Yoga Focus: How to become a yoga teacher

You’re thinking about adding yoga to your teaching repertoire – but with so many styles and courses to choose from, where do you start?

Adding yoga instruction to your skillset is an increasingly popular option for fitness professionals. Perhaps you’ve been practicing yoga for years and are looking to take the next step. Or maybe years of wear and tear on your joints caused by high impact activity and resistance training are prompting you to look for a mellower discipline to teach. No matter your reason, researching yoga schools can quickly become very confusing, with an overwhelming range of yoga styles and options to choose from. Here are five questions to ask yourself that will help you make the right choice:

Where do you want to teach? Yoga studio, or fitness facility? Most yoga studios will only hire with a minimum of 200 hours (often more) of training, and if they have their own teacher-training program they will generally prefer to hire their own graduates. On the other hand, fitness facilities will usually accept a general foundation training, such as YogaFit’s 6-day Fundamentals course.

Is the school accredited? If you are a current GFI or PT, accreditation with Fitness Australia will be a bonus, so you can also earn your required CEC’s. If you’d like the opportunity to teach overseas, Yoga Alliance is the most recognised certifying body internationally. Schools aligned with Yoga Alliance will have an RYS designation. Yoga Alliance Australia and Yoga Australia are your main certifying bodies for Australia. By taking your course through an accredited school, you can be confident that your school of choice has been audited to ensure a high level of education, as well as a wide range of topics important in yoga, such as anatomy, history, philosophy and practice teaching.

What is your learning style? Do you prefer to lock yourself away and devote 100 per cent effort to the task at hand, or do you prefer to take in a little bit at a time, giving yourself a chance to practice and understand before moving forward? Trainings are generally offered in one of three ways: full intensive (usually three weeks straight); a commitment to specific weekends within a 6-month period; or module-based, whereby you choose your time frame and pay as you go.

What’s your budget? An average 200hour certification course will cost approximately $3,100-5,600 depending on the school you choose. On top of this, you may need to pay for accommodation, food and travel, so you’ll need to consider whether travelling is an option for you. Some schools will request full payment up front and others will have payment plans.

What do your friends say? Nothing tops first-hand experience. Ask around and see what experiences friends and colleagues can share about trainings they have taken. Attend workshop sessions at FILEX and try to take classes with different teachers in your city to get a sense of the style of yoga that most resonates with you.

No matter the route you choose, your yoga journey is just that – a journey that provides the opportunity for self-reflection, inspiration and a little sweat along the way. In yoga we use the greeting word ‘Namasté’ which means 'the light that dwells in me, honours that same light that dwells in you'. May your journey be all that it needs to be.

YogaFit Instructor Training near you this Winter

A range of YogaFit Instructor Training workshops are being held across Australia this Winter.

  • YogaFit Fundamentals: 16-18 & 23-25 June, Perth; 21-23 & 28-30 July, Sydney; 18-20 & 25-27 August, Canberra; 8-10 & 15-17 September, Melbourne
  • YogaFit Anatomy & Alignment 2: 20 & 21 June, Perth; 22 & 23 July, Melbourne; 9 & 10 September, Brisbane; 23 & 24 September, Sydney
  • YogaFit Level 3: 28 & 29 July, Perth; 20 & 21 July, Melbourne; 7 & 8 September, Brisbane;
    21 & 22 September, Sydney
  • YogaFit Meditation & Mindfulness: 30 July, Perth; 6 August, Sydney; 24 September, Melbourne
  • YogaFit Kids!: 3 August, Sydney
  • YogaFit Older Adults: 4 August, Sydney; 22 September, Melbourne
  • YogaFit Prenatal: 5 August, Sydney; 23 September, Melbourne

Find out all you need to know at yogafitaustralia.com


Lisa Greenbaum holds her E-RYT 500 in yoga and is the Program Development Manager for YogaFit Australia and Director of YogaFit Canada.