The Prajna 300/500-Hour Yoga Teacher Training will hone your teaching skills to become an expert leader in mindfulness, somatic awareness, and yoga therapy. Gain the confidence and knowledge to offer creative, multi-faceted classes that include therapeutic posture work and manual assists. Learn how to help students get grounded…and help them to fly.
You can apply and register here.
Now it is time to take the plunge. Expand what you know and go deeper. Through penetrating practice, scientific rigor, and profound contemplation, take your dedicated practice to a whole other level. Make your practice and teaching be about constant discovery and surprise.
This program is for devoted practitioners and teachers in training who wish to take continuing education, deepen their practice and “cultivate insight”. Our 300/500-Hour Yoga Teacher Training is a professional training to become a highly skilled yoga teacher, designed to round out and solidify a teacher’s education. This training consists of 300 hours of Yoga Alliance approved studies that are designed to advance your practice and enhance your teaching skills and repertoire.
This program enables students to obtain a Yoga Alliance 500-Hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT500). Students participating in the Prajna 300/500-hour program can also choose to specialize in the Prajna Yoga Therapy by taking Yoga Therapy courses.
Students can take any combination of the following courses to earn the 300/500-Hour Prajna Yoga Certificate:
* Prajna Yoga’s Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction | 30-Hours
In such times of extraordinary stress, change, and uncertainty, how do we keep our balance—physically, mentally and emotionally? How do we find ways of responding with wisdom and care to the challenges and demands around and within us? As a way of building on and extending your yoga training, Prajna Yoga’s Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course offers skillful means of working with patterns of thought, emotions, and stress reactivity that are no longer serving you, or are, perhaps, causing harm.
The crux of our investigation in MBSR is straightforward: we seek to minimize harm and maximize human flourishing. We welcome you to join us in exploring the ancient wisdom and modern scientific understanding of how we can meet the difficulties arising, without and within, in ways that foster our own capacities for sanity, clarity, and joyful freedom.
Instructor: Janet Curry
The Art of Sequencing & Creative Adjusting | 45-Hours
Whether teaching classes on line or live in person, careful and intelligent sequencing is essential to every yoga class. Without proper sequencing, a class can leave the student ungrounded and imbalanced. Like a good chef who knows how to skillfully combine ingredients, the mindful yoga teacher blends poses to create a feeling of integrity and wholeness. In this course Tias and Surya share their combined 50 years of study, practice and teaching on how to design classes that are dynamic, playful, enlightening and creative. Known for their integrity, authenticity and wisdom, Tias and Surya share the art of teaching that has made them so successful and real over the years. You will learn not only how to weave a class together, but how to stand in a leadership role within your community at this time of upheaval and uncertainty.
In this time of distance learning, it is important that the teacher be able to guide and “ adjust” the student with verbal cuing. In this part of the course, we support on-line teachers and teachers in the yoga room to find the best descriptive language to facilitate opening in a posture. Tias and Surya coach on how to articulate actions in the pose when teaching. This will help maximize the physiological benefits of a pose, reduce anxiety, build immunity and find peace. This course of study also includes how to further “adjust” postures by guiding students in the creative use of props, furniture or wall space in order to help students experience ease and grace in their structure.
* The Art of Healing | 30-Hours
Art of Healing is an in-depth training on how to address structural imbalances in the body. Through anatomical study, demonstration, pose modification, prop work, and manual assistance, we address common muscular-skeletal strain patterns. Each day includes practice sessions, meditation, postural clinics, and small group discussion to learn to sequence and modify postural movements for low back pain, shoulder restriction, scoliosis, and much more. Whether teaching a group or offering an individual session, the more tools you have in your bag to address structural imbalances, the more effective you can be.
Course of Study
- Every body is different, therefore we will emphasize adapting the poses individually to meet the needs of each student
- Learn the “Four Essentials”—the most effective therapeutic poses
- Learn how how to modify postures to safely assist and support students
- Learn how to support the body to decompress fascial strain
- Practice and study ways to traction, compress, decompress and invert the body’s connective tissues
- Practice general sequences to restore health in the body
- Address mental, emotional and structural limitations with pranayama
Cultivating the Mindful Teacher | 45-Hours
The aim of this intensive is to provide the student with the practical skills and creativity to teach a well organized, clear and inspiring class. We help teachers who are already teaching bring greater depth and variety to their classes. What makes Prajna Yoga unique is its weave of asana, mindfulness, internal alignment and wisdom sharing. We help teachers develop the skills to teach a class that is not simply a physical workout but a class that is multi-layered. We address ways for teachers to skillfully integrate meditation, somatic awareness training and asana into their daily classes. We emphasize how to teach asana–both vinyasa and long held poses–with internal alignment in such a way that it is physically rewarding, mindful and spiritually uplifting.
When teaching guided classes, we encourage teachers to command a class through both intensity and gentleness. Considerable time is spent on teacher practicum and for trainees to receive feedback on how to use clear and precise language, to teach through tone of voice and to “hold the space” within a classroom. We provide the foundation for how to integrate anatomical study into the classroom setting, including how to use anatomical images and how to teach living anatomy. In addition, we cover the ways a teacher can integrate sutras, poetry, chant and teachings from the yoga tradition and buddha dharma into the classroom experience.
* Anatomy of the Vayus | 30-Hours
In the earliest yoga practices, the life force in the body is thought to flow through tubules, channels, or vessels in the way that wind or water flows in currents. In yoga, the vayus are “wind channels”, that conduct the flow of nerves, blood, and lymph. Understanding the nature of each vayu is crucial to harmonizing the subtle flow of prana in the body and to establishing health and vitality. This course undertakes an in-depth investigation of the five primary winds (apana, samana, prana, udana, vyana) and through yoga asana, pranayama, and SATYA (Sensory Awareness Training for Yoga) activate or mitigate the strength of each vayu. We will investigate the structures and the physiological function of each vayu and map out the vayus’ location in the body. We will address therapeutic cases such as high blood pressure, low immunity, digestive disorder, and head trauma in light of the internal vayus.
In a process that requires sensitivity and inner listening, we explore the pathways of the muscle, bones, and nerves in order to bring greater wakefulness to movement within the vayus. Through dharma study, guided meditation, yoga nidra, somatic awareness, and yoga postures this is a transformational week of practice and study. In this intensive we will investigate poems of awakening from the historical Yoga, Taoist, and Zen traditions.
Each day includes seated meditation, chanting, and inspirational dharma teaching followed by SATYA and therapeutic yoga asana. We offer both dynamic and restorative yoga practices to balance and heal each vayu.
* SATYA 1 | 45-Hours
Many of you have felt the extraordinary benefits of this practice on your fascia, joints, and breath. This course on SATYA will no doubt add depth and somatic sophistication to your practice… and it is so healing. Designed by Tias Little after 30 years of education, practice, study, and research, SATYA is a somatic practice that builds mindfulness through movement.
SATYA (Sensory Awareness Training for Yoga Attunement) is Prajna Yoga’s therapeutic, “yin” style practice. We practice fine articulated movement on the floor in a flowing fashion, synthesizing breath with movement. The exercises are non-weight bearing and involve sliding, gliding, and circular movements to reduce myo-fascial holding in the body. When done on the floor, the breath and movement together enables myofascial release without strain. All movements are done slowly, in isolation, and without force. The SATYA movements replenish the body by increasing circulation (the flow of prana) throughout all the tissues of the body. SATYA acts as a “prana pump” to oxygenate the bloodstream and irrigate, or “soak” the tissues.
The Art of Self Practice | 30-Hours
There is no greater gift in yoga than having a daily home practice. A creative, dynamic and steady home practice is like having a life long confidant and friend. In the Yoga Sutras it is said that one should practice “for a long time and without interruption”. Getting to the mat everyday requires regular practice, whether at home, in a hotel room or when visiting your in-laws. A strong personal practice is at the root of becoming a skilled teacher. At Prajna Yoga we believe that a home practice is a necessary ingredient for becoming a skilled teacher. Yet how does one build a regular self-practice? And how to keep a practice fresh, dynamic and innovative? How can one continue to expand their repertoire of poses while diversifying their practice? This course lays the groundwork for establishing a regular and rewarding home practice
* Transformation Through the Chakras | 30-Hours
The chakras evoke mystery, an artistic imagination and connection to the subtle body. For each of us, the chakras are unique centers of physical and psychic energy. In this specialized course we cover the anatomical structures that correspond to each chakra beginning with the tailbone and leading to the crown of the head. You will learn the muscular-skeletal, organic, and glandular association within each chakra. This course details these vital energy centers along the vertebral column that houses nerve bundles thought to be “small brains.”
In addition we investigate the emotional and spiritual quality of each chakra. We investigate ways to strengthen each chakra as well as the causes of deterioration within each chakra. Learn the energetic and emotional vitality that pertains to each vital energy center.
* Anatomy of the Koshas | 30-Hours
Since the earliest teachings on yoga, the body-mind is described as having five coverings or casings, called koshas. Like a tree or plant that has progressively more subtle layers from outer bark to pithy interior, the koshas move from outer to inner and from gross to subtle.
In this course we study the anatomical and energetic attributes of each sheath. The first sheath is correlate with food and the outer fascia, the second with breath, the third with thoughts and sensations, and the fourth with the wisdom of the deep fascia. The innermost layer is correlate with the brain and spinal cord and the body of delight.
Through contemplative practice, yoga postures, SATYA (Sensory Awareness for Yoga) and pranayama, we will journey through each stratum, refining and clarifying the subtle body as we go. Layer by layer, we generate greater luminosity and clarity, ultimately yoking to the Source that dwells perpetually in the interior. Each day will include anatomical study, investigation of the wisdom teaching, dynamic and recuperative asana practice, and meditation.
* Healing the Organic Body | 30-Hours
While it is valuable to stretch and strengthen the musculoskeletal system in yoga, the health of the organs brings radiant vitality to the entire body. In this course we utilize postures, pranayama, meditation and dietary regulation to support the health of the internal organs.
We focus on generating the flow of prana (blood and lymph) through each organ to support motility (inherent motion) and metabolic exchange. We review the anatomical position and function of each organ and practice SATYA (Sensory Awareness Training for Yoga) to slide, squeeze, wring, drain, and flush fluids through each organ.
* Yoga, Trauma, and Healing | 30-Hours
Current research shows that trauma is pervasive today, woven into the very fabric of human culture. Trauma may be due to circumstances in this lifetime, or inherited from previous generations. In this time of the pandemic where there is loss of life and political and social unrest, we are witnessing a global acceleration of the traumatic experience.
As yoga practitioners we must ask, what is trauma and how does it effect the body-mind? How can stretching, breathing, meditation, sound, and visualization practice help break the grip of traumatic holding?
In this course we investigate the impact of trauma on the mind and body and how anxiety and stress become embedded in the body’s soft tissues. While the historical yoga teachings do not point directly to trauma, they refer to obstacles, afflictions, and “poisons” that impair progress on the path. We will examine contemporary research in psychology, dreamwork, neurology, and somatic-emotional processing in order to provide you with the tools necessary to address trauma in your community and for your students and clientele.
Yoga Nidra: How to Rest Your Brain through Deep Sleep | 6-Hours
Contemporary research reveals how important it is that the brain rest and recharge during sleep states. Through the centuries, yoga practices have instructed to reduce noise in the brain through states of meditation, relaxation, and serenity. In this course, we embody states of deep peace and relaxation through restorative yoga, yoga nidra, and its corollary, savasana.
In each practice we embody stillness, silence, and space within. By resting in states of deep relaxation, the body and mind can restore to their optimal levels of vitality. Each class starts with a short investigation of the physiological benefits of deep sleep and insights into the yoga teachings on absorption. Each class includes a movement practice prior to the practice of yogic sleep.
The Inner Practice: The Five Vows | 30-Hours
The five affirmations constitute the second limb of Ashtanga Yoga, called niyama. In this unique course, we cultivate these five — cleanliness, contentment, physical discipline, contemplation, and devotion — to heal the split between body, mind, and spirit and prepare for the later limbs of yoga. We explore ways to personalize each of the five vows in accord with one’s own biography, age, religious upbringing, karmic history, and physical constitution. Each day will include meditation, discussion, postural yoga, and pranayama. Through an embodiment of the niyamas, commit to deepening your personal practice for greater nourishment, contentment, and clarity.
* Yoga and Marma Therapy: 21 Vital Points | 30-Hours
Marma points are vital acupressure points located on the surface of the body that connect to the energetic circuitry of nerve and blood flow. In this course we detail 21 key marma points that can be directly stimulated through yoga postures. Via pressure point therapy, we activate the flow of prana at each marma point to improve circulation through the skin, fascia and organs. We study the anatomical location of each point along with the energetic connection and treatment benefits of each point. In addition to yoga postures, we use physio-balls, foam rollers and tuning forks to stimulate the acupressure points and bring vital healing to the subtle body.
* Bandhas: Gateways to the Yoga Body | 10-Hours
This intensive explores the potent, alchemical effects that the bandhas have on the yoga body. We aim to demystify the bandhas, identifying them neither as mechanical locks nor esoteric techniques. Rather we will see how the bandhas flow as a natural extension of breathing and spinal motion. We will have time to explore each bandha, so that each week will include practices, meditations, journaling and pranayama to integrate the bandha into daily life. In the biogeometry of the human body the bandhas are like internal gates or portals that direct the flow of vital energy. Through guided meditation, somatic awareness, yoga postures and practices of yogic “soaking” (samadhi), this is a transformational month of practice and study.
Anatomy of the Kundalini | 30-Hours
In yoga, the deepest pulse of life in the body is known as the kundalini, a buzz current of neurological force that flows through the spine and throughout the body. But what is kundalini and how does it manifest in the body?
This course explores the colorful, poetic and artistic descriptions of kundalini within the yoga tradition while reimagining kundalini through the eyes of contemporary neuroscience. We use the yoga practice of asana, pranayama, yoga nidra, and meditation to enliven the deepest life force of the body. We will see how the force (shakti) of kundalini flows within the central nervous system and as awareness itself. This force bears close resemblance to the reptilian brain and brainstem. Through practice and study, we will see how breath, vibration, sound, and visualization activate this most primal vitality in the body.
* Students can specialize in Yoga Therapy as part of their 300/500-Hour Certification. Yoga Therapy Courses are denoted with an asterisk.
Requirements to complete the 300-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher Training:
- Have a 200-Hour Yoga Teacher Training certification either through Prajna Yoga or another school.
- Apply for and be accepted to the 300-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher Training.
- Complete any combination of the following courses for a total of 270 Contact Hours:
- Cultivating the Mindful Teacher (45-Hours)
- The Art of Sequencing & Creative Adjusting (45-Hours)
- The Art of Healing (45-Hours)
- Anatomy of the Vayus (30-Hours)
- Prajna Yoga’s Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (30-Hours)
- SATYA 1 (45-Hours)
- The Art of Self Practice (30-Hours)
- Transformation Through the Chakras (30-Hours)
- Healing the Organic Body (30-Hours)
- Silent Retreat
- The Inner Practices | Niyamas: The Five Vows (30-Hours)
- Yoga Nidra: How to Rest Your Brain through Deep Sleep (6-Hours)
- Yoga and Marma Therapy (30-Hours)
- Anatomy of the Kundalini (30-Hours)
- Complete the remaining 30 Non-Contact Hours through a combination of the following:
- Attend any Prajna Yoga sponsored workshop, teacher training, class or retreat offered online, or in U.S., Europe & Asia. (Please note: for 500-Hr candidates, up to 20 hours can be applied for workshops given by Prajna Yoga Teachers.) Can include hours received from Prajna Yoga Silent Retreats.
- Dharma Talks at Mountain Cloud or Upaya Zen Center in Santa Fe, NM
To continue on to Prajna’s 500-Hour Certification, further requirements are as follows:
- Have 150 hours of teaching experience
- Provide one 2 X 2 color head shot photo in digital format
- Video Assessment. A 1-hr minimum all-levels DVD video of you teaching a yoga class. See Video requirements.
- Attend 2 silent meditation retreats in Vipassana, Zen, Dzogchen traditions, or Prajna Yoga.
- Total time for the retreats is a minimum of six days and one of those retreats must be attended at Prajna Yoga.
- To ensure that silent retreat hours not at Prajna Yoga are eligible for training hours, please contact the Prajna Yoga office to get pre-approval.
- Pass the Prajna Yoga take-home final exam
Prerequisites to Become a Certified 500-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher:
If you’d like to apply your 300-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher Training to becoming a Certified 500-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher, you are required to attend the 200-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher Training even if you have a 200-Hour certification from another Yoga Alliance-approved school.
Requirements to Become a Yoga Alliance 500-Hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT500):
To become a Yoga Alliance 500-Hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT500), you can combine any 200-Hour Yoga Teacher Training with the 300/500-Hour Prajna Yoga Teacher Training. Click here to learn more about the Yoga Alliance 300-Hour requirements.
All students seeking certification with Prajna Yoga are responsible for keeping track of their course work and hours completed. You can download the log sheet by clicking here. It is advised that students print out a Certification Log and keep it updated.
Upon completion of all requirements, please send this log along with any other supporting documentation indicated above to the Prajna Yoga office at email@example.com.
“The trainings at Prajna Yoga are exceptionally valuable for professional yoga teachers, while simultaneously providing time for personal practice, retreat, and renewal. Tias and Surya are truly generous with their teachings, time, and energy. I plan to return again and again to study with these masters.”
– Keith Porteous | New Orleans, LA