This came in the mail last week and as I updated my Bio with E-RYT = Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher I thought what does that really mean?
For Studios where I teach it means that I have obtained a certain level of training and credibility to safely lead their classes, especially important since yoga has gained popularity and just about anyone can take a weekend workshop and hang out a yoga teacher shingle.
For my dear students it means that I so appreciate the early classes where they (like #3 in the definition above) endured, underwent and suffered through - hopefully not on a physical level - my first attempt at leading yoga classes, as well as (#2 ) allowed me to learn along with them through experience which can only be gained through direct interaction in the laboratory of the classroom, so that now I can hear my own voice more clearly and see a unique teaching style emerge. And if... (as in #1) I'm a bit wiser and more skillful as a teacher it is only because of that experience we shared.
For me it means I've been around the yoga block a few times, and though I feel more comfortable taking the "seat of a teacher" I am first and foremost a student and I will continue to practice, study and teach as I endeavor to uncover my own true self.