How to Become a Yoga Teacher Online

Nov 16, 2019

Yoga teachers impart the benefits of yoga by guiding and motivating students through their practice. This guide will help aspiring yogis find valuable online resources for learning yoga and developing their skill to the level of an instructor.

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Yoga Teacher Career Overview

Yoga teachers are specialized fitness instructors who teach any (or all types of) yoga practice, including ashtanga, vinyasa, Iyengar, and hatha. Their duties are to teach students the proper execution of the asanas, or 'poses', and motivate them to improve their practice. Aspiring yoga teachers can do some of their training and certification online but there are aspects of the career that require a physical presence.

Required Skills Physical fitness, communication skills, motivational skills, customer service skills, problem-solving skills
2018 Job Growth* 13% (for Fitness Trainers and Instructors)
2018 Median Salary* $39,820 (for Fitness Trainers and Instructors)

Source: *U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics

Steps to Become a Yoga Teacher Online

Although it may not always be required, aspiring yogis should first complete an online teacher training course and obtain either the Certified Yoga Teacher (CYT) or the Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) credential from a yoga school. Although learning to become a yoga teacher can be easily done using online resources, aspirants must be aware that, unlike a CYT credential, an RYT credential requires taking onsite classes.

Step 1. Learn Yoga

Experts in the field recommend that beginners take classes in a studio because proper breathing and alignment cannot be refined through distance-learning. Once the basics have been mastered, distance-learning (via instructional videos) can be a viable option.

There are many instructional videos created by CYTs and RYTs that can be accessed for free on YouTube or on blogs. Also available are mobile applications that allow users to customize their training regimen. It takes years to master yoga but a commitment to practicing daily can significantly accelerate one's progress. Yogis should visit yoga studios from time to time to have a teacher assess their progress.

Step 2. Take a Teacher Training Course

Aspiring yoga teachers should take teacher training courses once the foundation of their yoga practice has been built and decide to become whether a CYT or an RYT. If they are restricted to learning online, they can only earn the CYT credential in the meantime. Many yoga schools have online teacher training courses aside from their onsite teacher training programs. These online courses take 3 months to 1 year to finish, and typically include lessons on yoga history and modern yoga methods, human anatomy, asana alignment modifications, and sequence cues, depending on the yogi's skill level.

Step 3. Get Certified

Graduating from a teacher training course, whether onsite or online, automatically gives yogis the CYT credential. With a CYT credential, they can now teach yoga. There are several different RYT certifications. The RYT 200, RYT 500, the Registered Children's Yoga Teacher (RCTY) and the Registered Prenatal Yoga Teacher (RPYT) are just a few. The most basic, the RYT 200, requires 200 hours of training and continuing education every three years.

Step 4. Take More Classes

The learning experience in yoga is never-ending. Online classes for different yoga types are available so yogis can expand their practice. They can also attend online workshops hosted by Yoga Alliance, a nonprofit association that imposes guidelines for proper instruction and conduct of yoga. If you are an RYT, you can progress to higher certifications like the RYT 500 (and maintain your current credential) by taking advanced classes in yoga.

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