A Guide for the New Graduates of 2021 Part 1: How to Start Teaching Online After you Graduate From Your 200-Hour Training
Becoming a teacher is a paradox. The only way to become the instructor you want to be is to throw yourself into a class. As a new graduate from your 200-hour certification, it’s like jumping into a moving hamster wheel at full speed. At least that’s how it was done as little as 5 years ago. In 2021, the term “breaking into the business” is no longer some great jump we have to make. We can ease into it, improve our practice as we find our voice. Through online classes we can take charge of our careers as we start our new venture.
What do we need to start teaching immediately? Virtual classes are the quickest way to get your teaching legs. This article will provide you with a short guide to set yourself up, get some real-world tips, and some life lessons I learned along the way when I started out as a newbie teacher.
Teaching online is no longer a trend, it is our "new normal" as yoga teachers–something you might want to seriously consider getting into. As newbies, you have entered into a brave new world with a new set of rules. This is one of them. Not only will you be your own boss, but most studios today will ask you to teach virtual classes at some point. Which makes online teaching a skill you must try to master. Start watching yoga videos, follow your favorite teachers, and list down the elements you like from them and see which observations may work for you.
The insecurities about how I looked on camera melted away because I became focused on the content, not on how I looked
Single Classes, Series, and Live streaming.
Before you pick out what kind of classes you want to offer. Let’s talk about the reason behind these 3 types of paid content.
- A single pre-shot class is an attractive option for potential yogis. It is a one time payment that provides passive income for you, while it shows off your teaching style.
- A series is a set of classes that can have a specific goal at the end of the period you assign. You can create numerous sets of classes for specific purposes. Yoga for better sleep, posture, backbends, you name it. Before the start of every series, the teacher provides you with a short video on how to approach the sequences. By following the sequence to the end, you should be able to see improvement in the focus of intention. This is a more expensive course that can potentially help yogis in need of some physical correction. This will also showcase your knowledge on, for example, anatomy, physiology, alignment.
- Live streaming is for your week-to-week or even day-to-day operations, and will demonstrate that you have a fully operational virtual studio. It provides some regular income.
By providing your yogis with these 3 options, you have something for every yogi who’s looking for a class. It ensures passive and regular income with an infinite space to grow from. Remember to set up all your payment options with Momoyoga 😉. We’ll take care of all that!
How to set up your teaching space
I actually hung back during the boom of online classes in 2020. In doing so, I was able to see how the format evolved for yoga teachers. One of the things that made us different from other content providers was our attention to detail. Having a clean minimalist set to shoot your classes is necessary. Think of it this way: Yoga teachers need to put yogis in a tranquil mindset. How can they achieve a calm mind when they see their teacher working with clutter? Find a quiet space in your house without any distractions, but you can always use some accessories. Pick a time of day when you can have a quiet space without any distractions, if possible. Maybe you could even shoot outside if the weather permits it. Although I’ll have to warn you, outdoor shoots also mean more equipment. For example, outside shoots require a higher quality mic as yogis may hear the wind louder than your voice. It’s up to you. Your background should be soothing because your class is supposed to take your yogis to a more tranquil frame of mind.
Investing in equipment and other alternatives
Shooting your classes can be done 2 ways: Shoot the video yourself or hire a local videographer. I say this because in my experience your friends or partner rarely have the patience to do a full-on shoot. Either you end up fighting or grabbing a drink! Anyhoo, for your pre-shot classes or series, it’s always good to have the basic equipment for your online classes but a good videographer can add variety to your set and have the equipment to shoot outside. They may also give you pointers and edit your classes. It can be worth it to hire a team of professionals, semi-professionals, or students. As far as equipment goes, your smartphone is good enough to shoot video but you may run out of space and it can be tricky to keep uploading to your computer back and forth. Investing in a camera or gopro allows you to keep your personal photos and videos separate from your business content. Believe me, half the job of online classes is about organizing your content. So save time by segregating them to begin with. As you can see there are many options to record your online classes. Some are a bit more tedious than others but with minimal equipment, you can start teaching right away. Soon enough, you and your content will evolve into something high quality and unique.
Practice! Practice! Practice!
As we said above, the only way to become a great teacher is to start teaching. Get in front of the camera and start recording your classes. It doesn’t matter if you don’t intend to publish the class. Record it anyway, so you can see what works dor you, and what doesn't. In the beginning I hated myself in front of the camera. I was in my head about it too much. It felt so permanent to record yourself and put it out there. Nevertheless, I just had to face my fears about being on screen. When I did, something amazing happened. I became kinder to myself about it. The insecurities about how I looked on camera melted away because I became focused on the content, not on how I looked. In time you will automatically learn how to project your voice for your mic, how to write out your script, if you work with scripts, and where to set up the camera so that your yogis get the best view of how you align yourself in an asana, all these little details will come together in your final product. You’ll get there, I promise!
Let’s recap! For today’s new graduate, it is imperative to be skilled at teaching online. You’ll need it to drive business towards you. Teaching online is here to stay, and probably yoga studios, fitness centers, and spas may ask you to teach online in the future too. Next, minimalism and light is key to creating your yoga space. Make sure your background is as calming as the class you’ll impart. When it comes to equipment, what you have on hand will do but make sure you separate your business content from personal content. You will have a lot on your plate when you are starting out. You don’t need all that clutter to deal with. Series, Single classes and Live streaming all have their place in your program. It all depends on your intention as an online content provider. Again, don’t overwhelm yourself and start with what you can do now. Lastly, just go for it. Teaching is a trial by fire profession. This is something that will never change so start recording and learning about yourself in this new role. Don’t worry, your yogis will love you! We hope this article has helped you in some way. Watch out for Part 2: How to Market Yourself as a Yoga Teacher.