My Yoga Journey – To Teach or Not to Teach – Where I am in my Practice right now

To Teach or Not To Teach?

I’ve been pondering taking Yoga Teacher Training.  I have been practising on and off for the last 12 years.  I did leave the mat for a few years here and there for one reason or another, but always found my way back to the top of my mat.

When I first started doing Yoga, it was an escape from my life.  A place to call my own and to be me.  Budget and time had me stop. The cost for attending classes in a studio is pretty high. I’m sure its peanuts compared to some studios around the world.

I was not that diverse in my practice to do it at home, so I bowed out and did not pick it back up for a few years. I took a few classes here and there, just the “drop in” fee and fell back in love with my practice.

My husband and I bought our first house 3 years ago! It moved us to a small “town” outside of the big city.  It also brought me closer to a few small towns that have Yoga Studios. Within one of those towns was a new studio that offered very reasonable prices and NO membership fees!

I attended their open house, got hooked.  It was my drug, my happy place.  I love/loved my yoga teacher and the studio vibes were awesome as well.  I almost never missed a class.  I went for a year and than the studio had to close it’s doors.  It left a hole in my heart and mind.

I tried other studios but nothing brought the same feeling as going to that studio did. My mind and wallet missed this studio…

This year I turned the big 3-0! I said that this was the year that I would try new things and enjoy what this city has to offer this summer.  I started to go to festivals and events in the summer.  A local winery started to host more and more events, including Yoga classes.  I’m not much for getting out of my comfort zone, but I “forced” myself to attend.  I am so happy I did!  It was so amazing and exactly want I needed to kick start my love of Yoga into high gear again.  The classes were held near the water, at a winery, in the morning.  Birds flying overhead, the cool breeze of the wind and the amazing view of the water.  We were blessed to have clear skies for the classes.

I got home after that one class and rolled out my mat again and started practising on a regular basis. I use Yoga DVD’s to guide me through my practice.  I still love being taught or lead through the practice.

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Now, your probably thinking, where does the “yoga teacher training” come into play here?

We were out celebrating my good friends birthday recently,  when one of our friends brought up Yoga and how she wanted to “get into it”.  She started to ask me a ton of questions and than asked me if I had considered teaching.  It had crossed my mind, years ago.  Before it became the “it thing” and everyone was doing it.

The time and money to do it was one thing that was holding me back. The other?  My monkey mind.  The voice inside my head telling me that I am not the best at yoga or teaching.  I can not do the Crow, stand on my head or hands and I am not that flexible. What could I possibility offer anyone?

After talking to my friend and doing lots of research, I found out the true meaning of teaching Yoga.

The Goal of Yoga
Credit: http://samadhiandme.com/

This quote has popped up so many times, that it was only fitting that I use it in my post.

I also have doubts and concerns with falling “out of love” with Yoga.  Not having time for my practice.  Everyone teaches differently.  Some do the practice with you, only to get up and walk the room when needed. Others only walk the room, correcting you and shows you the moves when it is needed.  I would like to think I would be the first.  My favourite Yoga teacher is like this and I enjoy this way of teaching so much better than the “university” style teaching.  I learn by doing and seeing, not just hearing.

My Monkey mind has also stated that I would not be able to quite my full time job for a yoga career. It would mean working late afternoons, leaving a 8-10 hour day to head to a studio to teach.  Would I be into it?  Would I be able to offer my students enough of me without being burnt out?  All great points.

I just happened upon a new or fairly new teaching platform online.  YouTube is a great resource as well, however, this platform allows you to “teach” online for a fee.  The student can practice whenever they have time, but you still get paid to teach.  I was very interested in this “new” concept and it made my thinking become a possible reality.  Something that I could do and not have to take so much out of me. Upload and teach/create on my time.

Making it available to a wider range of yogis is also amazing.  You are the driver in the seat.  You create the fees, the programs, the videos, the documents. You name it, you create it. They are the platform to help you create and teach. They are the opportunity that just might make me jump start this “thought/daydream” into high gear.

I was discussing with my good friend, another yogi, on my thoughts on Yoga Teacher Training and how I found an online, accredited program that you do at home. This program is very affordable, something that I could save up for and make happen a lot sooner than the other training’s.  She made a great point, one that stuck with me for a bit and left my hopes shattered.  “Yoga Training should be hands on.  To learn how to realign someone, to walk through the classes and learn how to lead the class.  These can not be learned or taught from a book”.  She was right.  I learn in a “college” atmosphere, not a “university” setting.

For months, after that conversation, I was defeated.  Thinking that I would never teach yoga.  Maybe it is for the best.  Maybe I won’t be great at it. Maybe I would begin to hate Yoga and stop practising when I wasn’t teaching.

OR

Maybe, I would learn along the way.  Become amazing at teaching.  Become recognised around the world.  Start out small, learn and become the best that “I” can be.

But, I read a blog post/article about a fellow yogi that basically had the same thoughts and feelings as me.  She was in the same predicament as me, it seemed, and yet she just went for it!  She shut out all the “what ifs, the maybes and the nos” and just jumped, feet first onto her mat and just practised.  She is now a Yoga Teacher and LOVES it.

If she can do it, than I can. The only thing holding me back is my monkey mind and opinions of others.  That really, at the end of the day, if YOU are happy with you and your discussions, that’s all that matters.

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All these thoughts and emotions are what, I my opinion make for a great teacher.  You should always be learning. You should always be listening. You’re going to make mistakes. You’re going to fumble. You’re going to laugh at yourself, and you should!  It is after all, a practice…

After an internal battle with myself, I have come to the conclusion that I WILL complete the Yoga Teacher Training – online.  It will get my feet in the door and allow me to teach, if not just online, but to small groups and community centres.

And I will rock at it 🙂

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Yoga is YOUR practice, YOUR time, YOUR journey.  Let it be what YOU need it to be.  Step on your mat and Let it all Go.
Namaste

 

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