Monthly Archives December 2018

2018 Year End Message From Brandt To Breathing Deeply Yoga Therapy Students

Friends in Yoga,

How humbled I am to be able to write this letter to all of you. This year has been a huge year of growth for all of us. Each week I am amazed at the work that is being done by members of this school. I am seeing students mature so rapidly into Yoga Therapists. I am seeing graduates working in the field and helping their clients find health and contentment. I am seeing students in the Advanced Program putting hundreds of hours of material together for themselves and gaining confidence. On all levels, I am seeing the bar being raised for delivering yoga therapy with quality and integrity. This is because of you, the Breathing Deeply student body. A deep pranam to all of you who are working so diligently to create physical and mental health and peace in the world through the applications of yoga.

The school has had many milestones this year. We completed our first round of the 7 Advanced Program modules and celebrate the first group of students who finished them. We began our mentored practicum component for the Advanced Program. We moved our residential learning into a beautiful retreat center and are so delighted with the space and our collaboration with the Won Buddhist order that runs it. We started a 200-hour teacher training prep course to bring in those interested in being Yoga Therapists who aren’t yoga teachers yet. And after a long process, our 875-hour Advanced Program became accredited by the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT).

This year, I have seen our community become much more engaged in learning. Monthly forum discussions are full of thoughtful and often insightful posts. The Q&A sessions are well attended and I am continuously hearing references of students supporting each other directly. The more we help each other as a community, the more we can give to the world. So let’s continue to expand our support for one another in order to create more resiliency as Yoga Therapists and in the work we do!

I want to take a moment to honor our team of people who work very hard to support the school. The beauty we create doesn’t happen without them. Joe and Kerry mentoring students in the Yoga Therapy Foundations Program, Rebecca helping in so many ways behind the scenes, and of course, Anna, who works tirelessly to create this container we are all learning in.

In this coming year, we will expand the school further with a meditation program — focused on personal evolution. This course and Sangha is born out of student requests for a clearer and deeper understanding of yoga’s teachings. It is also to serve the need so many of us have to be supported by a community of like-minded seekers and helping people become a meditation teacher. My hope is that this offering will be a great help to those of you looking for a spiritual home.

I am personally looking forward to seeing the school and you as individuals expand even more throughout this coming year. There is such a great need for yoga therapy and I am confident that together, we will deliver the teachings with integrity, compassion, and vitality.

Blessings to everyone this New Year. May the bliss of the heart find us all and may we share that bliss will those who seek it.



What’s the difference between a Yoga Therapist vs Yoga Teacher?

A yoga teacher is tasked with teaching yoga which is often taught within a certain system. Ashtanga, Bikram, Sivananda, as examples, all have their ways of training yogis to teach. In the western context, yoga teachers are often trained to teach yoga classes that are primarily a physical practice. These sessions have labels like “vinyasa” “hatha” “restorative” “yin”, etc.

A well trained and skilled yoga teacher can lead groups in a class setting, helping students learn whatever style or system they are sharing. Yoga classes have a therapeutic effect for many. In addition, a very experienced and skilled yoga teacher can educate students in all aspects of yoga, helping them progress on a spiritual level. This is mentioned because even an enlightened teacher is technically a yoga teacher as opposed to a yoga therapist.

What is Yoga Therapy and how can a Yoga Therapist Help?

A yoga therapist is tasked with applying yoga techniques to specific health conditions. A yoga therapist, therefore, must be trained in both the techniques (asana, pranayama, chanting, philosophy or point of view and meditation) and the therapeutic applications of these techniques.

A yoga therapist—like anyone in the health field—must have knowledge of the conditions they are working with. Yoga therapists are trained to look at health conditions through a yoga therapy lense, as well as assess from a western medicine perspective.

Yoga Therapy Training Vs. Yoga Teacher Training

Although yoga teachers and yoga therapists are usually lifelong learners, the training entry point for yoga therapists is much higher. The IAYT (International Association of Yoga Therapists) has set standards that have a minimum training time of 800 hours. This is in addition to the prerequisite of a 200-hour yoga teacher training. Also, yoga therapy schools are tasked with graduating competent yoga therapists with a proven ability to work with medical conditions in a safe, effective way.

Since yoga therapists are always yoga teachers it is easy to see why the public can get easily confused. Yoga therapists often play both roles — teaching interested students yoga and working individually with clients that have health challenges. Most essential is that those with physical or mental health issues looking to yoga for help consult with a yoga therapist as opposed to a yoga teacher.

Individualized education from a yoga therapist will have much better outcomes and minimize the chance of an untrained yoga teacher inflicting harm due to lack of knowledge and education.

At Breathing Deeply Yoga Therapy, we pride ourselves on providing high-quality yoga therapy education with continuing support for yoga therapists. We are confident that our students and in turn, graduates are educated in a way that promotes positive client outcomes and integrity in this rapidly growing field.

Ready to begin your yoga therapy training and become a Yoga Therapist?

Apply today. A new class will be starting soon!

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