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How To Teach Philosophy In An Asana Class

In this episode of the beYogi webinar series we invited guest host Mado Hesselink, C-IAYT and E-YRT 500. She is the founder of the Yoga Teacher Resource podcast and helps yoga teachers integrate their heart-centered mission with practical business & teaching strategies so that they can make both an impact and a living. 

Today we take a deeper dive into the topic of adding philosophy into your classes without it feeling preachy, boring, or clueless. Please enjoy our discussion about how to incorporate Philosophy into your students' physical practice.

How To Teach In Philosophy In An Asana Class

Why incorporate yoga philosophy into your asana classes?

  • It’s the right thing to do for the yoga tradition
  • It’s the right thing to do for your students
  • If done well, it makes your classes more interesting and enjoyable
  • It can set you apart from other teachers.
  • Teaching helps us learn.

How to choose which topics to share in your classes.

Not every philosophical topic will lend itself to asana class and you don’t need to be constantly coming up with new ideas. It’s enough to educate your students that there is more to yoga than asana and stick to the topics that really work for you and for your students. Ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Have you personally experienced the relevance of the teaching in your own life?
  • Is it something they can experiment with while they practice asana?
  • Does the amount of explanation needed match the pace and style of the class I teach?

An adaptable formula for teaching a philosophy infused class.

  • Personal inquiry
  • Introduce the topic
  • Guided meditation
  • Weave the teaching into pose instructions
  • Incorporate the teaching into savasana
  • An invitation to bring the practice into life outside of class

Conclusion

Keep an open mind as you begin to work up to adding yoga philosophy in your asana classes. There is no right or wrong way. If you want to dive a little deeper download the companion workbook, 'How to Teach Philosophy in an Asana Class - without sounding preachy, boring, or clueless'.