5 ways meditation teacher training made me a better yoga teacher
Yoga teachers who wish to further their knowledge and understanding of the practice should consider doing meditation teacher training. This week ACMM Coach, Yoga and Meditation Teacher Susie McPhie shares how her meditation teacher training supported her in becoming a better yoga teacher.
Through meditation and mindfulness teacher training, yoga teachers can gain a number of new skills that can help to enhance and deepen their abilities both as a teacher and as a practitioner. They can learn to cultivate greater awareness of their own bodies and minds and also how to better lead others in their practice. Furthermore, by becoming a teacher through meditation-based training, yoga teachers can learn to access deeper insights into their own practice, while also gaining valuable tools, techniques and resources to support their students. Meditation teacher training is a great way for yoga teachers to further their own growth and development, while also equipping themselves with the knowledge and skills to be an even more effective leader and guide!
Below Susie shares her journey as a meditation and yoga teacher:
The first time I attended a Yoga class, I knew that it would be an integral part of my life from there on. Many things about Yoga resonated deeply for me. The non-competitive nature of the practice, the inner peace experienced with Savasana and the gentle connection with the other practitioners all seemed to open up for me a supportive world I hadn’t known was out there.
As time went by I felt the flow-on effect into my daily life – life enjoyment, physical benefits of strength, flexibility and balance and an inner peace.
In order to deepen my own practice and with a tiny plan to share yoga with others, I decided to study for my Yoga Teacher Training.
It turns out I wasn’t the only one for whom Yoga resonated. My classes grew and grew.
I had an inkling that the peace of Savasana and relaxation was leading me to further my knowledge of meditation and mindfulness.
This progression took me through my Advanced Certificate and Diploma with ACMM, and my work in guiding and teaching meditation and mindfulness has really consolidated my business into a deeply holistic offering.
What are some ways in which my Yoga Teaching has benefited from my Meditation Teacher Training?
Deeper connection with people
Travelling the ACMM Journey is more than a road to a qualification and the benefits that brings. It is also a journey into your Self. Having learnt more about myself, I feel that I have improved my own insight into the mirrors that exist between me and my students. I have greater confidence in listening, reflecting, supporting and nurturing my students. I am comfortable with silence – I can wait without jumping in to ‘fix’. My students usually come up with their own solutions – discovered by talking it through.
A more holistic approach to classes and self care
Yoga classes are more than just an exercise and stretching session. My meditation training has reinforced the importance of taking time – allowing ‘arrival’ of people holistically – not just their bodies onto the mat, but allowing time for body, mind, spirit to arrive and be all in the one place at the one time. I now allow more time to ‘drop in’ to the physical and mental space before launching the yoga class. A benefit to me during this quiet time is to feel into the energy in the room, pick up on those who might not be travelling well on that day and the then adjust the class accordingly.
Being able to express your own uniqueness when guiding Savasana
Meditation Teacher Training has opened up a whole new Toolkit of ideas to use during Savasana. I can tailor my guidance during Savasana to the energy of the room. I am able to individualise and create a truly unique experience for my students – one which they probably won’t receive elsewhere, or with other Yoga Teachers. Creating my ‘brand’ in this special way.
Enhancement of Yin Classes
Yin classes are a fabulous time and space to use my skills learnt during Meditation Teacher Training. Being able to feel confident guiding deeper relaxation is one aspect, or even guiding a deeper dive into a more awareness or inquiry style of experience throughout the Yin poses can help facilitate release of past hurts or emotional ‘baggage’ the students could be carrying. This results in opening and release of not just the fascia, but also of the soul.
Offering more than just Yoga to clients
I am so proud to be able to offer more than only Yoga classes. The vast range of skills, knowledge and practices learnt with ACMM has enable me to offer my Yoga Students pathways they may have not previously considered. “Introduction to meditation and mindfulness” short courses; meditation groups; children’s mindfulness – kids don’t keep still, so using the mindfulness skills along with movement really connects kids to their body and their mind. Sound bathing and healing; outdoor meditations and yoga (just to name a few). The list is endless and allows me to be able to connect with my students in ways with resonate for them.
My roles as a Yoga Teacher and as a Meditation Teacher allow me to provide a place (physical and metaphysical) for acceptance, reflection, relaxation, exercise, healing, peace, sharing, connection and support. People come to connect with themselves and with others. I am just the catalyst who enables these magical transformations and connections to happen.
I am blessed to be working in these wonderful modalities.
Author – ACMM Coach, Susie McPhie