By Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500
Not so long ago, Yoga teachers, in the West, taught small groups of dedicated students in basements, garages, lofts, backyards, barns, or any other place that was convenient. As seasons changed, the location of the Yoga class would have to change too.
For example: If you live in a northern climate, teaching Yoga in a barn might not be suitable as winter approaches. The same would be true if you live in an area where temperatures exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit, during the summer months. Students, who can accept extreme temperatures and inconveniences, are the exception, but not the rule.
As Yoga classes grew in the West, classes moved into Yoga studios, large ashrams, fitness centers, spas, and large public areas. Suddenly, Yoga became something that teachers could devote their whole day to. As a result, some part-time Yoga teachers became full-time teachers.
It was not uncommon to see Yoga teachers gathering in local book stores, libraries, and ashrams. The reason for these daytime gatherings was networking, mentoring, learning, and sharing information. Along came the Internet, with instant access to resources for teachers, such as videos, forums, Blogs, and podcasts.
Suddenly, there was a need for business consulting, Yoga coaches, and online mentors of teachers. Where would a Yoga instructor start to search for a trainer of teachers? The place he or she graduated from might be a logical choice, if that trainer would share business and marketing knowledge.
If that option was not open, there were still a number of alternatives available, but let’s leap frog into the present. If you are looking for a Yoga teacher consultant or coach, you may want to make certain you are getting reliable knowledge. Consider the following criteria before hiring a consultant or coach that specializes in working with Yoga teachers.
Is the coach in question a Yoga teacher?
The person you hire may be a great consultant for local restaurants, but Yoga students are not exactly the same as a restaurant owner’s customers. Dedicated students are not motivated by the same methods as customers.
Has the coach in question ever owned a successful Yoga studio or ashram?
If he or she previously owned a large and successful chain of gas stations, would that information be relevant? Almost every adult has purchased gasoline, at least once, because he/she had to – unless they lived right next to their place of employment, didn’t transport their children, have their food and clothing delivered, or own a $100,000 electric car. On the other hand, some studies indicate the majority of American adults never participated in one Yoga class.
If you live in Colorado or California, you may find it hard to believe, but a large percentage of American adults are still sitting on the couch. How do you get them off the couch and make them realize the rewards of good health? In truth, it is a lot easier to sell them discount gasoline; especially right now.
Does the coach in question have any experience with teaching Yoga or running a studio in a tough economy?
Economic trends tend to change. Lately, it seems as if we see economic changes every 10 -15 years. If your coach has been successfully teaching Yoga since the early 90’s, you are getting reliable information.
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