Course 6 – Teaching Yoga/Professional Essentials

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Students will become confident to teach in a variety of situations. Students will learn and practice techniques for teaching. They will learn the importance of the three prongs of teaching: self-study, study of the body of information (yoga) and the study of students. Students will gain clarity and confidence to begin the journey of teaching yoga to others.

Students will learn:

  • The History and lineage of Shanti Yoga Teacher Training
  • Principles of Sequencing and Pace
  • The importance of kramas for applying appropriate modifications, props & sequencing.
  • How to design and use lessons plans and how to integrate themes into the students’ experience.
  • and practice teaching the function, release valves, position and key actions for each of the 33 fundamental asanas so that they can appropriately sequence for:
    • Beginners
    • Multi-level classes
    • Special Populations – Healthy Aging, Injuries, Back Care, Prenatal and Children
  • Compassionate, compelling and effective cueing.
  • Class Management and Structure.
  • Scope of Practice.
  • Design & utilization of Space including Music, Voice and Eye Contact.
  • Injury Prevention.
  • How to develop a “tool belt” of techniques.
  • TLC method – The Science of Teaching Yoga
    • TEACH – How to give students A-HA! moments via clear, compelling & compassionate cueing & demonstration.
    • LOOK – Students will learn how to Observe.
    • CONSIDER – Students will learn how to assess what they observe so they can apply the appropriate modifications, sequencing, whether to proceed or repeat.
  • How to teach the Quiet Practices of Restorative Yoga, Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra.
  • The Yoga Profession
    • Clear Vision/Authentic Voice – Discover your Dharma, Develop your Style. Clarify core values (mission) & teaching goals (vision).
    • Identify skills and obstacles.
    • Ethics of Teaching – Personal, Shanti Yoga and Yoga Alliance.
    • How to Cultivate & Sustain Abundance.
    • How to develop Business Plans, Resumes, Social Media, Promotions, Partnerships, and Community.
    • Studio Ownership, Sub-contracting, Retreats, Privates.
    • Yoga off the Mat – Yoga as a Profession, Yoga as a Life Path


  • Course 6 Lesson PDFs
  • Moving into Stillness pages 349-357, Schiffmann.
  • Appendix 2 in Heart of Yoga, Desikachar.
  • Chapter 5, 6, 10, 11 & 12 in Teaching Yoga, Mark Stephens.
  • Extra reading: “How to teach a Multi-level Class,”

Journaling – to keep for yourself.

  • Develop a home asana practice to do 3 times a week. Make notes to yourself as you practice and impressions and wisdom arise.
  • Practice teaching yourself all the poses that we are learning. You may add other poses but be sure to include the ones listed in your manual. Speak silently or out loud to yourself as you practice giving instruction, encouragement and deeply experiencing the poses. Attempt to say the Sanskrit name to yourself. Record yourself if possible…and then practice from the recording. Note what you liked, note what skills you might want to work on.
  • Note how your teachers begin their class, is there an “opening” that relates to the rest? Now, design an Opening you’d like to teach – include a theme.
  • Notice how your teachers sequence their class. Does it relate to the opening theme?
  • Design a “Teaching Checklist”…things to do before starting your class.
  • What is the main lesson you want to teach your students?
  • Review your beginning Intention. Has it changed?
  • Review your beginning thoughts/research on ethical guidelines and consider how they are affected by the niyamas and yamas.
  • Construct your own “List of Ethical Guidelines” using your journaling thoughts.
  • Describe your ideal life rhythm/teaching dharma without censorship. Vividly imagine where you would live, hours of teaching, people, and other aspects of the community life.
  • Create a class of your choosing with a theme of your choosing. Include your “dharma talk.” If possible, record and take your class.
  • Describe a way that you might take yoga off the mat after you leave this program.
Introduction to Teaching Yoga