With the launch of my kids yoga – printable teacher training package many parents and teachers have been happy to get their hands on teaching tools for their kids yoga classes.  By offering a training download, teachers can learn from home. It saves time, money, travel, you don’t have to get a babysitter, and so on.

Kids Yoga Training - is a weekend enough?

Now according to the brand new childrens’ yoga standards introduced by Yoga Alliance in the USA only 8 hours of kids yoga training can be non-contact hours.  The new standard in the USA is 95 hours of kids yoga training.

Still, these standards are voluntary! As far as I know at this time anyone can legally teach yoga (please double check this in your country).  There are no government regulations for yoga, the few attempts at regulations have failed.  There are industry standards, but it is up to each teacher whether they will comply with or  join an alliance or association.

What Makes a Kids Yoga Teacher?

I’m a registered yoga teacher with IKYTA (for Kundalini Yoga teachers).   We seem to be among the strictest of the yoga regulations – not only do we have to take the 200 or 500 hour training, we also pledge to be a vegetarian and abstain from alcohol to be a teacher.

When I started teaching kids yoga over 10 years ago, there were no universal standards, even for adult yoga.  There weren’t any 95 hour kids yoga training courses.  They didn’t exist.  After I did my adult training I had about 30 hours of kids yoga training in total spread over four years.  The rest I learned from books.  Which is why I also offer down-loadable trainings.  It worked for me!

So I keep going back and forth on how I feel about this new 95 hour training requirement.

Is Yoga Teacher Training a Money Grab?

It could be easy to fill 95 hours of training – but does a new teacher really need this much training to teach kids yoga?  Is it worth paying hundreds of dollars a year to register Young Yoga Masters as a training school with Yoga Alliance?  Can students afford the extra tuition?

New Standard in Childrens Yoga from Yoga Alliance (USA)

This is where yoga has arrived at today, standards for a practice that existed for 5000 years without them.  Take a look at this 95 hour outline on the Yoga Alliance USA Website:

Curriculum must incorporate training hours in the following educational categories:

  • General Background in the Specialty Area:  12 contact hours
  • Techniques Training/Practice:  20 contact hours
  • Teaching Methodology:  15 contact hours
  • Anatomy and Physiology:  10 contact hours
  • Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyle and Ethics for Children’s Yoga Teachers: 12 contact hours
  • Practicum: 18 hours
  • Remaining Hours (8 hours)

Total: 95 Hours,  Total Contact Hours: 87,  Additional Teaching Outside Curriculum: 30 hours

Tell us what you think of the new standards:

What do you think of the new 95 hour childrens yoga training standard from Yoga Alliance USA?

Yoga Teachers: Are you going to get the training? Do you feel you need it?  Do you already have it?

Parents: What training do you want to be able to do yoga with your kids at home?

School Teachers/Educators: What training do you want to be able to do yoga with your children in the classroom or daycare?   Would you feel more comfortable with a longer training?

Everyone: If the government doesn’t require it, do you think it is necessary to train 95 hours?

I’d love to hear what you think of this topic that kinda/sorta affects us all!

Yoga Man vs. The Stressor:  Save on this Kids Yoga Teaching Tool

Help kids learn about stress and help yourself with 10 new games, 12 coloring pages, and 6 activity pages that you can print out for your classes with this instant download package.  You could be teaching new material today! Click here to save $5 now. (discount expires Wednesday Nov.  24, 2010 at midnight – only 2 days left to save!)

Get Your Kids Yoga Teacher Training

Now Online!

Train during the temporary online provision from Yoga Alliance

*Yoga Alliance’s Online Training Provision allows for both self-paced (watching recorded training) and/or Live Zoom Training. You can choose a combination of these that works for you.

You’ll be glad you did it!

  1. Good questions all around. As I’m currently refining and developing teacher training I’m torn as to whether or not to follow the YA Regulations as to this point I’ve had no contact with YA. I also began teaching kids long before YA was an entity and learned from any and every source available – books, videos, experience, workshops, etc. I like that they’ve taken the time to spell it out, and in that way recognize yoga for children however I’m not sure if it’s necessary or even wanted by many instructors, parents or teachers.

    • Donna – Thanks for adding to the conversation. As someone who works with a lot of school teachers, you must get a lot of yoga into schools with your great book and workshops. I wonder too if school teachers feel a longer training is necessary.

  2. I, too, waiver back and forth on this topic. My background before teaching yoga to kids was as an elementary teacher, so much of my learning about children, development and classroom management came from experiences I had in school. I do, however, have 95+ hours of training in Children’s yoga as well. I prefer teachers who work for Learning Tree Yoga to have at least 30 hours of children specific training or a degree that deals with children along with time spent watching videos, reading books and “student teaching” with me.
    Great topic to bring to the surface. I’m excited to see what others have to say!

    • Thanks for adding to the conversation Jessie. It’s true that many people bring experience and other training to the table that may not require them to have so many hours to get started teaching kids yoga.

      When you look for teachers for Learning Tree Yoga, all the training must become secondary to whether the teacher can deliver a great class. So many studio owners I know here in Toronto have trouble finding teachers that can keep students coming back.

  3. A great discussion – thank you for bringing it up. The more training one receives the better, but in my humble opinion, it’s my personal experience and recommendation that it’s good to hear from as many voices and approaches as possible – IN fact, those who attend ChildLight Yoga trainings get a list of recommended trainings being offered by others in the industry, and they are encouraged to attend at least one of those per year. 95 hours is lot and for most people out there, it’s more than is needed to begin to teach yoga to kids. Having said that, it’s important that all yoga teachers continue their education, just as other teachers need to do. A set curriculum of 95 hours? – I personally don’t feel it’s necessary. I honor the standards and all the work that went into them. However, ChildLight Yoga will most likely not be recreating it’s training program specifically to accomodate them.

    • Thanks for adding to the discussion Lisa. You’ve been a kids yoga trainer for many years so you know how to get people ready to teach kids.

      Also great point about the continuing education. This ongoing education is a standard in many industries – and for good reason. I think it helps keep teachers “fresh.”

  4. I certainly am interested in additional training beyond a weekend, but I don’t feel that it should be mandatory to obtain 95 hours. After attending a children’s yoga training, my classes have improved tremendously, but I feel that experience is really the best teacher!

    • Holly, that’s so true. You don’t really know what teaching kids is like until you get in front of the kids. I agree too that some training is very useful. Otherwise its hard to deliver a good class that makes people want to come back or hire you back.