So you wanna be a teacher

Many people I have observed, think to themselves “I like yoga, I ought to go into teacher training.” And sadly, many of them do. The problem is, you need a lot more than a love of yoga to be a good teacher. Teaching is not performance art. Teaching is not about you. Teaching is not an opportunity to bully others, show off, or be a control freak. Teaching requires measures of knowledge, compassion, discipline, an ability to see other points of view.

In the recession economy I have also observed studios guilty of pushing teacher training.  It’s a far site more expensive than a membership, and less arduous on the studio than a retreat in Bali.  Less planning.  Less outside costs.  But what are they planning on doing with the glut of newly minted teachers?  Before you hand over the big bucks to a teacher training program ask them what they can do for you.  Is there a sub list you can get on? Will they offer you an internship?  Will they market you for private lessons?  All too often the answer is no.

So what does this have to do with the price of eggs? Well, let’s just say you’ve been coming to class for a while. Every night when you leave your skin glows, your face smiles and your muscles exhibit a pleasant soreness. You think to yourself my friend, mother, spouse, neighbor “needs” to do this. With the very best of intentions you go off to confront them about their lack of flexibility, inability to focus or breathe, overweight body etc. etc. What’s wrong with this picture? Why do you instantly experience resistance?

Well for one thing, if the emphasis is on what’s “wrong” with the other person, in lieu of what’s “right” about yoga, you’ve lost your audience in sentence number one. So, DO invite your friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors – AND do it in a friendly detached manner, not taking it personally if they don’t want to participate. Trust me on this one, as YOU grow more lithe, more strong, more confident they will get curious and start asking “What’s the secret??” And then with excitement and appropriate emphasis, you might share your new passion over yoga!

And here is where that two to four thousand dollar teacher training may just make perfect sense for you.  If you love teaching and want to share your joy, by all means get educated! No matter how much of a natural you are at teaching, certification gives you legitimacy.  Also teacher training opens you to a network of other professionals.  Also you may learn more about the science of sequencing than you were able to inuit on your own.  You CAN expect to deepen your practice.  You should expect to learn some new things no matter how broad your yoga knowledge already is.  If you are a self directed individual who isn’t afraid to market I salute you on your journey !
Sat Nam!