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7 Things To Look For in Your Next Yoga Teacher Training

Will

Posted on Jan 20, 2021 yoga

  1. Community Experience
  2. Quality of Teachers
  3. Well rounded Curriculum
  4. Yoga Alliance Certification
  5. Schedule & Location
  6. Type of TTC: 200-hr, 300-hr, 500-hr, Yoga Therapy
  7. Course Price

Most people don't know what to look for when they're signing up for their first Yoga Teacher Training Course (TTC). They end up either spending too much or having a less-than amazing experience.

If you want to have the best possible experience, here are 7 key-factors you should look for in your next Yoga TTC.

1. Community Experience

You would never know this without having done a teacher training course, but the community experience is one of the best (or worst) parts of a TTC.

You should never sign up for a TTC where you haven't connected with the community. So no random residentials in Bali or taking a TTC at the local yoga studio. Not unless you've done at least a few classes there and seen if you like it.

The last thing you want is to spend 200 to 500 hours feeling awkward around people who just aren't 'your people'!

When you find a studio, retreat center, or online community you vibe with, then you'll likely have an incredible TTC experience. You'll make life-long friends who have the same passion for personal growth, authenticity, kindness, and joy in their life!

But none of this is likely if you don't check out the community first. That's why at myYogaTeacher you can start off with a 2-week free trial before ever signing up for the TTC (or any other course or workshop).

2. Quality of Teachers

Next, you'll want to be sure that the teachers leading the TTC are highly qualified and experienced yoga teachers.

Not only do you want them to be experienced at teaching yoga, you want to make sure they are experienced at teaching other teachers to teach yoga.

You see, TTCs are a fast way for yoga teachers to make a lot of money. So for the really good teachers, it becomes an essential part of their lifestyle.

But it also attracts a lot of brand new teachers looking to increase their income.

So you'll want to find out how many TTCs they've led, and what previous students thought about it. Any well established TTC will be able to offer you testimonials from previous students. And will be quick to answer your questions about how many TTC's they've led.

Rohan, the lead teacher for myYogaTeacher's TTCs has lead 17 in-person TTCs, 6 online TTCs, and managed 13 other TTCs. That's a lot more than your average Yoga TTC leader, but it's important to know you're in good hands!

And true to our own tests, you can see what past TTC graduates are saying here.

3. Well Rounded Curriculum

A Yoga Teacher Training is a life changing opportunity to go deeper in yoga. You can discover aspects of yoga no regular class has the time or structure to show you.

But that being said, if your TTC curriculum is bland, or asana only, you'll continue to only scratch the surface of what yoga has to offer.

That's why it's so important that your TTC covers more than just asana and correct alignment... that's the minimum.

You want to find a TTC that also dives into pranayama (yogic breathing exercises), meditation, yogic philosophy.

You'll want a TTC where you learn about Patanjali's Yoga Sutras. Learning the sutras may sound academic and irrelevant. But it's practical, down to earth, and more relevant today than ever. This is the core of yogic philosophy.

Although you're probably signing up for the asana — most TTC students find that the philosophy and meditation practices are what transform their lives most.

Yoga is a big beautiful ice-berg, and asana is just the tip...

Don't worry though, any Yoga Alliance certified Yoga Teacher Training Course must have a well rounded curriculum.

4. Yoga Alliance Certification

This certification is becoming less and less relevant. Because more studio owners and yogis are realizing it's mainly a tax on teachers and studios. But it's still a certification you'll want to have.

It used to be that to get a job teaching yoga, you had to have Yoga Alliance certification. That's slowly changing. But today, if you want to be eligible to teach yoga at most studios, you're still going to want Yoga Alliance certification.

So make sure whatever TTC you sign up for is accredited by the Yoga Alliance. After you graduate your TTC and receive your certificate, you can go to yogaalliance.org and register for certification. Then, as a teacher, you pay a yearly fee to keep your certification.

Most yoga teachers feel like it's just a way to tax yoga schools and yoga teachers. But they do, at least, enforce a minimum standard of quality for TTCs. So it's not all bad.

That's why it's still in your best interest to make sure your TTC is Yoga Alliance certified. And for this reason, all myYogaTeacher TTCs are Yoga Alliance certified.

5. Schedule & Location

This one comes down to personal preference and lifestyle. There are two main types of TTC; residential and non-residential.

A residential TTC is often in a beautiful location like India, Bali, Mexico, or some other tropical area. You carve out anywhere from one to three months of your life, to go live at a yoga retreat center. There, you study and practice yoga full-time. Usually 6 to 10 hours a day, 5 or 6 days a week.

This is a great way to have a fully immersive experience and do nothing but yoga for a few months.

Not all of us can do that. With kids, work, and other responsibilities non-residential TTCs are the best option for most of us.

In a non-residential TTC, you study part time at your local yoga studio or online. The schedule is still intense, because you need to finish anywhere from 150 to 450 hours of class time (the last 50 hours is self-study).

This means that for a 200-hour TTC, you'll need to spend 150-hours in class. So even at part time, 12 hours a week, that's a 3 month course.

You'll want to find a TTC that has the right schedule for you. Is 6 hours a week for 6 months better for you, or 12 hours a week for 3 months? Do weekends work better, or weekday nights?

For you, these may be inflexible. But after watching hundreds of students complete TTCs, I've seen that most people can make any schedule work. Even a working mom can do 12 hours on the weekend. It's an adjustment, but I often hear them saying things like;

"I didn't know how I would do it, it was so much time every weekend. But I really wanted to join the TTC and I knew that if I didn't do it now, I might never do it! Then, it turned out to be completely manageable. Actually, I look forward to every Saturday, it's the best part of my week. And I'm getting so much 'me' time!" 

         - every mom who takes a TTC

So before getting too hung up on the schedule, ask yourself, "can I make this work?" And if so, then focus on the other parts first; the community, teachers, and a well rounded curriculum.

6. Type of TTC: 200-hr, 300-hr, 500-hr, Yoga Therapy

There are dozens of popular styles of yoga and many different types of TTCs.

When it comes to the style of yoga; Vinyasa, Ashtanga, Power Yoga, or some home-brand yoga — don't worry too much here. If you've taken classes with the teacher, you know their style. Do you like it? If so, then you'll probably love the TTC. If not, move on until you find a teacher with a style you do like.

What you don't want to do is go looking for a specific style, thinking "I've heard Vinyasa is the best, I should only do a Vinyasa TTC." That's a quick way to waste a lot of money and have a disappointing experience.

Remember, this TTC is as much for you as it is for your future students. You want to make sure that you have a deeply uplifting and enlightening experience. And you want to share a style of yoga that you love, not the one you heard is "better".

Do you know what I mean?

Now when it comes to the type of TTC: 200-hr, 300-hr, 500-hr or Yoga Therapy, choosing is pretty easy.

A 200-hour TTC is perfect for beginners. It's the entry point and smallest time commitment. If you like the TTC experience, you can always take a 300-hr TTC later. This will bump your training hours up to a total of 500.

The 300-hour TTC has traditionally been for people who have already completed a 200-hour TTC. That's changing recently, but it's still the norm. This is a great way to get 500-hours of certified training, without having to quit your job or dedicate 9 months of your weekends to full-days of study... Intense!

A 500-hour TTC is good for beginner to advanced yogis. It's basically the 200-hour and 300-hour rolled into one. You make a big commitment and dedicate a few months of your life to a deep-dive, full-time yoga immersion. These are usually residential.

And finally, a Yoga Therapy TTC. These are for advanced teachers who want to specialize in solving big problems for their clients. You don't have to be super flexible or anything like that. But you will become an expert at anatomy, perfect alignment, and healing all sorts of injuries and illnesses with yoga. These TTCs are often 600-900 hours of training, with long apprenticeships.

You typically must have already graduated a 200-hour or 500-hour Teacher Training Course, before you can apply to join a Yoga Therapy TTC. So graduating a TTC is a prerequisite for Yoga Therapy TTCs.

If you've never taken a Yoga Teacher Training Course, you'll probably want to start with either the 200-hr TTC or 500-hr TTC, depending on the time and energy commitment you want to make.

7. Course Price

The last thing you want to do is pay more than you should when it comes to your next Yoga Teacher Training Course.

Yoga TTCs are not cheap to begin with. So you probably don't want to overpay.

In a studio, you can expect to pay around $3,500 for a 200-hr TTC (plus or minus $800). This is a fair range, so watch out for any 200-hour TTC that costs more than $4,300. Unless the teacher is famous or highly sought after, you're probably better off going elsewhere.

But these days, underpaying is even more of a problem. You see, for the first time ever, Yoga TTCs have gone online. You'll see 200-hr online TTCs for $900, $600, even $400.

Why is this a problem?

What these TTCs aren't telling you is that 85% of the course is pre-recorded video. That's how they keep the cost down and therefore the price down. It's not so different from what you might find free on YouTube.

I don't know about you, but I don't want my next yoga teacher to have learned from a bunch of YouTube videos!

That's a quick way to injure yourself, and your future students.

Definitely and absolutely, weather in-person or online, make sure your next TTC is 100% live instruction. It's totally OK to take a TTC online, just make sure it is 100% live.

So you get to ask questions DURING class, DURING lectures, and DURING examples. Not just at "office hours" 1-week after the class, when you forgot your questions anyways.

With live instruction you get feedback in every practice session. And importantly, you learn the nuances of the asanas.

TTCs can be tough. Long hours and lots of learning. With live instruction and an interactive setting (only possible in-person or through live classes online), you stay motivated and connect with your new yoga community.

That's why every one of myYogaTeacher's TTCs is 100% live. You'll find the price very reasonable. It's much less expensive than in-person at a studio, but necessarily enough to pay living breathing teachers to give every class live.

If you're interested in a 100% Live TTC, you can check out myYogaTeacher's TTC full course description here (with testimonials, course syllabus, and reasonable rates).

When you follow these 7-steps, you can't go wrong. You'll have an incredible TTC experience, make new friends for life, and walk away a better yogi, better parent, better human... You'll be less reactive, with more self-acceptance, and more full of joy!

So now you have everything you need to choose your next TTC wisely. And if you have any questions about TTCs or myYogaTeacher's upcoiming TTCs, feel free to drop us a line and ask at care@myyogateacher.com

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