What Students Want: Be Thoughtful & Supportive: Beginners: What Students Want

  1. Arrive early in order to be fully prepared and present, and have time to talk individually with each student.
  2. Personally welcome each student.
  3. Introduce yourself and ask the student’s name. Hold respectful eye contact and smile.
  4. Help them set up their mat and props.
  5. Speak softly or pull the student aside in order to have a moment of private conversation. Ask questions regarding experience in yoga and other physical activities: Are you under the care of a healthcare provider? Have you had any surgeries? Are you pregnant? Do you have any current injuries or conditions?
  6. Say something reassuring that the student can focus on, such as process vs. attaining a posture or prioritizing breath awareness.

Initial Greeting and Meeting of New Students

All new students deserve an individualized welcome from their teacher. Along with asking about prior experience, injuries, and intentions, this initial contact is essential in helping new students feel more comfortable in class. It is important to tell them explicitly that in yoga we are interested in how we go, not how far we go; that it is a process of consciously connecting breath-body-mind while exploring the development of strength, flexibility, and balance as part of a long-term sustainable practice of holistic integration… If possible, group new students close to one another so you can more easily give demonstrations and more specific guidance to them while remaining attentive to the larger class. – Mark Stephens

Move Around the Room

While you can be sure to offer clear verbal cues that do not require always seeing a demonstration, of course new students will still tend to watch you constantly.

  • Make it easier for students to see you demonstrate poses by moving around the room.
  • Moving around the room will also enable you to observe each student and to provide discreet one-on-one attention, as needed.