Curriculum

CURRICULUM OVERVIEW

This curriculum is based on the Educational Standards of the Yoga Alliance for a 200hr Yoga Teacher Training certificate. The program addresses all of the 5 required educational categories – namely:  

TECHNIQUES, TRAINING AND PRACTICE

These hours are a combination of personal practice as well as analytical training in how to teach these practices. Your personal practice will be refined under the experienced guidance of your teacher, ensuring that you will be teaching from a place of “direct experience” and give you the confidence you need to teach.

Personal practice: In the seat of the Student

Learning through direct experience (pratyaksha) is the foundation for authentic, informed, and powerful teaching. In this part of the training students will:

  • Develop proficiency in the foundational poses across the family of asanas (standing poses, standing balances, backbends, arms balances, inversions, seated poses and restorative poses)
  • Learn how these foundational poses support more advanced poses in terms of both flexibility, strength and neuromuscular conditioning
  • Explore how the breath, bandhas and drishti support the asana practice
  • Use the asana practice to prepare the body for pranayama
  • Explore introductory pranayama practices that strengthen the subtle body by working with the vayus, nadis, chakras
  • Discover the power of sound and vibration as healing with the chanting of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and other mantras
  • Explore directing energy through sankalpas (intentions) and the use of mudras
  • Go deeper through guided and personal meditation practices

Analytical training: Moving towards the seat of the teacher

Observing fellow students and invited members of the public in a class environment aspiring teachers will “learn” through observation

  • Observing students bodies in the poses – seeing the individual
  • Using props and variations – supporting the individual
  • Offering adjustments and assists – deepening the individual experience
  • Sequencing for mixed level classes– inspiring the individual in a group practice

FUNCTIONAL ANATOMY AND PHYSIOLOGY:

A solid understanding of functional anatomy, biomechanics and how the body moves in asana is integral in keeping yourself and your students safe in the practice.

This section of the course will take you on an exciting journey deep into the magical workings of your own body via the Annamaya Kosha (physical sheath). We will focus primarily on the Human Movement System and will learn about key muscles and joints.   We will explore what “alignment” means and learn about common postural misalignments and how they affect movement.

You will come to understand the importance of sequencing grounded in functional anatomy and learn the art of giving precise, clear and concise instruction to ensure optimal alignment and healthy movement patterns so that students are safe, appropriately challenged and empowered.

We will learn the benefits and contraindications for poses so that you can offer props, variations and regressions as needed.

We will look at how the various aspects of the practice (asana, pranayama and meditation) affect your organs and systems and you will be introduced into the energy system of nadis and the chakras.

You will become familiar with the “language of anatomy” which will assist you in ongoing studies and research. You will learn how to weave anatomical words and instructions into your teaching vocabulary in a fun and interesting way.

Drawing on this knowledge teachers can create sequences that are appropriately challenging, empowering and transformational

These hours will lay a solid foundation for the 300hr YTT Anatomy Training which entails a deeper study of functional anatomy, human movement impairment syndromes, sequencing for correcting postural and movement impairments, and sequencing for specific groups.

TEACHING METHODOLOGY: Taking the seat of the teacher

Through discussion, demonstrations and small group projects we will continue to refine our teaching skills through the following key learning categories:

  • Qualities of a student and teacher
  • Clarifying your teaching values
  • Identifying your teaching/presentation style
  • Developing your teaching “voice” – projection, modulation, articulation
  • Managing the teaching environment and group energy
  • Developing the skills of observation – the teachers “eye”
  • Identifying and matching “learning styles”
  • Sequencing principles
  • Developing Communication skills in the classroom through:
    • precise, relevant and appropriate verbal instructions
    • physical demonstrations
    • hands on assists
  • Identification of obstacles and motivating students
  • Working with music
  • Teaching through themes – deepening the understanding and experience of Yoga
  • Teaching in Sanskrit
  • Working with the Yamas and Niyamas to set professional boundaries
  • Building your teaching confidence – working with a mentor
  • Business of Yoga:
    • Identify what studios want - writing a resume and preparing for an “interview class”
    • Identify your market and cultivating an online presence that matches your teaching style and values to the students you best serve
    • Professional body Registration (Yoga Alliance) and teaching insurance
    • Exploring continuing education options
    • Cultivating a mentorship relationship
    • Getting teaching experience after graduation
    • Tips for building your yoga business – what it means to be an contract based entrepreneur

YOGA PHILOSOPHY, LIFESTYLE AND ETHICS

Expanding beyond the Hatha Yoga practice of asana and pranayama we will explore the teachings of Raja Yoga and the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali as a means of cultivating greater levels of self awareness, self knowledge and self love.  Through group discussion, self reflection, journaling, and meditation we will gain clarity and insight into thoughts, patterns and behaviors that hold us back from experiencing and expressing our very best selves. We look at yoga as a practice, a lifestyle and a way of being in the world that cultivates healthy, loving, respectful relationships and builds conscious and inspired communities whereever we go in life.

Topics for study include: 

  • Introduction to the History of Yoga, and how these teachings came to the West
  • Lineages and schools of yoga being practiced today
  • Primary branches of the yoga practice – Raja, Hatha, Bhakti, Karma and Jnana Yoga
  • Introduction to the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali
  • Explore the 8 limbs of Yoga - making these teaching applicable and relevant in context of our modern lives
  • How to share these teachings in a classroom enviroment 
  • Yoga as service (SEVA) - a joyful, selfless offering in return for all we have received we can “pay it forward”, by sharing the experience of yoga with our communities and those less fortunate
  • The Yogic lifestyle - what that looks like to the individual (introduction to the Doshas)
  • Exploring the Yamas and Niyamas on and off the mat – cultivating professional integrity and aligning the “professional personality” with one’s personal life 

PRACTICUM TEACHING

During these hours students will have the opportunity to “put into practice” all they have learnt.

Teaching to each other, senior teachers and invited members of the public, students they will be assessed on sequencing, the use of variations and props, giving adjustments, communication and presentation skills. At the end of their practicum class there will be time for feedback and suggestions on how to further improve their teaching skills.

Students will be required to teach an additional 20 hours on their own time and then submit a video of a 1 ¼ hr class to obtain their certification. Through this 20hr ongoing non contact practicum portion, students will receive personal mentorship and support via Skype and telephone meetings.

 

REQUIRED READINGS:

Prior to the course: Health, Healing and Beyond: Yoga and the Living Tradition of T.Krishnamacharya – T.K.V Desikachar

During the course: The Language of Yoga – Nicolai Bachman

You will be provided with an anatomy manual but suggested additional literature: The Anatomy Coloring book – Wynn Kapit and Lawrence M Elson