I’ve been a yoga teacher for two and a half years, and a traveling yoga teacher for about a year now. I regularly get questions about my adventures, and how I made the shift from living a relatively typical lifestyle in the States to teaching in other countries and living out of a suitcase. Many times the questions are about how to get started in travel teaching for those who aren’t sure where to begin.
First, know that there are several ways to be a traveling yoga teacher: You can travel and teach as a type of vacation (or get-away) by offering yoga-oriented retreats in beautiful locations, and make a nice little chunk of money to do so. You can also travel-teach as a lifestyle by offering specialized workshops like more well-known teachers (think Meghan Currie, Patrick Beach, and many others). Both of these sort of require that you already have a small following of local and/or international students.
If, however, you (1) are a newer teacher; (2) don’t yet have a solid following of students; or (3) aren’t sure what your unique offering is at this stage in your teaching career, but you want to begin travel teaching, then fear not.
Here are a few steps and tips to get you started on your own unique path into travel teaching.
13 Tips to Begin Your Journey as a Traveling Yoga Teacher
1. Create the Vision. Meditate on, dream, and imagine this experience so you can manifest the heck of out it. But get clear on what you want, and where you want (and are willing) to go.
2. Know that getting paid might not be an option as working in another country typically requires a work visa, which can be a lengthy and expensive process. So refer to #1, and know what you want. If you want to move to another country for a year or more, then maybe applying for a work visa is the way to go.
3. If, however, you want to spend only a few months in a country before moving on, then work-trade or volunteer teaching might be the best option for you. This is what I’ve done for all of my teaching opportunities. Almost all places offer room and board in exchange for teaching, and some places even offer meals. Do your research and know exactly what the exchange is before you apply.
4. You will probably be sharing your living space in some capacity with other people. You might have a private room with shared bathroom and kitchen. You might have to share the bedroom as well. Determine what you can live with before you apply.
5. Do your research, and know the area of the world you’re going into. Is it a developed country? Or is it still categorized as ‘developing’? This matters because your living situation will likely reflect the economic state of the country you’re traveling to.
6. Get on a work-trade websites specific to yoga (Yoga Trade). Join Facebook groups specific to yoga and traveling (e.g., ‘Yoga jobs all over the world’), and even groups specific to yoga in the city, town, or country you want to go to (e.g., ‘Yoga Santa Teresa’). This is how you’ll find out about available opportunities to apply for.
7. Create profiles for non-yoga specific work trade websites as well (e.g., WWOOF, Workaway) because they might end up leading you to the teaching opportunity you want. My second teaching placement was volunteering as a receptionist at a hostel that happened to be connected to a yoga studio. Once I arrived, it turned out that the studio needed a teacher to fill in some classes and I ended up teaching four classes a week, in an open air studio, across from the Caribbean Ocean – which was the original vision I’d hoped for.
8. Put yourself out there. Have a professional CV, make a website, and get your social medias running and active.
9. The Universe is on your side, but you’ve got to help her out, so apply to as many positions which meet your criteria from #1.
10. Know that volunteer travel teaching is surprisingly competitive. Despite how strong my teaching resume is, I only get emailed back from about 20% of the applications I send, and only 10% of those ask to schedule interviews.
11. Be diligent and don’t lose heart. If this is your dream, then give it time. Although if you do lose heart, then perhaps this isn’t your path right now. Be okay with that.
12. If an opportunity opens up, and is the next step on your journey as a teacher, then things will effortlessly click into place. But if you find yourself trying too hard, then take a step back to reassess your vision.
13. If things don’t click into place, then trust that the Universe is using this disappointment to guide you. Be okay with this too.
The Universe IS on your side, so set your vision, and then just allow, allow, allow.
Sarah Cavrak, PhD, is an international yoga teacher, reiki healer, and wild woman. She hopes to empower others to discover their own Wild Soul. Find her on Facebook and Instagram @sarahcavrakyoga, as well as her website www.sarahcavrak.com.
The original posting of this article can be found here: