Professional Yoga Therapist
CYS Yoga Therapy
We have submitted our Letter of Intent to IAYT for accreditation of our yoga therapy program, and will be able to provide information on our status after our application is complete and the IAYT then completes its review process.
For initial inquiry into whether a yoga therapy program is right for you, here's a pdf provided by the IAYT for your review: 9 Steps to becoming an IAYT Certified Yoga Therapist
The CYS Yoga Therapy program is an 800+ hour program that includes our 300YTT program as a pre-requisite. 500 hours of the Yoga Therapy Program is conducted over the course of three years: 2 years in residential intensives along with distance learning and practicum between intensives and the final year is solely practicum delivery in your community and mentorship with faculty.
What we deliver is an integrated body of esoteric and practical knowledge that is organized around the great liberation triads that have appeared as consistent illustrations of the nature of matter, spirit, evolution and transcendence. Examples of these include Sat-Chit-Ananda (Being, Consciousness, Bliss), Rajas-Satva-Tamas (Kinetic energy, Emptiness, Solidity). These triads illustrate the forces that embody and animate creation at every scale of its manifestation from the largest to the smallest. We assume that the human system is primarily an expression of the energies that form these triads operating at a small scale. Flourishing, dysfunction and illness are then matters of expressing a more or less harmonious relationship amongst the three primary forces that create and sustain us.
As a practical expression of this understanding, the Shala’s program is organized around the triad of Bio-Psycho-Social sections of material.
The purpose of our curriculum is to establish the foundations which define the wholeness of the human system and its integral relationship to the Universe and consciousness. These foundations are a fusion of Classical Yoga and Ayurveda, the biological sciences and evolutionary theory, and Integral Psychology, which is a broad vision of psychic life that includes Eastern and Western views of mind and identity, positive and negative views of psychic functioning, and transpersonal dimensions of development.
These foundations support and guide our assessments of the system and the technology of adaptation that address the needs of individuals.
2.1 Move WEll intensive: Screening Structure and Motion, Developing Corrective Strategies
This intensive teaches a two part biomechanical assessment and the details of the corrective pathway that is engaged for the biomechanical portion of therapeutic interventions.
- Part 1 assesses the state of the system’s functional mobility and motor control competency by screening motions that derive from the fundamental milestones we master as we acquire the upright walking posture: rolling, creeping, crawling, lunging, squatting, and single legged stance. These motions are representative of the functional relationship between the mobility in the distal limbs and the stabilization reflexes in the core.
- The second part involves screening of the skeletal tilts, shifts and major rotations that are observed while the body is positioned in stillness in Tadasana. These static structural asymmetries are interpreted via Thomas Meyer's "Anatomy Trains” concept and then related to the findings in the motion based screens. This process reveals the body’s most prominent functional asymmetries and ranks their severity by revealing the developmental level at which they are most recognizable.
With a coherent assessment of function and structure, a clear and simple corrective pathway upon which to revitalize and integrate fundamental motor integrity, and method of testing the results of biomechanical intervention, the YT is equipped to adapt traditional asanas and vinyasas, as well as engineer new variations for client’s individual needs.
2.2 Breathe Well Intensive: Pranamaya, Kriya and the Nature of Stress
This intensive teaches the deep relationship between Prana and the major organ systems of the body.
- We examine in detail many common dysfunctions in those systems, and breath based methods of adapting sadhana to them based in part on the 5 Prana-vayus.
- We also examine traditional Kriyas and Bandhas to address certain of these dysfunctions within the scope of the YT’s practice.
- Using Stephen Porges’ Polyvagal Theory, we study the evolutionary development of the cardio-pulmonary and nervous systems to flesh out the significance of the cardiac rhythm (RSA, HRV) as an indicator of the body’s reaction to stress, and as the basis for the human need to resolve and overcome stress in ways that ultimately involve engaged relationships with others. The cardiac rhythm is screened via two correlated methods: heart rate monitors, and Ayurvedic pulse analysis.
- We study the chakra system to provide another model of development and assessment, and its correlations to the organ systems. To further the understanding of the relationship between prana and healing, we teach breath as sound, and how to interface asana, vinyasa and chanting using the bija syllables.
These physiologically based methods combine with the assessments from “Move Well” to round out the adaption of asana, vinyasa, and pranayama to individual’s needs by giving clear ways to engineer a broad spectrum of sadhana intensities that span the continuum between non-aerobic, aerobic, and anaerobic.
3.1 feel well intensive: Ayurveda and Rasa
This intensive teaches the Ayurvedic concept of Rasa as a means of engaging and cultivating our relationship with the senses, the mind, emotion, and the environment in ways that culminate in an understanding that the purpose of existence is thriving enjoyment. Accordingly, enjoyment is distinguished in its unique character as a mode of being that includes both pleasure and pain, while transcending each.
- In keeping with the Ayurvedic understanding that modifications in eating are the fastest, most efficient way to produce positive changes in the system, and that the 6 tastes are the keys to understanding what a healthy diet is and how the digestive cycle is managed, we teach eating according to
the tastes, developing a sophisticated palette, and how to modify intake according to change of season, time of day, sickness and etc. In this vein we also teach the dynamics involved in modern versions of fasting and/or abstaining from particular tastes.
- In keeping with the understanding that Rasa denotes emotion as well as taste, we teach that emotion is the essence of all experience and the primary means by which the experienced, subjective difference between the mind and the body is bridged.
- We look in detail at the 9 emotional rasas and their relationship to the five elements and the doshas. This understanding of emotion as central to sensible experience is also taught from a modern neuroscientific standpoint as we examine the concept of neuro-plasticity and the neurotransmitter profiles involved in aversion and reward, so that YTs can assist in the breaking of unhealthy habits and the formation of healthy new ones in healing and development.
- Lastly, we teach the nature of intuitive experience and its place in spiritual evolution and enjoyment. This involves looking at the relationship between bias and intuition, and how intuition can indeed be developed and honed with regard to training and inquiry.
3.2 Live well intensive: Contemplative Dimensions and Practices
This intensive teaches the process of screening for asymmetries in the psyche, habitual points of focus that impede the growth of self knowledge and courageous openness to the freedom of the ever-changing universe.
- The Enneagram of Fixation guides deep inquiry into the specific nature of individual’s samskaric make-up, fleshing out the distinctions between 9 essential character traits that divide into 27 shades of subtle psychic asymmetry.
- Using Claudio Naranjo’s Character and Neurosis as a bridge between the Enneagram types and their correlations to the diagnoses in the DSM-V, students will be guided in developing an understanding of psychic imbalance occurring in degrees along a spectrum of health and dis-ease.
- We provide education on common mental health conditions within the scope of practice, common approaches or interventions for these difficulties, and how they correlate with contemplative methods of developing presence that nourish personal and spiritual growth while also opening the door to transcending it. Attention will be given to the ways in which the yoga therapist can support a patient in their therapeutic work with a mental health care professional.
- To harmonize and balance the material that is deficiency based, the program includes a deep investigation into the nature of the flow state (Samadhi) and in its role in healing and spiritual evolution. Topics include flow and the body, the flow of thought, flow and the workplace, flow and relationships, the fundamental tenets of positive psychology, the autotelic personality and etc.
Final Year of Practicum
The final year is solely focused on practicum and mentorship hours, meaning the yoga therapist in training practices and delivers principles previously learned in a public and private setting, working one-on-one and in group sessions. The mentorship relationship begins early in the training; however, it is the sole focus of the last year to increase proficiency in working in a clinical setting and developing a private client business.
Private Training Site
We have a private training site for all of our YTT/YT programs. This comprehensive site consists of each program and their manuals broken into the various sections for easy accessibility in finding and referencing content. We video record each intensive, at all the locations offered, so in addition to your manual, you have access to lectures, sequences, corrective strategies, practices and more on the site. The site is also used for homework assignments, and being in touch with the program faculty.
This resource also allows you to continue growing your knowledge in between intensives via the digital platform.
- Applicant must have completed a 200YTT and Circle Yoga Shala's 300YTT
- Applicant must have at least one (1) year of teaching in public setting
- Circle Yoga Shala's 300YTT (500RYT) course.
- Due to the specific content and nature of our program we do not accept credit transfers.
- Applications (and application fee) must be submitted at least 1 month before the start of the program.
- Deposits to be paid within 10 days of acceptance into the program.
- If the program is scheduled to begin within 10 days of acceptance, full tuition is paid instead.
- Enrollment form to be signed at time of deposit.
- Tuition paid in full 15 days before the start of the program.
- Course fee does not include accommodations.
- See school policies on fees, refunds, transfers, etc.
- See shala page for logistics and to sign waiver
- Apply Here
Yoga Therapy Fees
(Fees for Year 1: Pre-requisite 300YTT, see 500RYT page).
- Move Well, 11-day Intensive: $1950
- Breathe Well, 11-day Intensive: $1950
- Feel Well, 11-day Intensive: $1950
- Live Well, 11-day Intensive: $1950
- Year of practicum and mentorship: $1200
- Total Program fee: $9000
- $400 deposit to secure spot
- One and done, 10% discount: $7740 (per module fees, minus deposit, minus discount)
Accommodations are separate and can be paid upon arrival. See accommodations available.
Dorm lodging including meals: $60/day
Private sleeper room including meals: $80/day
There are two private homes available to rent. Rental including meals:
- Rustic cabin in the woods $120/day
- Modern home $160/day
Please note, laundry service is not included in the summer program's accommodations and can be done by hand or at the laundry mat in town. Also, the telephone in the main house is not for personal use except in the case of emergencies. (The local phone provider does not offer unlimited long distance). You are welcome to give the number to family/friends to be able to easily reach you if necessary.