How to Choose the Best 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training for You
By: Steph Ball-Mitchell, E-RYT-500, RPYT, RCYT, YACEP
By: Steph Ball-Mitchell, E-RYT-500, RPYT, RCYT, YACEP
You're already a 200 hour yoga teacher and you're ready for more. Maybe you've been teaching yoga for awhile and you are ready for growth as a teacher so that you expand what you're able to offer your students. Maybe you just finished your 200 hour yoga teacher training and you're on a roll, ready to find the 300 hour that makes the most sense for you. Whatever the case, you're checking out all the 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training programs that speak to you and it's tough to choose which is the best fit.
We've been offering yoga teacher trainings for many years and have certified thousands of yoga teachers. In the process, we've been able to learn what is important to yoga teacher trainees and what elements most impact the trainee's learning experience. I'm often asked, "what is the best 300 hour yoga teacher training?" The answer is that it depends on many factors. This guide to choosing the best 300 hour yoga teacher training for you is intended to help you evaluate those considerations for yourself so that you can arrive at the most appropriate choice for the 300 hour yoga teacher training program for you.
This may sound silly and you may be thinking that all 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Trainings cover the same basic topics, but there's actually a lot of variation in the subject matters explored in 300 hour yoga teacher training programs. Almost all 300 Hour YTT Programs cover yoga philosophy, anatomy, asanas, pranayama, business and some form of teaching methodology. However, the degree to which each of these topics is explored varies drastically.
Some 300Hr YTT programs are very anatomy-based. They may have more anatomy than anything else. I'm not saying this is good or bad, but rather this is an offering that you may come across as you shop around for a 300 hour yoga teacher training program. Whether or not this is what you want probably depends largely on how comfortable you are with anatomy. If you feel like you have learned enough A&P in your lifetime and your 200 hour yoga teacher training included significant anatomy, you may not be interested in a 300-hour with a heavy emphasis on anatomy. On the other hand, if you feel like you have a lot to learn about the human body as it pertains to yoga, you might be seeking an anatomy-driven 300 hour yoga teacher training program.
Some 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training programs contain a lot of yoga philosophy. Both our 200 hour and 300 hour yoga teacher training programs offer significant philosophy modules. If you're interested exclusively in the physical asana aspect of yoga teacher training, our 300 hour yoga teacher training program would not appeal to you because we more than dibble and dabble with our yoga philosophy. We look at the yamas and niyamas more deeply than any 200 hour training. We look at ethics in yoga, boundary issues and making good decisions as a yoga teacher. We also cover yoga mythology and teach you 18 about 18 yoga stories and characters that yoga poses come from to help enrich your asana practice.
Asana instruction in 300 hour yoga teacher training can vary drastically. Some 300 hour ytt programs do not offer much of any asana instruction. I took a 300 hour ytt once that taught us to refine our teaching skills for the asanas we already know, and it was actually a very cool experience. Yet, these lessons fell more under teaching methodology than asana instruction so the training overall lacked asana.
Other 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training programs focus exclusively on intense asanas that are challenging for many people. In some yoga schools, if you aren't upside down balancing on your heads or hands, it isn't advanced asana. If this is what you're looking for, you want to be sure to clarify up front what postures you will be learning to practice and teach in the 300 hour yoga teacher training program.
Our 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training program views advanced asana practice differently. We have a strong focus on accessibility in our 300hr YTT. The goal is not for our teacher trainees to go as deep or as far as they can in their own personal practice. The goal is to make the posture as accessible as possible and to create options for accessibility for all students. For example, we teach multiple variations of modified sun salutations so that our teacher trainees can modify for wrist injury, knee injury or hip injury. While we do cover many challenging inversions, we also offer yoga drills to help the body prepare for those postures and we offer many modifications for the postures. For example, this is our modified Side Crow with the feet on the wall.
Our 300 Hour YTT covers 50 yoga postures. Some of these postures are considered your typical "challenge postures" but we offer progressions and options so that every single person in your yoga class can participate with the posture in some way. That's what teaching accessible yoga is all about. We also cover drishti and prana vayus in our 300 hour yoga teacher training asana instruction, and we have a special populations module so you can learn to teach seniors in chairs, pregnant women and children.
Some 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Trainings do not cover pranayama, mantra, mudra or meditation. Some cover a few of these topics, but not all. There are many 300 Hour YTT programs that give you a brief overview of all these topics, maybe offering 2 or 3 pranayama practices, a couple of mudras, meditation basics and the chanting of Om. Occasionally, you find a 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training program that understands the importance of covering these topics in detail.
What we've found over the years is that most 200 hour yoga teacher training programs do not extensively get into pranayama, mantra, mudra or meditation. There's a good reason for this. You only have 200 hours and there's a lot of ground to cover. If a 200 hour yoga teacher training program covers these topics in intricate detail, there isn't time to cover all foundations of yoga that 200 hour ytt programs are intended to cover.
This leaves many yoga teachers hungry for more information on pranayama, mantra, mudra and meditation. These are the little trinkets we can drip in our classes that make them really special. Knowing what mudra helps to seal the intention of your theme or adding in a not-so-common pranayama practice can really give your students a special experience. Knowing this helped us to design the best 300 hour yoga teacher training program possible.
In our 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training, we teach 14 advanced pranayamas and the different stages of those pranayamas. We teach over 50 mudras, including the benefits of each and contraindications of each. We teach you to design your own mudra and pranayama practices. We also cover the benefits of Mantra and we have the lovely Dr. Sandra Sluberski, Kirtan teacher and E-RYT-500, who leads you in many mantras that can enrich your yoga classes. Finally, we cover meditation from the angle of the Yoga Sutras. We also look at guiding meditation, mindfulness and other traditions of meditation. You learn how to write meditation scripts from scratch.
We often meet 200 hour yoga teachers who know how to teach all the yoga poses they have learned, but they are uncertain about how to sequence them together in a way that is safe and effective. Smart sequencing is an important piece of a 300 hour yoga teacher training. Some 300 hour ytt programs sequence only for one style of yoga, so it's important to find out what type of sequencing you will be learning in your 300 hour yoga teacher training program.
Cueing is another topic that is not found in all 300 hour yoga teacher training programs. Our 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Online teaches you a specific cueing formula after first taking you through multiple steps to clean and refine your cueing vocabulary. When you have a cueing formula that works, you're able to easily talk students into any yoga posture in the world. Communication as a yoga teacher is so important which is why we take learning to cue effectively so seriously.
Business of Yoga lessons in 300 hour yoga teacher training can vary considerably. Be sure you know what you want out of your 300Hr YTT business module so that you can ask potential yoga schools if they offer those elements. You definitely want to learn how to scale your yoga business, you want to learn how to identify your student demographic and then where to find the right students for you. You amy be interested in learning how to teach online and what equipment you will need. You may also have questions about using social media to grow your yoga business.
Another big decision you have to make about your 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training is whether or not you want to take it virtually, in person or maybe a combination. There are pros and cons to each and you can explore those more in our article on how to become a certified yoga instructor.
Whether or not you need a Yoga Alliance registered training is a personal decision. If you're already registered with Yoga Alliance as a RYT-200, you may be looking for a Yoga Alliance registered 300 hour yoga teacher training like ours so that you can upgrade to RYT-500. Just know that registering with Yoga Alliance is not required to teach yoga, but if it's important to you, we've got you covered!
Our 300 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Online offers advanced yoga philosophy, yoga mythology, advanced anatomy for yoga teachers, contraindications, advanced pranayama, advanced asana, advanced mantra and mudra, advanced meditation training, advanced sequencing and cueing, trauma sensitive yoga teacher training and advanced business of yoga.
We offer our training 100% online in a self-paced format. We do offer optional live zoom sessions to support you if you'd like to connect, but all of the mandatory material is located right on your dashboard. We don't have any required readings, only recommended readings. Our requirements for certification are attainable and well laid out so you know what you're getting into before you enroll.
We are super affordable and you get a ton of information for the low tuition that you pay. Making yoga teacher training affordable, accessible and authentic are the core of our mission. We are registered with Yoga Alliance so that you can upgrade to RYT-500 if you'd like to do so. Registering with Yoga Alliance is not required to teach yoga.