If you’re a yoga practitioner who wants to deepen your practice then a yoga teachers training course may be a great idea. Many people feel like yoga has transformed their world and made them discover life-changing truths about themselves. Many of them want to share this experience with other people by guiding and teaching them about the practice of yoga. A yoga teacher training program would be the first step on this path. It will take you on a journey of self-discovery so that you can achieve your highest potential mentally, physically and spiritually. Through this, you can have an immersive experienced supported by mentors, scholars and fellow trainees. Through a good teacher’s training course, you can develop your practice, become a certified professional yoga teacher, find your path in life and make friends for life.
While there are many yoga teacher training programs being offered out there, here’s how you can choose one that is best suited for you. You must carefully go through a yoga teacher training curriculum before signing up for the course. It will involve some practical commitments like time, money and energy but the most important commitment would be an emotional one. Therefore, you need to find a yoga trainer who resonates with you and offers a program that will set you on the right path and help you to achieve your goals. The primary aim of this training program is to train a person who will be teaching yoga in the future. You must remember that teaching and practicing yoga are different skillsets and the program will be designed to cultivate your ability to teach yoga. Similar to yoga classes, yoga trainings are also very different from each other. Depending on whether you want to deepen your practice or become a yoga teacher in the future, talk to the faculty and ask them about the focus of the teaching program. You can ask them questions regarding the curriculum and the breakdown of the hours. If the lead faculty doesn’t want to answer your questions you should find a yoga teacher training program that does. It is very important that you resonate with their approach and personality.
While looking into the curriculum of a yoga teacher training program, you must look for well-organized content. Yoga is an ancient practice with roots in Hinduism that improves the health and well-being of both the mind and the body. Over the course of time, many different traditions or schools emerged within the practice of yoga. Many of them like hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, Iyengar, Bikram, kundalini etc. became widely popular in the west. While selecting a particular training program, choose one that offers training in the specific yoga tradition that you want. The marketing materials should have clearly articulated methods, topics and schedules mentioned. These crucial things should be kept in mind as an unstructured class can often become very chaotic. The curriculum must also be thorough and comprehensive enough to teach you all the skills that are necessary to teach yoga well. The most common yoga teacher training requires 200 hours of classes. The curriculum of such a program must have a good combination of asanas, anatomy, sequencing, breathing exercises, sun salutations, philosophy, prop use, hands-on adjustment, teaching practice, and meditation.
The teaching methodology should include theory lectures, micro lessons which are practical sessions when techniques are taught, trial lessons when the student has to conduct lessons in order to develop teaching skills and exams for evaluation. The trainee must also dedicate time for self-study when he or she has to read books from the syllabus and revise theory lessons like the different types of yoga, yoga lifestyle, human anatomy, and physiology and learn how to prevent injuries during yoga practice. During practical training, asanas, mudras, pranayama, kriya, chanting of mantras, meditation and cleansing techniques must be taught. Cleansing processes include nasal cleansing or jalaneti, frontal lobe cleansing called kapalbhati, concentration or tratak and partial master cleansing called lagoo shankha prakshalana. More specific needs for various populations, challenges of teaching multiple levels and Ayurveda etc. are generally taught at a more advanced level of training spanning 300 hours to 500 hours.
While you’re deciding on a yoga teachers training course, there are certain proverbial red flags that you must watch out. Avoid a particular program if you come across the following things. It should not be style over substance. Talk to people who have graduated the program recently to get a sense of the teachers and scholars. You can often find the marketing materials of a particular program completely focused on promoting an exotic location. This should never be the case as teaching is a huge responsibility and you’re not going on a vacation. Also avoid a program that claims that it is the only method of yoga and other traditions are not worth practicing.