For the past year, I’ve focused much of my yoga teaching on therapeutics with most of my students having some form of physical or mental health challenge. It’s been such a gratifying experience to work with these students that I’ve thought a lot about how to leverage my skills to get these teachings to a wider audience. Two ideas have emerged: I could teach therapeutics to yoga teachers and I could teach the staff at hospitals, healthcare agencies, assisted living facilities, etc. to provide yoga to the people they work with.
This week, I took my first step with the first option and taught a mini yoga therapeutics class to a teacher from Italy who wants to teach therapeutic yoga in her home city of Torino. She reached out to me online during the Spring after finding my website and asked if I could teach her what I know about teaching therapeutic yoga. Her boyfriend came to New York City for a month-long cinematography course at NYU and she took the trip as well with the intent of enhancing her yoga teaching. She spent 9 hours of one-on-one time with me to learn therapeutics and then spent a half day for four weeks at the Sivananda Yoga Center. This was my first time teaching a teacher how to teach.
It’s a vastly different skill to teach teachers about teaching than it is to teach a traditional class. The depth of knowledge must be deeper because the teachers are going to ask very specific questions; their curiosity takes the content to a whole new level. You know exactly how you’re doing because they tell you. And with the desire to train the trainer, the responsibility is heavier as well. You need to keep the teachers safe and you also need to help them keep their students safe. The stakes are high but the potential for impact is high as well.
I’m really proud to say that she loved the training and that I thoroughly enjoyed the time spent teaching a teacher. She is bright, eager, and passionate about healing. I am so excited to hear how everything unfolds for her when she returns to Torino and starts to use this training with her students. I have a feeling this won’t be the last time I share this practice that I love so much with a teacher who cares about it as much as I do. Another door opens.