What makes a good yoga teacher?

Recently I’ve been thinking about this a lot. I know why I choose my teachers and I know what I value in a teacher. But I have also been wondering how students and studios distinguish good teachers. What qualifies someone as a good teacher in their eyes?

You would think several questions hold value in deciding this. For instance, how many years have you been practicing? How many years have you been teaching? What does your training history look like? What does your daily practice look like? Do you even have a daily practice? Who do you practice under? How do you incorporate yoga into your personal life off the mat? How much do you love what you do? How much do you appreciate your students? Can you relate to your students? How dedicated are you in sharing yoga? All reasonable questions right? I think so. I think these elements plus many more can and should be factored in to what makes a good teacher.

But unfortunately in today’s society, I feel like instead of asking these types of questions, the new questions are: How many followers do you have? What’s your Instagram handle? And do you post content daily? It breaks my heart. Yoga is about breaking down the ego and stripping it away, but instead today’s yoga teachers are being reinforced by ego boosting likes and followers. The more followers you have, the more teaching gigs you get right? Or so it seems.

But having a blue check mark next to your name or a “k” behind your follower count doesn’t make you a good teacher. What it does mean is that you’re good at creating content and engaging with your followers. Now I’m not saying that great teachers can’t have a social media following. I’m not saying that all. But what I am saying is that some of the best teachers I’ve practiced under don’t have a huge social media presence.

I would love to get the conversation started down below. What makes a good teacher? And does a social media presence influence whether or not you choose your teacher?

Katie Baki