Building a good yoga sequence

One of the challenges I was faced during my 200hrs YTT is when, during the last week of our training, we had to come in front of the class to teach other future teachers a real class.

This was a challenge for various reasons: I had to fight away the “shyness” in me and act as if I was a tenured teacher, I had to show confidence when this was the first real class I was teaching, I knew the others had the same level as me (if not better) and I had to teach them nice sequences, I had so many things running in my head at the same time (voice tone, energy, smooth transitions, adjustments…). 

But one of the most difficult challenges for me was finding the right sequence. The sequence that I and my students would enjoy. The sequence that would reflect my personality and style. 

I would spend hours over the weekend to watch some YouTube videos or pinning some nicely illustrated yoga sequences on Pinterest, yet I felt lost in an overflow of information. Until I found a really nice cheat-sheet on how to build a yoga sequence. You need to fill the blanks according to the class you want to deliver but it guides you through a nice smooth flow. As I know a lot of young Yoga Teachers might be reading these blog posts, I thought it’d be a nice to share:

  1. [Note to teacher only]
    1. Class Name
    2. Peak pose
    3. Theme
  2. Intro
  3. Starting pose (eg. child pose, seating, standing, laying…)
  4. Breathing exercise (eg. kapalbhati, ujjayi, aloma viloma…)
  5. Spinal warm ups (eg. cat-cow, twists, side bend…)
  6. Sun salutation x times (eg. Hatha, Ashtanga A, B…)
  7. External hip rotations with Vinyasa in between and repeat other side (eg. 
  8. Internal hip rotations with Vinyasa in between and repeat other side (eg. 
  9. Standing balance poses (eg. tree, half-moon, eagle, warrior 3…)
  10. Sequence leading to peak 
  11. Peak pose (eg. high lunge, chair, pyramid, low lunge…)
  12. Counter pose (eg. headstand -> child pose, shoulder stand -> fish pose…)
  13. Seated poses (eg. baddha konasana, lotus, paschimottanasana…)
  14. Supine poses (eg. bridge, fish, reclined butterfly, happy baby…)
  15. Savasna
  16. Optional: place some core exercises in between a sequence category

You can fill out this cheat-sheet depending on the time of day, level of your students, theme of the class, mood of the day… without forgetting the essentials!