Build a Yoga Community
Help your yoga students come together with a sense of shared purpose and friendship.
Here are some ways to help a yoga community grow:
- Encourage interaction. Allow conversation for a few minutes at the beginning of class, or create a space where students can talk (a lobby or waiting area) if a previous class is finishing. People will naturally start to talk, based simply on their familiarity from class.
- Suggest an outside activity. Create an opportunity for your classes to interact in a nonyogic setting. Begin with a social event or a shared meal, and then identify something more committed, such as donating time or labor to a good cause. Students will bring the memories back to the classroom and it will extend their relationships beyond their yoga practice.
- Cultivate a teaching community. Keep your teaching fresh by studying and interacting with your colleagues. This deepens your personal practice and also gives you new ideas and inspiration for your lesson plans.
- Show that you care. Your students look up to you and appreciate your attention and involvement. This doesn't mean you have to become best friends (you shouldn't), but they will be more dedicated to their own practice if they see you participating in the community they've helped create.
Brenda K. Plakans lives and teaches yoga in Beloit, Wisconsin. She also participates in the online yoga community with her blog Grounding Thru the Sit Bones.
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