How to Find the Right Yoga Therapy Training Program for You
By John Kepner, IAYT Executive Director
IAYT is often contacted for recommendations for yoga therapy training programs. Of course, we can’t endorse specific programs, but here is the general advice that I offer.
Shop carefully and purposefully before making a commitment. It will take an investment of time, energy, and scarce funds to find the right program for you.
Use the IAYT website’s "Find a Member School” function (top right on the home page) to find schools near you and throughout the world and to begin learning more about the wide variety of training programs. IAYT Member Schools are also supporting the development of the field by supporting their professional association.
Join IAYT and read the publications including the ads. This is both the best and the least expensive way to gain a professional perspective on the field.
Visit and peruse the websites of our advertisers to see what many of the leading training programs are like, even if you are only looking for a school close to you. There are advantages to both local and national programs. Many of the ads you will see in our publications are for training programs with a national draw.
Come to IAYT’s conference, the Symposium on Yoga Therapy and Research (SYTAR). There you will meet dozens of leading teacher trainers and hundreds of attendees with the same questions and interests as you. There is no better place to get quality information in a short period of time. Plus, you will gain brief but quality exposure to many different approaches to yoga therapy. Conferences also provide a wide exposure to the diverse ways people are actively working as yoga therapists, such as in structural, physiological, psychological, and/ or spiritual realms and both individually and in integrative healthcare institutions.
Narrow your choices and then attend a weekend or introductory session with one or more different programs to gain a deeper perspective on their program and their teachers. Make sure you resonate with the teachers, their underlying approach to yoga, and the school’s teaching methodology.
Last, but certainly not least for individuals seriously interested in a professional career as a yoga therapist, consider a program that has obtained or is in the process of seeking IAYT accreditation. This is a very important step in the professional development of our field. Graduates of IAYT accredited programs are automatically eligible to apply for IAYT certification as a yoga therapist.