chances are good that you won’t teach what you necessarily practice. What do I mean by this? You may, for instance, have been practicing a hardcore Ashtanga sequence but end up teaching a soft gentle yoga class. Be open to this. When you get the chance to expand your knowledge and skill, do it!
So how do you gain recognition as a new yoga teacher?
Offer some free classes or a trial period, so that your friends and community can join and see how they like it. It’s time for you to share your passion! Personally, I have my own website (jessyogajourney.com), and my video which is for non-profit purposes.
✔ Attend other teachers’ classes.
This is not to copy what they do, but to observe and apply new techniques to your own style. There’s a variety of great teaching methods everywhere. In case you don’t want to pay a drop-in fee, try YouTube or Instagram. There are some fantastic videos there. Many good teachers don’t just post stuff, they share their knowledge and techniques as well.
✔ Practice other yoga styles like Hatha, Flow, Yin, Rocket, or even meditation.
There are more opportunities available when you can teach a variety of styles and are able to apply it to all levels of students. In my own experience, most students are beginners, having zero background in yoga. Sometimes we have to redesign and modify our classes to suit our students’ goals.
✔ Read, read and … read.
There are tons of books available from both online and offline stores, from hard copy to electronic versions. Yoga is 90% practice and 10% theory. As a teacher, it’s good to always be prepared and ready to answer questions and give advice or information when needed. The topics could be physical body issues, healthy diet and nutrition, or even frequently asked general yoga questions.
Rest! You need a rest day – a day to do absolutely nothing.
Put aside time for yourself to balance your energy, whether it’s good positive or bad negative energy. Bring yourself back to the center. Spend more time with your inner self.
✔ Take good care of yourself.
How can someone trust you if you looked ill and weak? Presenting a low energy image is not a good idea when you want to advertise yourself as a yoga teacher. I’ve often been asked if I’m a yoga teacher or a fitness trainer before introducing myself. This doesn’t mean you need to have a six pack or muscles in order to look good. It’s just overall health, wellness, and happiness that shine outwards from within you.
Two years ago I taught as a part-time job and still did all the above. Now I’m taking it seriously as a main career … I still do everything the same as before, yet more intently. You need to have fun with your job. When you are in love with what you do you want to improve yourself because it’s fun.
Just as when playing a video game, if we don’t like the game, we tend to give up easily. If we really like it, we will fight ‘till the end no matter how hard it is!