There’s more to being a yoga teacher than teaching asanas in a stylish yoga top. A great yoga teacher will facilitate the same positive experience that they received from yoga practice. In most cases, the best instructors are those who genuinely want to help others and share the practice of yoga.
Often, the level of compassion and humility that an instructor has correlates to their mission to serve, and vice versa. An empowering instructor is inclusive and aims to connect with all of their students equally. Some people spend years searching for a teacher who empowers them. When you find one, it means that you have someone who is looking out for your best interest, both on and off the mat. When they have your highest potential in mind, you’ll really notice a difference in your practice.
Wondering whether you have a yoga teacher who empowers you? You’re in the right place! In this article, we explore 5 signs you have a yoga teacher who empowers you.
An empowering instructor provides the necessary tools for you to take the practice into your own hands. This gives you the ability to modify the practice to suit your personal needs. Whether it’s providing resources that will help you study the sutras or teaching you how to find alignment in a certain pose, an empowering yoga teacher is one who provides knowledge of the practice. Any experienced yogi can run through a series of postures with a class, but it takes an empowering teacher to really teach you something. She will encourage you to practice on your own and utilize the things you’ve learned outside of the studio. If your yoga teacher simply runs through the asanas and doesn’t stick around to answer your questions, she probably isn’t empowering.
Every student grows and evolves, just like a teacher and her teaching style grows and evolves. Over time, students may outgrow their current teacher or yoga style. This may be because the teacher or student has changed, or because the student falls in love with a different style of yoga. Whatever the reason, this change is OK. An empowering teacher will encourage you to try out different teachers and styles of yoga if you’re feeling lost. Instead of fighting to keep your business, she’ll have your best interests at heart and will be happy to see you grow as a yogi, regardless of what teacher or style you’re working with. If your yoga teacher is bad-mouthing other teachers in an attempt to keep your business, she probably isn’t empowering.
An empowering teacher encourages you to use your discernment. She’ll provide proper alignment cues and give you space to modify if needed. She’ll teach you the direct translation of yogic texts but also give you space to find your own interpretation. An empowering instructor will offer a flexible approach to yoga, allowing you to adapt the practice to suit your needs. She’ll ask thought-provoking, inquisitive questions in sessions that help bring awareness into your own head. Instead of opening the door with her teachings, she’ll give you the space to choose whether to open it or not. Above all else, you’ll feel heard, because an empowering teacher understands that you know your body better than anybody else. If your yoga teacher ignores your request for modifications or tells you to power through the pain, she probably isn’t empowering.
An empowering teacher will see your highest potential and encourage you to fulfill it. She’ll believe in you, even if you don’t believe in yourself. Whether you’re striving for a complex pose or want to start leading your own classes, she’ll have your back and help you to get there. Whatever your dreams and aspirations, an empowering teacher will believe in you stepping into your best self. You’ll know that your teacher is genuine because she will share the happiness you experience from your success and help pick you up if you fall. If you’re not encouraged to better yourself, your yoga teacher probably isn’t empowering.
When you have an empowering yoga teacher, you’ll feel continually inspired. Not just by her teachings in the classroom, but also by who she is as a person. An empowering yoga teacher doesn’t just teach, she lives and breathes the practice. She teaches more with her actions than her words, both inside and outside of the yoga studio. Her dedication to living a yogic life will inspire and encourage you to do the same because you’ll know that her words come from a place of integrity. If your yoga teacher doesn’t inspire you, she probably isn’t empowering.
So, there you have it – 5 signs that you have a yoga teacher who empowers you. There’s more to being a great yoga teacher than tight-fitting clothes and fancy yoga jewelry. Above all else, an empowering yoga teacher has your best interests at heart. Instead of seeing you as a business venture, she really cares about you and your progression. An empowering teacher will inspire you both on and off the mat by her actions, words, and teachings. Regardless of how experienced she is, she’ll understand and respect that you know your body better than anyone, so she’ll be happy for you to modify postures to suit your needs. If you haven’t found this yet, don’t panic. An empowering yoga teacher is out there for you! Keep searching until you find someone you fully connect with. When you do, you’ll know you’ve found something truly great.