Cues For Yoga Teachers - It is also crucial to teach students Cues are words or phrases that tell students what to do or how a pose should feel. They can be incredibly powerful when used wisely in yoga classes. Using the wrong cues can discourage students and leave them feeling defeated on their mats. Fortunately, there are many ways to avoid common miscues. Restorative One of the best things **[Best cues for yoga teachers](** can do is to teach their students how to listen to their bodies. Many people come to yoga because they are seeking more flexibility, but it is important for them to understand that not everyone will be able to reach the same level of flexibility. It is also crucial to teach students that if they feel uncomfortable during a sequence, it is okay to leave the pose and return to child’s pose or savasana. This will help them to understand that they are still part of the class and valued, even if they don’t always complete every pose in the class. This will also help them to build self-confidence and a positive mental attitude. This is a key skill for life outside of the yoga room. Bringing the Heat Some yoga poses can be very intense, especially in yin yoga where postures are held for long periods of time to get deep stretches. Encouraging students to welcome this intensity, and even move towards it is one of the best yoga cues for helping them stay safe as they move through the class. Using simple verbal cues is often more effective than flowery yoga terms that can be interpreted differently by different students. The best yoga cues are clear, concise and easy to understand for all students regardless of yoga knowledge level. Saying something like “creating space laterally” instead of just saying ‘move your arms’ for example is much more specific and helps all students understand what you mean. Keeping yoga instruction simple also allows for a more streamlined flow through the class. Adaptive In some yoga poses, a teacher may instruct students to move deeper or explore variations of the pose based on their personal body experience. Cues like this are a great way to encourage students to challenge themselves, but can also be frustrating for those who don’t have the flexibility required to achieve the pose. For example, asking students to lift their sit bones in a pose that requires grounding through the feet can be destabilizing for those who don’t have flexible hips and can cause students to overwork the hamstrings. Instead, inviting students to move based on how the pose feels empowers them and gives them ownership of their practice. It also allows them to keep moving if it works for their bodies. Freedom of Movement Some yoga poses require a great deal of stillness to get the most out of them. This is where yin yoga can be really helpful. Cueing your students to find comfort and value in the stillness can be empowering and encourage them to continue their practice. Cues like "return your shoulders down and back" help your students stay connected with the pose. They are not as jarring as using anatomical language or references such as "shoulder blade" which could throw off the student. It's a simple but effective cue to use that can make a huge difference in the experience of the student. It's also a great way to reinforce that stillness is just as important as movement in yoga. Sequencing Putting together the components of a yoga class is a bit like putting together a puzzle. While some of the pieces are readily available, the art of sequencing comes from practicing on your own and learning what works and doesn’t work for your body. Cueing students to take it easy in a resting pose can help them to relax. It also reminds them that they don’t have to achieve anything right away and that it is okay to take things slowly. When teaching a pose that expands (Plank, Down Dog, Warrior Two, etc.) it helps to cue the opposing sides of the body so that students can find balance in their bodies. For example, you can say “Imagine your arms and legs are engaged in a tug of war.” This will help students to stay in the moment.