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How to find a Yoga Teacher that's right for you.

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How to Find a Teacher That's Right for You

There is a yoga practice appropriate for every body.  However, not every yoga is appropriate for every body.  Here are some things to consider when looking for a yoga teacher, classes or private lessons.


Yoga Teacher Minimum Qualifications

  • Completed basic level yoga teacher certification
    • Yoga Alliance 200 hour registered yoga teacher (RYT)
    • Yoga Alliance 500 hour RYT preferred
    • Strong background in all aspects of yoga including the use of props
    • Minimum of 5 years teaching experience with diverse student populations
  • Additional training in adaptive / therapeutic yoga techniques
  • Knowledge of MS including primary and secondary symptoms and tertiary effects
  • Experience teaching yoga to diverse student populations that require an adaptive approach (seniors, rehab, disabilities)
  • Ability to modify and adapt poses for individual student needs
  • Inclusion - ability to work with multiple physical abilities and challenges in the same class
  • Acute observation skills with the ability to recognize stress and respond appropriately to avoid injury.

Interview the teacher

  • Qualifications
  • Training
  • What style of yoga? 
    • Not all are appropriate for students who have MS such as:
      • Hot yoga
      • Styles that include long posture holdings that put pressure on joints
      • Vigorous styles
  • Teaching philosophy
  • Experience
  • Ability to adapt to change
  • Personality
  • Student / teacher relationship
    • Boundaries
      • Personal assists
    • Confidentiality
    • Safety

Private lessons or group classes consideration:

  • Is there a class that meets your needs and availability?
    • Time and location
      • Accessibility
      • Transportation
      • Your energy needs
  • Class level:
    • Chair?
      • Seated only or seated and standing
        • Standing poses:
          • Are you able to stand without assistance?
          • Can you stand with assistance (chair, table, counter?)
    • Mat?
      • Considerations for floor poses:
        • Are you able to get up from the floor once you are down?
        • Do you have problems with knees, wrists or hips that make floor poses uncomfortable?
      • Floor poses may include sitting on the floor, kneeling on hands and knees, standing (with or without a chair for support), lying on the belly and lying on the back.
        • All of these positions can include modifications that make poses more accessible.  Substitute poses can also be offered for students who can do most but not all of the positions.
        • Certain props can make many of these poses more accessible.