Adam Husler might be one of London’s most in-demand yoga teachers – travelling the world for retreats, leading workshops and teaching at studios including Triyoga and Equinox. But a career in yoga hadn’t always been on the cards.
Before the Birmingham native, who studied law at Durham University, made the transition into the £74bn global yoga industry, he first embarked on a career working with youth-related non-profit organisations. That career developed fast and whilst managing two significant, flagship sites in London, he decided to complete a yoga teaching training, to build his knowledge in something that although had been part of his life for many years, wasn’t rooted in his current profession.
Teaching a few classes on the side gradually turned into 10+ classes a week, with Adam eventually leaving his full-time role. And as more yoga teaching opportunities came his way he decided to make yoga his main focus.
Now, after teaching thousands of hours of yoga, Adam has carved out a viable career teaching public classes, international workshops and teaching training, with a scattering of appearances in national and international media along the way.
Here he shares his experience of transitioning from one industry to another, how short-term sacrifices can lead to long-term benefits and why being a modern yoga teacher is about much more than the yoga…..
What inspired you to want to work in wellness?
Having worked for years in non-profits, with the often disadvantaged, I started to realise that I might be better placed in facilitating widespread change if my work focused more on making decision makers and employers etc. more mindful, content and conscious.
What were the crucial steps you took that got you to where you are today?
Though not directly related to yoga, my academic background and management experience in operations, marketing, people management and business have played a huge part in allowing me to have success in yoga teaching. Beyond that, the most crucial action I took was acknowledging that I was essentially setting up a new business and so, for years, I worked ridiculously long, anti-social hours and grabbed every opportunity that came my way.
How long did it take you to transition your career, and what did that journey entail?
The transition was, in part, accidental. Though I wanted to teach, I never intended to become a full-time teacher, but suddenly I had a 50+ hour a week full-time job as well as teaching 10+ classes a week. After leaving my full-time job, it was still not my intention for yoga to be my main source of income, but I became comfortable with the idea when I got to the point of being in a position of having more work offers than I could accommodate.
What were some of the key challenges you faced along the way?
The most significant challenge I faced was simply a willingness to work long hours, to work hard, to be reliable and to make the associated sacrifices.
What are some of the crucial skills your job as a yoga teacher requires of you?
Of course, the foundation is competence in teaching yoga classes and having a teaching style that is popular with a large enough segment of the market. Building teaching skills can come from practising teaching for hundreds of hours, with further teacher training coming much later.
Beyond teaching ability and knowledge, modern yoga teachers need to have significant skill in marketing, relationship management, finance etc; essentially all the skills one would associate with running a new business alone.
Are there any myths or misconceptions about working in yoga that you want to debunk?
Don’t believe the social media highlight reel and don’t believe a 4-week training course will change your life/career in an instant. To give context, a 200hr teaching training is probably the equivalent to about one term in college or university!
Finally…….what do you love about working in the wellness industry?
There is such satisfaction to be gained from being around people who are taking active steps to make positive changes to their life –– whether through diet, yoga, exercise, meditation or anything else wellness related.