The cycle of teacher and student within the world of yoga is an age-old tradition. Students seek out their teachers for guidance on their life path. It is only natural that once you begin to experience the benefits of a regular yoga practice that you wish to share it and become a teacher yourself.
However, the journey does not stop there. Even as a yoga teacher, you will continue to seek guidance from your teachers and even seek out new teachers to continually expand your knowledge and, therefore, teachings with your students. You are always a student, even when you are a teacher.
Many people complete their initial yoga teacher training (YTT) as a way to test the waters and give them the basic skills necessary to teach their yogic field of interest. There are many 200-hour yoga teacher training programs that offer multi-style courses, providing an array of different yoga styles that can serve as an introduction.
After this, the student/teacher may decide they wish to focus on just one particular style to teach or practice in the future more in-depth to build upon the foundation of their knowledge base.
After teaching for some time, most teachers look for a way to advance their knowledge and add more to their teaching repertoire. It is recommended to wait at least one year before heading back to yoga school to seek out more official training. This helps ensure that you are creating income in your yoga career and seeing progress in your own practice.
Teaching often takes time away from our own personal practice. It is vital to spend quality time dedicated to advancing your practice and understanding of yoga on a regular basis. Yogic knowledge can be imparted by teachers but it is also an experiential practice.
It is completely up to the needs of the practitioner to discover how they choose their advanced yoga teacher training course. Here are some tips to consider when you set out to progress your yoga career.
Upping Your Credentials
One of the first questions to ask yourself is, “Do I need a Yoga Alliance certification?” The answer to this question may depend on your employer or professional goals. Yoga Alliance is certainly the international standard when it comes to yoga credentials. While many courses will be Yoga Alliance approved, there are also many that are not.
If you wish to just study with a certain teacher, that is perfectly fine. If you are looking to start your own Yoga Alliance school or Continuing Education program, you should complete a Yoga Alliance 300-Hour Registered Yoga School (RYS) teacher training or shorter continuing education program by a Yoga Alliance Continuing Education Provider (YACEP).
It will become necessary by 2022 to be a certified Experienced Registered Yoga Teacher (E-RYT) at the 500-hour training level to have your own RYS.
If you decide to go to the Yoga Alliance route, check to ensure that your teacher is at least an E-RYT, which means they have completed over 1000 hours of teaching. These teachers are then allowed to register as a YACEP and offer shorter programs, such as 50-Hour Yin Yoga Teacher Trainings.
Duration of Course
Do you want to spend a weekend away on a short course or are you looking for an immersion experience? Perhaps you want to take something online while you are at home to supplement your own teaching without even leaving your house.
This will help you decide if you want to take a continuing education course or a full 300-hour course. Think about your lifestyle and interests to guide this decision.
Consider what you are interested in learning. Yoga is a broad umbrella under which many subcategories, topics, and styles fall under. As yogis, our practice changes with time, age, injuries, and interest.
Look at the needs of your students, studios, and at-home setup, as well as to what you have access to or are willing to invest in (like more props, which require more training). Remember, your education is an investment of a lifetime. You can get specific and ask for the syllabus in advance! Make sure what you want to learn is included.
Read the Reviews
If you are continuing your studies with a trusted teacher, you can skip this one. If you’re diving in for a new journey with a new teacher or school, then ask for recommendations and make sure you read the reviews!
This way you can get a feel for how long the school has been around and their results have been. You want to make sure the teaching is high quality and that the students who complete the courses are thriving as teachers.
What does "advanced" mean to you? It does not have to mean learning how to do all of the arm balances from the Ashtanga third series. It may mean how to guide a soulful yin yoga class gracefully with a theme from start to finish. It may mean diving deeper into anatomy, philosophy, or anything else beyond asana.
When you go to an advanced teacher training, typically it should also include components to advance your teaching skills, not just your personal practice. So, look for the various components, such as theory, methodology, teaching practice, sequencing, and the like when you are checking out the course curriculum and ensure it will improve your teaching. Receiving feedback on your work as a teacher is incredibly valuable and one of the best things you can do to have well-received classes after the fact.
When it’s time to get out there and do your research, grab your notebook and brainstorm your requirements. Ask for recommendations, search the internet, and start email conversations to find the perfect advanced yoga teacher training for you. Get out there and never stop learning, so you can rise up to your potential as the best yoga teacher you are truly capable of being.
During These Times of Stress and Uncertainty Your Doshas May Be Unbalanced.
To help you bring attention to your doshas and to identify what your predominant dosha is, we created the following quiz.
Try not to stress over every question, but simply answer based off your intuition. After all, you know yourself better than anyone else.