Search

Available in: العربية | 中文(简体) | English | Français | हिन्दी | 日本語 | Español

Launch of the Ethical Commitment and a Strengthened Era of Accountability

Last Updated: February 27, 2020

Since Yoga Alliance’s founding almost 20 years ago, the teaching and practice of yoga has evolved drastically. In order to best support the modernized needs of membership and the broader yoga community, the standards supporting Yoga Alliance’s credentials also needed to evolve. With our goal being to support and foster the high quality, safe, accessible, and equitable teaching of yoga, we did not take this evolution lightly.

Throughout the community-led 18-month Standards Review Project and its multi-faceted feedback channels, including a 12,000-respondent survey, a listening tour, a series of virtual town halls, and working group sessions, three clear themes emerged:

  1. Our credentials must identify and support our members as experts and professionals who stand for quality, safety, accessibility, and equity in yoga;
  2. For this to be credible, we—Yoga Alliance—must be able to uphold the credentials with integrity through enhanced standards and a strengthened application and review process; and
  3. We need to better support our membership via continued advocacy, the expansion of our educational resources and member benefits, and community-wide dialogues in support of the field’s challenges, such as equity in yoga and power and empowerment, so that our practice can continue to evolve alongside the cultures in which it is found.

Taking all of this to task, in February 2020, Yoga Alliance announced the collective member-wide Ethical Commitment, up-leveled standards for the foundational Registered Yoga School (RYS) 200 credential, and a strengthened application and review process. Throughout this entire process, Yoga Alliance also relied on decision-making principles founded upon traditional yogic values, equity, accountability, integrity, and balance and stability across the community.

We acknowledge the evolution of yoga is ongoing—changing and growing in both breadth and depth—and this is just the beginning. We thank our members and the broader yoga community for the continued patience and dedication to the betterment of this ancient practice while we work together to support and foster high quality, safe, accessible, and equitable yoga teaching.

 Overall Implementation Timeline

Overall Implementation Timeline

Beginning February 27, 2020, all new RYS 200 programs will apply under the up-leveled standards via a strengthened application process. By February 2022, all Yoga Alliance RYS 200 programs will operate under these same standards and a common core curriculum. Also as of February 27, 2020, all new and renewing RYSs and RYTs will agree to the shared Ethical Commitment. Click here to learn about the overall timeline for these changes.

 The Ethical Commitment

The Ethical Commitment

In effect now, all Yoga Alliance members will abide by a shared Ethical Commitment, reflective of the membership's input and priorities shared across the entire yoga community. Learn more about this member-wide commitment.

 Current v/s Enhanced RYS 200 Comparison

Current v/s Enhanced RYS 200 Comparison

The standards for the foundational teacher training credential, the RYS 200, have been significantly up-leveled, with differing timelines depending on whether a school is a new applicant or a current RYS 200. Learn more.

 Common Core Curriculum for RYS 200

Common Core Curriculum for RYS 200

The enhanced standards underlying the RYS 200 credential create a strengthened core curriculum common across all RYS 200s, inclusive of lineage, style, or methodology, emphasizing key learning goals and desired outcomes. The 5 educational categories that exist under the current standards have shifted to encompass 4 “core curriculum” categories aimed at ensuring confidence across 12 clearly-defined competencies. This common core curriculum will signal quality and safety in yoga training and teaching to the practicing yoga community. Get to know the new categories and competencies of the enhanced RYS 200 common core curriculum.

 Strengthened Application and Review Process

Strengthened Application and Review Process

In addition to upgrading the RYS 200 standards, we have up-leveled the overall application and review process to provide more shared accountability to meet or exceed the new standards. We have also added a re-credentialing component, which all RYSs, once operating under the enhanced standards, will undergo every three years. Learn more about the enhancements to the application and review process.

 Enhanced Lead Trainer Requirements

Enhanced Lead Trainer Requirements

The new RYS 200 standards include three significant enhancements that affect the Lead Trainer. One is the depth and breadth of the Lead Trainer's knowledge, skills, and experience. Another is the increase in the number of Lead Trainers within an RYS. Lastly, is the percentage of the curriculum that the Lead Trainer must teach. Click here to learn about these changes and by when they take effect.

 Community Conversations

Community Conversations

We received a call to action from our members and the broader yoga community to serve as the convener for conversations that impact the entire yoga profession, including the future of yoga teaching and various community-wide, systemic issues. Learn more about what we heard and the conversations we’ll convene.

 The Path of an RYT

The Path of an RYT

Aside from the shared Ethical Commitment, many RYTs will be be curious as to what the changes to the RYS 200 standards mean for them as graduates of RYS 200 programs and holders of the current RYT 200 credential. Does this apply to you? Learn about the path of a Registered Yoga Teacher.

 What Comes Next?

What Comes Next?

We will look to the future with respect to our credentials and how we can continue to up-level the profession of yoga to include a wide range of paths to support the school and teacher where they are. See what the next steps are in the near future.



For answers to common questions about our new standards, visit our Frequently Asked Questions page.

Yoga Alliance is a nonprofit 501(c)(6). Yoga Alliance Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3). This website refers to the two organizations as "Yoga Alliance." Copyright 2020 Yoga Alliance. Yoga Alliance, the Yoga Alliance logo, RYS, RYT, and YACEP are registered marks with the USPTO and other jurisdictions.
Copyright 2020 by Yoga Alliance