Yoga pt.1: How I chose my 200hr yoga teacher training course

So you want to yoga…

I’ve wanted to do my 200hr yoga teacher training for the last three years, but it wasn’t until I quit my job that I felt like I finally had the time (and mental capacity) to go for it 100%. There are so many options for yoga teacher training – in so many countries – that it can be overwhelming choosing which one is right for you. I decided to make a list of what I wanted from the experience and find the program that best fit. Here is what I was looking for:

  • Recognised accreditation
  • A reputable, well-known, popular school/studio, with a post-course community
  • Sydney-based yogi friends
  • Exotic locale
  • A dense, shorter time frame (as opposed to every weekend for a few months)
  • Personal development
  • Positive reviews
  • Value for money $
  • A good vibe!

With these factors in mind I spent a good afternoon going down a rabbit hole of yoga. I hemmed and hawed over the idea of doing my entire training in Bali, but decided it was really important for me to have training that was well-recognised in Australia, as well as a post-course support group if I wanted to do my 500hrs in the future. I also looked at schools in Byron Bay and Hawaii, but the costs of doing the course, paying for accomodation there, plus my rent in Bondi made it too expensive. In Sydney, there were only two studios who’s programs I seriously considered: BodyMindLife and Power Living.

Both had schedules that I could fit my life around, but Power Living stood out because not only was the training in Bondi (and five minutes from my apartment), but there was a one-week immersive retreat in Bali as part of the program*. And – serendipitously – there just happened to be a 200hr yoga teacher training info session at their Bondi Junction studio that next day.

So what I haven’t mentioned yet is that even though I’d been wanting to do a yoga teacher training course for a few years, I didn’t know if I wanted to be a yoga teacher per se. I loved going to yoga, but I would leave amazing classes feeling high, elated and searching for something more…like I’d only touched the tip of the iceberg. I wanted to know more and I wasn’t sure if that was enough to do a teacher training course – would I be the odd one out? The info session at Power Living helped dissipate every worry I had. Sol and Jordan were so chill, inspiring and very firm about how the course was a journey for anyone who loved yoga and that I didn’t have to be a flexible, hand-standing, perfectly lycra-ed being to partake. They also explained how the early bird discount worked in conjunction with the Power Living member’s discount…which meant the course, including the one-week Bali immersive retreat (!), would end up costing me less than any of the other courses I’d looked at. I signed up the next day without any hesitation, ready to yoga.

So how did Power Living stack up to my original list?

  • Recognised accreditation:
    • Yoga Alliance (USA) & Provisional Membership with the Yoga Teachers Association of Australia (YTAA)
  • A reputable, well-known, popular school/studio, with a post-course community:
    • 8 studios in AUS and one in NZ
    • An extensive, wide-ranging selection of advanced modules/retreats that go towards your 500hr credit
    • Power Living Teachers Network: a new program for graduate teachers to promote themselves, connect with each other and get discounts on upcoming workshops and retreats ($$)
  • Sydney-based yogi friends:
    • Most of the students in my group are from Sydney (others are from the Gold Coast, Canberra, Adelaide and even Philadelphia (!))
  • Exotic locale:
    • Hello Bali. One-week immersive retreat at Kommune resort in Keramas. And even though Bondi itself might be considered an exotic locale to some…haha, it doesn’t hurt to be able to go for a swim at break 🙂
  • A dense, shorter time frame (as opposed to every weekend for a few months):
    • They have a few different types of courses to suit different schedules
  • Personal development:
    • Power Living is big on this, which was a huge attraction for me. We’re constantly questioning our assumptions about ourselves and trying to identify our self-imposed limitations. LOVE THIS.
  • Positive reviews:
  • Value for money $:
    • Great early bird and members discounts. These helped me sign up without hesitation, but even without those discounts it’s worth it and then some – an invaluable life experience (and I’m currently only halfway through).
  • A good vibe!:
    • The instructors are amazing, so knowledgable and so conscious of what different highs and lows everyone might be experiencing. They speak to this a lot and it really makes a huge difference.

Link: Power Living 200hr teacher training

* Two months later I just checked out the BodyMindLife site and they’ve added on a one-week Byron retreat to their program, which would be a GREAT value add. Byron Bay is AMAZING.

I’m currently in the middle of the course. I’ll definitely write about my experience at the retreat in Bali, as well as the entire 200hr yoga teacher training course as a whole once I’m done my exams in mid-July. Stay tuned x

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