Level Up Your Life!

It’s no secret that I believe in the power of Yoga to transform your life, your relationships and your health.  As a Yoga teacher, I have witnessed the magic of Yoga through my students as well as my own ongoing personal journey and Yoga practice.  Before I start to sound preachy or condescending, I still struggle to live a balanced life, relax when needed, eat and sleep properly, meditate daily and practice Yoga daily.  Old habits die hard….and I have 50 years of poor habits under my belt to overcome.

So, with that disclaimer out of the way, let’s look at how becoming a Yoga teacher (or attending the 200 hour Yoga Teacher training to simply deepen your practice) can help you improve your physical and mental health and infuse your life with new purpose.

What is Yoga? 

Good question, right?  Do not be fooled by Instagram photos, magazine covers or Youtube videos!  You do not need to be hyper flexible, ridiculously thin or own fancy pants to practice or teach Yoga.

Are you alive? Check.

Do you have a body? Check.

Can you breathe? Check.

Do you want to live your best life? Check.

There! You already have everything you need to get started.   The Yoga Sutras (one of the most important ancient texts on Yoga) states: Yogas-citta-vrtti-nirodha which means: Yoga is the stilling of the fluctuations of the mind.

Yoga can include poses or postures (known as asanas), meditation, breathing exercises, chanting, mudras (hand gestures), prayer, study…ANY action (or stillness) that calms you.  There are thousands of ‘styles’ of Yoga.  I happen to practice and teach Kripalu Yoga- an accessible, gentle form that can be modified to suit almost any ‘body’.

Am I ready?

Have you have practiced Yoga in any form for any length of time and has it changed your life in a positive way? Check.

Do you feel that you found a missing piece of your life when you began the practice of Yoga? Check.

Have friends, family members or other important people in your life noticed the positive changes in you? Check.

Are you telling your friends, family and anyone who will listen that they should come to a class? Check.

When I began teacher training, I had been practicing Yoga for a whole 6 months.  The inspiration came during Savasana (the deep relaxation at the end of any good yoga class).  A single thought popped in my head: “I should teach Yoga”.  With the encouragement of my mentor and first Yoga teacher, Amy Andrews (owner of the famous Yoga Hut in Belleview, FL), I enrolled in training with Jennifer McCracken (of the equally famous Blissful Life Corporation in Ocala, FL) and my journey began.  It wasn’t easy! I dedicated 2 months of my weekends and many evenings of practice, reading and study to the training.  I was out of shape in both body and mind. I struggled to keep up with my classmates physically.  I struggled with my spiritual beliefs (or lack of any belief).  It was the best challenge I ever accepted.

What will I learn in Teacher training?

Most initial training programs are 200 hours in length and include philosophy of Yoga, Asana (yoga poses or postures), Pranayama (breathing exercises), Meditation, Anatomy, Sequencing, Ethics and more. You’ll do A LOT of Yoga (duh) and you’ll do A LOT of ‘practice teaching’ (cringe!).  You’ll have homework and be required to take Yoga classes each week outside of your training time.  You will spend time on spiritual subject matter but Yoga is not a religion.  You’ll begin to explore the meaning of consciousness and how your mind and body work together to bring bliss…or distress.  In order to graduate, you will be required to teach a class and pass a written final exam.

Yoga: Side Hustle or Career?

Once you have completed your training AND make the commitment to teach, Yoga can bring financial rewards.  Local studios, fitness centers, and spas are always looking for qualified, trained teachers.  Opportunities are available at senior centers or nursing homes, large planned unit housing developments (HOA’s-Homeowner Associations) as well as schools or churches.  Employers are also adding Yoga as a benefit with classes offered during the work day at larger corporations.  By leveraging your social media presence, you can find opportunities to teach private lessons.  During your training, you will learn more about how to promote yourself as a Yoga Teacher.

Teaching Yoga is a rewarding part time job.  You choose when and where you want to teach!  However, whether you make this a full time endeavor or a side hustle, it is vital that you do not flake out.  Just like any other job, your reputation is crucial to your success.

Get ready to LEVEL UP!

Once you are ready to dive in, do some research.  Currently, there is no shortage of Yoga Teacher Training opportunities.  A quick search on Facebook or Google will reveal several area Yoga Teacher Schools.  However, not all training programs are suited for everyone.  Find YOUR style. Talk to your Yoga teacher.  Attend a class at the school to get a feel for their style of Yoga.

The best resource for more information about Kripalu Yoga is linked below (you can learn benefits of Yoga as well as how Kripalu Yoga compares to other styles):

www.kripalu.org

If you are ready to take this leap of faith in yourself OR if you know someone who may be interested, follow this link to learn more:

https://www.blissocala.com/200-hour-teacher-training

Or, you can email me directly at: reneeihowerton@gmail.com

It’s never too late to find your passion.  It’s never too late to reboot your life.   Yoga has healed people for thousands of years.  We (the world and all of humanity) need that healing more than ever before.  Whether you decide to teach Yoga after the training or evolve your practice to the next level, you’ll be practicing Seva (service) to the world.

Namaste

Renee

Aspiring Yogi

Lover of Goats

Will shamelessly use gamer lingo although I am totally not a gamer

Will also shamelessly and relentlessly promote Yoga, Teaching of Yoga and Better Living Through Deep Breathing at any given opportunity

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