HOW TO FIND A JOB TEACHING YOGA WHEN TRAVELING
Many people ask me how I find work teaching yoga when traveling. When I signed up for my yoga teacher training, I never had the intention to teach yoga as a job (I know, mostly everybody says that…), but I discovered that I actually loved teaching and wanted to share my love of yoga. I also had a strong desire to travel more and to combine both just seemed natural.
After my first 200h teacher training I started by teaching friends at home but I wanted to get back to Bali as soon as possible. On my next trips to Bali I focused on my own yoga practice – visiting lots of yoga classes, workshops and more trainings – and also took every opportunity to teach yoga and gain experience. This meant filling in as a last minute replacement as yoga teacher at a surf yoga retreat, teaching donation based community yoga classes for free and subbing classes and starting to teach yoga classes at a beach in Gili Meno. I jumped at every opportunity, even if I was slightly terrified each time.
Teaching yoga abroad has a lot of benefits. When you start looking for teaching opportunities in foreign countries, the number of possibilities increases drastically. Teaching abroad gives you the chance to see new places, try new foods, and to learn from other cultures. It’s also a great way to connect with other yoga teachers and students worldwide. And let’s not forget that the costs of living are much cheaper, especially in South East Asia, so you might actually be able to support yourself teaching yoga and gain valuable experience.
Here are my top 10 tips how to find a job teaching yoga when traveling:
1. Already on the road? Find a yoga studio you love and start from there
In my opinion that’s the best way to find a job teaching yoga that you really like and it’s how I got the opportunity to teach at Radiantly Alive Yoga in Ubud. When traveling, visit yoga studios wherever you are and you will find a place that resonates with your heart. Go back often, become friends with the staff and teacher and offer to sub classes if they need someone. Give it time, be patient and you never know what will develop from there.
2. Check out yoga teaching opportunities online
I found my job volunteering as a yoga teacher in Cambodia on http://yogatrade.com and I always check out Facebook groups for new opportunities. These are the best websites for yoga teacher jobs that I know of:
Facebook group yoga jobs all over the world: https://www.facebook.com/groups/4176939886/
3. Create a bio
Create a professional looking bio that you can send to potential employers. It should include your name and contact information, your education and experience as well as references if you have them. I think it makes sense to include things you did before teaching yoga, but don’t go in to many details. Don’t forget to add good images – a portrait and some yoga poses.
4. Define your profile like a brand
The market for teaching yoga is becoming more saturated every day, which makes it important to define your profile as a yoga instructor. What do you stand for? Strong vinyasa flow classes? Gentle hatha yoga with an Iyengar focus? Ashtanga? Yin and restorative yoga? Kids yoga? Maybe you’re bilingual and can teach in more than one language. Whatever it is, find what makes your offering unique to set yourself apart from the rest. Include this in your CV.
5. Build a website
I recommend having a website as soon as possible, so people can find you online and get into touch. Start simply – a simple wordpress theme with a pretty homepage including information about you and your contact information is enough. You can easily add more services like a blog or your schedule later. Need some inspiration? Have a look at my website: www.susanneriekeryoga.com (I can also help you set up your website for a very reasonable fee, click here for more information).
6. Use your network
Network with studio owners and yoga teachers you meet and anyone else who could help you find a local teaching gig. Word of mouth is one of the best ways to lead you to opportunities. Social media is great to stay in contact and to connect with other yoga teachers on a similar path.
7. Be willing to volunteer to get practice teaching yoga
The hard truth? A three-week training doesn’t make you a yoga teacher. Only practice does. Volunteering is a great chance to gain valuable experience and confidence in your teaching abilities. I loved teaching free community yoga classes at Radiantly Alive Yoga in Ubud and jumped at every opportunity. When I was volunteering in Cambodia I got to teach between 1 and 3 classes a day and my teaching skills made a big step forward.
8. Discuss payment and requirements before you start
A written contract is best, but if you don’t get one (in most places) make sure you understand payment structure (nothing? Per student or per class? A percentage?), when you will be paid, and what is expected of you. Note down phone numbers and contact details for the studio in case of emergencies.
9. Stay up to date on visas and immigration
In most countries you will not be allowed to work and work visas are expensive and difficult to get. Be aware of your situation and maybe don’t advertise your new job proudly on social media when officially you are not allowed to work in that country.
10. Don’t forget your self practice
As Patthabi Jois said: “Practice and all is coming”. For me it’s the most important part of becoming a yoga teacher. Never forget your own practice, visit workshops and classes, study anatomy and yoga philosophy. Stay open and interested. Yoga is a never-ending journey and we are all just beginners.