•When do I need to update my syllabus to meet the new 200-hour standards? Show
If you are currently an active RYS, you have one year from your 2020 renewal date to submit your updated syllabus, or curriculum. For example, if your renewal date is May 1, you may renew under current RYS 200 standards in 2020 but must update your curriculum to the new standards by May 1, 2021.
If you are a former RYS 200, currently inactive, first you must renew your registration, and then you will have one year from your 2020 renewal date to submit your updated curriculum.
Schools applying for the RYS 200 credential after February 1, 2020 will apply under the new RYS 200 standards. View the Overall Implementation Timeline here.
•By what date does a new school or track for the RYS 200 credential need to apply under the updated standards? Show
Schools applying for RYS 200 status for the first time will need to apply under the new standards beginning February 1, 2020. View the Overall Implementation Timeline here.
•What happens if I don’t submit my syllabus by my next renewal date in 2020? Show
If you do not submit your syllabus by your next renewal date in 2020, you will not be able to renew your school in 2021. Then, your school will no longer hold the Yoga Alliance credential, and your trainees will not be able to register with Yoga Alliance after completing your training.
•Did the Lead Trainer, Teacher Trainer, and Other Faculty requirements change with the new standards? Show
Yes. As of February 1, 2022, a Lead Trainer of any RYS 200 will need to hold the E-RYT 500 credential. You may view the requirements to become an E-RYT 500 here. Before this date, the current Lead Trainer requirements hold true. Currently, there are no changes to Teacher Trainer and Other Faculty requirements.
In addition to Lead Trainers having to hold a higher credential, 75% of an RYS 200’s classroom hours will need to be taught by a Lead Trainer(s) beginning in February 2022. This means that the Lead Trainer(s) will need to teach 150 of the classroom hours in a 200-hour training. The remaining 25% of classroom hours may be taught by Other Faculty members. You can learn more about this requirement here.
•Will Yoga Alliance now require re-credentialing as part of its new RYS 200 standards? Show
Yes. Re-credentialing will occur every three years after a school first applies for RYS 200 status under the new credentials. For example, if a new school applies February 1, 2020 and is accepted April 30, 2020, it will go through a re-credentialing process three years later, between February and April 2023. We will contact our schools to share information about the re-credentialing process in the future.
•Is there a fee to submit the updates to my syllabus?Show
No – there is no fee to submit your updated syllabus.
•Are there any changes to the registration fees or membership dues with the updated standards? Show
While there are no changes to the cost of the application (a US$400 fee) or the annual credential dues (US$240), there are some changes to the process for submitting these fees and dues.
Effective July 15, 2019, schools will only be able to renew for one year at a time, and the renewal payment may be submitted no more than three months prior to the school’s renewal date. For example, if a renewal payment is due on November 15, 2019, the payment may be submitted as early as August 15, 2019, and the school will be renewed until November 15, 2020.
Beginning February 1, 2020, and when applying or renewing under the new RYS 200 standards, schools will pay separate application and credential fees. A school will pay an application fee at the time of application, and when approved, the school may choose to join Yoga Alliance by paying a credential fee. Once the credential fee is paid, the school may proudly display its Yoga Alliance RYS credential and access the benefits of Yoga Alliance membership.
View costs for schools here.
•Why do I need to submit updates to my syllabus? Show
The changes to our standards align with the feedback we received from the Yoga Alliance membership and the broader yoga community through the Standards Review Project. We heard from the community that it wants us to uphold the value and integrity of our credentials, to foster the development of skillful yoga teachers, to support accountability and public safety in the teaching of yoga, among other things.
The evolution of our standards is a step towards fulfilling this expectation. So, too, is instituting re-credentialing process after three years so that we review updates to RYS programs to ensure that standards are continuously being met. We look forward to continuing to listen to and learn from our membership. If you have any questions about the changes, contact our Member Support team at email@example.com or 1-888-921-9642.
•Do these changes really up-level the RYS 200? Show
Yes! The elimination of non-contact hours significantly increases the time trainees spend in the classroom, either in-person or online – from 180 hours for some schools (current standards) to 200 hours for all schools moving forward (new standards). The adoption of a common core curriculum across all RYS 200s, which includes four categories and thirteen competencies, ensures a shared understanding of foundational yoga concepts while enabling schools to teach across the vast lineages, styles, and methodologies that we love and practice, free from external government regulation. The requirement that lead trainers teach 75% of the RYS 200 curriculum and all be holders of the E-RYT 500 credential by February 2022 provides that experienced, tenured teachers train the teachers of tomorrow.
In addition, the accountability measures – from the requirement of an assessment to the expanded application process to the new Code of Conduct – will foster a larger, stronger yoga community that agrees to principles of voluntary, self-regulation.
•Are accountability measures in place to ensure that all schools comply to the updated standards? Show
Yes. Yoga Alliance is continuously updating the way in which it holds schools accountable within a voluntary, self-regulating community. We are dedicated to ensuring that schools that choose to be Yoga Alliance schools comply to our shared standards across the membership. Steps we have taken include enhancing the application process to include a 20-point checklist as well as an academic-style peer review panel and updating our policies regularly to encourage accountability and to monitor compliance through a grievance policy.
In addition, under the new RYS 200 standards, each RYS owner will be required to agree to and uphold a Yoga Alliance Code of Conduct and will have to share with Yoga Alliance their own school policies for grievances, sexual misconduct, code of conduct and refunds, among others. Anti-harassment and non-retaliation clauses may be included in these policies. In addition, each school will properly assess its trainees for knowledge, skills, and experience across 13 competencies to ensure that graduates have the foundational knowledge to lead quality and safe yoga classes.
•I don’t have time to submit an updated syllabus. Show
We understand that these changes may be significant for many of our schools and that they impact time and other resources. We took this into consideration when we created our timelines as we purposefully wanted to up-level our schools at a measured pace, giving members time to acclimate and change. All current RYSs will have one year from their 2020 renewal date to up-level to the new standards. For example, if your renewal date is May 1, you may renew under current RYS 200 standards in 2020 but must update your curriculum to the new standards by May 1, 2021. If you have any questions about the changes or need assistance, contact our Member Support team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-888-921-9642.
•The change from 180 contact hours to 200 classroom hours will increase expenses for my business. Show
We understand that these changes may be significant for many of our schools and that they impact costs and other resources. Our goal is not to upset any school’s livelihood, so we took this into consideration when we created our timelines to allow members time to acclimate and plan for the changes. All current RYSs will have one year from their 2020 renewal date to up-level to the new standards. For example, if your renewal date is May 1, you may renew under current RYS 200 standards in 2020 but must update your curriculum to the new standards by May 1, 2021. With the updates to the standards, an RYS can now offer 40 of the classroom hours online (20 hours in Anatomy & Physiology and another 20 hours in Yoga Humanities), which might provide an opportunity to optimize costs.
•Did the educational categories change with the updates? Show
Yes. The updated RYS 200 standards moved from five educational categories to four categories with thirteen competencies defined within. The requirements for Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyle, & Ethics is now termed Yoga Humanities, and Teaching Methodology and Practicum are both under Professional Essentials.
•How many hours are required for each new category and competency? Show
Techniques, Training, Practice requires 75 hours; Professional Essentials requires 65 hours; and Anatomy & Physiology and Yoga Humanities require 30 hours each. Each RYS has flexibility within these 4 categories with respect to how to allocate hours across each competency underneath. The required assessment of each of the 13 competencies is included in the overarching category hours. View the Common Core Curriculum here.
•Can my syllabus include topics outside of the categories and competencies of the core curriculum? Show
Yes, and we encourage our RYSs to add any incremental topics as desired to support the lineage, style, and methodology that they teach. In fact, many foundational-level teacher training schools, those operating under the RYS 200 credential, include as many as 250 classroom hours. However, these additional topics are outside of the 200 hours of the core curriculum as outlined in the updated RYS 200 standards and therefore are incremental hours.
•Do the new RYS 200 standards include contact and non-contact hours? Show
No. The updated RYS 200 standards no longer use the nomenclature of contact and non-contact hours. Rather, the new RYS 200 standards use the term classroom hours, of which all 200 required hours must be. The majority of these classroom hours must be taught in-person (a minimum of 160 hours) while up to 40 may be taught online (20 hours maximum in Anatomy & Physiology and 20 hours maximum in Yoga Humanities). Each of these categories requires 30 total classroom hours, so a minimum of 10 hours in each must be taught via in-person classroom hours.
Hours that trainees spend completing projects, writing reports, doing homework, and attending yoga classes are not included as classroom hours in the new RYS 200 standards. However, Yoga Alliance encourages RYSs to still include these components in their syllabi and curricula to reinforce the learnings of the overall program.
•Do the updates include readings from required texts? Show
No. Yoga Alliance is not mandating any particular reading from any required text. However, traditional and modern texts that ladder up to the core curriculum and/or that relate to yoga concepts in support of your school’s lineage, style, and methodology should be considered. When your school upgrades to the new RYS 200 standards, you will be asked to provide an updated syllabus as well as a list of texts that you are requiring of your trainees along with rationale for what you are using and why.
•Can I include topics outside of the new standards in my syllabus, such as Reiki, Ayurveda, etc.? Show
Yes. However, these topics would be outside of the minimally required 200 hours in support of the core curriculum. The new RYS 200 standards center on an hours + competencies model centered around a core curriculum that covers foundational yoga teacher training concepts. You can certainly include supplemental hours in your syllabus to cover these outside concepts in support of your school’s lineage, style, and methodology.
•May I offer a survey of different lineages and styles of yoga in my syllabus? Show
To support trainees in their learning of a consistent approach to teaching yoga, a syllabus must include content that pertains to one yoga lineage, style, or methodology rather than a survey of different approaches. That said, Yoga Humanities includes the history of yoga in the ancient and modern world, which can include a survey of different lineages and styles of yoga.
•I understand that Yoga Alliance will be requiring an assessment. Is there a standard core competencies assessment test? Show
Under the new RYS 200 standards, Yoga Alliance will require that all RYSs assess their trainees across all four categories and thirteen competencies prior to graduation. Yoga Alliance itself will not be creating or conducting this assessment. We expect that each school will develop its own method for assessing knowledge, skills, and experience of each. The school will still be the entity to graduate their trainees. The completion certificate that the school issues can be used for as part of a graduate’s registration with Yoga Alliance for RYT status.
•Do the new standards include a mentorship requirement? Show
Right now, the new standards do not include a mentorship requirement. However, we believe strongly that mentorship is an important way in which trainees learn to be teachers, and we encourage schools to offer mentorship as a component of their training programs.
These initial changes are only the next step in our journey of upholding the integrity of our standards. We will be reviewing the possible requirement of mentorship across the next year and will share any updates in future newsletters and on our website. Be sure to subscribe to our newsletters to be informed of changes as they develop. Select “Communications Preferences” in your online account to update your subscription preferences.
•Do the new standards include a trainer:trainee ratio? Show
Yes and no. Yoga Alliance will not be requiring a certain trainer:trainee ratio at this time. However, we do request that schools implement a ratio that is conducive to a supportive learning environment. When your school upgrades to the new RYS 200 standards, you will be asked to provide trainer:trainee ratio along with rationale for how the ratio aligns with the teaching methodology for your school.
•Will Yoga Alliance provide a sample syllabus for the new RYS 200 standards? Show
Yoga Alliance does not want to unduly influence a school nor define how it should train teachers on its lineage, style, or methodology. Rather, we have created a framework that supports hours + competencies, centered around a common core curriculum, that still provides freedom and flexibility for schools to teach yoga freely and without unnecessary restriction.
•Do you have a copy of my RYS syllabus? Show
Unfortunately, we are not able to provide you with a copy of your current or past syllabus. However, if you became an RYS after 2013, your syllabus is available to you in the “Manage School” section of your online account.
•What else do I need to submit with my updated syllabus? Show
To align with the changes to the standards, we enhanced the application, which includes various checkpoints. Required elements include the syllabus, curriculum, and hours-by-competency allocation; the overall schedule; manuals and other training materials; letters of intent; and more.
In addition, Yoga Alliance will introduce an academic-style peer review panel which will ensure a fair, consistent, and thorough review process of each application.