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The 5 Best Books for Yoga Teachers

books for yoga teacher training

When you were working through your 200-hour yoga teacher training, you most likely read several books, such as The Bhagavad Gita, Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, and The Upanishads. While there is incredible knowledge to be found in those texts, we feel it’s important to continue learning and growing in your yoga journey, and we’re sure you feel the same way! However, there are countless volumes and books available, so it may be hard to choose which ones will be the most beneficial to you as a yoga follower and as a teacher. That’s why we are sharing the five best books for yoga teachers to continue in their study.

Hatha Yoga Pradipika

Many teachers read Hatha Yoga Pradipika during their original yoga teacher training, but if you did not, this essential tome should be first on your list (and why it’s first on ours!). As a “treatise” on hatha yoga, this book goes into incredible detail about the entire science of hatha yoga along with the spiritual perspective, including the asana, pranayama, shatkarma, mudra, and bandha. You’ll get an in-depth look beyond the health and fitness aspect, and provides in-depth detail of what it means to awaken the vital energies. While it sounds incredibly clinical, it’s actually very easy to absorb and understand, even for new teachers and lay practitioners.

The Secret Power of Yoga: A Woman’s Guide to the Heart and Spirit of the Yoga Sutras

The Secret Power of Yoga: A Woman’s Guide to the Heart and Spirit of the Yoga Sutras by Nischala Joy Devi is a feminine interpretation of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras. While you most likely read Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras while in your yoga teacher training, this provides a contrast to the traditional interpretation. Devi’s translation comes from a heart-focused, feminine perspective that shifts away from the analytical and embraces the intuitive.

Nischala Joy Devi has been teaching yoga for over 30 years and is also the author of The Healing Path of Yoga, and she is a trusted voice. The Secret Power of Yoga goes beyond sharing information, the words are kind and loving, providing a warm comfort as you take it in.

Art and Business of Teaching Yoga

If you want to open your own studio, create online classes, or find new ways to ethically monetize teaching yoga, The Art and Business of Teaching Yoga by Amy Ippoliti and Taro Smith is a great place to get information. It covers the foundation of what you need to start your business, plus you’ll get information on social media marketing, the best ways to communicate with prospective, new, and existing clients, and tap into new opportunities. Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in business for awhile, you can find practical information for how to build and improve your practice.

Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body

Jessamyn Stanley is a powerful voice in the growing Yoga for Every Body movement. Dedicated to breaking stereotypes in the yoga community to create a more welcoming environment for all types of people, her book, Every Body Yoga: Let Go of Fear, Get on the Mat, Love Your Body can be eye-opening and educational for yoga instructors.

While it’s great for lay practitioners to learn yoga poses and take their place in the yoga community, instructors will learn how to modify poses for all body types as well as to how to become more respectful and welcoming to diversity in their classes.

The Yamas & Niyamas: Exploring Yoga’s Ethical Practice

The Yamas & Niyamas: Exploring Yoga’s Ethical Practice is a modern look at how Yamas and Niyamas – the first two limbs of the 8-fold path of the yoga sutras – can be interpreted to the modern practitioner. For example, the Yamas refer to the “restraints” such as nonviolence and nonexcess. Author Debora Adele takes a concept like brahmacharya, which is generally translated to mean celibacy, and shifts the meaning of “walking with God” and explains how this can be applied. Each chapter also offers a self-study section that you can use for notes to lead powerful philosophy discussions in your classes or online groups.

Learn About Our Yoga Teacher Training Programs

If you haven’t received your 200-hour yoga teacher certification or you’d like to move onto your 300-hour yoga teacher training, we can help. We offer several types of yoga teacher training classes to help you meet your goals and step into your purpose. To learn more about them, reach out to us today at 919-971-1431 or fill out our contact form.

Though introduced to yoga over 30 years ago, Martha has been teaching yoga since 2001. She received her 200 hour yoga training in 2003 and is now an E-RYT 500. Additional education: M.S. in Health Psychology, Integrative Health Coach and Mindful Awareness Meditation instructor (Duke Integrative Medicine), and over 800 hours of Yoga Therapy training. She has a school for 200 hour and beginning in the winter of 2014, a 300 hour advanced yoga certification which will award a cumulative 500 hour teacher training in compliance with Yoga Alliance. Martha's envisions yoga as a form of health, healing and well being for all people. Her students range from health professionals to yoga practitioners seeking a deeper understanding of the benefits of yoga. See all of our yoga classes.

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