0 In Yoga Teacher Training

The Ultimate Guide To Yoga Teacher Training

Students in a yoga teacher training

In this article: Discover everything you need to know before doing your yoga teacher training!

Do you want to become a yoga teacher? If so, chances are you have a lot of questions. Before booking your YTT, it is important that you do a little research.

You need to figure out your reasons for going on a training program, and what’s the best one for you.

Whether you want to expand your knowledge of yoga or simply learn more about yourself, yoga teacher training can be a life-changing experience.

A YTT gives you the chance to take your practice to the next level.

You’ll also meet new friends, learn from qualified instructors and become a fantastic teacher after completion of your program.

Below, we answered all the questions you might have about yoga teacher training.

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How to choose the right yoga teacher training?

There are many things to consider before going on a YTT. This is an experience that will most probably change your life, so you should choose your course wisely.

Here are some of the things to consider when choosing a yoga teacher training:

Duration of the course

Some YTT run over the course of several months and others can be completed in three intense weeks.

The option you choose really depends on the time you have.

If you think your everyday life will get in the way of your learning, you might as well go on a yoga teacher training retreat.

On the other hand, training over a longer period of time will allow you to digest concepts and learn at your own pace.


There are plenty of options for becoming a yoga teacher.

Whether you want to stay near your home or go abroad to study, you’ll surely find the best school for you.

If you choose to go on a retreat-like training, you should definitely consider going abroad. India and Bali are home to some of the best yogi masters in the world.

Your intentions

What do you want from this training? Do you want to become a great yoga teacher? Do you want to deepen your knowledge of yoga? Think about that before you choose your YTT.

The course material should focus on what you want to learn.

And if what you want is becoming a certified yoga teacher, make sure your program is recognized by Yoga Alliance.

The teacher

Don’t forget to do your research on the teacher with whom you want to study. Ideally, they should have years of experience.

Make sure you connect with the style of their practice. If they have online classes, take them, so you’ll have a pretty good idea of what to expect in your training.

How much does yoga teacher training cost?

Yoga teacher training retreats aren’t cheap.

Especially if you want your certification to be recognized by an accredited association such as Yoga Alliance, the International Yoga Federation, or the British Wheel Of Yoga.

In fact, the price of yoga teacher training depends on many factors such as the location, the number of hours you choose, or the type of yoga you want to learn.

Simply said, a yoga teacher training can cost anything between $1,000 and $4,000.

Is yoga teacher training worth it?

Yoga teacher training has many benefits. It essentially gives you an in-depth knowledge of yoga. It also definitely helps you deepen your practice.

Some people actually join yoga teacher training retreats even though they do not want to become teachers.

But, if teaching yoga is something you really want to do, we highly recommend completing a yoga teacher training.

It’ll definitely be worth it if you want to teach yoga full-time. 

As you probably know, the yoga industry has been rising for the past 10 years. This means there are already many yoga teachers out there.

If you plan on starting your own yoga teacher business, you’ll most probably have quite a bit of competition.

But that shouldn’t discourage you from achieving your dream.

How long should you practice yoga before teaching?

Ideally, you should have some experience with yoga before you join a yoga teacher training program. This doesn’t mean you have to be an expert, but you should definitely be comfortable with the basic poses.

Building a strong foundation before completing a yoga teacher training program is one of the best ways to prepare for the course

Practicing yoga is not only about poses, flexibility, and mobility.

It’s also about being mindful, and present. These are things you’ll be learning on a yoga teacher training course. 

If you’ve been practicing yoga consistently for several years, and you feel like you want to become a teacher, you’re probably ready to take the leap.

Can I do a yoga teacher training online?

You can definitely do your yoga teacher training online. However, up until recently, it was impossible to become certified with Yoga Alliance with an online training.

But since COVID-19, Yoga Alliance has decided to offer fully accredited yoga teacher training online.

With a certification recognized by Yoga Alliance, you are sure to be able to practice and teach anywhere in the world.

On top of that, online yoga teacher training is budget-friendly, it can be done from the comfort of your living room and from any device.

Most of these programs can be done in one month, but some are self-paced, allowing you to take all the time you need to complete it.

Additionally, you’ll have access to qualified yoga instructors, to guide you and teach you everything you need to know to become a great yoga teacher.

Here are some of the best yoga teacher training online that are eligible to a yoga alliance certification:

Where can I complete my yoga teacher training?

Yoga Alliance has registered schools all over the world.

You could complete your training in India, Costa Rica or in Bali if you wanted and become a Registered Yoga Teacher in the USA.

You can complete your training at a yoga studio or on a yoga teacher training retreat.

At a studio, it’ll most probably take you several months to complete, especially if you go only a couple of days a week.

The fastest way to get your yoga teacher training certification is to go on a yoga teacher training retreat.

Here, you can complete 200-hour of training in one month (sometimes 15 days). It is pretty intense though, and you are fully immersed in yoga for an entire month.

But if it’s your passion it’s definitely worth it.

Do I need to join Yoga Alliance?

If you’ve been thinking about becoming a yoga teacher, you’ve probably heard a lot about Yoga Alliance.

If you don’t know, Yoga Alliance is the United States’ largest registry of yoga teachers and schools.

It’s the world’s most popularly recognized yoga organization, internationally known for its membership credibility guide.

Joining Yoga Alliance is not mandatory.

However, it’ll certainly give you more credibility and help you land jobs and clients more easily, especially if you want to teach in the USA. 

RYS, RYT, YTT: What do they mean?

If you’ve been looking into yoga teacher training programs, you probably came across different acronyms such as RYS, RYT or YTT.

If you don’t know what they stand for and what they mean, it can quickly become very confusing. These are acronyms from Yoga Alliance, and here is what they stand for:

RYS = Registered Yoga school, 

RYT = Registered yoga teacher 

YTT = Yoga teacher training.

Basically, if you want to become a registered yoga teacher (RYT), you should complete a yoga teacher training (YTT) in a registered yoga school (RYS).

A YTT is a program you have to complete if you want to become a registered yoga teacher (RYT).

RYS is basically a registered yoga school where you can attend yoga teacher training programs that meet Yoga Alliance standards.

For instance, if you complete a RYS 200 program, you can become a RYT 200 – which means you’re a Registered Yoga Teacher who completed a 200-hour program.

Yoga teacher training: Hours and courses

Yoga Alliance offers several different training options. Some offer deeper knowledge than others. If you want to become a yoga teacher, you’ll have to complete at least 200-hours of training. 

Here is a table of the different YTT hours and level you can find:

Course and level Hours of training
Following courses 50-hour courses and 100-hour courses
First level of yoga teacher training RYS 200
Second level of yoga teacher training RYS 300
 First and second level (200+300 hour) RYS 500
Experienced Yoga teacher (certification + hours of teaching) E-RYT

Should I do 200, 300, or 500-hours?

A RYS 200 training is foundational yoga, and a RYS 300 is for advanced content.

You can take a RYS 300 directly, but it makes more sense to get the foundational content first. A RYS 500 includes both foundational and advanced content.

The pathway to register with Yoga Alliance as a teacher (RYT) is to complete a full yoga teacher training program at a Registered Yoga School (RYS).

We definitely recommend visiting the Yoga Alliance website to view the requirements to earn RYT credentials.

If you are interested in a RYT 500 designation, there are two ways to earn it. You can complete a full training at a RYS 500.

Or, you can complete a full training at a RYS 200 and a full training at a RYS 300.

If you decide to do RYS 200 + RYS 300, they can be from one school that offers both training or they can be from separate schools. 

It’s important to know that these are the only training that can go towards the RYT 500 designation. It is not possible to combine several RYS 200 training.

This is because RYS 200 standards are for foundational yoga teaching instruction. 

RYS 300 and RYS 500 standards include more in-depth, advanced instructions. So, multiple RYS 200 training cannot take the place of more advanced training. 

Also, Yoga Alliance doesn’t accept certificates that combine non-RYS training. This includes 100-hour courses.

Instead, those courses may count as continuing education if they meet the requirements.

You can’t be become a certified yoga teacher and register with Yoga Alliance if you’ve only completed a 50 or 100-hour course.

If you meet the training requirements to be RYT 500, you must also log at least 100 teaching hours after the date of your first RYS training.

So, if you completed the RYS 500 training, you may register as an RYT 500 when you’ve completed 100-hours of teaching after the completion date on your 500-hour certificate.

What is the highest yoga certification?

It’s hard to say which is the highest yoga certification in the world since there are no strict requirements to become a yoga teacher.

However, we can say that the highest certification recognized by Yoga alliance is the E-RYT 500.

People who are certified E-RYT 500 have a 500-hour training and at least 2,000 hours of yoga teaching experience. The E before RYT means experienced. 

If you’re not there yet, you can become E-RYT 200 first. For this, you’ll need to have completed a RYS 500 (or RYS 200 + RYS 300), and have at least 1,000 hours of teaching experience.

Do yoga certifications expire?

All major certifications expire and need to be renewed.

If you want to keep your certification up-to-date you need to pay a renewal fee and submit continuing education hours.

Keeping your certification up to date is very important. It is proof that you are continuing your education and keep learning.

Here is a table with the different fees to be registered with Yoga Alliance:

Designation Application fees Annual/Renewal fees Total initial registration cost
RYT-200 ; RYT-300 ; RYT-500 50$ 65$ 115$
Upgrade fees 50$ n/a n/a

Is it illegal to teach yoga without a certification?

Well, the simple answer to this question is no. It is not illegal to teach yoga without certification in many countries (including the USA).

But that doesn’t mean you should do it. Even though you can legally teach without a certification, most yoga studios will ask you to be at least RYT 200.

If you do not have a certification and an injury occurs during a class, you can end up with a lawsuit.

Whether you want to work with a studio or give classes at home, we definitely recommend you complete a RYT 200 training recognized by Yoga Alliance.

You can learn yoga in depth and improve your skills with yoga instructors who have many years of experience.

Bottom line

If you’re ready to take your practice to the next level, you should definitely consider a YTT.

You’ll learn more about yoga, anatomy, pranayama and teaching techniques. After completion of your training, you’ll get to teach others the great benefits of yoga.

Pick a training that is registered with Yoga Alliance, and think about what your intentions are. If you’re ready, don’t wait to take the leap!

You’re guaranteed to have a life-changing experience. We hope this post was helpful.

If you want to learn more about becoming a yoga teacher, discover the benefits of yoga teacher training and our post on how to prepare for your YTT.

Did you complete a yoga teacher training? Let us know in the comments below!

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