My Iyengar Yoga Teacher Training Experience: By Sam Smith

Observing and then assisting at Beginners and Level 1 classes at Hills Yoga School has been an invaluable part of my Iyengar yoga teacher training. I have enjoyed deepening my knowledge and skills as a trainee teacher and I am grateful for the encouragement of the students at Hills Yoga School to me as an observer and assistant at their classes. It has been wonderful to observe the changes in students as they continue their practice at the school. I have learned so much since I started to observe and assist in classes at the start of 2018. 

Watching how Stephanie as an expert teacher structures classes to enable all students to experience the benefits of the poses has given me greater confidence in planning my own classes. Being able to stand back and watch how props are used for different student needs and how poses can be modified is a privilege. Participating in a class as a student and watching a class as an observer are vastly different experiences. It is only through focusing on what is happening with other students in a class that we as trainee teachers, are able to truly understand how to cater to the diverse needs of our students. I have learned how to better support students with knee, back, shoulder and wrist injuries, students in their menstrual cycle, students recovering from illness and students at different levels of experience within the same class.

Assisting in classes and learning how to adjust students in poses has been enormously beneficial to my growth as a trainee teacher. Attention to precise alignment is a hallmark of Iyengar yoga and supporting students to find this alignment is crucial to experiencing the benefits of the practice. My strongest motivation to become an Iyengar yoga teacher is to pass on some of the immense benefits of the practice I have experienced myself. Learning how to safely adjust someone deeper into a pose or into a better alignment is so important for this.

To finish, I leave you with this quote:

Learning is as much an art as teaching - B.K.S. Iyengar