After several hours of sequencing and sun salutations, you are a 200-hour registered yoga teacher. Your eyes have been opened! You’ve studied the asanas and the alignment points. Your friends are psyched for an on-demand class on weekend getaways. And then it happens: You start wondering about what's next. Here are a few tips to help you understand whether the 300-hour program is right for you.
1. Understand what the program is about.
The 300-hour program is an advanced yoga teacher training. There is often confusion between the 200-hour, the 300-hour, and a 500-hour training. Yoga Alliance, despite many efforts to simplify, has not made it any easier. The best way I can explain it is as follows:
The 200-hour is college. You make a whole new crew of friends. You are taking your first steps into deepening your yoga education. There is SO much knowledge out there, even if 5 percent seeps in, you have gained a whole new perspective on life.
The 300-hour is graduate school. You need to go to college first before attending grad school, right? Right. Hopefully you have been teaching for at least a year so that you come to this advanced program with a perspective and relevant questions — not just to put another notch in your training belt.
Like many who enroll in business school or law school, the 300-hour program is an opportunity to dive deep and focus on the type of teacher you want to be, cultivate your voice, and truly examine what you want to teach your students.
In my many years working in the business of yoga, one of the questions I was asked time and time again remained, “If I have taken over 300 hours in continuing education, does that equal a 300-hour certification, thus making me a 500-hour registered yoga teacher?” The answer is always NO.
Smaller workshops, though wonderful and incredibly valuable, do not equal a 300-hour training. The advanced training must be registered with Yoga Alliance as a 300-hour registered yoga teacher program.
2. Understand your options.
Choosing a training can be very overwhelming. There are many different schools, formats, focuses, and features that will develop your teaching skills in various ways. So before you put down a deposit, I advise you to take the time to compare different programs. Here are some important questions to ask the school: