Anna Wardwell is a writer and yoga teacher based in Bennington, VT.

Bad Yoga Teacher

It's crazy how many bad yoga teachers there are out there. 

And most of them are really well meaning, and they THINK they're doing a good job and helping their students, but they're not. They're just bad. 

Teachers who are clearly just riding on the training that they did 10, 15 or 20 years ago. And maybe some of them are continuing their education, but it makes no difference if you don't use it. Like, why are we stepping forward into Warrior I if all we're going to do are open hip postures??? What is the benefit of stepping to Warrior I just to immediately scoot to Warrior II? Who can explain it to me? The answer is nobody. Because there is no advantage to this transition. They are two completely different poses!! It is just what teachers do because it's what they have always done. 

But teachers: PAY ATTENTION!!! There is so much great new information out there. And when you learn something new, you have to integrate it into your teaching!! And please, LOOK at your students! When you see people who are so misaligned in a posture that they are no longer getting any of the benefits, OFFER ADJUSTMENTS. Encourage the use of PROPS. Because I'm looking at these people and I know that what they're doing does not feel good. 

And you can tell people to listen to their bodies and post that shit all over your studio, but most people are just going to do what you say. Actually, they paid $15 to come here so that you would tell them what to do, so tell them the right things. 

Mostly, don't just keep doing the things you've always done because they are what you've always done. Continue to realign yourself to center, and to your purpose as a teacher, which is hopefully to serve your students and to show them how to feel good in their bodies. And you have to actually SHOW THEM! So many people are coming to yoga because they have no idea of what their bodies can do or how they can feel. 

So be a teacher. Learn. Integrate. Pass that knowledge along. Just be better, yoga teachers of the world. Be better and do better.