I'm back! Or, as the pilot said on landing... "G'day".
I have had the wonderful opportunity to teach barre and flow yoga and also to do some personal training with men and women of all nationalities, ages and abilities.
While I admit, Phuket is not for me as a non-drinker with no interest in seeking massages, beer, manicures and $1 thongs and singlets daily, ever day. If this is your deal on holidays, you will love it. Beer, pedicures, massages until you collapse...perhaps from the heat, perhaps from the drinking.
Anyway, I digress.
Teaching yoga and barre to men who have never done it before and speak only French or Korean is not a piece of cake, but it was a fabulous challenge and one I really rose to. I had my class in perfect wide plies, pilates single leg extensions and Warrior 2 positions daily and it was incredibly satisfying! I was also able to schedule some one-to-one sessions and work on more difficult poses, or even perfecting squat and lunge technique.
I would recommend the opportunity to teach overseas - to challenge your cueing and sequencing, adaptability and demonstration skills - to any and all fitness instructors. It is a deep joy to discover that yoga, dance, barre, pilates and training in general are universal to a degree. Find the right WAY to show and explain - using hands-on and demonstration - and you'll discover new ways to teach and a new appreciation for the body and spirit.
In future, I would do more consideration of WHERE I was teaching and the rules, regulations and approach to classes and teachers. While I appreciated the great respect shown for my style and ability as a teacher, the approach to fitness was "whoever shows up, whatever they're wearing, they're paying guests so they can do the class".
While I was very fortunate to have committed and enthusiastic class members, I also had people wandering in with 4 toddlers "just wanting to watch" or dressed in jean shorts and filling in time before the bar opened.
I would also opt for somewhere I really wanted to explore and feel part of during my stay. I felt in my natural environs when travelling in Ubud and Barcelona recently and I would easily and enthusiastically teach in both cities again. The mix of architecture, artistic and expressive individuals, great food, coffee and vintage clothing and music boutiques, outdoor fresh fruit, veggies and seafood markets and sacred sites all in one big mix was so appealing.
Having said all that, again, the opportunity to teach to international participants and to make use of some very basic French and German (thankyou high school!) skills was fabulous. I also completely ignored my stern note to self: No More Ink. If you're in Phuket, I highly recommend Hanuman Tattoo Studio.
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