Posted by: birdmaddgirl | 30 July 2011

side angle chorus line

this week i taught my first full class, a 75 minute intermediate in the park near my house. i invited friends and had a class of 5.

my thoughts on this experience:

planning the class was a lot of fun and a big confidence boost. the chunks of class, the flow of the class, and the ways that moving pieces around could be beneficial all made sense to me. because i understood the logic behind it, learning the pieces of the sequence wasn’t nearly as challenging as i thought it would be. i just had to remember where the pieces started and ended and the rest clicked. i couldn’t quite remember it all as i was teaching, but i didn’t expect to. i was more and less nervous than i thought. teaching friends (but not fellow teachers) was both disorienting and reassuring.

+: the sequence seemed to work. my cues seemed to work (everyone was in the poses i intended with minimal fuss). no major right/left confusion. sanskrit (a strong suit of mine). not hanging out at the front of the class.

-: less adjusting than i wanted to do (i just got too nervous). fewer alignment cues than i wanted to give. insufficient encouragement. no attention to breath & locks. pacing (this is going to be a major issue for me in my first classes, but i’m hoping to work this out sooner rather than later).

i’m going to offer a handful of free outdoors classes while the weather holds & until i begin to adjust/sub classes, which i hope to do this fall. ideally, i will work out the kinks in one or two areas at a time and get closer to feeling comfortable with my teaching.



  1. It sounds like a good first class! I never say enough about breath either, and what I do say always sounds repetitive and trite to my ear. Pacing is hard – how long do you leave them in the pose? I’ve been trying to count my breaths and take them out after, say, five breaths, but sometimes it doesn’t feel like enough and sometimes it feels like too much. Just the sort of thing we’ll have to get a feel for. Which is to say, it’s normal at this point to have issues with these things.

    I did a little practice teaching both yesterday and today (yesterday, tree pose in the Sunday morning class at the studio; today, to a class of one, Meg, on my front porch). I’m hoping to keep up the momentum and teach some friend-classes soon.

    I think next time we get together we should teach each other. That would be super fun.

    • yeah, it is definitely going to get better with practice. i think i just need to keep observant about what i feel can be improved and pick one or two to work on for my next class. little steps! my breath is a long one, so i think most practitioners (esp at beginner level) would think i was leaving them in too long. i had aimed to use my students’ breath as a marker, but in the outdoor setting it was hard to hear (which i hadn’t counted on). oh well, i’m learning! 🙂

      we will totally have to teach each other in january! lucky you, getting the private out of the way. 😉 and even luckier meg!

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