WINTER 2023 24-DAY TRAINING – STARTS JANUARY 20, 2023
YOGA TEACHER TRAINING
BUILD ON YOUR EXPERIENCE TO EXPAND AND REFINE ALL THAT YOU BRING TO TEACHING YOGA
Our Training Calendar
The Mark Stephens Yoga 300-Hour Teacher Training covers all of the major topics in teaching yoga and goes far beyond the very basic curriculum standards set forth by the Yoga Alliance. It is a comprehensive training that both fills the gaps in knowledge and skills that most teachers feel they have after completing most 200-hour trainings, and it helps you to greatly refine your knowledge and skills in entirely practical ways that are in keeping with your personal values and interests in yoga.
Upon registration, you receive a welcome packet giving a general orientation to your training. You receive the reading list, recommendations on how best to get the most out of the training, and you receive Mark’s direct and personal contact information so you can discuss any questions you might have before, during, and after the training.
On the first day of the training you receive a detailed syllabus for the course along with the course Resource Book that contains materials to assist you in more deeply learning.
As each in-person training is limited to 20 participants, you will be part of a small group of yoga teachers, some of whom might become you new best friends. Indeed, our primary resource in the training is one another as we interact in a variety of ways to develop and hone our skills and knowledge. Throughout the course, Mark will give you extensive individualized guidance and support.Teacher training can be an intensely personal and transformation experience. We begin each day with an Opening Circle to ensure we’re sharing in the clearest and most comfortably engaging, always opening to making our shared learning experience the best it can be.
The training is offered in three formats: 1) Six 50-hour Online Modules; 2) 24-Day In-Person Intensive (with supplementary video content on deeper aspects of anatomy and philosophy, and subsequent Independent Study), and 3) A 9-month format in which we meet one weekend per month.
With your successful completion of the course, you will receive a Certificate of Completion of the 300-Hour Yoga Teacher Training. This enables you to be a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYS 500) with Yoga Alliance.
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
Advanced Yoga Teacher Training is all about deepening and refining your skills and knowledge. We fill the gaps left from prior trainings, build upon all you’ve learned and experienced thus far on the yoga path, and take it further in the directions you envision. What follows here are just some highlights. Please see below for more details on our curriculum.
- Renew your passion and appreciation for yoga as a transformative practice.
- Further refine and deepen your own yoga practice along with other highly motivated and experienced teachers.
- Move far beyond the typical cookie-cutter approaches to teaching postural yoga through insightful and informed observation of diverse students in a wide array of asanas.
- Gain a more thorough and deeper practical understanding the major asanas, including their alignment principles, energetic actions, variations, modifications, contra-indications, risks and benefits.
- Expand your understanding of yoga anatomy – how the body is structured, held together, moves and stabilizes - in a way that makes practical sense in teaching real human beings.
- Refine how you integrate verbal, visual, and tactile cues to more effectively and clearly teach yoga to all levels of students and various student intentions and conditions.
- Learn how to plan classes based on clear principles of sequencing that are informed by knowledge of the interrelations of postures within and between each family of asanas as well and other facets of practice such as subtle energy, seasonal changes, and changes across the lifespan.
- Greatly refine your insights and skills in the art and science of giving hands–on adjustments and other forms of assistance, one of the essential tools in guiding students in their yoga practices.
- Learn to work with the injuries, pregnancy conditions, and other specific or unique student needs in your yoga classes that might not have been thoroughly addressed in your 200-hour training.
- Explore more deeply in the received wisdom from ancient yoga traditions to develop a more well-rounded knowledge of the connected histories and various yoga philosophies that inform yoga today, plus a deep exploration of ethics in teaching and matters of lifestyle.
- Develop specific plans for expanding your teaching in a variety of settings, including yoga studios, gyms, businesses, schools, community centers, retreat centers and more, plus the basics of opening a yoga studio, and how to create and expand opportunities for teaching yoga online.
- Gain extensive teaching experience through refined practice teaching and mentoring.
WHO IS THIS TRAINING FOR?
This training is designed for anyone who has completed a credible 200-hour training and wishes to dive far more deeply into learning and refining the skills for a lifetime of teaching yoga with spirit, intelligence, and creativity.
The +300/500 Advanced Yoga Teacher Training attracts a wide range of participants from a variety of backgrounds and diverse interests in life and yoga. Many are new to teaching while some are teacher trainers themselves, some still trying to find their path in the teaching world while others might own studios or run retreat centers. Working and sharing together, participants in the +300/500-hour program have at least one thing in common: the desire to keep learning and to develop into the most highly competence and confident teacher one can be.
“It was a wonderful experience attending Mark Stephens Advanced Teacher Training. Mark was a dedicated, passionate and smart teacher who motivated and inspired us all. I don't think we could of had a better teacher on this planet. His online resources, his textbooks and resource book promote and support that independent learning after you return home and try your best to apply the principles as a teacher. It was fantastic.”
“Mark is an exceptional teacher and a reference to me on my yoga path. He is very knowledgeable in so many areas of yoga, and I would like to highlight in particular: asana hands-on adjustments, alignment and sequencing, anatomy, pranayama and history, philosophy & ethics in teaching yoga. I super recommend this course with Mark and it has totally made a difference for me, both in my life and path as a teacher!”
A CLOSER LOOK AT THE CURRICULUM
We begin with the question, “What is yoga?” Then we fully dive into the interwoven threads of a holistic and integrated practice and how best to share it with others.
Asana Technique & Teaching Methods: The most extensive part of the course, here you will learn in detail how to teach each of over 75 basic yoga poses compassionately yet systematically, including their functional anatomy, alignment principles, energetic actions, risks, benefits, preparatory asanas, counterposes, variations, modifications, hands-on adjustments, and use of props. This part of the course covers the major families of asanas: Sun Salutations, Standing Poses, Backbends, Forward Bends, Twists, Arm Balances, Inversions, Core Refinement, and Hip Openers.
Practical Yoga History & Philosophy: A practical survey of yoga's interconnected histories and diverse philosophies that distills the essential insights for teaching yoga. We look at the ancient-to-current threads of yoga and how they have developed and been intertwined over the ages, exploring key passages from the Vedas, Upanishads, Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, Tantra, early to modern Hatha, as well as somatic theory and other 20th and 21st century sources that can inform how we practice and teach. We give close attention to ethics in teaching, including matters of emotional transference and projection, sexual harassment, and how to ensure an emotionally and physically safe space for practicing and self-transformation.
Practical Yoga Anatomy: A hands-on introduction to functional anatomy, bio-mechanics, and the kinesiology of movement as applied to seeing students in the practice and guiding them in a meaningful, safe, and effective way. You will learn about the basic human skeletal structure; how different types of bones, joints, muscles and connective tissues optimally function in postural practices; the basics of human movement so you better understand transitions in and out of asanas; close study of the spine, hips, and shoulders as they relate to all seven families (and sub-families) as asanas.
Designing & Sequencing Classes: The art and science of sequencing families of asanas and crafting entire classes, including for different levels of students, different intentions, seasons, styles and other considerations. Here we also cover pacing, duration, tempo, and vibe for different levels and intentions of classes.
Teaching Pranayama: Basic and intermediate pranayama techniques, including how, when, and whom to teach basic yoga breathing (ujayi pranayama) and more intermediate pranayama techniques (including kapalabhati, bastrika, sitali, viloma, kumbhaka, and nadi shodhana).
Subtle Energy & Anatomy: Awareness and activation of subtle energy, including how to cultivate bandhas and the relationship between pranayama, bandhas, and the elements of yogic anatomy, including koshas, chakras, nadis, vayus, gunas, and doshas.
Meditation Practices: In demystifying meditation, we explore how to bring meditation into yoga classes and everyday life in way that is simple, accessible, and sustainable. We explore several meditation techniques.
The Art of Seeing & Relating: An integral part of the course, here we learn to systematically observe, appreciate, and understand what is happening with different students in each of the 75 asanas, thereby developing the necessary skills for working individually with your students and giving appropriate verbal cues, hands-on adjustments, and use of props.
Demonstrating & Cuing: Here we focus on when, where, and how to most effectively demonstrate yoga poses while giving the clearest, most understandable verbal and hands-on guidance to students. Qualities of voice, including language, tone, and audibility, are given close attention.
Hands-On Adjustments: We go deeply into the full range of hands-on adjustments, an essemntial skill for all yoga teachers. It begins with an in-depth consideration of the principles of tactile cues, and then looks at specific techniques for guiding students in over 50 poses. Here you will work with one another to learn, practice, and refine your ability to guide students.
Teaching Pre/Post-Natal Yoga: Every public yoga teacher is a pre-natal yoga teacher if only because you will definitely have pregnant students in your yoga classes. Here we look closely at maternal anatomy and physiology, adaptation of the practice for each trimester of pregnancy, indications and contra-indications for various conditions, effective use props, emotional and psychological aspects of pre-natal experience, preparation for delivery, delivery, and post-partum reintegration through yoga.
Working with Student Injuries & Special Conditions: Students come to classes with a variety of conditions, including acute and chronic injuries, disease, and other conditions that need to be considered in guiding their practice. We will consider several of the most common conditions: joint issues (ankles, knees, hips, sacro-iliac, spinal, shoulders, elbows, wrists), scoliosis, osteopororis and students undergoing chemotherapy.
Making Yoga Meaningful: Why do you do yoga? What are the core values at the heart of your practice? How can you best be true to your values while holding space for othersand their values in your classes? How might you best create space in class and provide guidance to students in making their yoga experience more meaningfulin the fullness of their lives?
Class Observation: Buy observing experienced teachers in the act of leading live classes, you will further refine your insights into what different students are likely experiencing in their yoga practices, thereby expanding your own skills in leading classes.
Practice Teaching: From the very beginning of this course, you will work with other participants to teach classes, starting with working one-on-one and gradually developing the confidence and skill to lead larger and larger classes. Each practice teaching session includes extensive feedback and discussion of teaching techniques and methods.
Lifestyle & Ethics: How we live our larger lives off the mat, including personal yoga practice, nutrition, sleep, relations with family and friends, and being in community are essential aspects of deepening our yoga and sharing it with dignity and integrity.
The Profession & Business of Yoga: This covers the role of the teacher, getting yourself established as a professional yoga teacher, and being successful in teaching yoga as your source of livelihood.
DEEPER INDEPENDENT STUDY
The +300/500-hour Advanced Yoga Teacher training program brings you into deeper study of topics of special interest to you, empowering you to tailor the training to your greatest interests as a teacher. The 50-hour of customized Independent Study is done with Mark’s direct guidance, starting with choosing your specialized topic. The following are the five most common areas of Independent Study. Let them inspire you, not limit you!
1. Specialized Teaching: Topics include Teaching Pre-Post-Natal Yoga Classes; Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Teaching in Institutional Settings (schools, prisons, treatment centers); Planning, Organizing and Teaching Yoga Retreats; Teaching Partner Yoga; Teaching Yoga to Athletes; Teaching Kids; Teaching Seniors.
2. Optimal Sequencing: The Traditional Energetics of Sequencing, including Koshas, Nadis, Chakras, Doshic Types and seasonal factors; Sequencing for Peak Asanas; Planning and Varying the Arc of a Class; Sequencing Restorative Yoga; Sequencing for Energetic Effects; The Bio-Mechanics of Asana Relationships.
3. Philosophy, Ethics and History in Teaching: Vedic and Upanishadic Philosophy; The Bhagavad Gita; The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali; Tantra; The Origins and Development of Hatha Yoga; Yoga in the West; The Student-Teacher Relationship; Ethical Business Practices.
4. Advanced Anatomy & Physiology: Subtle Anatomy (Koshas, Prana, Nadis, Chakras); Anatomy of the Pelvic Girdle, Shoulder Girdle and Spine; Anatomy & Physiology of Respiration; Teaching Pranayamas; Applying Principles of Subtle Anatomy in Vinyasa Flow Yoga Classes.
5. YOGA THERAPY: Topics include Working with Injuries; Developing a Comprehensive Student Assessment and Practice Plan; Teaching Students with Scoliosis, Lordosis, Kyphosis and other Spinal Issues; Teaching Yoga to People in Pain; Teaching Yoga to Reduce Anxiety and Depression.
Full Tuition is $3,000
Oct. 1, 2022 through June 11, 2023
1 weekend per month: Oct. 1-2, Nov. 5-6, Dec. 2-4, Jan. 14-15, Feb. 11-12, Mar. 11-12, Apr. 15-16, May 13-14, Jun. 10-11Registration Form
24-Day Intensive Format
Full Tuition is $3,000
Starts January 20, 2023Registration Form
HOW TO REGISTER
Submit your Registration Form and $500 Registration Deposit (at left).
Receive your Welcome Letter & Preparation Checklist
Pay the $2,500 balance due on your Tuition Fee no later than 30 days prior to the start date. Your Registration Deposit counts toward your tuition.
The $500 registration fee is refundable up until 30 days prior to the start of the course and is forfeited after that. Two weeks prior to the course beginning, 60% of the full tuition is refundable. One week prior to the course beginning there are no refunds.