How Do You Get an Ashtanga Certification?
Ashtanga yoga is a powerful, traditional yoga style that provides a profound transformation for your body, mind, and spirit. By pursuing an ashtanga certification, you can deepen your personal ashtanga yoga practice and share the depth of ashtanga yoga with others! But ashtanga certification is approached a bit differently than other yoga styles, so it is crucial to understand the nuances of ashtanga certification before diving in.
Making the decision to become an ashtanga yoga teacher is an exciting path, and it is vital to understand the process before embarking on this journey. In this article, we will go over the basics of ashtanga certification and answer all your burning questions about how to become an ashtanga yoga teacher. So, let’s dive in!
How Do I Become an Ashtanga Yoga Instructor?
The path to becoming an ashtanga yoga instructor is very similar to that of any other yoga style. However, that depends on whether you are pursuing a basic ashtanga yoga teacher certification or authorization as an ashtanga yoga teacher (don’t worry, we will get more into this below!).
The first step to becoming an ashtanga yoga instructor is to sign up for a 200-hour yoga teacher training that is registered with Yoga Alliance. Yoga Alliance is the main regulatory body for all yoga teachers and sets the standards for yoga teacher training.
There are specialized 200-hour yoga teacher training courses that specifically focus on ashtanga yoga. Alternatively, you can take a general 200-hour yoga teacher training and then pursue a continuing education course in ashtanga yoga. Whichever path you choose, remember that the key to teaching is being a student! Daily ashtanga yoga practice serves as the foundation for how you will share your wisdom with your students.
What is the Difference Between Authorized and Certified Ashtanga Training?
One important distinction that makes ashtanga yoga unique from other yoga styles is the process of becoming an authorized yoga teacher. The founder of ashtanga yoga, Pattabhi Jois, established an institute in Mysore, India, called KPJAYI or the K. Pattabhi Jois Ashtanga Yoga Institute. After Pattabhi Jois’s passing, his son, Sharath Jois, now runs the institute and oversees the teacher authorization process.
Through a rigorous, multi-year process involving multiple trips to India, you can become an authorized ashtanga yoga teacher only through the KPJAYI center in Mysore, India. There are also various phases of this authorization process in which teachers first receive authorization as level 1 teachers, designating them to only teach the primary ashtanga yoga series. Subsequent levels of authorization correlate to the various other series – for example, a level 2 authorization would authorize a teacher to teach both the primary and intermedia series.
So, essentially, the process of becoming an authorized ashtanga yoga teacher is much more rigorous than becoming a certified ashtanga yoga teacher. However, you will still learn the same sequences and fundamentals of ashtanga yoga. That being said, the authorization process is typically more highly respected and regarded than an ashtanga yoga teacher certification.
Can Anyone Do Ashtanga Certification?
Anyone with a base level of mental and physical fitness is eligible to pursue ashtanga yoga certification. Ashtanga yoga is a more rigorous yoga style, but it can be made accessible to all body types and needs with the proper adjustments, props, and modifications.
Traditionally, ashtanga yoga incorporated minimal props and emphasized a specific alignment in each pose, regardless of the individual’s body type or needs. However, ashtanga yoga has expanded over time to become increasingly accessible and adaptable to varying needs. Ashtanga yoga is truly accessible to all students with guidance from a certified ashtanga yoga teacher.
Many people choose to pursue ashtanga certification simply for their own benefit and to deepen their ashtanga yoga practice. Whether you want to become an ashtanga yoga teacher or are just interested in learning more about ashtanga yoga, an ashtanga certification can be an excellent experience!
How Long Does It Take to Learn Ashtanga Yoga Primary Series?
The first step to becoming an ashtanga yoga teacher is to learn the ashtanga yoga primary series. The ashtanga yoga primary series is a set sequence of 49 poses and 35 vinyasas, creating a whole body-mind experience. If you are a complete beginner to yoga, the ashtanga yoga primary series may be intimidating or challenging as it requires an immense amount of strength and flexibility.
However, if you have some experience in yoga practice, you will recognize many of the poses and practices in ashtanga yoga classes from vinyasa and power yoga classes. In fact, vinyasa and power yoga classes are an adaptation of ashtanga yoga sequences.
The length of time it takes to learn the ashtanga yoga primary series really depends on your background and dedication. Some students can learn and memorize the sequence with just a few classes, but for others, it may take much longer. Let yourself go at the speed that you need to. That is one of the most significant benefits of an online yoga teacher certification – you can truly learn and practice at the pace that you need!
Is Ashtanga Yoga Worth It?
Some yoga practitioners are intimidated by the intensity and rigor of ashtanga yoga practice. But ashtanga yoga can be one of the most rewarding yoga styles to practice because it is both rooted in tradition and incorporates the modern benefits of yoga all in one! Pursuing ashtanga certification can give you a deeper background in one of the longest-standing yoga styles in modern times.
Where is the Best Place to Study Ashtanga Yoga?
Some purist yoga teachers might tell you that Mysore, India, is the only place to learn authentic ashtanga yoga. But this couldn’t be further from the truth! There are now many excellent ashtanga yoga teachers all over the world who can bring the traditional practice of India straight to you.
A good rule of thumb when studying for ashtanga certification is to study under an authorized ashtanga yoga teacher. But the next best thing is to ensure that your teacher has their own strong ashtanga yoga personal practice – remember, our personal practice is the foundation of our teaching!
You can also study ashtanga yoga online through many excellent training programs. Even if you just want to engage in self-practice, an ashtanga certification can give you the tools to deepen your personal yoga practice and maybe share this wisdom with others as well!
The Steps to Ashtanga Certification
1. Choose Between Ashtanga Certification and Authorization
Before you begin the ashtanga certification, it is essential first to determine if you want to pursue the foundational ashtanga certification process or the more rigorous and extensive authorization process. Most people begin with an ashtanga certification to give them a foundation before looking into the authorization steps, but it is a personal choice!
2. Find Your Ashtanga Certification School
Perhaps the most critical part of starting your ashtanga certification is choosing your yoga teacher training school. Determine whether you want to train online or in person and if you want to begin with a 200-hour yoga teacher training course or go straight into a 500-hour yoga teacher training program.
3. Deepen Your Personal Ashtanga Yoga Practice
An essential component of being a yoga teacher is having a consistent and dedicated yoga practice. The deeper you go into ashtanga yoga practice, the better yoga teacher you will be. Try to set a schedule and practice ashtanga yoga every day. Incorporating ashtanga yoga practice into your daily routine will set a strong foundation for becoming an ashtanga yoga teacher.
4. Complete Your Yoga Teacher Training Course
Becoming a yoga teacher takes time. So, give yourself as long as you need to integrate and absorb the material. If your training program does not have a set schedule, it is vital to provide yourself with that structure to ensure you are moving through your ashtanga certification at the proper rate.
5. Start Sharing Ashtanga Yoga with Others
Teaching ashtanga yoga takes practice, so don’t be afraid to get out there and start teaching! Many new yoga teachers start out by teaching to their friends and family before embarking into gyms or yoga studios. The more that you practice teaching ashtanga yoga, the easier it will become. Before you know it, you will be an excellent ashtanga yoga teacher in no time.
Get Your Ashtanga Yoga Certification Online Today!
Making the decision to embark on ashtanga certification is an exciting and rewarding path. Ashtanga yoga is regarded as one of the most holistic, traditional, and potent yoga styles that can promote the true transformation of your body, mind, and spirit. Joining an ashtanga certification can give you the experience of practicing safely on your own and teach others the power of ashtanga yoga as well.
In our online yoga teacher training courses, we teach you the foundations of yoga along with specific guidance on ashtanga yoga to support you on this journey of becoming a yoga teacher. Online YTT is an excellent choice for those who want to study from the comfort of their home but don’t want to sacrifice the quality of their learning. So, send us a message to learn more about our online yoga teacher trainings and get your ashtanga certification online today!
Learn the benefits of an ashtanga certification