Yoga teacher training is an intense, transformative and nerve-wracking experience. Here are our top tips to help you prepare for and survive your training.
1. Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.
In the run up to your teacher training maintain as regular and frequent practice as possible, this will put you in good condition for the journey ahead. During the training, you’ll be practising twice daily so the greater level of strength, flexibility and fitness you acquire beforehand the better.
Additionally practising both the “Fierce Grace” and “Classic” class as frequently as possible will help to familiarise yourself with the sequences, language as well as getting a feel for different teaching styles.
2. Remember to have a sense of humour.
Humour relaxes us, cuts through our ego, and changes us energetically.
It’s when we take ourselves out of our comfort zone that we learn the most. Teacher training will challenge you both physically and mentally, staying light hearted and leaving your ego at the door will help you through these challenges.
Often the best yoga teachers are not the ones that can do fancy inversions but the ones that are attentive, compassionate towards their students and create a non-judgmental learning environment. To genuinely embody these traits, you have to ‘practice what you preach’ and not judge yourself too harshly. Be kind to yourself, laugh through embarrassment and forget any unreasonable expectation you placed on yourself. If you were already a ‘perfect’ teacher you wouldn’t be out of your comfort zone and therefore wouldn’t be learning anything new.
3. Your peers will become incredible friends.
Spending a month with the same group of people can be intense, but sharing this unique experience will bond you together in a way you’ll cherish. Take advantage of the support network, practice with your peers, ask for their help and offer yours. Teacher Training is a roller-coaster experience, one day you’ll be in the zone and inspiring others and the next you might struggle and need some encouragement. So be kind, supportive and patient towards your peers, bounce ideas off each other and remember you’re not alone.
4. Remember, feedback isn’t criticism.
One of the most beneficial aspects of the training is giving and receiving a huge amount of feedback. When you're teaching in the real world you receive very little direct feedback, as students may not be able to communicate their thoughts clearly in a class setting. So try and see the training feedback for what it is - an opportunity to grow. To harness this opportunity you’ll need to try and not feel criticised and keep your ego in check. When receiving feedback try and take it in good humour, make a record of it so you can refer back and see how you improve over time.
During the course, you’ll be filmed whilst you instruct, we understand how some might find this daunting but watching yourself teach can be one of the most helpful tools for improving. Public speaking and diction can be one of people’s greatest insecurities, so spend time practising vocal projection and enunciation as it will aid your teaching from day one.
5. Look after yourself.
Teacher training is both physically and mentally challenging as much as it is rewarding, so try and take extra care of yourself. Make your life as simple as possible avoid things that distract or have a negative effect on you. Get early nights, fuel your body with vitamins and energy packed foods, relax your muscles and most of all listen to your body, find your edge stay there.