Become a yoga teacher – me?
Can you be a yoga teacher? Joanne Moules says yes you can
So you enjoy yoga. Regularly attend a class and you are experiencing countless benefits from your regular foray onto the mat. But could you become a yoga teacher? Could you impart your knowledge and share your love for yoga?
I know what you are thinking. Surely all yoga teachers are slim and bendy, and look amazing in their yoga leggings. Gliding around their airy studios with their hands in prayer pose bowing namaste in a softly spoken manner to all they meet? Do you fit that description? Maybe. But I don’t, and I am a successful yoga teacher.
You may not set out to be a yoga teacher
Let me share something with you. I never set out to be a yoga teacher. I was a single Mum who used yoga to get herself through the tough days, the emotional days, the tired days. Yoga was my escapism and healer and I used it 100% for self-care.
Then, one day, my two-year-old son joined me on the mat and copied me. Suddenly my mind raced with thoughts of, 'Is this yoga safe for children?’ That was it, a seed was sown. I sought out teacher training, not to become a teacher but to ensure my child could do it safely.
Let me say that again. I never set out to be a yoga teacher. However, life has a way of guiding you in the correct direction when you least expect it.
Deepening your practice
As your fascination with yoga grows you will naturally deepen your knowledge. And what I realised along the way is that everyone initially began training to deepen their own knowledge, to enhance their own practice and not everyone was a teacher or intended to teach.
Becoming a teacher finds you! And your style! And it happens when the time is right.
So becoming a yoga teacher: is it for you? Read on to find out.
Can you be a teacher? Don't ask.
First and foremost, whether you can be a teacher is irrelevant. There is no cookie cutter for a yoga teacher because every individual person requires a different type of teacher. And quite simply the answer to whether you can be a yoga teacher is yes. Everybody can. We each require different styles of teaching, different styles of yoga and different styles of students to practice with.
Now I know you may be thinking ‘Jo, this is rubbish. You are creating more questions than answers.' But the fact is simple – you can be a teacher because you are you. Consider the answers to the following questions.
Do I have the knowledge and the passion?
Knowledge? No. The knowledge is never known as we learn more and more each time we teach. Teacher training gives you all the foundational knowledge you need to be able to lead a yoga class. Deep wisdom and knowledge is learnt more and more each and every day.
You will never have all the knowledge, you can only gain more with every class you plan and deliver. It's OK, you already have what you need.
You will deepen your personal practice and reconnect with yourself spiritually, physically, and emotionally. - Hari Pawali
Passion? Yes. You do have the passion. The fact that you are still reading proves to you that you have the passion, curiosity and interest with which to be a great teacher. Just as you feel passionate, you can guarantee there is someone else just as passionate as you, who needs you to guide them.
Consider your passion a little deeper. Is there a style of yoga that you love? Is there a gap in your local vicinity that you could fill? Be confident in the knowledge that whatever style of yoga lights you up and drives you forward, is the style of yoga that someone else needs too.
It may be Hatha Yoga, Chair Yoga, Vinyasa Flow, Ashtanga Yoga, Yin Yoga, Goat Yoga, Hot Yoga, yoga with hats on, Divine Feminine Goddess Yoga (that is a real thing – I teach it), Yoga for Men, Yoga for Runners, Naked Yoga (that is also a real thing – I don’t teach it).
Find your passion and use it to take a step forward.
I am an introvert. Can I teach?
Remember the image of the yoga teacher gliding around the studio? Well of course they exist and are just as personable as you and me. We can all interact with each other, as we are all part of one thing. What is important here is not how you look, dress or speak, it is that you can welcome each person as an individual and connect with them as authentically you.
Your students are not looking to you for entertainment, and song and dance, they want yoga. If you are passionate about it, you will share it in a way that they love.
If you don’t vibe, the student will find their way to another teacher – and that is fine. That is how it is meant to be.
If you want to become a yoga teacher to please everyone and teach everyone then I am afraid you are going to be disappointed. Know that you will attract your tribe, it will change and grow often because we humans do. Remaining authentically you and true to your yoga and style of teaching, your students will get the best of you and their class.
‘There is no doubt that the foundation of being a being a great yoga teacher is being a great yoga student’ - Rod Stryker
Become a Yoga Teacher? Me?
Yes you. I am not trying to convince you to become a teacher, but if you wish to deepen your knowledge of yoga, and learn more about yourself, then yoga teacher training is the way to do it. And along the way you may or may not become a teacher.
Look closely at your relationship to yoga, the fact that you searched and found this article, and are still reading, are all little signs that you are ready to move forward.
Your next step?
Yoga teacher training is very much an immersion into discovering more about yourself. Whether that leads to a career change and you gliding around your studio looking fabulous, so be it. What kind of person makes a yoga teacher? You do.