Updated: Jan 20
You know it’s time to take a yoga teacher training course if you want to improve your own practice, learn more about yoga in general or want to share your passion with others. You then go to your good old friend Google and start searching for level one yoga course, yoga program, intensive yoga training for beginners and so on. All these are now called 200-hour yoga teacher training, and no, they are not only for those who want to become yoga teachers. You kind of have to know more about it before teaching it, right?
With so many offerings out there, it’s kind of overwhelming and you need to be selective and pick the right one for you. Here are a few tips that can help you do that (learned from our own experience and mistakes)
A teacher training program should have one or two styles of yoga that you will practice. With so many yoga styles out there, make sure that in your teacher training, you will spend time studying and practicing a style which you already know and love. When a yoga school’s website mentions that you will practice five styles of yoga, they are just trying to get as many people as possible booked in.
A 200-hour yoga course should mention ONE style of yoga that you will learn to teach to others. The asana instructor would teach you, step by step, how to sequence for this style of yoga, how many types of classes there could be based on this specific style, how a level one class would look like, level two, and so on. This theory should then be applied, which means that the students would have to create their own yoga classes and practice on their fellow students. After they are done teaching, there should be continuous feedback from the teachers and students. Apart from the sequencing, this module should include general info such as teaching skills, class management, verbal cueing, and demonstrating techniques.
Alignment classes of the yoga postures should be included in the training. Let’s say a school teaches Vinyasa Yoga. Which poses are found in most of the Vinyasa yoga classes? The alignment of these poses should be explained and broken down in the afternoon classes, with modifications, prerequisites, preparation steps, ways to get to the main goal of asana, and so on….
Now that you’ve done some research on the style of yoga you want, it’s time to pick the school. Actually the teachers.
How many instructors will be on the course? Is it a one-man show or is it a small group of teachers? What are their yoga practice and teaching experience? Read reviews and see if you can even take a class with them. If you can’t meet them, you can request a phone call with them. Connect, follow them on social media, just don’t get fooled by the numbers of followers they have. This number means nothing in terms of their ability to actually teach. It just means that they put a lot of effort into their IG account. Their IG success may not mean they are skilled teachers.
Does the overall syllabus sound ethereal and a bit too poetic to you? An ethereal teacher training mentions “sacred anatomy”, inspirational classes, storytelling, connection, work through life changes, dream, finding clarity. Can you really get an idea of what you are gonna learn in such training? A more grounded course mentions things like alignment, teaching skills, workshops, philosophy, anatomy, sequencing, relaxation techniques and so on…and breaks all these modules into details.
What is the objective of the training? This should be stated like: By the end of this course, you deepen your asana practice, learn about the roots of yoga and be able to teach Vinyasa yoga to mixed level class. Or it can be something like: By the end of the course, you will learn how to perform cacao ceremony, fire ceremony, transform your life and learn prenatal, acro, kids and yoga for all.
Is the training accredited by Yoga Alliance? If it is, this means that the program is following the standards set by Yoga Alliance. So upon completion of the course, students have the option to register with YA and be called “Registered Yoga Teachers” Does this mean that you will find clients just by being on this website? Of course not. Does this make you a great teacher? Of course not. Does this mean that one day you can run your own teacher training? Yes. One of the benefits I see on this website is that you get discounts on yoga equipment, yoga insurance, and access to great online workshops (some of which are for free and some are not)
Other things to take into consideration are:
Format of the training: is it over the weekends or is it running over several weeks?
Location: Is it around the corner or do I have to pay an expensive ticket to get there?
Cost: What is included and what is not included?
We hope this helped you in making the decision for your training and do let us know if you need any more info on this topic. 💜
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