Teaching Your First Yoga Class: What to Expect

I am an elementary teacher that just started teaching yoga. My education background really helped me know what to expect when I taught that first yoga class. For those of you who have never taught, here are some things you can expect for the first yoga class you teach.


Here’s what you can expect:

 What to expect when you teach your first yoga class

You don’t see anything that is off your mat when you teach your first yoga class.

The first class you teach, you probably will feel like you are in a black hole. You won’t notice anything that happens off your mat. With each class you teach, you will be able to notice a little more about the things going on in the room. Once you have had some experience you will notice every little detail of the environment and how your students are doing and what they need from you.

You will fumble on your words.

But prepared to say things in the weirdest way possible. You will trip over words and forget how to explain the simplest thing. This will get easier over time. It will help you a ton if you talk through your class a few times by yourself before your first class.

Teaching yoga is more meditative than attending a class.

Surprisingly, I find teaching yoga more meditative than attending a yoga class. When you are teaching you can’t let your mind wander because you will completely forget what you have done and what you are doing next. This was a very pleasant surprise for me since I thought that once I started teaching I wouldn’t be able to enjoy/benefit from the effects of yoga as much during the classes that I teach.

Adrenaline will keep you from feeling tired in your poses.

The adrenaline from being up in front of others and leading them through the class will probably keep you from getting tired like you normally would while doing yoga. It’s important to keep this in mind and give your students opportunities to take child’s pose or downward dog. If a lot of students are taking child’s pose, you can gauge that the intensity is high and vice versa.

You should be prepared for some positive and negative feedback.

Hopefully, your students will give you feedback. I would even encourage you to ask for it. The positive feedback will help you start to build your confidence and the negative feedback will help you make adjustments and improve your teaching. Negative feedback can be hard to swallow, just remember that you are new to this, being perfect is unrealistic. Use the feedback to learn and grow. Show your students that you value their opinion. By making the necessary changes they will see that you care about making the class an enjoyable experience for them.

It will be hard for you to plan.

It might be hard for you to know how much to plan and how to make it the rigor that you want. My advice is over plan rather than under plan. Practice your plan to help get a better idea of what the flow will feel like. It will get easier the more you do it.


Are you a yoga teacher? What was your experience when you taught your first class? Comment below!

Abby is a teacher (RYT 200) and student of yoga, passionate about her yoga journey and helping others on theirs. She is the blogger behind Journeys of Yoga, and a second-grade teacher. Learn more about Abby. You can also contact her here.