Yoga is a body of knowledge that is over 5,000 years old. It was started by the Hindus in India and is all about harmonizing the body with the mind and breath. In order to do so, various breathing exercises, poses, and meditation are used. There are many variations of yoga practiced around the world and those that choose to attain yoga teacher certification help others learn and master the techniques.
In order to be a yoga teacher, you need to be more than just a skilled practitioner. Prospective instructors must also learn how to lead a class and guide students. Yoga instructors tend to also provide guidance in yogic philosophy and other areas that are complementary to yoga. These include both nutrition and meditation. Professionals in this field teach group classes, workshops, or one-on-one classes at yoga studios, fitness centers, and related facilities on either a full or part-time basis.
Yoga teacher training involves taking classes that include different types of yoga in order for you to understand which style works best for you. It also helps you determine which instructors you work best with, as well. The coursework will also include classes in anatomy and physiology, as well as instructional techniques, and yoga philosophy. You will also gain hands-on experience through both observing teachers and teaching classes. It is not uncommon for the certification to require anywhere from 200-hour and 500-hour teacher training programs.
It is also a good idea to become certified in CPR as most health and fitness centers require that instructors have the skills to deal with a health emergency. You can take a CPR course while enrolled in a teacher training program. You should also look into earning continuing education credits once you have completed the initial certifications. It is not uncommon for professionals in this field to attend workshops and seminars in order to keep their knowledge up to date. In fact, some teachers are required to complete 75 hours of continuing education every three years in order to maintain their certification. This includes the requirement of teaching yoga for 45 hours and attending additional classes for 30 hours.
There are many schools across the country that offer training programs to those who want to become instructors and costs vary. The government does not require yoga instructors to obtain a license to teach students. However, many states are moving toward requiring yoga schools who train instructors to become licensed. Additionally, yoga instructors who open their own schools and train new instructors will have to pay a fee and pass a site inspection.
Once training is complete, most instructors contract their services out to health clubs, spas, and community organizations including nursing homes, hospitals, schools, and businesses. Many also become self-employed and open their own studios.
Before you do anything, it is best to ask around and get advice from those who have already been through the process. They can give you pointers to make your journey easier.