Dear Yoga Alliance Members,
As you know, the Standards Review Project is a comprehensive look at the existing yoga teaching standards supported by Yoga Alliance. Developed with your direct feedback, the project is expected to result in meaningful updates to our 18-year old standards. Over 12,000 of you – yoga teachers, teacher trainers, school owners, studio managers, and practitioners from 96 countries – have participated in the Standards Review Survey. The survey was hosted and fielded by Edge Research, a third-party marketing research firm that specializes in research for member associations. Thanks to your efforts and engagement, you have made this what may be the largest ever study of the yoga community, and it will be invaluable as we move forward.
The preliminary survey information is now being reviewed as we await the final reports from Edge Research. The final reports will be published in full for our membership and will include a topline summary as well as a complete analysis of survey responses with demographic data. We expect to have those final reports to share in mid-August.
When complete, the results of the survey will be shared on the yastandards.com website. That site will be updated significantly in July, August and September to include additional information on the outcomes of the first six months of the project, the progress of the Working Groups, and the plan for advancing the Standards Review Project for the remainder of the year.
You may recall that the Standards Review Project has eight key areas of inquiry: Code of Conduct, Scope of Practice, Integrity, Inclusion, Teacher Qualifications, Core Curriculum, Teacher Trainer Qualifications, and Online Learning. Today, we want to share the first round of feedback which emerged from the preliminary survey results. Here is what we heard from you about the need for a yoga teacher Code of Conduct:
- There is near unanimous support for an Ethical Code of Conduct and for Yoga Teachers to pledge to uphold it.
- 91% of yoga professionals say it is very important to have an Ethical Code of Conduct, with an additional 7% saying it is somewhat important.
- 88% of yoga professionals say teachers should pledge to follow the Code of Conduct.
- Yoga practitioners also overwhelmingly support the adoption of a Code of Conduct, with 84% responding that this is very important.
- 93% of Yoga Alliance members said a Code of Conduct is very important and non-members of Yoga Alliance agreed, with 86% responding that this is very important.
These findings support what members of other professional organizations are saying as well. A 2017 survey of association members in the United States found that providing a Code of Conduct is a must-have benefit from professional member associations. *
This survey and the many conversations we’re having in person through our listening tour and at yoga conferences are telling us one thing very clearly: an established Code of Conduct for yoga professionals will go a long way in promoting safety and trust within our community. It is timely, in the spirit of ahimsa, and in overwhelming demand.
You can read more about the survey results on Code of Conduct here.
A group of external subject matter experts is also hard at work on a Code of Conduct recommendation and proposal to offer to Yoga Alliance. For more information on our advisors, please visit yastandards.com.
Here is a quick snapshot of our next steps for the project:
- This summer, the survey results will be released, and we invite you to engage with us about the findings. A summary and raw data presentation are being prepared by Edge Research.
- This fall, we will combine the survey results with reports being developed by working groups of subject matter experts, who have been meeting and advising on a parallel track to address questions around each area of inquiry. (If you are a subject matter expert and want to join in, it is not too late. Go to yastandards.com to apply).
- This winter, Yoga Alliance will draft proposed changes to the standards, based on all of this feedback, which will be made available on public platforms for you to weigh in on.
- In early 2019, the final proposed revisions will then be brought back to the members.
For additional information about the Standards Review Project and the many ways that we are seeking input, this fact sheet may be useful. If you were not able to participate in the Survey, we hope that you will take advantage of one of the many other avenues to provide input. We continue to gather feedback from as many people as we can through online channels as well as our Listening Tour and other vehicles. You can also write to us about the Standards Review Project using this online field.
Thank you for taking the time through the Standards Review Survey to reflect on where we are, and where we hope to go together.
*Member Loyalty Study: A Deep Dive into Member Retention and Preferences (Community Brands, formerly Abila, Aug 2017)