What it feels to teach? ~ Jasmine Ho

It was a good opportunity to teach a couple of times to my classmates, some friends and my classmates’ friends. You may wonder how I feel prior, during and after teaching. Well one word sums it up “tough”!

Prior to class, time is need to plan the sequence from breathing to warm ups to asanas. It is important to plan more asanas than less and the potential adjustments that may be needed to be made to the asanas during the class. For me, I am particular about the flow of the asanas, just like a dance choreography. Hence, I always imagine first then try it out while coming up with the instructions. Recording myself helps in hearing how I speak and ensuring that I do not use too much time or too little time. Using my memories of all the yoga classes I had attended in the past helps a lot in coming up with sequences and remembering them as I had personally gone through the movement myself. Lastly it is crucial to MEMORISE my own sequence in Sanskrit so that I sound like I know what I am doing.

During my class, I realised that yoga instructors have to be super proficient at multi-tasking. There are so much to be done concurrently like recalling the sequence, Sanskrit names of the asanas, count breaths, adjust alignments for everyone, informing students what are the benefits of the poses they are doing and reminding them whether to inhale or exhale using Ujjayi breath and what to take note of like scooping in tailbone, engaging core and lengthening of spine. And all these have to be communicated with a suitable tone and proper strides to take around the room to adjust. So many to say or do in such a short amount of time! It is also for me to take discretion in deciding who to adjust and how much to adjust so that the others are not painfully holding the poses.

After the class, it is great to hear feedback from teachers and the students themselves on what they like and that I can improve on for a better class next time. I feel really glad and relieve when they say that they enjoyed the class as they felt challenged but at the same time, satisfied that they feel good about themselves.

This sums up what I felt during the teaching sessions and I will definitely accept more opportunities to teach for greater improvement.