Prenatal/Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training Recap: Part 1

Reaching while rooted: spreading out and exploring the world around one’s self, while remaining grounded in the essence of one’s soul and identity.

There is an endless parade of cars that go by my hotel window: I imagine families returning home from weekend getaways, truck drivers hauling freight across the country, and professionals headed toward a week of business meetings and conferences. This is my home away from home for the next week while I attend Pre/Postnatal Yoga Teacher Training, and I am in turns thrilled and anxious.


Prenatal yoga has been something that I have felt called to offer ever since my 200 hour yoga teacher training over a year ago, and I am so fortunate enough to have an opportunity to make it happen. I am looking forward to a week of classes and being immersed in the technical complexities of yoga with other women, building on the things I know and the things I have yet to learn. A week of exploring a new place and running new paths, meeting new people.

In order to become a Registered Prenatal Yoga Teacher (RPYT) with Yoga Alliance (a reputable governing board of yoga teachers and studios) one must complete an 85 hour training at a accredited studio, and teach 30 hours of prenatal yoga. How those 85 hours are broken up will vary from studio to studio, but for my training at Pranayoga Institute the following has been a rough guideline:

  • 30 hours of contact (classes, lectures, guided practice)
  • 30 hours of reading
  • 10 class observations
  • 24 hours of home practice (with video)
  • Teach 6 private lessons (with phone calls before and after with the head instructor)
  • 6 page prenatal thesis

This week promises to be full of knowledge. I will be learning the anatomy and physiology of pregnancy and labor, appropriate postures and modifications for pregnant women, safe ways to assist an expectant mother in her practice, childbirth preparation, post-labor restorative, and the perceptions and understanding of labor and delivery in American culture.

This training is important to me as a teacher because not only does it deepen my understanding of the practice, but there is simply nothing like it in my community. My home is a Midwestern community in which health and fitness is not necessarily prioritized socially, and even if it were most people could not afford it (only a quarter of the adult population holds a college degree). My town was built off of industrialization and manufacturing, and that is still the biggest economy. Part of my training requires observation of prenatal classes, and when I did a quick Google search I was shocked to find that there was none of the sort in my region.

I am hoping to change that with my training. I hope to bring prenatal yoga to the women who would not otherwise get to practice: I have been talking with representatives about teaching classes at my local YMCA where I am a yoga instructor sub and the Crisis Pregnancy Center. I want to get women to connect with their body and spirit, and I want to reach those who may otherwise slip in the cracks because they can’t afford it. It’s a challenge for sure, but one that I see worthy of the chase.

I will be recapping the training over the next week on my blog, so make sure you follow along each day as I share my experiences! Go here for Part 2 of the six part series!


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