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How to Become a Yoga Teacher

Careers
Last Updated Aug 21, 2020

Yoga is among the fastest growing natural health practices in the world. In fact, the popularity of yoga within the Australian community has grown significantly in recent years as it has been well-documented as a complementary therapy for several chronic conditions.

Want to explore yoga as a career, deepen your practice, or understand what’s involved in the discipline? You’re not alone. In the teachings of Patanjali: Yoga begins now. The steps below show you how to turn your passion for yoga into a fulfilling career as an instructor.

What’s your objective?

The first step is to know your purpose for teaching. The more you reflect on the true reasons for deepening your practice, the more clarity you'll gain. Bear in mind that studying to become a yoga teacher takes more than just clinching that qualification; you must have a genuine interest in stimulating your personal growth and that of others.

Study at a Certified Yoga School

Once you’re ready, go and look for a certified yoga school with qualified training programs. The ideal school not only teaches different yoga styles, but also provides its students the ability to tailor the discipline to their client’s specific needs. Aside from the theoretical and practical aspects of yoga, its coursework also covers topics on setting up and running your own private practice.

It’s worth looking into the following schools:

Gain Your Qualification

To qualify as a yoga instructor in Australia, you need to complete a minimum of 200 hours in a yoga teacher certification training program, which is equivalent to 10 or 12 weeks of study. But if you want to teach yoga extensively, it’s worth considering a diploma course that requires at least 500 hours of study time.

Before enrolling, find out if the course has an online program which allows you more flexibility in schedule, especially if you have to juggle your study time with a nine-to-five job. What’s more, distance education allows you to learn the pranayama and asana techniques from proficient yoga instructors regardless of their location. 

Register with a Professional Association 

Joining a professional organisation that’s relevant to your practice will swiftly further your career. You want to register with the International Yoga Teachers Association of Australia (IYTA), Yoga Alliance or Yoga Australia. Being the largest governing bodies for yoga internationally, they regulate and maintain the highest standards of yoga teacher training programs.

As a registered member of an accredited yoga association, you will be automatically listed in their directory of teachers and recognised by potential employers worldwide as a yoga instructor who has met the highest standards of yoga training.

Take up Continuing Education

Studying yoga doesn’t end after earning your qualification. A good teacher is one who constantly updates their knowledge base so that they can help their students maintain their physical, mental, emotional and spiritual wellbeing.  

Aside from gaining real-life teaching experience, seek the guidance of a mentor. Doing so will deepen your practice and widen your professional network consisting of like-minded yogis.

Taking a yoga course not only prepares you for a rewarding teaching career, but it also deepens your understanding of self and others. You become the embodiment of confidence, resilience and absolute wellness.

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Originally published on Jul 20, 2020

FAQs About Becoming a Yoga Teacher

Is it hard to be a yoga teacher?

No, if you are truly committed to becoming a yoga instructor. Studying at an accredited school which allows students to enroll in a face-to-face course or online program will make the learning process easier and more fun as you get to study at your own pace.

Can a beginner do yoga teacher training?

Yes. Several yoga and natural therapy schools in Australia offer a 200-hour teacher training program for aspiring yoga instructors.

How long does it take to train to be a yoga teacher?

You have to complete at least 200 hours of a teacher training program or course to qualify as a yoga teacher in Australia. Depending on the kind of training program you choose to undertake, your length of study could take from a couple of months to a year.

Do you have to be good at yoga to teach?

Yes. It's not enough to be highly knowledgeable about different pranayama and asana techniques, which you've learnt in a yoga certification program or diploma course. You must have practiced rigorously for about a year before you can confidently say that you're ready to teach the spiritual discipline.

What yoga certification is best?

The Diploma of Yoga Teaching is an in-depth study that covers elements of anatomy and physiology, breathing techniques, different yoga poses, hands-on teaching of a yoga class under instructor supervision, and many other subjects.

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People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills… There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind… So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself. — MARCUS AURELIUS