Lesson plan- first time in yoga

Lesson Plan

1 hour

First time yoga student

The goal for this class is to expose new students to a number of postures from all different sections of yoga practice. The poses are modified; and explained and demonstrated clearly so as to not ‘scare the student off’.The student gets a feel for the flow and direction of a class and the teacher gains an insight into the students alignment, strength and flexibility.

Pre Class








5 mins


Post class

  • Students arrive 20 mins prior to class commencement.

Fill out a brief questionnaire and sign a disclaimer. (questionnaire includes medical conditions, injuries and previous yoga experience)

  • Teacher views questionnaire then has a brief discussion with student confirming the information provided and asking any additional questions.

  • Students are then shown to the practice area and shown how to set up mat and any additional equipment required.


  • Teacher and students sit, introduction by teacher is made and students welcomed.

  • Teacher asks again if anyone has a medical condition or injury. Balasana (childs pose) is also demonstrated here for students to go to at anytime during the class if they wish to rest.


  • Students sit in a comfortable position with back straight. They are then asked to breath deeply and slowly.

  • Teacher observes and gives guidance. Eg, Use hand on stomach to ensure in exhalation stomach goes in and inhalation stomach goes out.

  • Students are encouraged to use this breathing continuously throughout their practice in todays class.

Warm up

  • Guide students through a basic warm up, starting with the toes working up to the neck.

  • Rise and fall on toes, revolve ankles, squat and stand, bend forward (legs straight), swing legs (individually back and forward), side bends, revolve arms and wrists, move neck side to side, up and down.

Asanas all postures are demonstrated; verbal and visual direction is constant; and breathing is cued.

Wake up/ energising

  • Marjariasana (Cat pose) x10 sets

  • Surya Namaskara beginners (sun salutation) x2 sets

    2nd set student remains in downward dog.

  • Adho Mukha Svanasana (downward dog) x5 breaths



  • Parivritta utkatasana (twisted chair pose) x2 sets

    Each side should be held for 2 breaths and legs alternated. Students may have feet and knees slightly apart to gain balance.


  • Vrikshasana(tree pose) x2 sets

    Each side is held for 3 breaths. Hands can be kept on hips or students may hold a chair/bar to gain balance.


  • Dandasana(staff pose) 5 breaths

  • Janu Sirsana A (head to knee pose) x2sets

    Do not alternate legs, lift and fold forward each time holding of 3 breaths. (Emphasise the need for a straight back and not to place head on knee)

Back bending

  • Ushtrasana (camel pose) & Balasana (childs pose) x2 sets

    Students are to keep hands on lower back, push hips and thighs forward, arch back and push chest out. Do not encourage the release of the head backwards, instead keep eyesight forward. Balasana is done as a counter pose between sets.


  • Savangasana variation (half shoulder stand) 5 breaths

    Students are to get in and out of this pose slowly using their hands as support.

  • Matsyasana (fish pose) 10 breaths

    This is a counter pose and must be performed and held to prevent injury.


  • Sarvasana 5 mins

    Teacher is to navigate students, encouraging complete stillness. Guide students out of pose back to seated position.

  • Namaste

 Check all students are feeling ok and advise them to drink water. Give students a printout containing all of your contact details; what to do if they have pain after class; background information on the benefits of a commitment to yoga practice; and a brief explanation/history of namaste.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *