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Conducting our first class

Teaching our first class this weekend was something we practised and worked hard for, as it was our first time delivering a full class. We had rehearsed with each other prior, giving feedback on what to improve on. Remembering the poses and transitions is also a challenge for me with my poor memory and I had to run through the sequence on my own a couple of times too, but I find that it really helps to have the poses flow from one to another as it would come naturally to mind. Hopefully when I am more used to this, I will take less time to prepare for a lesson.

It was exhilarating to be able to teach a full sequence. I started off a little shaky and nervous, especially with the mask on and I was getting a little breathless trying to do the sun salutations together with my ‘students’. I was also a little panicked prior to the start of class as I was unable to get my music playing on the speaker. Being a yoga teacher also trains the mind in many ways – you’re forced to stay calm and focused, because there’s no stopping once the class starts.

Here’s noting down what I found challenging with teaching:

1) Juggling delivering instructions, observing students and reacting to their requirements and limitations by giving customized cues

2) Being aware of the time and not panicking near the end of the sequence because it may feel like you are running out of time, but you actually aren’t

3) Not getting tongue-tied when giving instructions, or saying wrong body parts or directions

4) Juggling giving adjustments while focusing on the flow of the class (which we tried when practising with each other)

5) Not letting any distractions throw you off at any moment

6) The most challenging – keeping count of the breaths, either mentally or physically (somehow I can’t take as long deep breaths as when I am practising) and keeping them consistent among poses. Mel also told me this during our practice sessions and I still need to work on this

Looking forward to more classes!

Michelle Cheung
200 Hour YTT Feb-May’21