In my yoga teacher training many years ago I was encouraged to identify my niche – a group of people or a particular area that I would like to specialize in. Much like a major in college, finding your niche helps you develop better expertise in your chosen area. Many yoga teachers choose to specialize in areas that they had experience with themselves – pregnancy, mature age, weight issues, hormonal challenges, etc. Others just develop an interest in a particular area. I fell into my niche without any effort on my part – retired professional women over 60 flocked to my classes and together we explored the issues that bothered them the most: physical aches and pains, menopause after-effects, energy challenges, concerns about balance, etc. Then they brought in their husbands and boyfriends, so my niche expanded a bit more…
No matter how you come by your niche, it’s good to have one. It helps you to seek specialized education, get plenty of practice and know where to promote your services. You end up teaching general classes, too, of course, but by building your expertise in a specialized area you can become a go-to expert on the subject.
Starting next week, every other Friday we will be featuring a yoga teacher that has found her niche. For some it means working with specific populations (like kids, older folks, pregnancy, etc.), for others – specific conditions (cancer, addiction, hormonal issues, etc.), yet for others it means thinking outside the box and finding their own unique approach to spreading the message of yoga (like blogging about yoga or writing yoga mysteries).
Hopefully, their stories will show you the wide range of possibilities that yoga teachers have, and encourage you to find your own. Please feel free to ask them questions and share your own ideas – we would like this experience to be beneficial for all.
On other Fridays we will be featuring videos of various “yoga snacks”. Yoga snack is a short, focused yoga practice that you can reach for any time in the course of your day. It’s usually between 5 and 15 minutes long, helps you feel better overall, and also addresses some pressing issue. You will get short practices that prepare you for an activity (like hiking or gardening), work on a specific body part (like neck or back) , help manage a particular state of mind (like feeling rushed or frustrated) and help treat or prevent certain ailments (like SI issues or sciatica). Yoga helps us the most when we are able to integrate the practice into our regular day, and you need very little time to do it. Example: Magic Three yoga snack
Tune in next Friday to meet our first Featured Teacher!