If you’ve looked at my blog or social media accounts even for a second, you’ll probably get the jist that I’m a little bit into yoga. In fact, I can’t say enough good things about this practice. Yoga has been a huge part of my mental illness recovery and journey towards managing symptoms of anxiety and depression related to Complex PTSD. So this practice holds a very special place in my heart.
So much so, that I’m desperate to share the benefits with others. Sure, this blog is a start – but I want more. I want to connect with people on an individual basis to teach them what my teachers have taught me. To be a part of their journeys and to guide them to finding their own inner peace and happiness. I want to be a yoga teacher.
So in a little under three months, that’s what I’m doing! I will be enrolling in a yoga teacher training course with School Yoga Institute in the wonderful land of Bali, Indonesia i.e. paradise. But I’m not telling you this to brag… I actually want to show you that this is an option that is available to you should you wish to teach yoga! And if you’ve stumbled upon this post… you’re probably considering it!
I know that this decision can be scary and overwhelming, but breaking down the ins and outs of yoga teacher training can actually show you that it doesn’t have to be. So here are some answers to some frequently asked questions about yoga teacher training, to get you on the path to being the yoga teacher you want to be. I’ll also tell you about the yoga teacher training course I am embarking on because I am oh so excited!!
Update: In October 2018 I completed my yoga teacher training and I am now a certified yoga teacher!
How to become a yoga teacher: the ins and outs of yoga teacher training
How do I become a yoga teacher?
Quite simply, you can become a yoga teacher by enrolling on a yoga teacher training course. I’m not trying to be patronising here, but we needn’t overcomplicate it. These courses are typically 200 hours worth of training including asana practice, yoga anatomy and teaching skills. At the end of the training you will receive a shiny certificate that makes you qualified to teach yoga. Yay!
Tip: look out for trainings that are accredited by Yoga Alliance – although they may not be the be all and end all, this accreditation is favoured by a lot of employers.
Am I good enough to become a yoga teacher?
This is something I’ve asked myself time and time again, but it’s just the ego talking. Squash any idea that you have to be “good” at yoga to be a yoga teacher. Being able to do the splits or a king dancer won’t get you any bonus points in the yoga world. As long as you are dedicated to your practice, willing to learn and motivated to teach others, you are “good enough” to be a yoga teacher.
What’s better: an intensive course or a long-term course?
In my opinion, there really is no right or wrong here. There are benefits to each.
For example, an intensive course allows you to place yourself into an immersive experience where you are 100% dedicated to the spiritual practice for a period of time e.g. 3 weeks. It can be an intense experience and will push your mind and body to their limits.
In contrast, a long-term course allows for more time to reflect in between classes and may give you longer to develop confidence in both your personal practice and teaching ability.
Decide what you feel the right option for you is. One thing to note is that there may be some stigma attached to intensive courses in the yoga community because some yogis believe that aspiring yoga teachers use this as a quick route, and courses use this route to churn out new teachers for profit. However, as long as you are truly dedicated to your practice and teaching, and you choose a course that you believe in, who cares what anybody else thinks? Go ahead and prove ’em wrong!
Should I do my training at home or abroad?
Again, this comes down to preference. It also comes down to whether you wish to do a intensive course or long-term course. Courses at home e.g. in London are typically long-term and allow you to work and study in between.
Courses overseas allow you to stay in some beautiful and spiritual locations, and are usually intensive courses. If you’re working you may be able to book time off work as a long holiday, otherwise this may be a more difficult option to fulfill.
As long as it’s an accredited course, it doesn’t matter where in the world you complete it.
Are yoga teacher training courses expensive?
Yes and no. They’re going to set you back at least a couple thousand pounds, which is quite a hefty chunk to pay upfront. Some courses will have payment plans in place to spread out the cost, others may have bursaries and scholarship opportunities to make teaching accessible to everyone.
Ultimately you need to decide whether it is a worthwhile investment. If you consider that you will be a qualified yoga teacher at the end of it and can potentially teach yoga for the rest of your life, it doesn’t seem like such a big cost any more. If you’re going to regret spending all that money… maybe this isn’t the right path for you – but that’s okay!
What is the difference between a 200hr course and a 300hr course?
Typically, 200hr courses are the foundation courses that allow you to become a newly qualified yoga teacher with the basic requirement of hours. Once you have completed this, you have the option to build on this with an additional 300hr course (to get a 500hr qualification) to develop your skills and specialise in certain areas.
I like to compare this to degrees in the UK system. A 200hr course can be likened to your undergraduate degree and a 300hr course to a masters!
Which yoga teacher training course is right for me?
There are so many different courses out there that specialise in different things. I would recommend exploring all the different types of yoga and deciding which style you would most like to teach or best suits your teaching style.
A lot of courses will cover Hatha yoga and Vinyasa yoga because these are the most common styles taught in yoga classes. This is a great basis, which you can then expand on with separate courses to specialise in other styles such as Yin.
I would recommend reading testimonials from well established yoga teacher training courses. Read about people’s experiences through blog posts and reviews online. Don’t rush your decision and potentially end up in a course that doesn’t suit you best!
Yoga Teacher Training with School Yoga Institute
I spent a lot of time evaluating the different yoga teacher training courses that are available, but none stood out to me like the training with School Yoga Institute.
Mystical yoga teacher training
This teacher training course is described as a “mystical teacher training”, which combines yoga teaching with shamanism. In this way, it is not only focused on getting you that teaching qualification, but also greatly on personal development and spiritual transformation.
The training is held in six beautiful locations in Costa Rica, Guatemala, Peru and Bali. I was instantly drawn to Bali as I have always wanted to visit the beautiful island and it would perfectly slot into my travels. My training will be held at the beautiful Kura Kura Yoga Retreat near Kuta.
School Yoga Institute is heavily focused on community, which is something that stood out to me. Yoga teacher training is kind of a big deal to me since I battle with anxiety and panic, so being part of a supportive community of like minded people is something I consider to be very important in my training. I have been reassured that the facilitators specifically set out to create a space where students feel safe and comfortable.
More than just a yoga teacher training
Basically, I wanted a training course that is more than a training course, and I strongly believe School Yoga Institute is just that. My hope is that should I come out of the other end and decide that yoga teaching isn’t right for me, I will have had a positive experience, developed within myself and met some amazing people. Win win!
You can read more about the 200 Hour Mystical Teacher Training here. But be warned, you may want to enroll immediately after reading this page!
I hope that you have found this post helpful and informative, and that it has helped you to progress further on your own journey to becoming a yoga teacher.
I will be sure to update you all once I’m on the training to let you know how it’s going, but I have no doubts that it’s going to be amazing! Let me know if there is anything specific you want to hear about!