Similarities Between a Multi-Tasking Ninja & Teaching Yoga

The connotation of a multi-tasking ninja is no doubt associated with; mothers, an amazing superhuman form who does a multitude of tasks on a 24/7 basis. Whilst definitely not on the same level as a mom, being a female, I take pride in being able to multi-task on a small scale, relatively well. Yes, I’ve gone out and said it, I think us females are better at multi-tasking and in details than our fellow male counterparts. Don’t get me wrong, I think males can get things done well, but just one thing at a time.

The class was exposed to teaching aspect this week, a real exciting yet daunting task. How hard can teaching be right… I’ve gone for my fair share of yoga classes, a few times a week actually and never gave much thought to what teaching really entails.

I joined YTT course for the simple fact that I like the physical aspect of yoga and want a deeper understanding of, not just the asanas, but what yoga really is. I did not except the course to be easy but never thought that teaching could be so challenging.

The class was tasked with teaching sun salutation and the application of posture alignment for it. Doesn’t sound like much on paper, in fact it appears rather fun, but NO. There are so many factors coming into play at the same time; from remembering the sequence of the postures, whether you need to breathe in or out for the postures to paying attention to the students’ postures and making the relevant adjustments… It was mind boggling… Another challenge is the finesse that comes with conducting the class, for instance, alignment of a student’s posture whilst the rest are all holding the pose and absolutely cursing you in their heads. Do not even get me started on having to remember the correct technique to adjusting the postures. Poooffffttt, the bubble that my multi-tasking skills are at a satisfactory level has just burst. Similarly, the stereotypical idea that multi-tasking ninjas are usually females. Look at the number of male teachers out there, who are exceptional at what they do.

To say that I’ve got a newfound respect for yoga teachers and the amount of work involved in teaching is an understatement. Of course, teaching is an art and a skillset that would get better with time and practice. I’m looking forward to honing my skills in that respect, to evolve from a duckling to a multi-tasking swan.

On deeper thought, it is my view that the art of yoga teaching and also yoga teachers on the whole are more like multi-tasking swans than ninjas. Poised, graceful and focused on the surface, but so much more work is going on beneath the surface.