For the last twelve years I have run a comprehensive two year 200-hour teacher training throughout Ireland. When I started it, the purpose was to fill the gap between the existing trainings available, these being Iyengar and Hatha Yoga (a very loose interpretation of it). The training I provided combined several key elements that were not available in one training at the time. A focus on aligning and engaging the body internally while working the breath dynamically, along with a strong emphasis on the practical application of yoga philosophy. Both myself and Ruth (my wife and co-teacher) have spent the last twenty years studying and travelling for our love of yoga. Ruth has studied and trained with several the most senior Iyengar teachers and I have studied with similar teachers in the Ashtanga tradition. We have both spent a minimum of 7 years with our respective teachers in Iyengar, Ashtanga and Shadow yoga so our understanding of their systems could run deep.
My main Ashtanga teacher Chuck Miller was once asked how long it took to become a teacher? His answer was 7 years minimum. Today courses are provided over as little as three weeks. Certifying people to teach who have very little life experience to begin with, a small amount of yoga ‘mat’ experience and have just crammed 200 hours into 21 days seems to me like a dilution of a system that takes years and years to comprehend let alone teach. It’s not the students fault however as they don’t know any better. The responsibility lies with those running the courses who are taking advantage of the ignorance of enthusiastic students sucked in by fancy words and glossy advertising.