Sometimes as teachers, we get hung up on what we do in our own practices, rather than what the students in our classes need. On a recent trip, I popped into a yoga class and found I was unable to sink into my practice because the teacher kept correcting every move, even stopping the class to mini-workshop. As a teacher, I've done this too. Sometimes you need to. But sometimes it is also unnecessary if your cues are more dogmatic than a simple breakdown. After all, yoga is about each student finding their own way through the practice.
Top 4 Mistakes Yoga Teachers Make
1) Forgetting to look at your students: So many times the teacher stays on the mat or walks around the room without actually looking at the students during the practice. Make eye contact. Keep your focus and stay in the moment of your teaching by facing the students.
2) Talking too much: Sometimes students need cues. Sometimes they don't. Sometimes teachers call cues that are unnecessary because they think they need to fill the class, calling one of two cues specific to the class at that moment. You'll drastically improve your own awareness of the class, but you'll also improve the students personal experience.
3) Imposing alignment cues on your students: Yup, most poses have specific alignment points. But not all bodies are created equal. That would be boring. Again, look and see what alignment points need to be addressed. Give verbal cues, then a physical adjustment if needed. You might find the students have reasons to forgo the usual alignemtn.
4) Preaching Your Own Practice: Practice what you preach, but don't preach what you practice. Your own personal practice may not be appropriate for the style or level class you are teaching. Let the students have a bit of freedom to explore and find their own practice. Your body and mind might not need the same as theirs.
Connect more with your students and deepen your own practice and teaching. Let go of rules and regulations and start teaching from your heart. You'll not only break through your own walls, you'll help your students break through theirs.