How to become a YYI accredited teacher

YYI Teacher Training Programme

The Young Yoga Institute was established in 1975 for the specific purpose of training teachers in the art and science of yoga. The late Winnie Young, the Founder, studied with Sri B K S Iyengar in Mauritius, Malawi and Swaziland. Over the years, and under her guidance, a schema was formulated for the training of teachers with the aim of establishing a training center for yoga teachers. Under the auspices of the YYI and the Tutorial Director, Doreen Smit, there are now a number of training centers around South Africa.

The YYI offers a training programme to prospective yoga teachers and honours those who pass the examinations with the Instructor Badge of the Young Yoga Institute. The Instructor Badge is not “permission to teach” At the moment, there is no law in South Africa, in our institute nor in any other South African yoga organization that can give or withhold permission to start a yoga class. The instructor badge is simply an accolade, an acknowledgement of the fact that the one to whom it is granted, meets the standards set by the YYI. However, it is strongly advised that any person who wishes to teach yoga first enhances her/his own knowledge of the subject.

The curriculum of the training course follows the 8 steps of Patanjali. It includes, but is not restricted to:

  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Breathing techniques and meditation
  • Teaching methods and practice
  • Morals, ethics and legalities of becoming a teacher
  • The 8 steps of Patanjali and the Sanskrit language
  • Detailed knowledge and understanding of basic yoga asanas
  • Benefits of and cautions for the asanas
  • Safety of students in class: correction and adjustment
  • Programme arrangement.
  • The training programme consists of tutorials which occur once a month or as designated by a tutor.
  • The course takes a minimum of two years to complete and may take longer.

If you wish to apply for the training programme, the following is required:

  • Membership registration with the Young Yoga Institute.
  • A letter of introduction and recommendation from your Young Yoga Institute certified teacher presented to your prospective tutor. This letter should confirm that you have been with your YYI Teacher for ONE YEAR and that you attend classes regularly i.e. ONCE a week and an Attendance Register is signed by your YYI teacher and Tutor.
  • A completed application form.
  • The purpose of the tutorial class is not only to learn the above curriculum but to provide a forum in which to air doubts and difficulties, discuss problems which may arise in a yoga class and receive encouragement and guidance. You have the seeds of knowledge, these need to be nurtured and guided to bring forth good instructors.
  • Once you have been formally accepted into the tutorial classes, the following criteria must be met. You should:
  • Follow the YYI principles and techniques
  • Be consistent in your attendance of your tutorial classes
  • Be consistent in your attendance at your own weekly class.
  • Pay the tutorial fees.
  • Obtain all the YYI text books. It is also recommended that any person who wishes to further their knowledge of yoga purchases B K S Iyengar books “Light on Yoga” and “Light on Pranayama”
  • All study material to be learnt thoroughly plus the information in the Guidelines (you will receive a copy when you join the YYI).
  • Submit timeously any question papers/assignments that you have been given.
  • Attend YYI seminars, workshops and other training sessions held throughout the year.
  • Study at home – this is a necessity – study plans for the following tutorial are given at each tutorial for the following tutorial
  • Continuously be assessed both personally and as a teacher.

In order to qualify for the Instructor Badge, the following is required:

  • To be a fully paid up member of the YYI for at least 2 years.
  • To be a pupil of a YYI instructor for a minimum of 2 years.
  • To be in complete charge of your own class, not merely a stand in teacher or locum teacher. This assesses leadership qualities, responsibility, competence, initiative etc.
  • To have qualities of leadership but tempered with the desire to serve rather than be served.
  • Be loyal to the YYI and in agreement with it principles and techniques.
  • Have the desire to help others in the art and science of yoga.
  • To sit a practical and a written examination (set and marked by the Tutorial Director) under suitable invigilation, (both preliminary and if successful, final examinations) in which a 75% pass must be obtained in both examinations.
  • Pay the examination fees
  • Confirmation is required from your YYI teacher that your attendance at class is regular, that is at least once a week.
    Tutorial Director, Doreen Smit can be contacted for further details, on 082 853 5528.