- Exercise & Fitness
Guidelines for Choosing a Yoga Teacher
Importance of a Yoga Teacher's Role
During yoga class, the teacher plays quite a significant role in ensuring that the student's goals are met during practice. To put it more appropriately, they serve as the “guiding hand” that shows the students what it needs to do to achieve desired results. So, an aspiring student must therefore pay a lot of attention when choosing the instructor to hire. This will save you both time and effort in the long run. After all,
Provides Clear Instructions
Prior to starting each session or class, yoga teachers will clearly lay out the instructions to the students. There is a huge difference separating a skilled yoga enthusiast against a qualified yoga teacher. The former might have excellent knowledge about yoga, but they might not be able to have the proper skills to share that information to others. The latter is a more important quality that must be present in a yoga teacher to ensure that they are able to relay the information to students. However, an excellent skill or knowledge about yoga would also be beneficial.
You need to look beyond the verbal instruction though, so consider whether the instructor is demonstrating poses while giving out the instruction. Doing the yoga poses themselves will provide students with a visual image of what they are trying to achieve.
Unless the teacher is highly skilled in verbal communication, it is better if physical demonstration is also done to reinforce the instruction given. In addition, the teacher has to make sure that every student in class has fully comprehended the instruction given before moving onto the next stage. Proper instruction is crucial since improper execution of yoga exercises is potentially dangerous to students, possibly causing serious health risks of injuries.
Responds to Student Concerns
It is important for a yoga teacher to speak with their students individually before beginning each yoga session. This will enable the teacher to gather the essential information needed to facilitate a smooth practice later on. Proper knowledge of individual needs of each practitioner will enable the yoga teacher to facilitate in the achievement of individual goals. In addition, it will reduce the amount of interruptions during each session to save time.
Aside from the skill level of each student, a good yoga instructor is someone who understands the physical limitations of a practitioner based on age, medical condition, or injuries. Inability to understand their special concerns can lead to further aggravation of existing conditions or injuries. So, a good yoga teacher is someone who ensures that each session is executed safely and all goals are met.
Facilitates Proper Yoga Execution
Skilled yoga teachers make sure that each pose in a routine are executed precisely. There are two benefits that can be enjoyed in the proper execution of each yoga pose: first, it maximizes the benefits that each pose can bring to your routine, and second, it will help you prevent acquiring unnecessary injuries or strain specific muscles in your body. This is why beginners are recommended to choose their yoga teachers carefully to ensure they avail of the proper guidance they need.
A good yoga teacher is someone who constantly looks around the room to examine each student and ensure that their poses are done correctly. Proper focus on each student must be given instead of trying to join the rest of the class to performing exercises. This will therefore enable the teacher to provide maximum assistance to each student especially when they're encountering difficulties on certain poses. This will further reinforce the idea of instructors serving as your guiding hand to the practice. Unless these lapses are noted, one cannot make the proper adjustments for them.
Yoga Teacher Training: Hot Yoga (Thailand)
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Provides Exercise Modifications
In a given yoga class, each student are bound to possess varying yoga skill levels. Hence, proper modification of exercises is vital in ensuring that everyone can perform the poses required for each session and experience the benefits of doing those poses. However, there are several physical limitations that will prevent one individual from doing certain poses, such as pregnancy, existing injuries, or physical disabilities. Modifications on these poses are therefore necessary to ensure that the person is able to maximize each pose without having to strain one's self.
The role of the yoga teacher is therefore of utmost importance in this aspect since they are the ones supervising each practice. The teacher must be able to continually reinforce the need for gaining union between mind, body and soul. Without this, none of the benefits are achieved or the effects are only superficial.
Consistently Asks Relevant Questions
Communication is an integral part of any student-teacher relationship, whether it be in the yoga class setting or not. But when doing yoga, it could entail the difference between success and failure. Thus, you need to build a strong communication system to learn about each other's needs and find ways to address them.
One way to achieve that is for a teacher to continually ask his or her students questions along the way. It has to be relevant and smart questions that would be of any significance to the student's practice. A teacher has to focus on specific issues such as comfort level, or if there are any signs of pain upon executing certain poses, among other needs.
Aside from asking the right question, it must also be timed well enough. The ability of a teacher to be sensitive enough to understand that a particular student requires some help at certain point during the practice is vital to avoid serious injuries. If for instance, a student is having difficulty adapting to the pace of each class, then you can ask them questions to be able to figure out the source of the problem. Maybe you have to modify the poses for them or make other adjustments.
Understanding of Their Role
A good understanding of his or her role is the most important quality that you must look for in a yoga teacher. Unless they have this quality, not even their level of expertise or precision in doing yoga poses themselves can help achieve your goal.
There is a huge gap that lies in between a person's own expertise with the yoga practice and their ability to teach those knowledge to others. Moreover, their understanding of their role as a teacher will inspire a sense of dedication for their students to help them out anyway they can and improve their practice.