Introduction: Adjustment & Assisting Guidelines

Here we focus on the practice of offering a teaching designed to address an individual student (in contrast to the whole class). We call this assisting or adjusting.

In yoga teaching, the word “adjustment” is typically synonymous with:

  • Physical adjustment
  • Manual adjustment
  • Hands on adjustment

How people use the word “assist” varies. It may include physical adjustments or may only refer to other types of teachings. Here we are using the words “assisting” and “adjusting” interchangeably and broadly, encompassing all types of assisting and adjusting:

  • Verbal
  • Energetic
  • Physical

The ways in which a teacher chooses to guide individual students varies greatly depending upon training, lineage, personal style, experience and complementary skills.

We honor that as with everything else related to teaching, this is a big topic with no one right way. Each situation is unique and so we do not advocate one way but rather bring together many expert teachings to support you.

Here we’ve gathered guidelines and approaches from numerous sources to support you in defining and refining your approach.

An Expression of Human Beings

Remember that asanas are an expression of unique human beings, not ideal or static forms or “poses.” – Mark Stephens