Michellew

Feeling unprepared to teach after training

6 posts in this topic

I went to Thailand for 4 weeks in October to get my 200 hour certification. It was intense. Really intense. And amazing. Now that I'm home I feel like it wasn't sufficient. I feel like we spent more time on the philosophy of yoga, pranayama, meditation and kriyas than we did on anatomy, adjustments, verbal cues and proper alignment. I'm paranoid that I'm unprepared to teach because I don't have a solid foundation of what I need most when teaching a class. After spending thousands of dollars on my certification I find that I need MORE training. Just wondering if I'm simply not being confident in myself or anyone else has found themselves in a similar position. Would love to hear your personal feedback! 

YogaByCandace likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi @Michellew First of all - Congrats on completing your 200hr training - it really is intense, isn't it? So here's the deal - all teacher trainings are a little different, some focus more on asana and others more on the theory. I can see how it might be a little frustrating to come out of it feeling like you're not prepared to teach, and really only you can make an honest assessment as to whether you are being too critical of yourself, or of you really do need some more training. Maybe try looking into another short weekend course on finding your voice as a teacher, or on adjustments, or whatever areas you feel you are still lacking. Something like that could help you build confidence. I can tell you that I did come out of my training feeling ready to teach, and now that I'm a year and a half into my teaching journey, I've learned that there are so many things I could have known more about and been more prepared for when I started. What I mean to say is that you have to start somewhere, and it will never be the place that you end. We are always learning and growing, so do try to cut yourself some slack. Maybe link up with a local teacher that you trust and try to observe some more classes to build confidence, and then just keep researching on your own. I can highly recommend Teaching Yoga, Yoga Sequencing, and Yoga Adjustments as great resources to give you tons of information on alignment, cues, and adjustments. I did my training with the author, Mark Stephens, and refer back to these resources all the time. Another thing that helps is to have someone to talk about it with. Even reaching out to some of your YTT-mates over Skype to talk about the things you're uncomfortable with - it's nice to have a sounding board. Maybe you'll even find that you're not alone.

Wishing you the best!

YogaByCandace and Michellew like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is something I see coming up a lot lately - someone recently left a comment on my post about how to be a more confident yoga teacher the other day that essentially said something very similar. I can share that I went through something very similar. My training was very hands-on, and we spent a LOT of time of adjustments, verbal cues, etc, so I felt like I knew what to do but I was really insecure about my delivery. I felt that while I knew what to do, I sometimes would freeze up and be unable to get the words out quickly enough and by the time I did, everyone in class would hate me for leaving them in x pose for such a long time! Haha. The thing is, teaching yoga is a lot like the yoga practice itself - start where you can, with what you have, and if you keep practicing and keep learning, you'll wind up with a beautiful teaching practice. Things that have helped me: masterclasses, being a student at regular classes, and continuing ed workshops. When you're in class as a student, observe what you love that the teacher does and what doesn't speak to you. You can incorporate the things you like and forget the things you don't. Continuing ed classes will also help you to build more confidence. And then, just take the leap and teach :)

brenskip55 and Michellew like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I am pretty new to teaching and had very similar feelings before I dove in.  My teacher training was very involved in adjustments and cues, but I still felt unprepared.  The best advice a yoga teacher gave me to let me know I was ready, was that you are the one deciding what poses to lead in class.  You can use your resources (books, Candace's blog, websites) to look up any cues that you don't feel confident in.  It takes a lot of time in the beginning, but then things start coming more naturally.  I don't know how to instruct someone how to properly align in grasshopper, because I've never taught it. If I ever chose to teach it, I would practice and use my resources to figure it out! I use Candace's pictures a lot to look at common mistakes in poses.

YogaByCandace and Michellew like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for your replies! I couldn't agree more and really appreciate the tips. I will also use the resources you provided (just ordered all 3 of Mark Stephens books.) Sometimes I think I'm just terrified of not being the teacher I expect of myself starting out. But you're so right @brenskip55 that that's just not practical. My husband reminds me the same thing. As much as I'd like to have a yoga mentor or friend to run things by, I do not which is how I ended up turning to this forum. Many of the people I graduated training with have found themselves in the same boat. But I will persevere! ?  Thanks again for taking the time to reply! 

yogafire, yogagrammy and brenskip55 like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, it's always good to know you're not alone - and this forum is a GREAT place to share your concerns and ask for feedback. I know I'm always willing to offer my two cents :) Hope those books are helpful!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now