Content of Yoga Teacher Training


#1

Hello,

could some/many people outline what they learned in such training? The consideration to teach Yoga has risen in my mind occasionally, so I’d like to know what the actual contents are. I had looked at outlines, and these include all sorts of stuff which I, in my arrogancy believe to not need. I have seen some videos of teacher training, for example - one of the best I saw - the Anatomy for Yoga by Paul Grilley, and even though it was great, the only thing I got out of it that I could not provide me with via books, was how he demonstrated stuff on the actual bodies of students.

So what I am particularly interested in is: What do you learn there, that you cannot learn from a book or DVD? Do you get to work with actual people’s bodies a lot? How much? And how much is it about someone standing in front of a class talking? You know, like 10% : 90% or 50 : 50 or whatever.

I had seen (not completely, cuz it’s 10.000 hours long) a set of lectures by Andrey Lappa (Universal Yoga), and while I found it interesting, I (like me myself, who is a good autodidact) could learn most of it from books. For example would I not need anybody to explain scriptures to me or the theory of anatomy or why and how some Asana has this and that effect.

I am particularly asking because there is not even a single Yoga-studio where I live, not to mention no training available, so studying a pile of books and then attending to something like a weekend course might be a good idea for myself. I am, though, not planning on doing this anytime soon, maybe in a couple of years, and the idea would be to go on holidays with the fam and grab a couple of hours of training of how to work with people and their individual anatomy and/or problems.


#2

Morning Q.

My teacher training consisted of 300 + hours. What was taught:

Teaching methodology/sequencing
Assists/Adjustments
Yoga Sutras
Yoga philosophy/spiritual side of yoga/psychology and lifstyle/
Branding and styles of yoga/business side of yoga
Asana practice
Anatomy/physiology/ dissection of yoga poses presented by 2 Osteopaths
Mudra/Bandha/pranayama
Chakras
Meditation/chanting/chakra meditation
shavasana including Yoga Nidra
experiencing different styles of yoga w/instruction/Q&A

You know Q, after practicing for 10 years before teacher training I felt I knew pretty much going in, only to find out how little I knew. It is wonderful to share this experience with people who share in the love of yoga. I learned much from watching them, from them presenting offerings on my assists and teaching style and just really getting a better understanding of the ‘bigger picture.’ So for me it was invaluable. I really felt, and I alluded to it in another thread, that the real difficulty comes when you begin teaching. That’s where you learn to put all the ‘things’ you know and have learned into practice.

Quite a bit was lecture, but was absolutely fascinating and we were all like thirsty sponges! I would probably guess about 50% was lecture, but it was always very interactive. As far as assists, we each took turns being the one in the center of the room, holding the pose forever, while the class offered adjustments. Mine was revolved triangle and boy was I feeling it after 5 minutes! I think there is always room for more learning and while I also learn quite well from books, I found I learned more from my fellow teachers in training.

Let your inner wisdom guide you if and when to begin training. Hope I was able to at least address a few of your questions!


#3

My first teacher training was 90% philosophy and 10% asana. It taught me how little I know about anything.

I am in a great teacher training program now, and on module 2 of three (one month a year. The curriculum:
Anatomy / Physiology, asana theory and techniques, philosophy, teaching methodology, pranayama theory and techniques, asana modifications (basics), and history of yoga. I believe next semester I have more of the same, some bandha-s and ayurveda, doing chapters 3-4 of the yoga sutra-s. That’s a grand total if 600 and something hours of training that will teach me how little I know about anything.

Your questions:

[I]What do you learn there, that you cannot learn from a book or DVD? [/I]
-Everything. Most of us just got screwed on a test because we didn’t realize that our assessment was going to be on things that were in the books listed on our prospectus. The only books we ever reference in lecture are classical texts and only two people even bothered to bring the book this year.

[I]Do you get to work with actual people’s bodies a lot? How much?[/I]
-No. The course curriculum does not teach physical adjustments, except light touching when needed to direct attention. The core of my program is how to observe people and learn what they need, and give it to them using right methods and communication. We had 2-3 hours of ‘how to observe’ people, and we have the next 11 months to master it with the help of our mentors before we come back and teach, supervised, at the school.

[I]And how much is it about someone standing in front of a class talking? You know, like 10% : 90% or 50 : 50 or whatever.[/I]
90% lecture, 5% group work, 5% of our own speeches and presentations. We also have homework, assessments and apparently a thesis to write over the summer, which must be defended in front of a panel of highly intimidating senior teachers.

When I started, I thought I already had learned everything from books. Years of research and studying, teaching children and free small group classes, doing university research projects, writing papers, reading the whole internet (yes, I’m pretty sure I read the whole thing). Then, which each subsequent hour I spend under the tutelage of my professors, I feel like I understand more and less at the same time.

When you read a sutra, you receive knowledge by the translator’s commentary and by your own interpretation and experience of it.

When you study under a teacher, you read a sutra and receive knowledge by the translator and your own experience again. Then you listen to your teacher explain what you read in the sutra, filtered by the knowledge they received by experiencing that translation and maybe many more translations, as well as what they learned from their teacher’s study of it, which was guided by the wisdom and experience of many other teachers before him and probably a dozen more books that are out of print which you will never read).

See where I am going? Real teachers are helpful, and they have answers to very specific questions that books and dvd’s won’t have.

That being said, had I not read those dozens and dozens of books on yoga before I started training, I would be at a serious disadvantage in class. :stuck_out_tongue:


#4

Is there a standard teaching course taught around the country or does it differ greatly from locale to locale. The reason why I ask is that my wife has been wanting to become certified and start teaching beginning classes for quite some time now. Does certification cross over state lines if you move?


#5

[QUOTE=nsmadsen;36441]Is there a standard teaching course taught around the country or does it differ greatly from locale to locale. The reason why I ask is that my wife has been wanting to become certified and start teaching beginning classes for quite some time now. Does certification cross over state lines if you move?[/QUOTE]

There is no national licensing requirement to be a teacher, but the majority of studios require at least a certain level of training or the accreditation of a higher organization. There is one such organization in the US that is accepted by many studios across the country. Google Yoga Alliance for more information on their requirements and which schools are recognized by them. You could also ask whomever teaches you currently for a recommendation of a school to be certified through that they have respect for.


#6

Makes sense, thanks for the info!


#7

Hello!
Please tell me where I can find a book about 1000+ meditation technics? Thank You!