How to Choose a Yoga Teacher Training
You want to take a yoga teacher training, but there are so many options that it is overwhelming. You are not alone.
Receiving your yoga certification is a huge investment. It takes a lot of time and money, so it is always a good idea to look at all your options. I have had a ton of people reach out to ask me what teacher training is the “best,” and honestly one size doesn't fit all. There is no perfect training, no perfect teacher to study with, and everyone's experience will be different. However, there are three things that I recommend people consider when looking at different training options:
1. Stick with the 200-Hour
In yoga the first "level" of certification you can receive from Yoga Alliance is 200-hours. The next phase is 300-hour training for teachers, which once completed will leave you with a 500-hour certification.
Most programs focus on one or the other, but some offer the opportunity to complete your 200 and 300-hour back to back. I do not recommend this option. Becoming a teacher takes above all else time and practice.
Your 200-hour will get you ready to sequence and lead standard yoga classes, but the real learning comes after the training ends, and you start to teach. Think of a 300-hour program like a Master's Degree. It offers you the opportunity to dive deeper into a specific element of yoga. Maybe you find that you love therapeutic work, or you find a new love of pranayama. This will inform what program you pick for your advance 300-hour studies. This also takes time to figure out. I personally waited 7 years before completing my 300-hour program, and I knew exactly who I wanted to study with.
Money matters! All programs are expensive, but some are way more than others. Take an honest look at your budget and give yourself a cap as to what you will spend and go from there. Also, see what the training offers once the program ends.
Do they provide community classes at their studio so you can go right into teaching? Is there some sort of mentorship and support system? Is it a program that is abroad and also includes meals and lodging? Look at all the elements you are paying for in intuition and compare a few different trainings to see what will work best for your wallet.
With money also comes the reality of your schedule. Do you work full time? If you do, a part-time 9-month program may be a better option than a one-month full-time program. Do you want to go abroad? Can you take two-weeks off for an intensive program?
There is no point in exploring a specific training program if it literally doesn't work with your schedule.
Who do you want to learn from!? Your relationship to the person leading the teacher training can affect your overall experience. If you are interested in training with a teacher you are familiar with but haven't met I highly recommend trying to catch their class at least once before committing to anything further. Practicing with your potential mentor will give you a better idea of the style they will use in their teacher training.