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Tools for Teachers

Learn—Then Teach—This 3-Part Yoga Curriculum Focused on Balance

Demonstrate the meaning of balance by unpacking three key concepts with your students.

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Whether you’ve just finished your first 200-hour yoga teacher training and are leading your first class, or you’ve been teaching full time for decades, we’re here to help you become a better yoga teacher (and student!). Outside+ members get access to sequences created by top teachers, tips and tricks for building unique curriculums, and articles packed with anatomy know-how and best practices for teaching in a studio and online. Not yet a member? There’s never been a better time to sign up.

If you’re structuring your classes one session at a time, it’s time to think bigger. Creating a curriculum that identifies learning objectives and maps a clear strategy can help your teaching become more cohesive, and makes it easier to weave together multiple concepts into a larger theme. A curriculum lays down a carefully crafted foundation onto which your students can build a deeper understanding of yoga—and gives you some structure, too.

To get you started, this three-week curriculum from teacher Chrissy Carter is built around the concept of balance and introduces a different focus each week. The first class explores the concept of ground and rebound; the second examines the concept of stability and ease; and the third unpacks the concept of practice and non-attachment. Now let’s get learning!

Week 1: Ground and Rebound With Tree Pose


Ground and rebound is a useful concept for understanding balance because it asks us to establish a stable foundation and to root down with purpose. This concept can be brought to life with a balancing posture like Vrksasana (Tree Pose). This smart sequence prepares students for Vrksasana while also considering how the main actions of Tree Pose support the curriculum as a whole. Read More. 

Week 2: Seek Stability With Warrior III

warrior 3 with blocks chrissy carter

In the Yoga Sutras of Patanjaliasana (posture) is a balance of sthira (steadiness) and sukha (comfort). Individually, these elements cultivate balance by offering support. For example, we can cultivate stability when we’re feeling unfocused, disorganized, or dull in our efforts. Similarly, we can focus on ease in the moments when we catch ourselves gripping, straining, or overworking. These elements also work together to create a dynamic conversation. It’s the process of navigating these oppositional forces that can reveal a deeper understanding of balance. When designing a sequence around the concept of stability and ease, consider your overall strategy. Read More.

Week 3: Practice Non-Attachment With Handstand

handstand chrissy carter

The play between practice and non-attachment demonstrates balance in action. Meaning: You’re not simply teaching balance as an idea, but rather asking your students to find it for themselves. Applying abhyasa (practice) and vairagya (non-attachment) on and off the mat gives us an opportunity to negotiate the opposing forces of desire and detachment. Read More.

Also from Chrissy Carter: Tips for Smart Yoga Sequences