Children’s Yoga Standards

 

A Registered Children’s Yoga School (RCYS) must incorporate training hours in the following educational categories: 

 

1. General Background in the Specialty Area: 12 hours

Min. contact hours: 12 hours
Min. contact hours w/ Lead Trainer(s): 0 hours
 
Includes the study and understanding of all childhood developmental stages from age 2-15 and how the issues of each stage impact what is appropriate for teaching them. The school may split ages 2-15 into age groupings as it sees fit (e.g., ages 2-4, 5-8, etc.; or pre-school, elementary school, middle school). All five of Yoga Alliance’s educational categories are to address the specifics of appropriate developmental application for each age group. Also includes the understanding of the yoga teacher’s relationships with parents/guardians and developmental specialists and basic communication skills for conducting those relationships.
 

2. Techniques, Training and Practice: 20 hours

Min. contact hours: 20 hours
Min. contact hours w/ Lead Trainer(s): 15 hours
 
Includes yoga-based practices appropriate for child development, such as asanas, asana-based movement, yoga-based games and activities, breathing techniques and chanting.
 

3. Teaching Methodology: 15 hours

Min. contact hours: 15 hours
Min. contact hours w/ Lead Trainer(s): 12 hours
 
Includes knowledge of classroom techniques, lesson plans and group processing for children’s activities.  Age-appropriate teaching skills for yoga class techniques (including how to phrase age-appropriate questions to a child) and effective communication skills (such as songs and stories) for working with children.
 

4. Anatomy and Physiology: 10 hours

Min. contact hours: 10 hours
Min. contact hours w/ Lead Trainer(s): 0 hours
 
Anatomy and physiology related specifically to changes during child development and their application to yoga techniques (see Techniques category above).  Includes both the study of the subject and application of its principles to yoga practice (benefits, contraindications, healthy movement patterns, etc).  Includes both human physical anatomy and physiology (bodily systems, organs, etc.) and energy anatomy and physiology (chakras, nadis, etc.)
 

5. Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyle and Ethics for Children’s Yoga Teachers: 12 hours

Min. contact hours: 12 hours
Min. contact hours w/ Lead Trainer(s): 0 hours
 
Includes basic yoga precepts as they relate to children and to teaching Yoga to children (e.g., the Yamas and Niyamas). Awareness of ethical behavior and state and local legal requirements as related to behavior with and supervision of children. Specific training in parameters and techniques of ethical touch with regard to teaching children. Basics of ethical language and behavior, both when parents or guardians are present and when they are not.
 

6. Practicum: 18 hours

Total observing, contact hours: 6 hours
Observing, contact hours with Lead Trainer(s): 4 hours
 
These hours must be spent observing another teacher lead a children’s yoga class.  A portion of these hours must be spent with Lead Trainers.

Total teaching, contact hours: 12 hours
Teaching, contact hours with Lead Trainer(s): 6 hours (at least 4 hours as lead teacher)
 
These hours must be spent teaching a children’s yoga class.  A portion of these hours must be spent with Lead Trainers and as lead teacher of the class.
 

Elective hours (8 hours) to be distributed among educational categories according to the school’s chosen emphasis (may be contact or non-contact hours). 
 

TOTAL HOURS: 95 hours

Total min. contact hours: 87 hours
Total min. contact hours with Lead Trainer(s): 37 hours
 
After completing training with a RCYS, graduates must also teach 30 hours of children’s yoga before they may register as RCYTs. These hours of children’s yoga must be taught after graduating from a RCYS.
 
Copyright 2014 by Yoga Alliance