200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training

Y’all have watched my passion for yoga evolve over the years, from my first real, live yoga class (not just a video) almost 7 years ago that literally left me tingly for several hours, to discovering my great passion for Yin & deepening my own practice multiple times a week ever since, then branching out of my Zumba lane 2 years ago to add PiYo to my teaching repertoire, and knowing in my heart that I would always eventually earn my 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training certification …but when?

In the back of my head, I had always planned to do this when the kids have graduated high school to give me a new, fresh intense purpose. (JB even said the other night, based on a completely unrelated parenting topic, that “you are going to be the worst empty nester ever!” :-D He’s not wrong...) But don’t we all know that God‘s plans and His timing very rarely match up with our own ideas! :-P

Every YTT (yoga teacher training) program that I’ve ever looked into has been several thousand dollars = absolutely not an option right now, but definitely doable when the kids graduate, as I would plan & save for it over those few years. Logical. Sensible. Safe. But don’t we *also* all know that God‘s plans and His timing don’t always initially appear logical, sensible, and safe? ;-)

I have felt Him stirring my heart more actively over this since last fall. The fancy corporate gym where I teach offers a highly touted YTT, and 2 of my sweet yogi friends (2 of the 10+ who have guided my Yin practice for years) facilitate it for Houston; but in addition to the $$$$, it’s every single Saturday & Sunday all day + Fridays 5-10 PM for 4 months straight = completely incompatible with my life at this point. There’s absolutely NO WAY that I am willing to give up that precious out-of-school family time while our kids are still home, and it‘s literally impossible with our travel over all-star cheer competition season. I know what my priorities are. This scenario is why waiting until they’re out of the house had made sense...

But there are other options. Multiple yoga studios offer intensive, week-long YTTs - I could definitely make one week work, but they’re still $$$$. My BFF Dalyce pulled the trigger on her YTT at a week-long intensive with Lex Gillan in December. Of course, she gave me the full download on our shared passion afterwards, stirring my heart to a whole nother level...and proving how realistically attainable it was. Urgency began to seep in. Ok, so perhaps less waiting, but God would also have to CLEARLY provide.

And He did. Within the next week, info about YogaRenew literally fell into my lap (via my phone. :-P) Only 12% of the normal program cost (not that those $$$$ aren’t worth it! I never plan to stop learning & am sure I will attend in the future; but for the immediate present, this was a literal godsend) because we’re not paying for a set location retreat and in-person teaching hours. The academic learning portion is self-paced online & with several text books, before observing & assessing multiple in-person classes, writing out complete class sequences & scripts for multiple yoga classes that you could possibly teach, and taking a final exam for certification. Yes, you get what you pay for: this 200 Hour YTT is *not* accepted to register with Yoga Alliance, because not enough of the training hours are done in person. Do I care about not getting their RYT designation right now? No. This is the initial groundwork to allow me to confirm what I’ve already been learning over the last 7 years and to actively *start* me down my Yin teaching path. (For those in academia, the 200 Hour YTT is like a general liberal arts degree, not your masters. :-P You can do some basic stuff with it, but if you’re really passionate, you will continue deeper.)

With anything, there are pros & cons: I *do* look forward to the camaraderie, touch, & fellowship of in-person group trainings in the future - it’s the same reason why I tell people who do PiYo videos at home on demand that it’s *nothing like* being in a live class - but 1) I really am good with the scholastic/memorization portions on my own. 2) I do have to attend & completely dissect 8 live yoga classes with different instructors. And 3) I *am* actively putting everything I learn each day into my regular yoga practice & teaching. I can’t imagine completing this YTT without actively using it in live classes with real people! I’m very lucky that I’ve gotten to sub 3 Yin classes and incorporate what I’ve been learning into teaching PiYo, as well.

This program has been such a blessing, being able to self-schedule every minute invested. Some nights, I’ve had 10 to midnight to dedicate; some days 1-4 PM after mornings at the gym before the kids get home; several days I’ve gone all in for 8+ hours at a time = that flexibility is inspirational, motivating, & ensures that I’m in the right headspace every moment. (How many days do our kids come home from school having learned “nothing” in this or that class, because their minds were on something else that they really need/want to do?) I progressed through it so much faster than I initially anticipated!

Just to share a basic idea of the syllabus, this program includes 17 sections:

1. Yoga Philosophy & History
2. Understanding Different Styles Of Yoga
3. Yoga Anatomy
4. Yoga Asana Foundations
5. Yoga Asanas
6. Class Sequencing
7. Yoga Hands On Adjustments
8. Pranayama
9. Meditation
10. Chakra Yoga Therapy
11. Class Experience
12. Beyond The Mat
13. Yoga Business
14. Community Yoga Class Observation Assignments
15. Yoga Class Script & Sequencing Assignments
16. Resources
17. Final Exam

We also use these additional text books: Teaching Yoga: Essential Foundations and Techniques by Mark Stephens and The Art & Business Of Teaching Yoga by Amy Ippoliti & Taro Smith, along with active videos, as well as quizzes at the end of each section. (The directors are just an email away & reply quickly; we also have a YTT FB group. I definitely don’t feel like I’ve been doing this *alone*.)

In light of some horrible abuses of this passion that should be about betterment, I’m thankful I found this most economical way to officially set my foundation and finally get my yoga-teaching gears in motion! After praying for “the right time” for years, I dove in, and I’m graduating within the next week, (as soon as the *40 PAGES* of assessments & sequencing I wrote are evaluated & hopefully approved. :-D)

Celebrating with yoga everywhere! :-P
(JB snapped me coming out of Half Moon while standing *IN THE EXACT SPOT* where the yoga studio will be in our new house!!! ❤️ They should be pouring our slab within the next week...)


  1. So exciting!!! Glad to hear that you've started down this road of exploring your passion!

    1. Thank you SOOO MUCH! It's been an AMAZING start!!! God is moving...


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