5 Reasons to do Yoga Teacher Training (besides teaching)

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When I did my first Yoga Teacher Training (YTT) in 2018, I knew what I wanted to gain from it – to become a yoga teacher!

However, I was surprised to find that many of my fellow YTT buddies had different intentions and that there were so many other reasons to do yoga teacher training, besides gaining the qualification to become a certified yoga instructor.

You might be askingwhy do yoga teacher training?’ if you don’t plan to teach, but there are so many more benefits of yoga teacher training, which I will cover in this blog post.

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5 Reasons to do Yoga Teacher Training (besides teaching)

I shared with YTT with a group of 20, we all shared an immense love for yoga, yet we were all had different intentions and many didn’t actually intend to change their career to become a yoga teacher.

Although my YTT gave me what I wanted – the skills, confidence, and qualification needed to teach yoga, it also gave me so much more.

That’s when I realized that there are many more benefits of yoga teacher training, besides gaining a teaching qualification, and that it can be a life changing experience and just as beneficial even if your goal isn’t to teach.

So if you’re considering a YTT, but worry it won’t be for you, read on to discover five life-changing reasons to do yoga teacher training.

Deepening yoga practice is a benefit of yoga teacher training. Photo by Nate Johnston

5 Reasons to do yoga teacher training – even if you don’t plan to teach

1. To deepen your yoga practice

Yoga retreats are a great way to improve your practice, but one of the biggest benefits of yoga teacher training is that is takes your yoga practice so much deeper. 

Some people feel unsure if they are ready to do a yoga teacher training course if they haven’t yet mastered all the advanced poses, but you needn’t worry – that’s what you are there to learn!

YTTs are extremely comprehensive; they not only break down the most common asanas, including the alignment, benefits, and contraindications, but they teach you about yoga anatomy and how to create effective sequences.

Thus, by taking a YTT, you’ll learn how to get the most from your home yoga practice by theming it or tailoring it to what you need that day.

In addition, asana is only a tiny part of a yoga teacher training course. You’ll discover so much about yoga philosophy and the history of this ancient practice and discover how to practice yoga off the mat as well as on it.

One of the most significant “aha moments” from my YTT was how yoga is a way of life rather than just a mindful movement practice. You’ll learn all about this complex practice on a YTT but you can prepare by reading these books before doing yoga teacher training.

2. To gain a better understanding of your body and mind

One of the most common phrases you hear in a yoga class is to “listen to your body.” However, you don’t truly understand how exactly to do that and why it is so important until you do a YTT. 

The intense daily practice of a teacher training course pushes your body to its limits, which helps you discover what it is and isn’t capable of. As a result, you’ll find a deeper appreciation and love for your body, triggering a heightened desire to take care of it.

Another benefit of yoga teacher training courses is that they stretch and open your mind in many ways. You’ll learn new philosophies and perspectives, meet people from different walks of life, and spend one month in a peaceful environment, away from the distractions of everyday life.

This helps you uncover the negative thought patterns, self-sabotaging behaviors, and limiting beliefs holding you back.

3. For a spiritual experience

As mentioned, the benefits of yoga teacher training go well beyond the postures. If you don’t already have some knowledge of the spiritual side of yoga, you will do so after a YTT. 

For example, you’ll discover the chakras and the subtle body’s energetic centers that govern different aspects of our physical body and emotions. Then, you’ll learn how to bring this spirituality into your own practice, taking the benefits of yoga beyond the physical and mental realms. 

What’s more, the profound spiritual experience that happens on YTT will bring you in touch with your most authentic self and help you realize your inner calling. This can lead to many realizations and self-discoveries.

In fact, it’s not uncommon for people to decide to make a massive change in their life, such as switching careers or moving countries, after doing a YTT.

Reasons to do yoga teacher training include becoming part of a like-minded community

4. To become part of a like-minded community

If you’ve ever traveled solo, you’ll already know how quickly you create deep connections with people you meet. Still, the relationships you build on a YTT are even more intense. 

Not only have you all traveled to a new city or country alone. You’re sharing an intense, demanding, and transformative experience that none of your friends and family back home can comprehend. 

On an intensive one-month YTT, you’ll have a few challenging moments, either physically or mentally. However, your fellow students will be there with support and motivation.

You’ll pull each other through, ensuring everyone makes it across the finish line. Your classmates will become your tribe, and this connection will last well beyond graduation as you’ll come away with many new life-long friends. 

5. For a unique travel adventure

Nowadays, you can find yoga teacher training courses all over the world, from authentic ashrams in India to more luxurious experiences in the jungles or on the beaches of Costa Rica.

One of the best reasons to do yoga teacher training abroad is that these courses are often more affordable and you can combine your training with an exciting new travel adventure. Many yogis choose to book a YTT in a destination they’ve always wanted to visit.

Now, while I recommend jetting off to an exotic place to do a YTT, here’s a disclaimer; Most YTTs last 3 to 4 weeks, squeezing in 200 hours of tuition. As a result, these courses are not easy-going retreats where you have half the day free to explore or sunbathe. Instead, they are intense and leave little free time to do “travel stuff.” You will likely have one day off a week, but honestly, you’ll be so exhausted you probably won’t get much further than the pool. 

Still, if you plan to spend some time in your YTT destination before or after the course, you can easily include some fun adventures in your trip. I recommend staying a week or so after your course finishes. In addition to enjoying some much-needed downtime, some of your classmates will likely hang around too. Thus, you’ll have ready-made travel buddies to explore with.

Final thoughts on The Benefits of yoga teacher training

Regardless of your reasons to do yoga teacher training the experience of intensively studying yoga with a group of like minded people is often transformative.

YTT’s not only give you a new skill that you can turn into a career should you wish, they also teach you so much about yourself and help you advance along your spiritual or self-development path.

So if you’re wondering if a YTT might be a waste of money if you don’t want to teach yoga, the answer is absolutely not! I highly recommend that any yogi who wants to deepen their practice or do some inner exploration take at least one yoga teacher training.

If you’re considering a YTT you might also find our other blog posts useful. Check out “How to choose the right yoga teacher training program for you” and “How to prepare for yoga teacher training success“.

For recommendations on the best programs check out our guides to yoga teacher training in India, Bali, Costa Rica, Thailand, Europe and the USA.

Read More Yoga Teacher Training Blog Posts:

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