Conducting a yoga class after a recent yoga teacher training course can be challenging. Losing the course of action, lack of time management, not remembering the names of poses or meanings of mantras, are a few of the general issues faced by a novice teacher. This is why during a teacher training course, we are taught to have a class plan every time we step inside the studio. It might seem like additional work initially but a strategic class plan goes a long way. Structurally dividing the whole session into different parts, a class plan leads to judicious utilisation of time and flawless flow of the class.
A planned class effectively incorporates the external factors affecting the class. For example, body types, seasons, holidays, physical condition of the students, level of the students, etc. fall under the purview of external factors. When we have time on our hand, we have the privilege to design the perfect class for extended benefits. For example, in winter season, asanas that heat up the body or are for Vata constitution works the best. A prior plan will allow the teacher to schedule these various aspects competently & skilfully. The quality of a refined yoga teacher is in the understanding the poses deeply and knowing what he is teaching.
When we incorporate these external factors, we cannot just plan for the current season, but also for weeks or even months in advance.
Theme Based Class
“Yoga is not about touching your toes, it is who you are when you reach there.” When the postures are merged with teachings from revered saints and yoga philosophy, the practice surpasses the boundaries of physical and marries the mental and emotional element of one’s existence. A planned class can be undertaken on a theme and postures can be taught on the basis of the theme. For example, on the themes surrender or letting go, semi inverted and inverted poses can be taken.
The regular students get an opportunity to delve deeper into their practice and relate it to various qualities or emotions, thereby creating a rooted relationship with their practice.
Reference for Students
Both new and old students have a chance to get deviated from their practice regime due to innumerable distractions. When we create links between various classes by creating themes, or relating it to their body type, they have a greater sense of association with the classes. Endorsing the upcoming classes, like surrender class follows heart chakra opening class, is yet another great way of encouraging the students to maintain regularity. New students also get a better idea of the concepts, application and techniques they have in mind regarding certain poses. Creating reference points always lead to a better teacher student relationship as well.
A Retrospect on Progress
A collection of schedules and class plans can be kept in the repertoire for easy reference for future purposes. A teacher can check his past lessons, evaluate his teaching skills and understands which poses are being done regularly and which ones needs attention at hand. This is a great practice which leads to higher evolution of an individual as a teacher. He can also plan a series and project the flow according to past lessons and design what should follow in the future. Planning will enable us to assess our abilities to perform and excel in our field.
They say “A goal without a plan is just a wish”. If this is true then in order to reach the goal of a revered teacher and a proclaimed yogi, lesson plans are a definitive tool to the pinnacles of success.