THE CONVERSATION: Do yoga teachers need to cover any standard content, or a “common core”, based on where yoga is today? If so, what basic knowledge should every yoga teacher share to ensure quality and safety and to honor yoga’s past?
WHAT WE LEARNED:
Most yoga professionals feel that yoga teacher standards need to be updated with the notion of a “Core Curriculum” being at the heart of said standards. This came through loud and clear via our survey, the listening tour, the virtual town halls, and the working group sessions.
As we saw via our 12,000-respondent survey, 83% reported being somewhat to very interested in seeing standards be updated. Teacher Trainers and Studio Owners/Managers were most favorable towards this, while individuals in India were most interested than anywhere else in the world.
In addition, the survey told us that, while training hours are important to becoming a teacher, there are differing opinions regarding what those hours should cover and what they represent. Most yoga professionals and practitioners agree that yoga teachers should have a basic understanding of yoga “fundamentals”, such as asana, pranayama, and meditation, as well as human anatomy, yoga philosophy, and a commitment to a Code of Conduct. Read more here.
Through the working group specific to Core Curriculum, there were a few recommendations that “rose to the top” including:
- Revised standards must include hours and competencies as well as assessments of knowledge, skills, and experience
- Revised standards must emphasize safety, competency, accessibility, inclusion, inspiration, and aspiration
- Revised standards must still be inclusive of diverse lineages
To learn more about this working group’s recommendations, please download the Core Curriculum Working Group Paper here. As a reminder, Yoga Alliance brought together a diverse spectrum of expert advisory voices to maximize the perspectives and resources within this area of inquiry. They represented one stream of input in the process, albeit an important stream. We thank them for their participation and dedication.
Note: these working group papers provide expert recommendations to Yoga Alliance and the yoga community for consideration as the Standards Review Project continues. They are not prescribed actions but rather insights from an experienced and dedicated group of subject matter experts. They were written by an independent third party. At this point in time, no decisions have been made regarding standards updates, and we welcome and encourage your feedback and comments regarding the entirety of the SRP process.