If you've already completed yoga teacher certification and training programs, you can increase your knowledge and offer another type of yoga to students by completing a Kripalu yoga teacher training program. Kripalu yoga instructor training programs are 200 or 500 hours in length and some training programs prepare you to register with the Yoga Alliance as a registered yoga teacher (RYT). These specialized yoga teacher training programs are only available at select yoga studios and training centers around the country. These do require in-classroom attendance and participation, and adapting to the yogic lifestyle.

What is Kripalu Yoga?

Kripalu yoga is based on the principles of yoga asanas. The Kripalu methodology has been used for over 30 years by the Kripalu School of Yoga. This type of yoga uses press points, proper alignment and other techniques to help the practitioner develop witness consciousness and experience self-compassion. Most kripalu teacher training programs include the practice of yogic breathing techniques, and also teach students how to connect with the life force that serves as the inherent wisdom of the body.

Kripalu yoga emphasizes movement inquiries and prana-initiated movements. It also helps to increase self-awareness and encourages the practitioner to rely on personal experience and body sensations, rather than just thinking through and mentally focusing on each movement. Combined with relaxation and meditation, this form of yoga encourages the development of self-awareness and mindfulness.

Most Kripalu yoga classes run about one hour to 90 minutes in length, so prospective teachers are trained to design inspirational and creative class schedules and a curriculum based on the average yoga session.

Kripalu Yoga Teacher Training Courses

The Kripalu School of Yoga offers a comprehensive kripalu yoga teacher training program that includes courses and activities in the following areas:

  • Teaching safe and inspirational yoga classes
  • Creative warm-up and cool-down techniques
  • Benefits of classical yoga postures
  • Effective posture sequencing
  • Motivating students
  • Clarification of contraindications
  • Creating lesson plans
  • Principles of anatomy, physiology and kinesiology
  • Pranayama techniques
  • Relaxation methodology
  • Mediation methodology
  • Micro-movements
  • The koshas
  • Guided imagery
  • Nonjudgmental awareness
  • Natural alignment principles

Prospective teachers learn how to guide students through each yoga pose, execute various types of breathing techniques, and also create a deeply restorative shavasana as part of their relaxation and mediation practices. The entire training program promotes the development of self-awareness, as well as focusing on the safe execution of various yoga poses.

Completing Kripalu Yoga Instructor Training

Some studios and training centers that offer Kripalu yoga instructor training programs automatically enroll students who have successfully completed their training in the Kripalu Yoga Teacher Association (KYTA) organization. This organization provides ongoing training, workshops and educational materials for yoga teachers how want to continue growing their teaching practice in this specialized type of yoga.

The minimum content hours for a 200-Hour Kripalu yoga instructor training program, as determined by the Yoga Alliance, are as follows:

  • Instruction in Yoga Asana, Pranayama and Meditation: 100 Hours
  • Teaching Methodology: 30 Hours
  • Anatomy and Physiology: 20 Hours
  • Philosophy, Ethics and Lifestyle: 30 Hours
  • Practicum: 15 Hours
  • Other: 5 hours

Students enrolled in a Kripalu yoga instructor training program may also be required to read books and materials provided by the training school or studio. These materials complement the training received during the Kripalu yoga teacher training program.