While there were 18,000 yoga schools registered with the Yoga Alliance at the end of 2016, only a small percentage offer a thorough teaching and understanding of all eight limbs of yoga. Teaching yoga is a growing profession according the Yoga Journal USA, with well over 50,000 yoga teachers in the US alone, and the numbers are growing daily!
We recently sat down with Louisa Sear, a pioneer of yoga teacher training in Australia, and the founder of Yoga Arts to learn more about her school. Here are excerpts from our discussion.
Louisa, first please tell us about yourself.
I was born in Sydney in 1964 and grew up around yoga. I attended yoga classes with my mother as a child. I committed to practicing yoga at the age of 17 and at 21 became an accredited yoga teacher. I moved to Byron Bay in 1986, and then in 1994 I founded Yoga Arts which was the first Australian and internationally accredited yoga teacher training course in Byron and later in Southeast Asia.
What do you hope to impart in your teacher training?
I hope to impart dogma-free teachings, encouraging students to have an open mind, reminding them of our true nature, and how the techniques of yoga can bring about this enlightened awareness, well-being and the ultimate peace of mind. At Yoga Arts we hope to impart to students the most beneficial way to practice yoga that is suited to their individual needs. This means safe and detailed techniques are used for teaching students at all levels including Daily Asana Pranayama & Meditation, Sequencing, Adjusting Skills, Alignment, Modifications, Prop Usage, Philosophy, Ayurveda, Anatomy of Hatha Yoga, Mantra, Asana Mythology, Mudra and a lot more.
Why is the Yoga Arts RYT200 program unique?
First of all, to join our Accredited Yoga Teacher Trainings 200 hrs (RYT200) in Ubud, Bali, you are required to have a minimum of 2 years of yoga experience and practice. This means that you must already be attending regular yoga classes with a qualified yoga teacher for 2 years, then only do you qualify for our 200-hour teacher training.
We also encourage you to develop a regular personal yoga practice at home on the days that you are not attending yoga classes. To teach yoga it is important to be self-motivated and dedicated to your own practice so that you can impart teachings in the future to your students from your own perspective and experience, and not just from theoretical knowledge.
Our 200-hour yoga teacher training program provides comprehensive training in all aspects of yoga including Vinyasa style asana, mindful meditation, pranayama, anatomy and physiology, yoga philosophy and ethics, an introduction to Ayurveda, and more.
Our teachers have been practicing yoga for 15 – 40 years and we have been dedicated to training yoga teachers for over 25 years – this is a high-quality training program with an experienced, senior teaching team with over a thousand graduates over the years. The trainings are held at The Shala Bali which has ideal facilities to provide a holistic experience during the month of the training. Facilities include a swimming pool, vegetarian cafes, a yoga shala, on-site guest rooms, an Ayurvedic Day Spa and beautiful, peaceful, lush tropical gardens.
Louisa, thank you for sharing your perspectives on choosing the right school to become a yoga teacher!
Both our teachers Iyan Yaspriyana and Wayan Partawan have gone through their teacher training at Yoga Arts. And in July, our yoga teacher assistant Komang Desiani – or Desy – will be undertaking her yoga teacher training with Louisa.