How to teach a memorable wedding guest yoga class

Beach yoga class with out of town wedding guests in Spain. Photos by Jonathan Gipaya
Beach yoga class with out of town wedding guests in Spain. Photos by Jonathan Gipaya

When I was given the exciting opportunity to teach a yoga class for the out of town wedding guests at one of my best friend’s weddings in Spain, I knew I had to make it special. This wasn’t just a regular yoga class. And this class also happened to be a pre-surf beach yoga class (is this couple badass or what? The groom owns a surf school that they run together).

From my experience as a yoga instructor, theming is an awesome way to personalize and take your yoga class to the next level. Since we were gathered for a wedding, the most obvious and appropriate theme for the class was love. I like to weave my theme into my cues (examples – as students twist “feel the love in your side body”) and playlist if possible.

While many of the guests knew each other, it was important for me as a teacher to know all my students’ names and since we were kicking off a weekend of events together, it didn’t hurt to have everyone introduce themselves. This also helps to create a better sense of community.

Elizabeth&LoisDay1037

Follow these steps to create the most memorable wedding guest yoga class:

  1. At the beginning of class, introduce yourself, your relationship to the bride and groom, a brief background of your teaching experience, and a short summary of what to expect from the class
  2. *Introduce the theme of the class = LOVE 
  3. Let everyone know they will be introducing themselves and sharing one thing they love about the bride and/or groom (depending on who is present at the class)
  4. Share your reason why you love the bride and groom (this will also give people an example and a little time to think of what they are going to share)
  5. Watch the bride tear up as everyone shares why they love her 🙂
  6. **Teach an amazing yoga class now that everyone is acquainted and feeling the love! Make sure to weave as much extra love into the class as possible (especially through your cues, word choice, positive energy, and smiling face)
Happy bride front and center
Happy bride front and center
Beach yoga introduction
Smiling groom

*Here’s an example of introducing the theme:“The theme of this class is love. For those of you new to yoga, a theme is a great way to have an intention or draw focus to something during a yoga practice. You can take this theme and apply it however it best resonates with you. We are here to celebrate the love between the bride and the groom – to share love as we reunite with our friends and families – to experience love – to feel the love in our bodies on our mats.”

Hug reuniting with the bride
Reuniting with the bride 🙂

**Tip: Make sure to tailor the sequence to the vibe of your class (get this information from the bride/groom beforehand – does she want a chill stress-relieving class or a one-last-booty-kicking-before-the-wedding yoga class)! The steps above can be applied to any format of yoga.

  • If there are many people who have never done yoga (which was the case for the pre-surf beach yoga class I taught), use a sequence that is tailored to beginners (give my beginner-friendly sequence a try here).
  • If the group is full of yogis, use a more challenging and advanced sequence with inversions and balancing postures, but incorporate beginner options and modifications for those who might be new to their practice.

Elizabeth&LoisDay1041

This class is still one of my favorite classes I have ever taught and I received so much wonderful feedback from everyone – especially from those who were brand new to yoga. As an added bonus, I made the most money of my year-long trip thanks to the very generous tips from this class (I was awe-struck and so grateful).

Elizabeth&LoisDay1020

Now I hope you are inspired and ready to go forth and teach a memorable wedding guest yoga class!

Photos from this blog are by the talented Jonathan Gipaya.

 

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