Qualifications for becoming a Certified Mindful Yoga Teacher
For this course to have meaning and vitality, the leaders delivering it must do their best to embody the practice of Mindful Yoga in their daily lives. This will allow for them to lead from their personal experience and wisdom, rather than in a cookbook fashion.
A person may be certified as a Mindful Yoga teacher if she or he: a) has an established meditation practice, as defined by Criterion 1 below; (b) has demonstrable group facilitation skills and experience, including (but not limited to) completion of Criterion 2 below; (c) is a registered hatha yoga teacher with ample experience working with special populations, as defined by Criteria 3-4 below; and (d) Mindful Yoga Teacher Training Level 1 (formerly Yoga of Awareness Teacher Training Level I) course, and in most cases a Mindful Yoga Teacher Training Level 2 course; and (e) after fulfilling all the above requirements, has offered an initial Mindful Yoga course free-of-charge to a group of individuals, and recordings of the course sessions have been reviewed by Jim and/or Kimberly Carson. The Mindful Yoga course must be based on the 8-session Yoga of Awareness Program.
Criterion 1. Meditation practicum: To become a Mindful Yoga Teacher, for individuals who do not have experience with the mediation practices taught in the Mindful Yoga (formerly Yoga of Awareness) program, you will be asked to establish a personal practice for a minimum of 6 months. During this time, you will be mentored by Jim and/or Kimberly via email and phone calls, and join in phone conference meetings with other teachers who are participating in the mentoring process. This will be an opportunity to deepen your experience of these practices, share observations, and ask questions.
Criterion 2. Presentation skills practicum: Teaching the psychoeducational and applied practice components of the Mindful Yoga course is particularly challenging for most individuals. To address this, we ask that during the 6 months that individuals are participating in the mentored meditation practicum, that they also practice delivering four specific components of the program (the Foundations of Yoga Practice including how to connect with “simple being”; Riding vs. Battling the Waves of Stress; Working with the Mind’s Story; and Riding the Waves of Pain including the Gate Control Model) to a small group of students and/or friends and practice responding to questions and comments about the material presented. These practice presentations should be recorded for review and feedback from Jim and/or Kimberly. We may also arrange to come together at a suitable venue (physical or virtual) to work on the group facilitation and program delivery skills.
Criterion 3. Registered Yoga Teacher: To become a certified Mindful Yoga Teacher, individuals must be Registered Yoga Teachers (RYT) as certified by the Yoga Alliance (www.yogaalliance.org) or have equivalent evidence of competency.
Criterion 4. Experience teaching yoga postures, including specialized populations: Experience teaching yoga postures, including specialized populations: To be certified as a Mindful Yoga Teacher, individuals must have a minimum of two years’ experience of teaching yoga postures in general, including at least one year teaching yoga postures to specialized populations, such as expectant mothers, senior citizens, medical patients (e.g., MS, cardiac, cancer, patients with chronic pain conditions, at-risk groups). If you have less than two years’ experience in general or less than one year’s experience with specialized groups, you may go ahead and take the teacher training course, and then fulfill these requirements subsequently before being certified a Mindful Yoga Teachers.
Certification: Upon satisfactory completion of the above requirements, you will be certified by Jim and Kimberly as a Mindful Yoga Teacher.