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Practice Teaching & Daily Practices
While doing the course, outside of the work (e.g readings, assignments, etc), you should:
- Find one yoga student (e.g friend, family member, etc) to teach – a yoga “guinea pig”. This student will serve as your practice student through the course. You should also commit to teaching 2 hours a week to the student based on what you are learning in the course (via the readings, etc).
- You should personally practice yoga (at least 20 mins) and meditate while doing pranayama (see pranayama, under topics below to pick a pranayama – from the 5 there – to do) at least 5 mins daily.
- You should keep a daily yoga journal to reflect back on to see how you are changing through the course.
The underlined links below are the books you will use in the self study program, they are included for free and are in pdf form (click each to open each up to read). Note each book is numbered so you know which one to read from, per the readings for each topic below.
Topics & Readings
The topics should be done in the order they are presented below. The topics are in this order so you acquire teaching skills first; so you can start working on your sequence and practice class earlier, as opposed towards the end of the course.
Once you have done all the readings (so all the topics), you can take the practice quiz of all the topics to see that you understand the topics in preparation for the final written exam (emails us when your ready to write it [note we need at least a weeks notice] and we will send you the link (use this link to see how to prepare for the quiz and also note that you do not have to do the quiz, if you do not want). We advise you to underline and make notes from the readings and videos in preparation for the practice quiz and final written exam.
(click the link below the video title to watch)
What Is Yoga
|*No readings||*Recognizing Yourself Through Yoga 10 mins
This video talks about how the world we live in day to day is an illusionary world and that the truth is inside.
*The Meaning 4 mins
Video talks about how we are connected to something greater than ourselves.
*Unsung Hero 3 mins
Shows karma yoga in action, it shows how yoga and liberation (i.e. Moksha) can come from the simplest actions in the world, as long as the intent of those actions are without expectation of reward.
|2. Manual Demonstrating Chapter (see table of contents)||*No videos|
|1.Teaching Yoga Chapter 8
2. Manual Pranayama Chapter (see table of contents)
4. Chapter 2
|*Breath To Heal 18 mins
Powerful video that shows how the three part breath can help to unlock grief & truth.
*Breathing 17 mins
Video talks about the basis of pranayama and proper breathing.
The 5 types of breathe work below you should attempt to learn how to do each at a basic level and note you will need to use one of these 5 in your sequence and thus in your practice and certification class (they can be learned in any order).
(see a sample of a full class sequence under assignments below)
|1. Teaching Yoga Chapter 10
2. Manual Sequencing Chapter (see table of contents)
4. Chapter 3
Class Planning & Preparation
|3. Chapter 9||*No videos|
Teaching A Class
|3. Chapter 10||*No videos|
|2.Manual Connecting Chapter (see table of contents)||*No videos|
|2. Manual Themes Chapter (see table of contents)||*Should You Use Themes 4 mins
Discusses the pros and cons of using themes in a yoga class.
This video talks about how you can effectively use themes in a yoga class to connect better with your students.
|4. Chapter 8||*No videos|
|1. Teaching Yoga Chapter 6
2. Manual Voice Chapter (see table of contents)
4. Chapter 6
|2.Manual Touching Chapter (see table of contents)||*No videos|
|2. Manual Conditions Chapter (see table of contents)||*No videos|
Human Anatomy Yoga
|1.Teaching Yoga Chapter 4
2.Manual Human Anatomy Chapter (see table of contents)
|2.Manual Injuries Chapter (see table of contents)
4. Chapter 7
|1.Teaching Yoga Chapters 1 & 2
2.Manual Yoga History Chapter (see table of contents)
|*Yoga Unveiled 1 hour
This is a good comprehensive video that covers the history and all aspects of what yoga is.
A nice summary of modern yoga history.
*Gandhi 44 mins
This video covers his entire life and shows how Gandhi used many Yamas and Niyamas (the codes of yoga) politically to free India from British rule
|1. Teaching Yoga Chapter 3
2.Manual Chakras Chapter (see table of contents)
A nice summary of describing the seven chakras and their powers.
|2. Manual Koshas Chapter (see table of contents)||*Koshas Model 9 mins
Summarises well the five layers of the koshas.
|No Readings||*Origins of Sanskrit
Talks about how Sanskrit originated in the 2nd millennium and is the first language on the planet and the original language of yoga.
|2.Manual Ayurveda Chapter (see table of contents)
4. Chapter 10
|*Ayurveda Art Being 1 hour 45 mins
This video shows how this practice is used in day to day in rural India.
*Ayurveda Body Types 4 mins
Video talks about the tri-doshas that make up the constitution of each individual. Perhaps do the Dosha Quiz below before watching.
Optionally, for fun, take the following Ayurveda test and see what doshas you are and what kinds of foods, yoga, etc, help you to have optimal balance, just type in your email and click, start now.
|2. Manual Gunas Chapter (see table of contents)||*No videos|
Yoga Sutra & The Yamas and Niyama
|2.Manual Yoga Sutra and the Yamas and Niyama Chapters (see table of contents)||*No videos|
|2. Manual Mantra Chapter (see table of contents)||The Gayatri Mantra is the most famous of Hindu mantras. First you should try to lay on your yoga mat or in a comfortable seated position and close eyes and meditate to this mantra (link below) for at least 20 minutes once and note how feel after (perhaps note your thoughts and feels in your yoga journal, #3 under the Practice Teaching & Daily Practices heading above)
*Gayatri Mantra 1 hour and 45 mins
Then after watching the video above, watch this video (click link below) to understand the science of the Gayatri Mantra 9 mins
Business Of Yoga
|1.Teaching Yoga Chapter 12
2.Manual Business of Yoga Chapter (see table of contents)
3. Chapters 3-8
4. Chapter 12
|*Who Owns Yoga
This video talks about how yoga is being diversified and commercialised.
This video talks about the intense competitive world of yoga from Bikrams to major yoga brands.
Below (the underlined) are the 23 yoga poses we regard as the basic beginners poses you should know to be able to teach a beginners yoga class. You should find a way to learn all of these poses below knowing the:
- Basic step-by-step instructions
- Contraindications and cautions
- Modifications and props
- Physical and mental benefits
- Variations and challenges
Click here for an example of how to reduce the poses with the 5 points above.
You should know each of these pose fairly well especially the 5 aspects in preparation for the final written exam. As any and all these poses may be on the final written exam. Please note there is no practice poses quiz prior to the final written exam, so we suggest rewriting the poses on cue cards or online – like the click here sample above – and review them until you know them inside and out.(
Please Read First and Understand:
- All assignments should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org ONLY.
- All assignments should be sent in a pdf format ONLY.
- Please hand in your assignments as you do each, please do not hand them in bulk (e.g. 2 or 3 or more at one time).
- Please note in the subject line: 1. The title & 2. The # of the assignment(s) you are submitting please.
- The assignments should be done in the order they are presented below (in descending order).
(These assignments must be completed before you can do the evaluated assignments below i.e the written exam or certification class)
#1. A 250 Word Paper On ‘Why Do Want To Be A Yoga Teacher/Why Are You Taking This Program & What Is Your Yoga Concentration” (feedback, but not evaluated)
This assignment should clearly state:
- What are your motives, passions and reasons for wanting to be a yoga teacher or in taking this program or why do you want to be a yoga teacher (this will help you to know what you are going to do after the program is done and to set goals, while the program is on); and,
- What area of yoga you want to focus on while in program (e.g. yin yoga, etc). With this concentration you will do your sequence on the same type of yoga and you may elect to write your 2000 word paper on the same type of yoga.
#2. A 500 word paper on “What Is Yoga?” (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Write 500 words on what yoga means to you right now. The link below is for a video called ‘Yoga Is’ which you should watch first as it might give you ideas. *Note the assignment does not have to be on the video, the video is to simply give an overview on what yoga is according to many people in yoga industry.
#3. A 500 word paper on “What Is Enlightenment?” (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Write 500 words on what enlightenment means to you right now. The link below is for a video called ‘Enlighten Up’ which you should watch first as it might give you ideas. *Note the assignment does not have to be on the video, the video is to simply give an overview on the process of enlightenment is according to many people in the yoga industry.
#4. A 500 word paper on “What Is The Soul?” (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Write 500 words on what the soul means to you right now. The link below is for a video called ‘The Soul” which you should watch first as it might give you ideas. *Note the assignment does not have to be on the video, the video is to simply give you an overview of what the soul is.
#5. A 500 Word Paper On A Real or Mock “Business Plan’ (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Using what you have learned from the readings on business, write a 500 word short business plan for a real or pretend yoga business you’d like to pursue after the program. Focusing on the business name, equipment you will need, where you will run the business, legal considerations, the sort of time you want to spend on the business, how to market it, major goals, who is the target customer, etc.
Perhaps use (although not necessary) the following Business Plan subheadings to structure it:
While business plans vary in structure; here’s is a synopsis of the seven basic sections in most:
- Executive Summary – An outline of overall business in less than a page (really the other 6 section summarized together)
- Company and Description – Facts of business, is it incorporated or sole proprietorship, where will you be running the business (e.g. neighbourhood, city, etc), etc
- Legal – How will you deal with the legal aspects of your yoga business/being a yoga teacher, will have just use a waiver, will you buy yoga insurance, will you incorporate, etc.
- Products or Services – What are you going to sell (e.g yoga classes, yoga mats, etc), details of the products and services, etc
- Market Analysis – Know your niche (e.g ideal customer) you want to target, your competitors in the area you will run the business, etc
- Strategy and Implementation – How you will achieve your overall goals (e.g flyers, website, instagram account, etc), etc
- Organization and Management Team – Who is going to do what role in the business, do have full time or part time employees, contractors, etc
- Financial Plan and Projections – The financial goals you want to achieve (e.g to want make $20,000 a year from the business, products or services, etc), how will you track these goals (e.g. monthly sales records, spreadsheets, etc)
- Milestones – What are your goals as a yoga teacher/yoga business at the 1st year, 5th year and 10 years points.
#6. A 200 Word Paper On Ethical Issues As Yoga Teacher (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Please pick 2 questions from the 4 ethical questions below and write a 100 word reply for each:
Question 1: A male or female student you have gotten to know for the last few weeks in a yoga class you teach, comes to your class dressed – in what you feel – is inappropriate (e.g. in clothing which is revealing, tight, etc) for the class. If you decide not to say anything, provide a rationale of why; if you do decide to say something, point by point explain how you will go about doing it and the rationale and what you will say to that student?
Question 2: As it happens in yoga classes at times, students have emotional releases (e.g.cry, get very upset, etc). If a student started crying in the middle of a yoga class you were teaching; how would you go about handling it – if at all- as a yoga teacher?
Question 3: You are talking with a few students at the end of a yoga class you have just taught and one of the students waits until you are both alone and asks you if you would like to join them for lunch the following day, how do you handle it?
Question 4: You are single and you are attracted to one of your students in a class you teach; how do you go about handling that situation?
#7. Full Class Sequence (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Overall prepare a 1 hour class sequence based on the knowledge you acquired from readings, videos and feedback. Please assure your sequence has:
- A 5 to 10 min guided meditation in it,
- One type of pranayama (e.g. Ujjayi Breath)(see videos in the pranayama reading section above),
- Uses one mantra anywhere in the sequence (your choice you can use a simple mantra like om up to more complex mantras like Pavamana Mantra),
- It has an apex pose in it (see the sample sequence below for an example). This pose is the most difficult pose in a sequence and is always in the workout part of the sequence and all poses after it becomes eventually easier and easier as the sequence closes with Savasana, and,
- Its of your own design.
Please use the 23 poses under the poses subheading above (if you want to use another pose not included in the 23 above, please email for approval first). You can use the following template (link below) to design it. You will receive feedback on how to improve it before your practice class.
#8. Practice Class (complete or incomplete with feedback)
This is to prepare you for your certification sequence (to give you a chance to practice your certification class prior to being evaluated on it – grade wise). Once your sequence is approved, you will need to video you it to at least one student (i.e guinea pig student) teaching 30 minutes of your sequence (the beginning up to 30 minutes). You will be provided with feedback on how to improve it before you teach your certification class (which again is evaluated). The link below is how to video your class, a sample video of how it should look and how to upload it.
#9. A 2000 Word Paper (complete or incomplete with feedback)
Please cite any sources you use (e.g. a quote from a book, etc) at the end of the source, like the following: “Life is for the dreamers” (The Book of Dreams, Kim Kline, 1989) and then cite the full reference at the end of paper (i.e. endnotes); e.g.The Book of Dreams, Kim Kline, 1989, Random House, 3rd edition.
There are 3 options for this 2000 word assignment:
- Pick a book/movie that you feel is yoga in nature and explain why you feel it is yoga in nature or how it teaches the lessons of yoga within it. Or
- You can write a 2000 word paper on the type of yoga you are interested in pursuing as a yoga teacher (expanding on the first assignment). Or
- Pick a section or quote from the Sutra, The Upanishads or Gita (the 3 most important texts in yoga) and write about your interpretation of it. There is a copy of each on the underlined below:
- Yoga Sutras of Patanjali – The Yoga Sūtras of Patañjali are a collection of 196 Indian sutras on the theory and practice of yoga. The Yoga Sutras were compiled prior to 400 AD by Sage Patanjali who synthesized and organized knowledge about yoga.
- The Upanishads – Are a collection of texts of religious and philosophical nature, written in India probably between 800 BC and 500 BC, during a time when Indian society started to question the traditional Vedic religious order.
- The Bhagavad Gita – The Gita serves as both an ancient story of Krishna leading Arjuna into battle and a spiritual text on the inner struggle for self-mastery and the attainment of happiness through yoga.
#10. A 100 Word Paper On ‘What Of Your 7 Chakras Are Open & Blocked (which you will determine doing the chakra test below) and Why” (feedback, but not evaluated)
This assignment should be done as follows:
- Do this test first Chakra Test
- Then watch this video: Balancing The Chakras (13 mins: Talks about the sounds & mantras you can do to balance your chakras);
- Mediate at least 20 mins in a quiet space and at a time when you are most at peace and reflect on your results of the test;
- Write 100 words on why your certain chakras are blocked (perhaps some ideas from the video will help) currently and what you can do to help them to become unblocked (e.g. your throat chakras is blocked and you feel this is because you are not being totally honest to certain important people in your life currently, etc). If none of your chakras are blocked then write 100 words of why you think they are all open currently.
#11. A 150 Word Paper On ‘What You Have Learned From The Program, Why You Are Ready Teach (if that’s what you intend to do), How Will You Balance Being A Yoga Teacher With Your Personal Life/Other Responsibilities & Where You Intend To Do/Teach Your 20 Karma Classes (see below for details)” (feedback, but not evaluated)
This assignment is to be done after all the other assignments are done and marked and just prior to doing the final written exam and certification class. It is also:
- To help you clarify that you feel confident and ready to teach;
- How will you balance teaching yoga with your personal life and other responsibilities;
- To reflect on what you have learned from the program; and,
- To state specifically where you will do your 20 Karma Classes (see Post Certificate below for more info), note 10 of these classes need to be done at a not for profit organization (e.g Salvation Army, etc)
To successfully complete the self study program you need an overall combined average of 70% on the following:
- Written Exam 50% of the final grade and;
- Certification Class also 50% of the final grade
Written Exam (you need 70 out 100 to pass)
Closed book 1 hour exam on the Poses (based on the 23 above) and skills and philosophies (obtained from readings, videos and feedback). The only type of question on the written exam will be short answer. For example, question: what is yoga? A passing answer could be: it is an ancient practice that unites the mind, body and spirit. This is just one correct answer, there are others also. Use the link below to see how to prepare for the final written exam. Note we need at least 2 weeks notice when you are ready to write the final exam. You will be allowed to rewrite this exam if you fail it after a one month waiting period from the date it is evaluated.
Certification Class (you need 70 out 100 to pass)
You will need to video you teaching to at least one student 30 minutes of your sequence again (the beginning up to 30 minutes).Your yoga class (which will include a 5 to 10 min guided meditation) of your own design, incorporating what you have learned from the reading, videos and feedback. You will be evaluated on this class and will be provided with detailed feedback. Use the link below to see how the class will be evaluated. Also see the second link below on how to video your class, a sample video of how it should look and how to upload it. You will be allowed to redo the certification class if you fail it after a one month waiting period from the date it is evaluated.
20 Karma Classes & Post Certificate Class Paper (evaluated as a complete or incomplete only)
This is a two part assignment:
- Write a 200 word paper on where your confidence and teaching skills are now since doing your certification class and finishing your 20 karma classes; and,
- When the program is complete, you will need to teach 20 Karma classes. You have a year to complete these classes. This is to give you more practical experience (especially that the program is all online) and to spread yoga to people who don’t normally get a chance to experience yoga. The 20 karma classes need to done as follows and in the following order:
- 10 classes should be done at a not for profit organization (e.g Salvation Army, etc)
- The remaining 10 classes can be done at the same or another not for profit or you can do them with friends and family.
A photo of each karma class is required as proof with you and at least one student in the photo (click here for a sample of how the pictures should look), send them to email@example.com.
Please send all 20 photos as one email, as opposed to sending them each separately along with 200 words paper at one time. Send them both together!
|90 – 100
85 – 89
80 – 84
|An A indicates a mastery of the subject matter.|
|77 – 79
73 – 76
70 – 72
|A B indicates a good comprehension of the course material.|
|65 – 69
60 – 64
|A C indicates an adequate comprehension of the course material.|
|D||50 – 59||A D indicates minimal command of the course materials.|
|F||0 – 49||F indicates inadequate understanding of the material.|