What qualities do you look for in a good yoga teacher?

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I am currently enrolled in a training and certification program, and thought I’d ask some opinions. What do you like/dislike about teachers? In a general, eclectic session, do you place importance more on meditation/breathing or fitness? What are some bad habits you have seen before, and what did the best yoga teacher you ever had do that was so special?

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Dances with Buddha

Well, of course knowledge and experience.
Once you’ve experienced a knowledgeable teacher, it’s usually apparent when others try to ‘wing it’.
I like that my teacher has her own teacher, even after many years of herself being a teacher. I like her attitude that she will always be a student herself, with more to learn.
I’ve chosen her as my main teacher specifically because she does teach asana, some pranayama, & occasionally meditation (I know she keeps a regular meditation practice in addition to her asana practice), but I know many others seek a teacher of only the physical practice, and have no interest in the yamas, niyamas, or other limbs.
A sense of humor is always good. Remembering that it’s only yoga, not life or death.


I think DWB gave a great answer!
If I may add to that I’d like to say that when I did my yoga teacher training a few years ago, I had unlimited free yoga classes included in my tuition…….so I went to as many different classes with as many different teachers as possible. While most of the experiences were wonderful, there were a few negative ones which stood out.
I had complimented one of the best teachers I experienced a class with. Their response was, “I am only passing on things I have learned from all my different teachers and you will do the same.” The students being able to respect you, yet staying humble is an important trait.
When I teach, especially when I see a student struggling with a certain pose, I try to mention how I too am struggling with certain poses. It’s finding that fine line on being gentle, yet challenging students to the best of their abilites.
I have attended classes where the teacher did nothing but sit at the front of the class-no demonstrations, no adjustments, and I did not like it. I felt as if she didn’t care about us.
Here are things I like about yoga classes/teachers:
Starting class on time
A nice and guided meditation
Adequate time for a warm-up
Clear explanation/demonstration of asana-saying the name is both English and Sanskrit if possible
Adjustments(even verbal ones) when needed
Challenging the student without pushing too hard
A good sequence of poses
A nice long savasana
Respecting all students as equal
Some things I have disliked about teaches/classes:
One teacher had really bad hygiene(B.O.)
When they fool around too much with the music-I just bring my Ipod and speakers and put it on shuffle.
When they tend to focus too much on one student who is having trouble and then the student is self-conscious
When their voice does not project
When they are talking way too much where it is distracting to the students
I know I’ve been rambling but I hope it helped.


It was very clear and very helpfull all yours statements, thanks!


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