Is Online Yoga Teacher Training Valid?

Is Online Yoga Teacher Training Valid?

Online Yoga Teacher Training, Yoga Certification Online
Online Yoga Teacher Training

I received an email today that triggered a lot of thoughts.  The email was from a potential student interested in our online yoga teacher training who had many genuine questions.  They were great questions and I enjoyed answering them.  She said, " question is to whether one can become a good beginning teacher without the hands on guidance and feedback that can only come from being in the presence of a good teacher.  How does your online school compensate for the learning that comes with participating in person with one’s peers?"

How does your online school compensate for the learning that comes with participating in person with one’s peers?  

These are important questions.  As one of our students, you will learn everything you need to know to teach safe and effective yoga classes in our training.  Part of the training includes teaching others, sending in photos and/or videos of yourself in yoga poses for feedback and writing class plans.  Although your contact with us is virtual, your contact with your students will be in person.  You are able to receive feedback and guidance even when you take online yoga teacher training.  

Once you receive the 200 hour certification and begin teaching, you will never stop growing and learning.  I have been teaching for 20+ years and am always learning from my own students.   One of my favorite quotes is that, "when one teaches, two learn."  I believe it is when you put theoretical concepts into practice that understanding comes full circle.   

Online Yoga Certification, Online Yoga Teacher Training
Online Yoga Teacher Training at Online Yoga School

200 Hour Yoga Teacher Certification Is the Beginning

200 hours of study towards becoming a yoga teacher has become the standard in western society, but historically that is just the tip of the iceberg.  Teachers are students first and should be on a lifelong quest for learning and acquiring new information to share with their students.  

In life, I believe we are all inherently both students and teachers.  We are constantly learning new things and sharing our knowledge with others.  That is how we grow as people, as families and as communities.  Information and skill sets are passed from one person to the next, both formally and informally.  It is through this process of learning and teaching that we are able to thrive as human beings.  In Western society, the traditional concept that one grows as a yoga teacher in a natural and gradual way through years of dedicated studentship and practice is too much for us to wrap our arms around.   We tend to be uncomfortable with abstract concepts that don't have measurable components or clearly defined starting and ending points.  As a result, we in the West have collectively decided that 200 hours is a sufficient length of time studying to become a yoga instructor.  This belief has evolved into the idea that a 200 hour yoga teacher certification is somehow the pinnacle of yoga studies and the finishing line for yoga teachers.  Honestly, this could not be further from the truth.  

Completing your 200 hour yoga teacher certification is a big accomplishment and takes a lot of hard work and commitment, but I view it as the gateway to a lifelong yogic learning experience.   In 200 hours, you are able to cover the basics of many of the "standard" areas of yoga teacher training.  Our online yoga teacher training includes philosophy, human anatomy, self-care components, principles of movement, the esoteric body, meditation, chants, pranayama, sanskrit, asanas, a section on learning bodies, sequencing, introduction to ayurveda, preventing injuries, chair and restorative considerations, teaching methodology, adjustments and yoga as a business.  This gives you, as our student, a well-rounded foundation to begin your journey as a yoga teacher.  From there, the possibilities are endless.   

Our Students

We are really proud of each and every one of our students.  Our students are taking their yoga to so many different places.  Among our graduates are yoga studio owners, mental health professionals who have incorporated yoga and mindfulness into their practice, massage therapists who have added yoga to their offerings, children's yoga teachers, elementary school teachers who are implementing yoga and meditation into their classrooms and many other diverse paths.  We have graduates who are living their yoga in their own lives and have no intention of teaching and we have graduates who work for studios, gyms and other organizations offering weekly classes.  

Online Learning is Valid and Online Yoga Teacher Training is Valid

Beyond that, I guess our perspective is that there is no need to "compensate for learning online."  We see online learning as an alternate platform for delivering the same information contained in the training we offer locally to people who come in person.  I think it takes a certain level of self-discipline and dedication for someone to be able to learn online, and from that perspective, whether or not online learning is appropriate depends on the individual.  However, online learning is equally as valid as classroom learning.  Learning is defined as, "the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience, study, or by being taught."

Online learning is equally as valid as classroom learning.  Learning is defined as, 'the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience, study, or by being taught.'

Thanks to developments in technology, it is now possible to earn your college degree online.  You can even attend law school or nursing school online.  Whether you are in the same physical space as the teacher when receiving information is not important.  What matters is that you are tuned in to the information that is being taught and absorbing the material.  Many people have busy lives and hectic schedules and it is physically impossible for them to attend yoga teacher training in person.  This is why I started online yoga teacher training. Many of our students have likened it to the difference in seeing the movie in a theater or watching it on netflix from the comfort of your own home.  It's the same movie, experienced differently.  

online yoga teacher training, yoga teacher certification online
Online Yoga Teacher Training is Valid

Attending yoga teacher training in a face-to-face environment is also a great experience, and one that we certainly aren't knocking.  If that is available to you and you find a program that you are feeling drawn to, we would encourage you to follow that universal pull. Fully supportive of all forms of yoga teaching and learning, we encourage you to always do what makes sense for you.  

In the same way that taking a training in person does not guarantee adequate feedback and guidance, taking the training online does not preclude you from adequate feedback and guidance. I always make myself available for my students, and often times in the same day that they reach out.  The nice thing about online yoga teacher training is that the student gets to determine the level of interaction between student and teacher.  Some students enjoy working independently, while others prefer to have more contact.  

Continuing Education

We encourage everyone, whether you have received your 200 hour yoga certification online or otherwise, to continue learning about yoga.  There are so many workshops and trainings available after the 200 hour certification for yoga teachers to learn more in the areas that they are interested in.   If attending workshops is something that is not available to you right now, you can always read a book, watch a video or talk to others who can share the information you seek with you.  Education does not have to be expensive or formal.  A 200 hour certification is a great start for teaching yoga and opens the door for yoga teachers to teach group classes.  It is not the final destination.  Some yoga teacher trainings are very anatomy-intensive and you may finish your 200 hour training in need of more yoga philosophy.  Some 200 hour yoga teacher trainings are very philosophy-focused and you may need additional training on hands-on assists or sequencing.  

Often, the more we learn, the more we want to know because we realize there is always more to learn. It's like the saying, "the more I learn, the less I know."  As the mind expands to hold new information, it never regains its original dimensions.

Namaste, friends.

Inviting you to join us in our 200 Hour Online Yoga Teacher Training.... earn your 200 Hour Yoga Certification Online and begin your journey to lifelong learning