You love yoga - everything about it. How it has impacted your life, the people you’ve met through your practice, the deep calm it gives you. You’re inspired to teach and share this practice with others. But how do you know if you’re ready to take that next step? Explore these questions to come to an answer that feels true for you at this point on your path.
Am I deeply at home in my own practice, first and foremost?
The most inspiring, impactful and confident teachers are those who are deeply rooted in their own personal experience of yoga. They practice regularly and have a well-established relationship with the mat - both in group classes as well as at home in a private practice. They know yoga on a felt-sense level, and have experienced its potency in their own lives. And they allow this to guide their teaching.
What am I seeking in attending a training?
The answer to this question will greatly impact what training path you choose. Are you inspired by a specific style, and hoping to teach in that lineage? If so, research what that lineage requires of its teachers. Do you want to do your training for a fun side gig, or do you want to make a serious business out of it? Are you planning to teach a particular population that may benefit from special skills or knowledge? Perhaps you’re not actually sure you want to teach, but are looking to deepen your personal knowledge and practice -- which is totally fine, but important to be clear about as you choose your path. If you’re not sure what you are seeking, take some time to reflect before you decide on a training.
Is now the right time in the bigger picture of my life?
When it’s time to take the leap to teacher training, you want to have space to do so with your fullest self. If beginning the training will create significant financial, health, logistical strain (how much time do you have?), or there is an element in your life that will prevent you from being fully present and committed, it may not be time just yet. When you envision committing, how does it feel? It’s normal to feel nervous, excited and even a little bit scared… but be sure you’re honoring any real limitations!
Is there a teacher or style that really inspires me?
The 200 hour teacher training is truly just the beginning. Most yoga teachers continue to study for the rest of their career, gaining additional knowledge in areas that really inspire or intrigue them to enrich their teaching. That said, your training will be more satisfying experience if you take your training with a teacher or school that you find inspiring and worthy of your respect. You are offering your teacher(s) an important role: as the guide(s) for a deeply transformative step on your path. If you have not yet found a tradition, teacher or school that inspires you to your core, it might be worth it to wait while you do some more research.
In your community, try out as many styles of yoga as possible and attend classes with as many different teachers as possible. This will give you a better idea of the type of style that you enjoy and wish to learn. Who knows, maybe you’ll want a YTT that covers many different styles! If you are thinking about doing a YTT course abroad, video chat with the teacher ahead of time, read their testimonials, ask to talk to previous students or ask for videos of them teaching.
Am I ready to have my mind, body and spirit transformed?
There are no two ways around it: yoga teacher training will change your life in unpredictable ways. We’ve seen romances kindled. Breakups happen. Job changes. Families started. Families relocated. In summary? This journey can transform you on any and every level.
In the end…
Take your time. Do your research. Then, hit the mat -- and listen to your intuition. How will you know when you’re ready for yoga teacher training? When you just can’t wait to go any longer!