Describe the Type(s) of Yoga You Teach

The fourth assignment in our profile completion contest was to “Enter the Types of Yoga You Teach” in your Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT®) profile. Many of you responded on Facebook and Twitter and chose varying strategies for tackling this assignment. We’re wrapping up this week’s assignment by answering some of the questions that we have received about this new feature.

Where did these types come from?

The “types” of yoga list is a new feature in our Directory, which allows both teachers and schools to select the type of yoga you teach or train in. The intention behind this list was to provide terms that someone unfamiliar to a particular brand, tradition or lineage would be able to comprehend. 

Imagine that first conversation with your friend or colleague who asked, “So what kind of yoga do you teach?” Choose the list that aligns with how you’d explain your teaching to that new-to-yoga individual.

The particular types chosen were drafted by our staff, and reviewed by our Standards Committee. There was certainly some heated debate about the list, and we recognize that while it’s not perfect (because who can describe the vast range of yoga practices out there in a short list?), it furthers our intention of helping the average Directory user understand what a particular RYT or Registered Yoga School (RYS®) offers.

Go broad, or pick just one?

Whether you choose one or many of the types on your profile is up to you. You can see from our contest participants that a number went narrow:


…while others went broad:


Neither is right or wrong. Many of you have extensive experience and training and may teach a broad variety of yoga types! Also, the list isn’t mutually exclusive: someone may teach yoga that is both “spiritually-oriented” and “gentle,” for example. While we’re not advocating for one approach, there are implications and tradeoffs of your choice on a Directory search:

  • If you select every single type on the lists, and someone searches for RYTs using type as a filter, you will appear in his/her search results, regardless of which type of yoga he/she was seeking. 
  • Students may be more likely to reach out to the RYT whose only type is the one he/she is looking for, as that may imply more specific expertise. Sometimes, articulating a narrow, but focused list of the kind of yoga you teach, may appeal more to a potential student.  

Our best advice: be authentic. The types are simply another tool to help you describe your teaching in a way that makes sense to a potential student.

What if my type isn’t listed?

We’ve received a number of suggestions to expand the list to include specific specialties, like teaching to seniors, children, prenatal, or other specialty populations, or to include a particular brand, style, tradition or lineage. We’ve intentionally kept the list brief and broad, so here are some recommendations on how to promote your affiliation with a specific specialty, brand, tradition or lineage:

  • Include it in your bio. Anything you type in your bio is searchable by someone using the Directory. This means that if someone enters a keyword search for “prenatal” and you have “prenatal” in your bio, you will come up in his/her search results. The bio enables you to promote additional items that are outside of our standard profile features. You can also enhance your bio with additional formatting and hyperlinks to provide other information (you can even hyperlink to videos)!
  • Add dimension with other profile features. The types are just one tool of many on your new RYT profile. Imagine the richness of your bio when you include images of yourself teaching to certain populations, list where you teach classes, and add social media connections.

Our RYT and RYS Directory is always evolving at Yoga Alliance, so we can better support you. We welcome and appreciate your ideas and feedback.

We’re so excited to see how our RYTs engage with the new profile features. Use the tips and tricks we’ve pulled together over the last few weeks (check out the related articles below) to make your RYT profile shine.

Related Articles

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Tips for Entering Teaching Hours
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