What Does It Mean to Be a Yoga Teacher?

Is it essential to get a yoga teacher certification to conduct a yoga class? What is the significance of the suffix “RYT”? Isn’t it true that everyone can teach yoga? Why go to the trouble of completing a time-consuming and expensive certified yoga teacher training program? Isn’t it possible for you to master the positions well enough to teach them?

These are all excellent questions, but before we get into the answers, let’s look at the various yoga certifications to see what they include more on some of the best online yoga teacher training on YOGI TIMES.

Certification for Yoga Instructors

A yoga teacher must graduate from an intense program to teach yoga to the general public, much as a medical practitioner receives an “MD” to show the world that he or she has completed an extensive curriculum meant to prepare the doctor to practice medicine. The Yoga Alliance controls the minimal requirements necessary for yoga instructors in the same way that the American Medical Association controls the criteria for a Doctorate of Medicine (MD).

Information about Yoga Alliance Certification is also available.

Yoga Alliance is a non-profit organization that maintains a database of certified yoga instructors (RYTs) and schools (RYSs). The RYT designation denotes that a teacher has finished a rigorous training program and has been approved to teach yoga classes. To obtain an RYT certificate, you must study the following five areas:

Yoga poses and methods (the practice)

The philosophy, history, and way of life of yoga

Anatomy, physiology, and psychology of the human body

Yoga teaching methods

Training in the classroom (in front of a class)

A yoga instructor who holds an RYT certificate has completed the necessary training to conduct a class. You wouldn’t go to a doctor without an MD, and you shouldn’t attend yoga courses from a teacher who doesn’t have an RYT.

A Game of Numbers

Yoga Alliance offers two major certifications: RYT-200 and RYT-500. The discrepancies are due to the number of training hours.  The first option is to enroll in and finish all of the training at an RYS-500 school. The second and more common alternative is to complete 200 hours of classroom instruction before earning the RYT-200 certification. After completing the 200-hour certification, you can go to the 300-hour RYT program, a higher level of training that allows you to explore and master more complicated methods. The 500-hour RYT certification is earned by combining the hours from 200- and 300-hour RYT programs.

There is another classification that may be used to distinguish seasoned instructors from young graduates. Yoga Alliance has acknowledged a licensed yoga instructor with an E-RYT-200 designation as having over 1,000 hours of teaching experience.

Is it necessary to be certified?

Although many yoga studios require their instructors to hold a 200-hour RYT certificate, it is not legally required to teach a yoga session. Many of the most well-known yoga teachers are not qualified, as yoga certification was first developed in the late 1990s by yoga groups.

However, chances are you aren’t one of them, so enroll in a recognized program, like those given by the Asheville Yoga Center, to obtain your RYT certification. The more training you get, the better you’ll be able to lead a yoga class and convey its complexities, and the more probable you’ll get a job in an approved yoga studio.

To return to the points raised at the outset of this article, anybody may teach a yoga session. However, we recommend obtaining your certification from a reputable RYS. It is essential to have a yoga instructor certification.