So, you’re thinking of doing your yoga teacher training? Fantastic! It really is one of the most fulfilling experiences you can take part in. But, there are certain things you should know before you make that wonderfully exciting decision.
Yoga teacher training is about much more than increasing your yoga classes and getting a nifty certificate. It’s an enormous commitment; one that requires a lot of heart, determination and resilience. If you’re seriously considering turning your passion from yoga into a career, read on for my ten top things to keep in mind before starting your YTT.
1. You can’t escape it – studying is paramount.
If you avoid studying like the plague, then the reality is that yoga teacher training probably isn’t for you. Yes, there’s a lot of studying inside of the classroom/studio, but you also need to put the hours in outside of your actual ‘school hours’.
This matters because not only is it necessary to pass your course, but you also need to have the knowledge around what is needed of you once you step out into the real world as a teacher. Injuries can easily happen during a class, and unless you understand the risks and how to avoid them you may find yourself in a tricky situation.
Your students are putting their trust in you every time they roll out their yoga mat. Get ready to put the time and effort in to rack up those genuine study hours.
2. Be prepared for hard work.
Yoga teacher training is no walk in the park. A YTT is hard. Really, really hard. It’s physically, mentally and emotionally demanding and it will seriously put you through your paces.
If this is something you are prepared for, then fantastic: the satisfaction that you’ll gain whenever you conquer a new part of the training is like no other. And afterall, nothing worth having ever did come easy, did it?
3. And a midway wobble.
Almost all of my yoga teacher students hit a wobble part way through their YTT. They’ll convince themselves it’s too difficult and that they can’t do it. The tears tumble, the smiles disappear and everyone has a bit of a rant.
Believe me; this is totally normal! I’ve seen it before and I’ll see it again. But don’t worry. If this does happen while you’re on your yoga teacher training, your fellow students and teachers will be there to lift you back up again. It’s what they’re there for.
4. It will be emotional.
We’ve covered the wobbles, but there are SO many more other emotions that come with yoga teacher training. Highs, lows and everything in between.
It isn’t just the sheer enormity of what you’re doing – it’s the impact it has on you as a person. You may find that during your YTT you uncover feelings that you didn’t even realise were there. Lean into them. There’s a power in allowing yourself to be vulnerable.
5. Self care is crucial.
Because of this, you really need to make sure that you are ready to give yourself some extra TLC during your yoga teacher training.
Your body will hurt. It will ache. And there will be bruises. Plus, you’ll be tired: both your body and mind. Be sure to factor in additional time for self care. You’re going to need it.
6. Know your intention (and be ready to change it).
Before you sign up for yoga teacher training, ask yourself why you want to do it. What’s your intention for the course? Is it to start up a yoga business? To deepen your own practice? To move abroad and take your mat on the road?
It’s important to know that you’re doing your yoga teacher training for the right reasons… And to be aware that this intention may well change once you start doing your training!
7. Put yourself first and foremost.
Even if your intention is to build a thriving yoga business, if you want to get the most out of your yoga teacher training you should put yourself at the center of it. That means knowing and appreciating that your growth as a human being is far more important than getting your name onto the Yoga Alliance directory ASAP.
The best way to do this is by applying everything you learn during the course to your everyday life. Do this and you’ll be astounded by the amount you develop and change.
8. You will gain SO much beyond your qualification.
Of course your yoga teacher training qualification is gold dust, but it’s safe to say that it’s just the cherry on top of the cake.
You’ll embrace the beauty that can be found behind the asanas, as well as learning to be your own teacher. You’ll also (re)connect with your inner self and uncover ways to express yourself in unique and creative ways. These skills will support you both on and off the mat; it truly is such a gift.
9. You’ll make friends for life.
Your fellow students will become your support network. They’ll see so many different sides of you and will be with you, every step of the way.
They’ll be your cheerleaders. Your friends. Your yogi family. These relationships are special and everlasting.
10. It’s the experience of a lifetime.
There’s no denying it: yoga teacher training is an experience of a lifetime. It’s a spiritual, transformational and enchanting journey – one that will change you as a person and totally rewrite your path, whatever your intention for the course.
It’s the ultimate benefit of taking part in yoga teacher training. It’s an investment in the life you dream of, teaching the thing you adore. And what could be better than that?