I Did Yoga Teacher Training Over 40 And You Can Too! Why You Can Do YTT At Any Age

Hey aspiring yoga teacher! Whether you're a man or a woman wondering if you can do yoga teacher training over 40 or at any age, the answer is YES! I did yoga teacher training over 40 and you can do it too!

The decision to commit to a yoga teacher training certification course is a serious one. Yoga teacher training will require your financial investment, your time and dedication, some weeks of sore muscles, and then some! But I don't know about you, but I feel better and more committed and stable over forty than ever before!

It’s understandable that you might have questions before embarking upon the YTT educational path that will shape your future as a yoga teacher. It's important to choose the right YTT for you as an individual, and it’s important to know what you’re getting into. 

Let’s get right into some fundamental questions you might want to have answered before beginning a yoga teacher training certification course as a member of the forty-plus crowd!

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Can you do yoga teacher training over 40 or 50 years old? Yes, of course you can!

You certainly can do yoga teacher training over 40 – I did it! Now, the cat is out of the bag about my age, but I want to be candid about doing yoga teacher training over forty years old. 

For anyone over forty who feels any trepidation about getting certified to teach yoga – don’t! In fact, according to Zippia, 40% of yoga teachers are forty plus.

Learn about my experience as a forty-something who did yoga teacher training with Briohny Smyth to get my inside scoop on the matter.

In case you don't know, Bri (who is also over 40!) now offers online yoga teacher training (and in-person) where you can learn her signature Aligned Yoga method. It’s an amazing opportunity and experience.

Completing yoga teacher training at any age is worthwhile because it deepens your personal practice, enhances your understanding of yoga philosophy and anatomy, and equips you with the skills to teach others.

of yoga teachers
40+ years old40%
30-40 years old31%
20-30 years old27%

Frankly, yes, yes you can do yoga teacher training at any age. Yoga is ageless.

People of all ages practice yoga, and people of all ages can teach yoga or take yoga teacher training for whatever reason.

One of my favorite interpretations of the Yoga Sutras is of the first line of the second book of the Yoga Sutras, which says this: Tapa svadhyay-esvarapranidhanani kriya-yogah.

In her book Yoga Life, Brett Larkin translates that Sutra to mean: yoga in action is self-awareness, transformation, and surrender.

Why do I bring that sutra into the conversation about age and yoga teacher training? Because “yoga” does not just mean “doing” hard yoga poses. Yoga is as much of a practice of tapping into our inner wisdom and living life according to it as it is a movement practice.

And what comes with age? Wisdom. So, in fact, I think we need more yoga teachers who are in their wiser years or later chapters.

Yoga instructor age breakdown chart.

So now that we've covered the fact that any age and any level can do yoga teacher training, let's dive into the physical part of doing yoga teacher training.

Before enrolling in any YTT, you should consider the type of yoga teacher training you want to take.

Different types of yoga teacher training courses are more physically demanding. For example, an Ashtanga yoga teacher training is more physically rigorous than a Kundalini yoga teacher training, while a Restorative yoga teacher training is less physically demanding than a Vinyasa training.

Vinyasa and Ashtanga training will be physically challenging, and you will likely have two full-length asana practices per day, plus individual poses you are learning each day. However, modifications are always an option.

My advice is that if you're going to opt for a physically challenging YTT, prepare for it by getting yourself into the best physical shape you're capable of. And why not do that anyway, right? And at any age.

Can a beginner do yoga teacher training?

Being familiar with yoga postures is certainly beneficial as a yoga teacher trainee, but beginners can do yoga teacher training so long as they are committed to their yoga practice.

With just a few months of consistent yoga practice, beginners might find that the most common poses become second nature. And when that happens, you're really not a “beginner” anymore.

Aside from being familiar with all of the basic postures and asanas, having a strong practice before beginning your teacher training program will prepare your body so that you don't get as sore (hopefully!) from the daily yoga sessions that will be a part of your yoga certification course.

In fact, some may say there are benefits to being newer to yoga as a teacher trainee. You won’t need to do a lot of “unlearning” which some experienced yogis may find themselves doing in teacher training. I certainly did a lot of unlearning anyway. I needed to unlearn some bad habits.

You should have a consistent yoga practice to keep up with the physical demands of yoga teacher training. But that doesn’t mean you need to be an advanced yogi, by any means.

How long should you do yoga before teacher training?

You don't need to be a 10-year veteran yogi to take a yoga teacher training. However, having some months or years of experience as a practicing yogi will certainly make some facets of yoga teacher training easier. 

For example, if yoga poses come second nature to you, you can work on refining the postures you'll study in YTT (yoga teacher training) rather than trying them for the first time.

However, if you're quite new to yoga and you are eager to do a TTC (teacher training course), I suggest that you create flashcards and memorize the poses before beginning your studies. 

I also recommend establishing a consistent yoga practice before your teacher training begins. You can get 25% off Alo Moves here and take Sri Dharma Mittra’s beginner yoga series on Alo Moves, which breaks down 36 basic yoga poses. Each yoga posture even has its own video tutorial.

For photo images of each asana with definitions, check out Yoga Journal’s pose guide, which has everything you need.

↓Great Yoga Alliance approved yoga teacher trainings you should look into↓

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Takeaway on doing yoga teacher training at any age

Now that you know you can take yoga teacher training at 40, 50, 70, or at any age, it’s time to treat yourself and your soul!

Discover the best yoga teacher training in Thailand if you've been dreaming of training in Paradise!

FAQ about yoga teacher training

Can a beginner do yoga teacher training?

Yes, a beginner can do yoga teacher training, but it is recommended that you have a strong and consistent yoga practice and are very familiar with the basic yoga poses. But you do not need to be at the level of doing handstands or firefly pose.

Can I teach yoga without a certification?

You will not be able to get a job as a yoga teacher without being a certified yoga instructor.

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Heather is a Certified Yoga Teacher the visionary behind The Yogatique, her passion project. She created The Yogatique to help yogis & other growth-oriented individuals discover premium high quality trainings and classes in the yoga & wellness space. Heather is a RYT-200 and a practicing yogi of more than 15 years. She is also a global citizen who has been living abroad for 10 years. Her passions include health & fitness, studying healthspan & longevity, exploring the road less traveled, & SEO. Heather can be reached at heatherj@theyogatique.com, or you can connect with Heather on LinkedIn.


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