Yoga Teacher TRAINING FAQ
WHAT IS THE AIM OF THIS COURSE?
You might already be a great Instructor with a sound knowledge of the body and how it moves, or a Wellness Professional with an understanding of the mind, but you want to know more about the mind-body-spirit connection. Or you might just be someone who has bitten the Yoga bug and wants to understand more than just the movements. Wherever you are, the StretchBodyMind Yoga Teacher Training course is designed to build on your knowledge and train you in a modern hatha style of Yoga using the ancient works of Patanjali as a base for our work.
This is an intimate quality learning experience. Your Trainers deliver hands-on training in a small group (never more than 12 people) so they are totally approachable, available and offer the best philosophy and teaching alignment. In each of the weekends you will be invited to become fully present to your body, mind and breath so that you can experience the state of “yoga” and you will then be expected to teach this to YOUR students.
WHAT WE WILL COVER
In the StretchBodyMind Yoga Teacher Training we work on the principles of FOUNDATION, EXPRESSION and VISION. This will incorporate:
Practice & Training
Anatomy & Physiology
Yoga Philosophy & History of Yoga
PRACTICE & TRAINING
Each Saturday morning of your course will begin with an hour-long practice session where you will delve into the experience and the technique of asana, pranayama, meditation and mantra allowing you to deepen your personal practice of yoga while learning as much as possible about the application of technique for teaching.
• The course will involve a detailed study of the practice, benefits and likely effects (physical, mental and emotional) of certain Asanas (postures) and an understanding of the necessary precautions and limitations and how to safely apply these.
• Selected classical Pranayamas (breathing practices), and their anatomical and physiological effects, will be studied and practised.
• There will be consideration of selected classical Mudras (body positions which invoke particular moods and mental attitudes) and Bandhas (psycho-physiological locks) and methods of combining the Bandhas with pranayama, mudras and other Yoga techniques.
• There will be an introduction to the Kriyas (internal cleansing practices of Hatha Yoga) as well as an introduction to Kundalini Kriyas (exercise sets to awaken kundalini energy).
• There will be an exploration of Yoga Nidra and other relaxation techniques; its place in eliminating insomnia, improving the depth and quality of sleep and as a preparation for meditation as well as a look at modern and ancient theories of meditation and practical techniques.
TEACHING EXPERIENCEA minimum 2-hour portion of each day will be given to the study of teaching methodology.
• the study of alignment principles
• creative and intelligent class sequencing
• the art of physical demonstrations
• verbal and physical adjustments
• modifications for all ages and posture types
As well as voice and presence of the teacher including Sanskrit – the ancient language of yoga.
You learn the stories behind the names of the poses as you learn to properly pronounce their Sanskrit names.
ANATOMY & PHYSIOLOGY
In this portion of the training you will focus on the study of the musculo-skeletal and organ systems as well as anatomy of movement. It is important that teachers of yoga have an understanding of how the body moves (and doesn’t move!) so that they can lead a class with confidence and skill.
There will also be a focus on Eastern Anatomy of the Energetic Body. Topics of study include an introduction to the concepts of Prana (Life Energy/ Force), Chakras (energy centres governing aspects of our personality, bodily functions and health) and Nadis (energy pathways or meridians). This portion of our studies allows us to go beyond the physical body and delve into the exploration of our subtle energetic bodies.
YOGA PHILOSOPHY & HISTORY
Afternoon sessions of the training programme will rotate through the study of Yoga Philosophy, as it puts the physical practice into a much larger context, and the History of Yoga, looking at the major philosophical ages and their impact on the yoga practiced today. You will also receive life coaching on how to authentically incorporate yoga into your life and teaching style using the eight-limbed philosophy of the Yoga Sutras.
This part of the course will also take a closer look at the Bhagavad Gita and will include an Introduction to Ayurveda – the sister science of yoga and understanding your Dosha (constitutional type). We also look at modern trends and developments in yoga and how it has evolved since its introduction to the West.
When you become a yoga teacher, you are essentially starting a small business. Not enough people talk about this, but it’s true. Even if you’re only teaching one class a week at your local community centre, you still need to know how to write a catchy yet clear class description, get the word out about your classes and connect with all those students you really want to teach. So this course will walk you through the ins and outs of how to start your teaching with a clear plan in place so that you can get (and keep!) the students and classes you want.
You will leave this training with a 6-week series in hand, ready to teach the moment you get your graduation certificate. This includes a theme for the series, the sequences, and the marketing materials – all of which you’ll create along the way with the support of our training community. No teacher training programme would be complete without a closer look at the ethical guidelines and responsibilities of the yoga teacher. Therefore the course will also cover some key aspects of the business aspect of teaching yoga such as liability and insurance.
STYLE OF YOGA WE ARE LEARNING
The StretchBodyMind 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Course focuses on the fundamentals of Hatha Yoga which are key to all styles of yoga. Your principal tutor (Victoria) has trained in Kundalini, Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa Flow, Pre-Natal, Children’s and Anusara Yoga amongst others so all these different influences will be brought together into your training. The certificate you receive will allow you to teach Hatha yoga which is a very broad designation and will allow you to find your distinct and personal teaching style. Victoria is intentionally seeking students for this programme who want to find their own voice as a yoga teacher. While she will certainly provide you with a multitude of strong tools and templates to build with, this is your time to learn and share what yoga means to you.
WHAT DO YOU EXPECT OF ME?
StretchBodyMind asks that you ensure at least a 90% attendance and completion of course and practical homework. You will also be assessed according to the Yoga Alliance Professionals’ guidelines.
1. Students will complete a Learner Achievement Portfolio showcasing their knowledge in the main elements of the course
2. Students will be required to create a 6-week class outline to ensure their knowledge is deeper than teaching one class
3. Students will complete a practical assessment of their teaching skills
4. Students will have a number of interviews with the Tutor/Assessor throughout the course
All successful graduates will receive a certificate of completion from StretchBodyMind and RYT 200 (Registered Yoga Teacher) status from Yoga Alliance Professionals.
WHAT KIND OF HOMEWORK IS INVOLVED?
Students in this training are expected to do a variety of activities and assignments between training weekends. The homework is designed to both help you integrate what you learned in the previous session and prepare for the next. This includes, but is not limited to, practice teaching, reading related books and handouts, completing a Learner Achievement Portfolio (LAP), writing up pose instructions, writing a book report, creating your own 6-week series (complete with sequences & marketing) and more. For most people, this ends up being a couple of hours per week.
There are no special entry requirements although the course is best suited to those already practising Yoga with a strong practice of 2 years or more, or those already working within the fitness or health industry. Individual attention and guidance in the subtlety and art of yoga practice will be offered so that you may progress towards developing or deepening your own personal practice.
WHAT IF I CAN'T DO A CERTAIN POSE?
You are definitely not alone! But no one needs to be able to put their leg behind their head (or even close) to participate. This course helps you build your skills and confidence to then create the same safe, supportive environment for your future students and does not teach you to become a human pretzel (unless, of course, you were previously!) although your flexibility and confidence in the asanas will improve through the regular practice.
A TYPICAL TRAINING DAY
The training weekends are 17 hours long and involve two 8.5 hour days on Saturdays and Sundays.
(There will be additional self-study time required).
Sample Daily Schedule:
9am-10am Led asana practice and meditation
10am-12pm Practice to integrate teaching, sequencing and anatomy principles
12pm-1pm Teaching methodology
1pm-1.30pm Lunch break
1.30pm-2.30pm Philosophy or history of yoga
2.30pm-4.30pm Asana lab: alignment, risks, variations
4.30pm-5.30pm Meditation practice and closing
SUPPORT BETWEEN SESSIONS
Community is an integral component of StretchBodyMind training and in order to ensure that’s a continuous experience for everyone, even when you’re not together in person, your training group will have a private Facebook or WhatsApp group where you can stay connected between modules (and even after graduation!) On top of that, your Tutors will be available by email contact throughout the duration of the course.
WHERE ARE THE VENUES?
There are THREE Yoga Teacher Training venues in 2019/2020: Northern Ireland, Scotland and England.
The Northern Ireland venue is at Claire’s Yoga Studio, Magherafelt.
The Scotland venue is at the East Lothian Outdoor Learning Service in Musselburgh.
The England venue is at La Vida Yoga, Ulverston.
WHAT ARE THE DATES
The cost of the course is £2500. (If paid in instalments £2725).
The cost of the training includes tuition and your Teacher Training Manual as well as registration with Yoga Alliance Professionals.
Tuition costs do not include textbooks, travel to the venue, or any residential costs. The approximate cost for the required reading is around £50. You will be asked to purchase the books from the required reading list a minimum of two weeks before the course commences as there will be advanced reading assignments. The required texts are widely available from local booksellers or can be ordered online.
You are free to purchase your books directly from Victoria’s Amazon shop or wherever you’d like – or even get them from the library!
Once you have received your certificate of completion from StretchBodyMind you will be registered with Yoga Alliance Professionals at the 200 hour level which will allow you to use the letters RYT (Registered Yoga Teacher) after your name, join the Yoga Alliance Professionals register as a Yoga Teacher and apply for work in many studios, gyms and health clubs. It is recommended that you begin teaching as soon as you complete the course to small groups of friends and neighbours so that you are developing what you have learned during your training.
The benefits of completing an intensive yoga study are not limited to teaching, however. Many students who take teacher training programmes never intend to teach. Participants find that the in-depth nature of this programme helps them to deepen their personal yoga practice. Since each weekend builds on the one before it, the potential for growth is orders of magnitude larger than the growth that can be attained in a normal group class setting.
Additionally, attending a long-term training programme gives you the opportunity to connect with and build a community of peers and friends who share your love of yoga. Many people find they stay in close contact with their teacher training classmates for many years to come.