Questions about Yoga Teacher Training via Correspondence


Recently, I spoke to a Yoga teacher intern about Yoga teacher training correspondence courses. He had six years of formal training with a master Yoga teacher (Guru), and currently, lives outside of North America. This interview will help to put some light on Yoga teacher training by correspondence.

Q: Will a Yoga teacher training correspondence package make me competent enough to teach Yoga? This is bearing in mind that, at this time, I do not have access to a local Yoga instructor, who can supervise my Yoga teacher training?

A: Yes, your past experience will help, but the Yoga teacher training course must be entirely complete, and if you wanted to send an early pre-exam video, or DVD, to monitor your progress the director of Yoga teacher training should review for free, or for a small fee.

A mirror, camera, and audio recorder also make great learning tools for monitoring your progress, while you prepare to become a Yoga teacher.

Do not judge yourself too harshly. This is a common reaction, when we record anything we do. When you can get by our own self-criticism; you will be on the path to become a Yoga teacher.

Within your Yoga teacher training course, there should be step-by-step instructions, numerous Yoga resources, and you should also be guided in the direction of additional Yoga teaching resources.

In fact, any time you have a question, you should be able to send an email and receive a timely reply. It is also good if you can get answers over the phone.

Q: On receipt of Yoga correspondence course material how do I proceed with my Yoga teacher training? What do I need to have in order to fully benefit from the Yoga instructor training material?

A: Upon receipt of your Yoga training course material, you should receive step-by-step instructions – however, let’s go over the highlights of a typical Yoga teacher certification course.

1) You would want to focus on your written exam first. If you had a 900 page Yoga book to read, for the written exam; set a goal of reading a realistic amount of pages each day. For example: if you were to read 10 pages per day – within 3 months – you should have your written exam complete.

2) You should have developed a complete lesson plan for your Yoga class within the material of your written exam. As harsh as this may sound: Essay exams will teach you more.

Multiple choice or true / false exams are a “process of elimination,” and over the long-term, the facts you learn may be easily forgotten. A Yoga teacher written exam should be a measurement of what a Yoga teacher should know.

3) There might also be, at least, one essay. For example: You might pick a health topic to write about for your essay (3 pages – typed). It could be an overview of Yoga, and its relationship to health, or it could be Yoga and its relationship to a specific ailment.

4) Once you have your Yoga lesson plan template, you can start to refine it for your practical exam (video or DVD). As far as VCD’s, or DVD’s, make sure the examiner can read any format – from any part of the world.

5) In your Yoga course, there should also be a number of continuing education resources, for Yoga teachers.

You should not get side tracked by these during the Yoga certification process. Therefore, focus on your Yoga teacher written exam, the essay, and the practical exam first – and in that order.

Q: What Yoga teacher training level should I start from, and how do I proceed to the next Yoga teacher levels?

A: You should start with a Level 1, 200-hour minimum, Yoga teacher training course.

Q: Are there additional costs in correspondence Yoga teacher courses, which I need to be aware before I start the training, so that I can factor them in?

For International Yoga teacher interns, the only additional cost should be, shipping, and if customs charges an Import Fee, on educational materials. However, you should always ask about extra fees; just to be sure.

Q: I have developed a strong awareness of the benefits of Yoga. There are no Yoga teachers in my locality. Can my Yoga training develop my awareness into a life long career, as a Yoga instructor?

A: To be honest – Yoga teacher certification is only the first step in the journey of teaching Yoga. As you progress – you will either do independent research or take more Yoga courses.

This is the way it is for all Yoga teachers. Most of the time, we tend to focus on finding answers and helping our Yoga students, who have ailments. As a result, you will most likely research Yoga techniques for helping your students.

When it is possible to train with other Yoga teachers again; take advantage of the opportunity. You will much better off by networking with the nearest Yoga teachers, who teach a similar Yoga style.

You should also maintain contact with your Guru, even if the only method of contact is by post. Life is as short as an “eye blink” and your Guru would be proud to know you have chosen this path.

© Copyright 2006 – Paul Jerard / Aura Publications

Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, is a co-owner and the director of Yoga teacher training at: Aura Wellness Center, in Attleboro, MA. He has been a certified Master Yoga teacher since 1995. To receive a Free e-Book: “Yoga in Practice,” and a Free Yoga Newsletter, please visit:

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