The 10 Commandments of Finding the Right Yoga Teacher Training
1 ) Find a Spiritual Teacher
Avoid taking training from teachers that emphasize their teaching on the physical aspects of yoga only. It is important to have a teacher who can give you a full understanding of the spiritual (as opposed to religious) aspect of yoga. The teacher should not be a scholar who knows his/her information from reading books and taking workshops. The teacher’s teaching must arise from direct experience. Such a teacher will be able to deal with all of the spiritual concerns that the student may have with no hesitation.
2 ) Make Sure to Experience Direct Transmission
Do not settle for teacher training run by novice teachers who show the teachings of their master from a DVD. Do not settle for the said “master” to only occasionally appear in the course. Every student in the course needs to have direct contact and experience with the spiritual teacher, as the transmission of the knowledge and wisdom often happens on the energy level.
3 ) Bigger is Not Better
Often you see teacher training with 60 to 200 students in a course.
In an intense 200h course, as a result of the intense practice, students often go through physical, mental, emotional and spiritual crisis and may face multiple challenges. As a result of being in a large impersonal course, the student and their needs get lost in the crowd.
4 ) Avoid Religions, Cults and Worship
Avoid trainings with even a hint of worshipping the spiritual teacher. Yoga practice is a process to transform the novice to become a free master and not to become a sheep, following without knowing.
5 ) Practical Teaching
Make sure there is plenty of actual hands-on teaching experience for you during the course so you don’t end up with theoretical knowledge but are unprepared to actually teach. Knowing the asanas (yoga postures) inside and out won’t make you know how to teach them. Yoga teacher training is not a yoga boot camp of doing the asanas all day. You need to learn communication, the psychology of the mind, body language, how to correct by using hands-on techniques, and how to give mental and energetic support to your students in the future.
6 ) Yoga is Not Gymnastics
Remember that 90% of your students out there are beginners! Most of the people in the West are dealing with physical limitations and health conditions. Avoid vigorous acrobatic styles of yoga. Choose a style of yoga that can walk beginners safely into the practice. Otherwise you will join the endless number of yoga instructors who make the students feel (after their first class) that they are not flexible enough to practice yoga.
7 ) Restrictive Yoga Facilities
Avoid styles that constrict you and your students to a specific teaching facility environment (hot rooms or facilities with too many yoga gadgets). The essence of yoga practice is to be able to conduct it in any place and any time. Your students should be able to take the teaching you convey and practice on their own anywhere without dependency on a facility.
8 ) New-Age Yoga
Be careful of flakiness and new-age nonsense.
Knowledge of energy and the chakras is powerful, but there is much more to the yoga practice than just the chakras.
9 ) Connection With the Teacher After Course is Done
Make sure that the teacher will be available to you to answer questions after the course has ended and to guide you in your first steps of your teaching if needed. You should be able to find spiritual support from your teacher outside the course as your practice must continue after your certification.
10 ) The Power of Transformation
Let your heart, not only your mind and wallet, be involved in the search for the right teacher and teaching. Avoid being influenced by trends and burgeons. The teacher is the vehicle for the teaching that may resonate in you forever.
True teachers will expand your capacity to receive wisdom that arises from beyond your programmed mind.