True Story: I’m A Yoga Teacher

Have you ever wanted to work as a yoga teacher? Ever wondered if all that training translates into a good salary? Click through for one yoga teacher's tips and insights!
Have you ever wanted to work as a yoga teacher? Ever wondered if all that training translates into a good salary? Nina is a yoga teacher and today she’s giving us the low down!

Tell us a bit about yourself!
My name is Nina and I am 29 years old. I was born and raised in Norway, but I currently live in Boston with my hilarious and supportive husband. When I am not teaching yoga or blogging, I am a photographer, writer and crafter.
When did you get into yoga?
Six months ago, I quit my full time job and attended a yoga teacher training. It was a huge leap of faith, but I knew it was the right decision.

Before pursuing teaching yoga as a career, I worked in the non-profit sector in a variety of different fields. And no matter how passionate I felt about the organization I was working for, I always had a longing in my heart to do something related to yoga.

What’s the certification process like?
The yoga teacher training I participated in was a month-long intensive program in Massachusetts. We would wake up at 6 a.m. and go to bed around 9 p.m., practicing a total of 4-5 hours of yoga a day.

It taught me the world about myself and who I want to be as a teacher. I also made some incredible friends through the training. (It cost about $5000. Very expensive, but worth every penny.)

What’s an average day like?
As a yoga teacher, a big part of my job is to practice myself. Not a bad gig! I also spend a lot of time preparing to teach classes, working on sequencing, and reading about yoga philosophy.

Of course, like with any freelance job there is also the element of marketing myself, networking and making the business-side work.

What are the biggest challenges of the job? The biggest rewards?
The biggest challenges of the job are finding enough places to teach, (Boston has a saturated yoga market.) and also allowing myself to develop and grow as a teacher, while not being too hard on myself in the process.

The biggest reward is seeing the changes in my students. It’s a powerful feeling knowing that you are guiding them towards their best selves.

How do you deal with work when you’re feeling under the weather or in a grumpy mood?
Being sick while teaching yoga is very hard! I recently taught with a stuffy nose, and during our pranayama (breathing exercises) I felt like there was snot everywhere! 🙂 But usually if I am just in a grumpy mood, I allow that in.

Yoga is about being authentic, so no matter how I am feeling, I work with it, while still remaining professional.

Is this a financially viable field to work in? Do you need a second job to support yourself?
I am very lucky in that I am able to pursue teaching yoga while my husband’s job supports us. But the truth is, it’s not easy to make a full living on it. Most yoga teachers do it because they love it, not because they make very much money doing it. There are exceptions of course, and I hope to some day be one of them!

What advice would you give to others who are interested in becoming yoga teachers?
Go for it! Even if you decide you do not want to teach, attending a training will transform your personal practice. It’s one of the best things I have ever done, and I encourage everyone to do it.

Do you do yoga? Would you ever want to be a yoga teacher?

Photo by Matthew Kane on Unsplash

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14 Comments

  1. Morgan

    i love yoga.
    i'd love to become certified!
    seems so fun and peaceful!

    Reply
  2. Googlover/keishua

    I've thought about it.
    I do love practicing it.
    So maybe one day.

    Reply
  3. The Remarkable (Rambunctious) Redhead

    I love yoga and have been looking into training programs in my area. I know it wouldn't be the most profitable career as far as money goes, but I know that I would love it and my personal life would benefit.

    Reply
  4. Alyssa

    hey! did you do your training at kripalu?
    i'm looking into doing that when i graduate school next year! i can't decide if i'd want to do it there or if i'd want to do a smaller yoga teacher training near my home on the seacoast.
    after your training can you do whatever type of yoga you want (other than bikram obviously)? I want to do ashtanga and can't decide if i should do a program solely for ashtanga or just go to kripalu- i've heard some amazing things. the program is just so expensive when you include room and board!
    that's awesome your'e just doing it as your sole job! i actually decided to go to nursing school so I could work three 12-hour shifts and then teach yoga the other four days!

    that's exciting you did this post and actually live right near me!

    Reply
  5. Grace

    This is so timely Sarah! I was just thinking about doing some type of teacher-training last night!

    Thanks Nina for your insight! I'll be checking out your blog. 🙂

    Reply
  6. Hannah

    Therein lies salvation… quite possibly. DVDs and mat have been gathering dust for quite some time, but perhaps this post was some kind of wink to get things finally moving? Thank you t'internet.

    Reply
  7. Josephine @ Everyday Juju

    Two of the most lovely and peaceful women I have ever known were yoga teachers! I think if you had to work a second job to get by, having yoga as a big part of your life would give you the energy and health to do it.

    Reply
  8. Briel79

    Yay Nina! Sarah, you are just featuring all sorts of people that I like lately. 🙂

    I've never done yoga but I'd be interested to try it. They offer classes at my gym so maybe one day I'll give it a go!

    Reply
  9. Karen Beth

    I am actually in yoga teacher training right now. I have a week-long intensive at the end of May and will then "graduate" and be certified.

    I love it but… I'm nervous too.

    msred5 at gmail dot com

    Reply
  10. Robin

    Love yoga. I've been practicing for 11 years and the idea of teaching has popped into my head more than once. I will add it to my list of 36 things to do before my next birthday:)

    Reply
  11. doniree

    So inspirational! I've actually completed a teacher training (at CorePower in Minneapolis!) and have yet to teach. I'm a little nervous, sure, but I really want my own practice to be at a more consistent place before I start teaching others on a regular basis. I love reading this though – I can really relate, and it's one of the best experiences I've ever had!

    Reply
  12. Total

    Of course, teaching Yoga is one of the most satisfying jobs one can aspire to!! Also, if properly thought out, it is more than financially viable. You work a max of 3-4 hrs a day and get paid more than most Corporate types slaving 14 hrs daily!!

    Reply
    • Nava Nithya

      well said! its so true… Namaskar…

      Reply
  13. Nava Nitya

    Amazing article…. inspiring. 🙂 Namaskar

    Reply

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