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CYS Syllabus

1. Content

This yoga teacher training course focuses on the foundations of the Vinyasa yoga practice in the areas listed below. 

Students are required to develop their own yoga practice in the key areas during the training. Further to this, it is essential for all students to consolidate their learning by teaching Vinyasa yoga in practice sessions throughout the training. 

At the end, the trainees will be qualified to teach Vinyasa yoga to group classes as well as clients in 1-2-1 settings. 

Key areas of study: 

  • Asana

  • Pranayama 

  • Bandhas

  • Anatomy and Physiology of Vinyasa Yoga 

  • Vinyasa Yoga technique, teaching, training and practice

  • Philosophy of Yoga and Lifestyle Ethics

  • Restorative Yoga, Yoga Nidra and Meditation 

  • Chakras, Nadis and Koshas 

  • Mantra and Chanting

  • Bhakti Yoga & Mandala

  • Ayurveda

  • Teaching Vinyasa Yoga and Teaching Methodology

  • Business of Yoga 1.2

2. Course objectives

By the end of this course trainees will have developed the knowledge and understanding of the key areas as listed. Further to this, they will have consolidated their learning by putting into practice as outlined: 

Asana

Ability to guide students safely through asana practice - proficiency to use Sanskrit names and the English translation of various asanas that have been chosen to be covered on the training - ability to observe and adjust students safely - knowledge of benefits and contraindications.

Pranayama

Understanding of various Pranayama techniques, their benefits and application - Ability to lead basic Pranayama practices.

Bandhas

Understanding of Bandha anatomy, techniques, their benefits and application - ability to introduce and instruct the use of Bandhas for asana and Pranayama practice.

Anatomy & Physiology

Comprehensive knowledge about the human anatomy, including names and functions of the major muscle groups and joints - understanding of how to apply the muscle and joint functions in asanas for a healthy and balanced yoga practice - understanding of benefits and contraindications in Vinyasa yoga and Pranayama with the purpose of injury prevention - basic knowledge of the connection between asanas, Pranayama and the central nervous system.

Vinyasa Yoga – Technique, Teaching, Training, and Practice

A fundamental understanding of the function and physical mechanics of the body in relation to Vinyasa yoga - a strong awareness of how to connect the breath with movement and find a continuous balanced flow throughout asana practice - a higher level of physical intuitiveness and sophisticated intelligence in the practice of asana and Pranayama - comprehensive understanding of performing anatomically safe and conscious hands on adjustments to yoga students in a wide range of elementary to intermediate yoga postures - an increased awareness of how to read different body make ups with the purpose of preventing injuries and/or modify or advance certain postures, based on the needs of the individual yoga practitioner - knowledge and experience of how to use specific Pranayama and Bandha exercises when practicing and teaching yoga.

Yoga History

Understanding the roots of modern yoga - overview of the development of different yoga paths and practices from ancient times until today.

Yoga Psychology

Basic understanding between western and eastern approaches to the self and the mind during the anatomy and meditation modules as well as historical development - knowledge of the functions of the mind and their working - basic knowledge of nervous systems and the relationship to balance in asana practice.

Yoga Philosophy and Lifestyle Ethics

Knowledge of the philosophical system of Vinyasa Yoga and how to apply the Yamas and Niyamas as an ethical foundation in the teacher student relationship as well as other areas of life - a clear understanding of the Vedic philosophy from studying classical spiritual scriptures - an understanding of the similarities and differences between various paths of yoga as well as the ability to compare some of them to more western teachings of psychology and philosophy. Study of Samkhya and Vedanta, Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Sutras of Patanjali and Hatha Yoga Pradipika.

Restorative Yoga, Yoga Nidra and Meditation

Experience of restorative yoga as in a very slow vinyasa class, yoga nidra and meditation sessions - knowledge of background and basic technique of yoga nidra and meditation.

Chakras & Nadis

Understanding of basic structure - ability to relate physical and energetic sensations of Vinyasa yoga to the framework of Chakras and Nadis - ability to find parallels between different practices of asana, Pranayama, Bandha, Mudra, Mantra based on the energetic structure of the human body.

Mantra & Chanting

Knowledge of the philosophical system of Mantras and Chanting – general understanding of how to implement them into classes – use of scripture from Samkhya, Vedanta, Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and Hatha Yoga Pradipika as mantra – understanding how repeated sound can aid concentration and meditation.

Bhakti Yoga & Mandala

Knowledge of the philosophical system of Bhakti Yoga and Mandala and how to apply them as an ethical foundation in the teacher student relationship as well as other areas of life. Experience the beauty of a Mandala Vinyasa session.

Ayurveda

Understanding of Ayurveda medicine, its benefits and application – understand the energetic structure of the human body.

Teaching Vinyasa Yoga and Methodology

Fundamental knowledge of how to teach and sequence Vinyasa yoga classes from beginner to intermediate level - ability to teach Vinyasa yoga classes to individuals and groups - ability to recognize different body make ups with the purpose to modify or advance certain postures based on the needs of the yoga practitioner - ability to perform hands on adjustments - learn to use clear verbal instructions and anatomical teaching points - a comprehensive understanding of applying didactic method principles when teaching.

Business of Yoga

Basic marketing skills - business advice on how to set up and run yoga classes - required insurance - Yoga Alliance registration.

Materials

  • Course manual covering the key areas of the syllabus 

  • Reading list: 

    • Heart of Yoga - T.K.V Desikachar

    • Bhagavad-Gita - Eknath Easwaran

    • Patanjali Yoga Sutras - Sri Swami Satchidananda

    • Yoga Anatomy – Leslie Kaminoff, Amy Matthews

    • The Yoga Bible – Christina Brown

    • The Complete Book of Vinyasa Yoga – Srivatsa Ramaswami

    • Further additional articles for optional reading will be regularly sent to students via email

Evaluation procedure and grading criteria.

  • Journals: In between training weekends, trainees are asked to send a written journal based on the previous sessions. E.g. personal reflections of the Yoga Sutras, philosophy, teaching practices, etc.

  • Teaching practicum: Throughout the training students are continually observed during teaching practices. Teaching practices are 30 min sessions where the trainees are required to put their learning into practice and teach one or more of their peers through an asana, Pranayama or meditation practice.

  • Class planning and sequencing: Leading up to their assessment class, trainees will develop a Vinyasa yoga sequence as part of their homework and continuous assessment - 60-minute yoga class assessment: trainees develop their own 60-minute yoga class based on what they learned during their training and teach a group class.

  • Exams: Trainees will have to pass two written exams:

  1. Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyle and Ethics

  2. Anatomy & Physiology

and 1 Practical Exam. 

  • Presentation: a 1-hour presentation of a Vinyasa Yoga class (Practical Exam).

  • Self-practice: Trainees are required to have a six days a week self-practice routine/schedule.

  • Attendance: Trainees are required to attend 100% of the course.

GRADUATIONS

On graduation day students will perform a Vinyasa yoga sequence of their own choice during which each student will teach a short routine, one after the other.

COURSE SCHEDULE

  • 13 weekends (26 days); Saturday and Sunday 9am – 6pm over 1-year 

  • 13 weekends (26 days); Saturday and Sunday 9am – 6pm over 4-months

  • 26 days – 5 weeks Intensive; Monday to Friday 9am – 6pm

Deadline for written homework will be set after every module. 

In addition to the training modules, trainees must submit a minimum of 3 observations and 4 journals.

ATTENDANCE

Trainees have to attend and participate during 100% of the training/full contact hours. If for any reason they can’t attend or fully participate, students have to retake any parts of the training. The following options are available depending on what has been missed: attend a later session that is part of another training group, 1-2-1 tuition, additional homework or class attendance. Additional charges may apply for 1-2-1 tuition.