10 Things You Can Do to Prepare for Your Yoga Teacher Training [Tips]
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So, you’re planning and preparing for your first yoga teacher training? Well, as they say, when the student is ready, the teacher appears!
Right now, you may find yourself wondering how to best get yourself as ready as possible for this life changing experience. Millions of thoughts are probably running through your head such as: Are you ready for this? Are you good enough to teach or can you even be good at yoga?
Relax! We’ve all gone through that process before taking our first yoga teacher training – including yours truly. Just follow hese 10 tips to get ready for your course and you’ll be just fine:
1. Adho Mukha WHAT?
Not sure what I’m referring to? Well, go some reading! A good yoga teacher training will supply you with a recommended book list to support you through this learning journey.
Although you may not understand everything in these texts, the pre-course reading will help you to become familiar with some of the key concepts, the Sanskrit names of the poses, philosophy and the all-important 8 limbs of yoga.
2. Take an online course
Yoga has no age barriers, young or old, beginner or experienced, there is a yoga teacher training to suit all abilities.
It may have been a while since you have done any studying, so taking an online course to deepen your yoga knowledge beyond asanas can not only give you a basic understanding of what yoga is about but also understand some of the foundations to the practice.
[Temporarily available: Due to the COVID-19 recommendations to stay home, some organizers are offering online yoga teacher training courses. Even more affordable and available from the safety of your home. Be sure to check them out!]
3. Eat smart
During my yoga teacher training, it was suggested to eat a plant-based diet, and I wish I had prepared more for this prior to the training.
A yoga teacher training is an intense time for you and your body. Experiencing a plant-based, nutrient dense diet leaves the body energized with vitality and more resilient to unwanted symptoms like illness and disease.
Check out some meal plans, make sure to eat regularly and keep the ice cream just to celebrate your first headstand!
4. Just be where your feet are
It’s hard to switch off from the busy world around us, especially if you’re a mom or you have a busy job. To get the most from your training you need to be present on your mat. It can be tempting to think that you are being selfish or that you don’t deserve this, however, this is not the case.
Plan your time so that you can fully immerse yourself during your training and know that everything in the outside world will be okay. Dad will do the school run and the kids will get fed!
5. Practice, practice, practice
The best thing you can do to prepare for your yoga teacher course is to keep up with your own practice! When there is anatomy to learn, philosophy and alignment cues, it can be easy to let your own practice slip. Practicing your asanas will prepare you for the physical demands of a full day of yoga, it will also teach you where you need to add modifications according to your own needs.
Having a personal practice is also very important as this is your opportunity to become familiar with your own body, connect with your breathing, gain self-discipline, be playful, and most importantly, be able to share the benefits of your personal practice with your future students.
6. Don’t be afraid to be vulnerable
Most of us have the habit of hiding our emotions, blocking them out and not engaging with anything which has caused us pain.
During your yoga teacher training, you will most likely feel a whole lot of different emotions; happiness, sadness, frustration, love, hate and other feelings will arise and you’ll probably not know where they have come from.
Trust the process and allow your emotions to flow, accept them and let them go. This is important for your wellbeing as a teacher and as a person in general.
7. Understanding the belt
Make sure to get or at least know how to use all the essential props before the training starts. This may include a bolster, blanket, blocks and a belt. These are required for a reason and you should attend your training prepared.
From my personal experience, I would suggest trying out any props which you are not familiar with. For example, how to lace your belt so that you don’t waste your time on these small technical issues when you want to be focusing on the skills needed to actually use this tool.
8. Determine the *real* purpose of the experience
What is the reason for attending this yoga teacher training? If you haven’t thought about why you are attending this course, then this is your time to do so.
Perhaps you want to teach, strengthen your self-practice, do something for yourself… There are a plenty of reasons why you may consider a yoga teacher training and I’m sure you have your own. It’s a good idea to become clearly attuned with this intention for you to reflect on it during your training.
9. Read reviews
Spend some time reading the reviews and watching the personal experiences of the students who have taken this teacher training before.
A lot can be said for personal recommendations and it’s really inspiring to see where students started compared to where they are now. You will most likely to be able to get some useful insights from what to pack to tips that’ll help you to anticipate on what to expect from your training.
10. Prepare to be transformed!
You may sign up for a yoga teacher training expecting only to learn the poses, some sequences and how to teach.
I’m sure you’ll soon realize that the best learning will come during your time reflecting about how to become a better version of yourself. Whether this ends up being an emotional or physical change, the yoga teacher training will prepare and support you to look deeper at yourself.
Be prepared to share your experiences, be pushed out of your comfort zone and love being part of a group who truly supports you and encourages you to achieve your goals. Once you become comfortable with your own practice and journey, you can then fully support others through theirs and become a real yoga instructor.
Ready to take the next step? Sign up for a 200-hour yoga teacher training and start your journey to a new life!