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Diary of a New Yoga Teacher

Everybody has to start somewhere! Here are poet laureate Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg’s reflections on starting her teaching practice.
  • Diary of a New Yoga Teacher: Part 3


    Week Four

    One person showed up, which could have been my worst nightmare because how can you get a good momentum going with just one other? Yet it turned out to be a dream. She needed yoga at this moment in her life, and I was able to tailor the class to her: no headstands because she was too frazzled, and careful hamstring stretches because of an injury she was nursing.

    When I felt a little nervous because this person was very experienced with movement, dance and yoga, I...

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  • Diary of a New Yoga Teacher: Part 2


    Week Three
    I’ve prepared even more than usual for this week with a special mix tape I created to go along with each stop on the road trip through the class. I have poetry to read at certain intervals, I’m wearing some of my favorite yoga clothes, and I even shaved my legs for no particular reason. I arrive early, light the candles, turn on the fountain, start the music. I sit in the center of my mat and smile. They will be coming soon, and since last...

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  • Diary of a New Yoga Teacher: Part 1


     Week One
    Three people come, and I’m deeply grateful. This is a fairly new yoga studio on the western edge of town, a place where no yoga studios have yet ventured. We're in a location where we’re both greatly needed and greatly not expected (translation: invisible despite our lovely sign, postcards here and yonder, and tweets about town).

    When I went to my first teacher meeting, I asked the other teachers how many students I could expect.

    “Sometimes five,” one woman said hopefully.

    “Sometimes zero,” a...

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