This is it, the year you are finally going to commit to doing yoga teacher training and begin your journey of teaching yoga. But with so many options deciding on the right yoga teacher training course for you can feel like an impossible quest. I should know, I’ve already done 2 of them (one in-person and one online yoga teacher training)! In fact, many yoga teachers do decide to do more than one training to continue their professional development.
In this blog post, I’m going to compare my personal experience of doing both online yoga teacher training and an in-person yoga teacher training to help you choose the right path for you.
Why I Choose My Yoga Teacher Training Programs
For me, the decision to do my in-person course was driven more by the location, time, and cost. Whereas the online yoga teacher training course I was much more focused on the best online yoga teacher and what I would learn during the course. I already had my certificate, so that box was checked…it was the actual curriculum that was much more important than anything else for me in choosing my second course.
Reasons to teach yoga and do yoga teacher trainings
- Deepen your practice: Yoga teacher training will allow you to explore the practice of yoga on a much deeper level and help you to refine your own practice.
- Become a yoga professional: By completing a yoga teacher training program, you will gain the knowledge and skills to become a certified yoga teacher and start teaching others.
- Enhance your understanding of yoga philosophy: You will gain a better understanding of the ancient texts and teachings of yoga and how they can be applied to your modern life.
- Expand your network: You will meet and connect with like-minded individuals who share the same passion for yoga.
- Improve your overall well-being: Regular yoga practice has many physical and mental benefits and will help you to feel more balanced and energized.
Becoming a Yoga Instructor
You may still be on the fence about doing your YTT. If so, take a read at this blog post where I talk about my personal motivations for beginning my yoga teacher training journey and why I took the decision to top up by doing an online yoga teacher certification.
There are many reasons to pursue yoga teacher training, and the benefits can be deeply rewarding, I know they have been for me. It has changed me to the core in so many ways it’s hard to articulate. Digging deep into yoga philosophy expanded my mind and I’m a different person after doing it. I’m calmer, more grounded, more empathetic… the list goes on of all of the personal benefits I’ve noticed.
And then there are the more tangible benefits. Yoga teacher training will help you deepen your practice. You will be learning from experienced instructors, exploring the history and philosophy of yoga, and learning new and creative sequencing.
Once you become a yoga teacher and begin teaching yoga classes, you step into a whole new and magical role. Through your yoga instructor journey, you will begin to develop relationships with your students, as you guide them safely and effectively in their practice through your yoga classes spreading the yoga philosophy magic.
Becoming a Certified Yoga Instructor
If you are already teaching yoga, which I was before doing YTT. Yoga teacher training can help you develop your own unique teaching style, and become more confident in your teaching skills. I was already a good teacher before doing my YTT, as I’d been teaching dance at a professional level for many years. For me, doing my Yoga Teacher Training helped me to develop my sequencing skills and allowed me to be more creative with the material I was teaching in my classes.
And of course, most yoga schools require you to be a certified yoga instructor registered with the yoga alliance. The only way you can do that and get professional insurance to teach yoga is through doing a yoga teacher certification.
How to choose a yoga teacher training course
Once you have decided you want to do your Yoga Teacher Training you need to choose the right yoga teacher certification for you. Choosing a yoga teacher training course can be a daunting task.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to take the time to research and find the right course for you, depending on your personal goals.
Here are just a few things to consider when selecting a yoga teacher training course:
Consider the cost of the course and make sure you are comfortable with the price. The cost of Yoga Teacher Training can vary dramatically depending on many factors. My first course only cost me $500 for the in-person tuition. But then had to cover the cost of flights, accommodation, and food. Plus books and other learning materials I needed.
You may find courses that are $4,000 or more. Most of these higher-priced courses will include learning materials and accommodation and food if they are in person.
It’s always worth checking about payment plans too. If you want to do a more expensive course, then book early and ask to pay in installments to make the investment that bit easier.
Yoga Teacher Training Certification
This is a big one. Believe it or not, not all yoga teacher training courses are accredited. This is especially true for online YTT’s. So if you plan on teaching in a yoga studio and getting yoga teaching insurance, you must make sure that the course is accredited and will provide you with the yoga teacher training certification you need to teach yoga.
Depending on your budget and lifestyle, it may be important to look for yoga teacher training certification courses that are located in an area that is convenient for you.
If you are a mom like me then traveling to Bali to do an intensive 4-week course just isn’t an option for me… oh how I wish it was. Taking 4 weeks out of your life is a privilege most people don’t have. Maybe you can’t take time off work, have kids, or just can’t afford the expensive flights and tuition.
If you can’t travel, then you do have options. Many yoga studios offer yoga teacher training in a less intense way over longer periods of time. For example, a studio I taught at did yoga teacher training one weekend a month over a full year.
This is a great option for many people especially if you want to really take your time to develop your skills. Many of the graduates of courses like this can go on to teach in the studios where they did their training.
Yoga Certification Online
Or you can do what I did for my second yoga teacher training, do it online! I did a 3-month online yoga teacher training course with 3 live lessons per week (I only had to be live for one of them) and then the rest of the material I was able to work through in my own time.
If you are short on time, then I’d recommend starting the online yoga teacher training course a few months before the live part of the training starts. This is where I went wrong as I tried to do the whole 200 hours in the 3 months and with a new baby. It was just too intense!
Online yoga teacher training with a registered yoga school are amazing if you have life commitments that would make physically attending a training course impossible.
Read reviews and research the teaching style of the instructors to ensure that it aligns with your goals and preferences. With this option finding the best online yoga teacher is vital.
I did not do this for my first course. I was really lucky I got good yoga teachers and an excellent yoga philosophy guide. With my second online yoga teacher training, I did a lot of research. I knew that the teacher, Brett Larkin, was a big name in the online yoga sphere. I was confident that she was 100% the best online yoga teacher to do an online yoga course with, as she has been teaching her course online since 2014.
The Differences of Online Yoga Classes
Learning online is a lot different than learning in person so you need to pay close attention to HOW an online course is being delivered and the methodologies used. Many online yoga courses were put up fast during the pandemic. They just video-recorded the course they do in person and put it online with a cheap price tag with zero support.
There is no real thought to your journey as an online learner, moving through a course like that. My best advice is to find a good online yoga school, rather than a yoga school that put something up online to bring in some money during the pandemic.
The Best Online Yoga Teacher
Brett’s Uplifted Yoga Teacher Training course was designed as an online yoga teacher training course and she has had hundreds (maybe even thousands?) of students come through her online yoga school. She’s spent over 7 years refining and perfecting it. Her sole focus has been online learning and in my opinion, what she has created is hands down the best online yoga teacher training for anyone wanting to become a registered yoga teacher.
Check Reviews and Course Outlines
Read reviews, look at the course outline, and even take some classes with the teacher if you can before you commit. And of course, make sure that the yoga teacher training courses you are looking at are with a registered yoga school. Very important if you want to register with Yoga Alliance.
Review the Schedule
Look at the course schedule and make sure that it fits into your daily life. Even if your course is online, check the times of any live elements. I actually moved through 3 different time zones while doing my online yoga teacher training. The last timezone meant the classes fell at 8 pm my time which was Charlie’s bedtime… so every week it was hit and miss if I’d be able to do my class without him!
Finding a safe learning space
Lucky for me, the Uplifted YTT is a great space for new moms. No one batted an eyelid at me breastfeeding my baby whilst teaching yoga, haha. Looking back though, I wish I’d waited to do the next cohort when we were in a different time zone and the classes were during the day which would have made things much easier!
If you take the time to consider these factors, you will be better equipped to select the right yoga teacher training course for you.
What’s Better Online Yoga Teacher Training or In Person Yoga Teacher Training?
When it comes to deciding how and where to do yoga teacher training, there are pros and cons to both in-person and online options.
In-person training can provide a more immersive learning experience, allowing you to benefit from the expertise and energy of an instructor as well as the support of other students. It also provides the opportunity to learn hands-on techniques and to ask questions in real-time. However, in-person training can be more expensive and require more of a time commitment.
Online yoga teacher training can be more affordable and provide more flexibility in terms of scheduling. It also allows you to learn from instructors in different parts of the world who may offer unique perspectives. However, online training can be less interactive and may not provide the same level of individualized instruction as an in-person course.
This is why if you are thinking of doing an online course you should really make sure there is some live element to it so you can still get that help in real-time and build some kind of community with your fellow students. I loved how the Uplifted YTT was put together. We had lots of face-to-face live classes. Here’s how that worked.
Uplifted Online Yoga Teacher Training
Each week different students were expected to teach a practice vinyasa yoga sequence to each other. Also, there were breakout rooms where we got to interact with other students.
Sometimes I would be asked to teach meditation to one other student. Other times there would be a group of 5 of us creating a vinyasa yoga sequence for one of the students to teach to the whole class. There was also a very active and well-managed Facebook group.
All in all, I feel Uplifted did a great job of making the online course as interactive as it could be. My main concern with doing an online program was how I would learn adjustments and alignment. It’s easy in an in-person course, as you are all in a room together. But with yoga teacher training online it’s not so obvious how this could work.
Well, you may be surprised to learn that in the Uplifted yoga teacher training online course, I actually learned more than I did in my in-person course in terms of anatomy and alignment. Each week we were asked to submit photos of us doing asanas for the teaching team to review. A part of the live class was us all looking at these images and talking about what we could see and how we could correct it. It was brilliant, and I did nothing in this amount of detail on my in-person course.
While I loved the immersive and intensiveness of my in-person yoga teacher training, it was almost too intense to really learn. I came out of my 4 week’s course feeling amazing and ready to start my teaching journey. But there was so much information to process, and I forgot big chunks. That’s why many yoga teachers teach for a few years and then do a 500-hour yoga teacher training course to fill in the learning gaps.
Doing an online course over 3-6 months is very different. You have lots of thinking and processing time in between classes. This really is golden. I feel I learned so much in my Uplifted Online YTT course. Plus I have lifetime access to all of the material, so I can go in and brush up any time I want. Something unique to online teacher training.
Is online or in person yoga teacher training better to become a registered yoga teacher?
Ultimately, the best option for you depends on your needs, budget, and schedule. Consider the pros and cons of both in-person and online yoga teacher training certification, and research the different courses available in your area to find the best fit for you.
Online yoga teacher training offers a variety of benefits, such as increased flexibility, and improved mental clarity, as you have more head space to let the learning soak in. Plus you can learn the fundamentals of yoga in the comfort of your own home, and at your own pace.
With online training, you can also access a wealth of resources to help guide your practice, while benefiting from the support and guidance of experienced yoga teachers. Those resources you normally can access for life. I go back and rewatch material all the time.
Taking part in an online yoga teacher training program provides a unique opportunity to connect with other like-minded students from around the world. If you know you want to teach yoga online, then I’d say do an online course as it will prepare you better for this.
I loved both of my yoga teacher training and I would highly recommend both options if you can! There is nothing to stop you from doing an online course now, teaching for a few years, and then doing a second YTT in person.