These days yoga studios are popping up right and left. From Costa Rica, to Croatia, Morocco, and of course, Bali, Yoga teacher trainings are covering the globe faster than eager study abroad college students. Though Yoga itself has been around for centuries, it has only recently exploded into the next biggest cultural phenomenon. Yoga leggings and mandala necklaces aside, the fact that yoga is reaching more people now than ever before is a GREAT thing. In a fast-paced society, people are choosing to look inward to realize that there is more to life than what we’ve been taught. Through yoga classes people are realizing that by taking space from all the busyness, they can get closer to realizing who they really are and what they truly desire out of life. The demand for guidance on this is ever increasing which is why NOW is the time to take a step towards becoming a certified Yoga teacher, if it is something that has been weighing on the mind.
So…what does it take to become a yoga teacher?
Well for starters, an inner desire to become a yoga teacher.
Well what if you’re not sure? The good news is, as a yoga teacher, an innate passion to simply help others and give back to the community is enough. It starts there. Are you looking to do something outside of yourself because you are hoping to make a difference in some way? Becoming a Yoga teacher is a great way to help those who are eager to slow down, take a step back, and begin listening to their inner voice again. With every class taught, Yoga teachers have the privilege of creating an open and safe space for all students to come and learn.
Continuous learning: The Passion to Remain a Student First, and a Teacher Second.
Change is the only constant in life. The world today, was not the same world it was last month, two years ago, let alone decades and centuries ago. Our world is more connected than ever, and this allows information to spread like wildfire. To become a successful yoga teacher, there needs to be a passion for constant education and growth. This is not to say that you must know EVERYTHING before beginning your journey as a teacher. No, just a willingness and the humility to recognize that teachers don’t possess all the answers, and the passion to guide students in their learning and realize that you are all continuously learning. This also doesn’t mean that the only thing to study is all things Yoga. In fact, so many teachings are interrelated, so the wider your breadth of knowledge, the deeper your connections with students will be. The work of a teacher or student is never done so always be questioning the world around you. When you begin training to become a yoga teacher, you start at the 200-hour level, and progress from there. One cannot stand tall in Urdvha Hastasana (High Mountain Pose) without a solid foundation of knowledge at their feet.
Develop Your Own Yoga Self-Practice Routine
In order to safely and properly guide your students, you first need to know what it’s like to be in your student’s shoes. The best teachers couple their knowledge with personal experiences both on and off the mat. By starting your own yoga self-practice routine, you will better understand your student’s questions when they are having a hard time finding balancing in Tree Pose because you know the feeling of tucking your tailbone first-hand.
Choose the Yoga Teacher Training that is best for YOU.
What about Yoga draws you in and keeps you coming back for more? Is it the meditation and pranayama breathing techniques? Is it the Yogic philosophies that offer tools for a better life? The asana flows that allow you to move your body and leave you feeling empowered? The powerful community aspect? As a beginner, you will begin training at the 200-hour level which will cover the basics of anatomy, sequencing, philosophy, the business of yoga and more. However, not all trainings are created equal, so you want to choose a yoga teacher training that feels best to you. Do you prefer Vinyasa or more Yin style of yoga? Are you looking to teach kids or put your focus on pre-natal yoga? Would you rather learn in large group sizes or do you thrive in smaller groups? Are you interested in traveling for your certification or would you rather stay more local? Is the school accredited? Is there a specific teacher you’ve been following for years that you would love to learn from? Make sure you ask yourself these questions when beginning your search. Also don’t forget to keep in mind the values of the school to ensure they align with yours as well.
How Long Does It Take to Become a Yoga Teacher?
The beauty is that this depends on YOU. It can take you as little as 1 month for the initial 200-hour training or as long as a year. There are options for immersive one-month trainings in Bali, and your community may offer weekend trainings that go all year round.
What Certifications are Needed?
The 200-hour training you choose to go through will result in a RYT 200 level certification which allows you to begin teaching right away!
Realize NOW is the time, and that where you are now is ENOUGH.
Time is finite, and it is easy to put things off for fear of not feeling ready enough, good enough.
The first step is deciding. Decide to take a chance. Decide to listen to your inner-voice. Decide to trust this exciting process of becoming a yoga teacher! Often time we find deciding is the toughest part, but from there, all the fun begins. It is easy to build up obstacles in your mind, but your confidence builds after taking the first leap. You are worthy of this opportunity, so what are you waiting for?