Talking Teacher Ethics with Hala Khouri

Published: June 6, 2016



In recent months, there have been several allegations of sexual misconduct by prominent teachers in the yoga community. At the core, this issue stems from an important pillar of yoga teacher ethics—the relationship between teacher and student. The nature of this relationship has many different interpretations by many different people.

Our Chief Ambassador Andrew Tanner, E-RYT 500, sat down to talk with Hala Khouri, E-RYT 500, about the nature of student-teacher relationships. Hala talks about the psychological components of these relationships, how trauma comes into play and the basic principles of how to establish clear boundaries with students.

Any of Hala’s remarks that reference yoga therapy or yoga therapy terms are based on her Masters in Counseling Psychology and are not derived from her status as an E-RYT with Yoga Alliance Registry.

About Hala Khouri

Hala Khouri, M.A., E-RYT 500, has been teaching the movement arts for over 20 years. Her roots are in Ashtanga and Iyengar yoga, dance, Somatic Psychology, and the juicy mystery of life itself. Hala earned her B.A. in Psychology with a minor in Religion from Columbia University and has a Master’s degree in Counseling Psychology from Pacifica Graduate Institute. She wrote her thesis on using yoga and other complementary disciplines such as eco-psychology and somatics for self-empowerment to inspire a global shift towards peaceful and sustainable living. She is also trained in Somatic Experiencing, a technique which focuses on trauma’s impact on the body-mind and ways to resolve it.

Hala is one of the creators of Off the Mat, Into the World, along with Seane Corn and Suzanne Sterling. This is a non-profit organization dedicated to utilizing the tools of yoga and somatic practices within a justice framework to inspire people to be conscious leaders of change.

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