Online Versus In-Person 200-Hour Yoga Teacher Training (Differences Between Course Types)

Hey yogi, did you come upon this article because you feel called to share your love for yoga by becoming a certified 200-hour yoga teacher? Now is your time. Are you ready to find the perfect yoga teacher training that aligns with you – your body, soul, and budget?! If so, I wrote this guide about the difference between online and in-person yoga teacher training for you.

This article has everything you need to know about online and in-person 200 hr yoga teacher training. \

If you want to discover more about what your 200 hr yoga teacher training might look like online vs in-person, keep reading. I’m sharing what a YTT 200 journey is all about.

So what exactly does a YTT 200 involve and include? How long does it take to complete the course, and what are the requirements? 

I'm answering those questions and more, so without further ado, let's get to it. 


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What is a YTT 200?

YTT 200 literally means Yoga Teacher Training 200 hours. 200-hour yoga teacher training is the foundational training course for avid yogis who want to share their passion by teaching the practice to others or yogis or for yogis who want to take their knowledge to the next level. 

A YTT 200 is the most basic yoga teaching certificate recognized by Yoga Alliance (US), the International Yoga Federation, and other organizations that register yoga teachers. Although yoga teachers do not need a teaching certificate by law, most have completed at least 200-hours of training.

200-hour yoga instructor certification courses include a complete, well-rounded curriculum. You'll learn about the different limbs of yoga. This includes:

  • asana
  • meditation
  • pranayama
  • philosophy
  • anatomy

That being said, every YTT 200 course differs, depending on the school and the course teachers. For example, some may focus more on certain aspects of yoga more than others. Thus, it's essential to do your research before choosing which yoga teacher training program to join. 

But even though the trainings will differ, all Yoga Alliance-registered 200-hour yoga courses (online and in-person) conducted by RYSs (Registered Yoga Schools) must meet certain standards for the curriculum to be approved by Yoga Alliance.

RYT 200 requirements for online & in-person training

As the name suggests, a 200-hour yoga teacher training consists of 200 hours of required study of yoga theory, practice teaching, and maintaining your own personal asana practice.

CategoryCategoryCategoryCategoryCategory
Techniques Training & Practice:
(75 hours)
Anatomy & Physiology:
(30 hours)
Yoga Humanities:
(30 hours)
Professional Essentials:
(50 hours)
Elective Hours: (15 hours)
AsanaAnatomyHistoryTeaching methodologyElective hours
Pranayama & Subtle bodyPhysiologyPhilosophyProfessional development
MeditationBiomechanicsEthicsPracticum

Every yoga teacher training certification course also includes exams, which you must pass to earn your certificate and register with Yoga Alliance. You can't omit taking the exams if you have no plans to teach yoga. 

A YTT 200 hour is the most common type of yoga teaching certification you will find because it is a foundational yoga teacher training. It's where you learn the fundamentals of anatomy, poses, cueing, and more.

There are more advanced yoga certification options beyond 200-hr. The requirements for 300-hour and 500-hour teacher training certificates require more study and practical hours.

As mentioned above, all 200-hour yoga teacher training courses must meet certain criteria. But there are other differences between the experience of online yoga teacher training and in-person.

AspectOnline Yoga Teacher TrainingIn-Person Yoga Teacher Training
FlexibilityHigh: self-paced or scheduled online sessionsLow: fixed schedule and location
CostLower: $400 – $3,000Higher: up to $10,000 including travel and accommodation
InteractionLimited: primarily virtualHigh: face-to-face interaction with instructors and peers
ImmersionModerate: depends on program structureHigh: full immersion in yoga practice and community
Learning MethodsOnline modules, video lectures, digital manualsIn-person classes, physical practice, printed manuals
DurationVariable: can be completed in a few weeks to monthsIntensive: 4-6 weeks; Part-time: 7-12 months
AccessibilityAccessible from anywhereRequires travel to a specific location

A 200-hour online yoga certificate course is offered in a few different formats:

  1. Totally self-paced certification training
  2. Hybrid live & online certification course
  3. Drip format online program
  4. Completely live online yoga teacher training

1. Totally self-paced online certification training

For this type of online yoga teacher training, you are given login credentials to the course, and you move through the learning modules completely at your own pace. 

  • Self-paced training is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who wants the ultimate flexibility and the least amount of structure. 
  • Price: $ Self-paced online yoga teacher training is typically the most affordable yoga teacher training option because it costs the least amount for the yoga schools to conduct and operate.
  • Learning methods: Online modules with lectures and demonstrations. Digital yoga teacher training manual.

2. Hybrid live & online certification course

For this type of yoga course, you will convene with your instructors and classmates multiple times each week over Zoom (or similar) for live lectures, yoga practice, and learning sessions. These live sessions supplement the online learning course.
For the most part, live sessions are recorded as well, so being in a different time zone isn’t a show-stopper unless you want to actually be present for the live sessions. 

  • Hybrid training is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who wants a more personalized learning experience. 
  • Price: $$$ The price point of live online yoga teacher training is higher than self-paced options because they are more personalized and require more support from the teaching faculty.
  • Learning methods: Live lectures, yoga teacher training manual (printed and mailed to you, or digital, depending on the course)

3. Drip format online program

This style of yoga training is interesting in that the learning modules are released to students on a set schedule. I like this option because it gives students some structure, but also some flexibility. In this type of training, you will also likely be meeting over Zoom (or similar) throughout the course with your classmates and instructors for Q&A and discussion.

  • Drip-format is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who wants a bit of personal interaction with their instructor and classmates.
  • Price: $$
  • Learning methods: Yoga teacher training manual (usually printed and mailed to you)

4. Completely live online yoga teacher training

Completely live online yoga teacher training (with no supplemental online course) is being offered less and less. I think that live online yoga teacher trainings are too restrictive and sort of defeats the purpose of online yoga teacher training, in a sense.
I would hesitate to join a completely live course because the static camera on a live course could miss out on a lot of the training if the lesson happens to go out of view at any moment. A well-curated course of another kind might actually offer a much more procured and refined learning experience.

  • Live online yoga teacher training is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who has a wide open schedule and can be available anytime live learning is in progress.
  • Price: $$$$
  • Learning methods: Yoga teacher training manual (typically mailed to you)

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A 200-hour in-person yoga certificate course is offered in two different main formats:

  1. Intensive in-person YTT200 course
  2. Part-time in-person 200-hour yoga teacher training

1. Intensive in-person YTT200 course

In intensive types of yoga instructor trainings you fully immerse yourself in your practice. You literally “live yoga” for those 4 weeks, so you experience the practice in a way you've never done before. As the name implies, this is intense!

Aside from being intense, an in-person YTT 200 is the most expensive option for yoga teacher training and, of course, requires students to take a few weeks off of work and travel to a far-off destination!

A typical 200-hour intensive yoga certificate course could look like this: 
12-hour days (from 7am to 7pm) 6 days a week for 4 weeks. 

  • Intensive training is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who wants to get their qualification quickly and start teaching ASAP.
  • Price: $$$$
  • Learning methods: Printed yoga teacher training manual

2. Part-time in-person 200-hour yoga teacher training 

If an intensive course sounds too full on for you or you can’t spend several weeks away from home or work, a part-time in-person yoga trainer course may be a better fit.

  • Part-time training is ideal for: This is ideal for a yogi who has other commitments like family and work.
  • Price: $$$$
  • Learning methods: Printed yoga teacher training manual

Qualifications to apply for YTT

The qualifications to apply for 200-hour yoga teacher training differ from school to school. Some schools require that you have been practicing yoga for a specific duration, which could be anything from 6 months to 3 years. This demonstrates that you have a strong passion for yoga and a basic understanding of the practice. The most important part being the passion part!

Many yoga enthusiasts have the misconception that they need to be able to perform specific advanced asanas like handstands or inversions or have a strong Vinyasa practice to be accepted onto a RYT 200 program. However, you'll be pleased to hear this is not the case. You do not need to be an advanced Hatha yoga practitioner to enroll in training.

There are no specific asana requirements to enroll in yoga training, so whether you can do a headstand or not makes no difference. It is however very beneficial if you have attended enough yoga classes in your life to make you very familiar with the yoga poses.

Teaching and practicing yoga require two different skill sets. You don't need to be able to do every pose or be super flexible to teach an effective yoga class. 

The purpose of 200 hour yoga teacher training is to teach you the skills you need to lead yoga classes; improving your asana performance is just a pleasant bonus! 

Likewise, there are no age requirements. In my 200-hour, my classmates ranged from 20 to 60 years old.

Is 200-hour yoga teacher training enough? 

200 hours of study should give you enough knowledge and practice to start instructing classes. However, some better prepare you to teach yoga than others. 

It's normal to finish a 200-hour feeling a little unconfident about teaching. However, a good 200-hour yoga teacher training will give you the skills and knowledge to structure safe and beneficial classes.

That being said, many yoga teachers (and practitioners) decide to do additional training to further their personal practice or increase their teaching skills. But when it comes to teaching yoga, sometimes it is just a case of teaching and gaining experience. 

I found that the more I taught, the more confident I became, and the better I became at it. Thus, a mix of study and real-life teaching will help you become the best teacher you can be. 

Cost of online yoga teacher training vs in-person

When deciding between online and in-person yoga teacher training, cost is a significant factor. Online programs range from $400 to nearly $3,000. Local in-person options start at around $3,000 while a destination in-person course could be an upwards of $10,000 all in.

Each format presents unique financial considerations that prospective students should evaluate based on their personal circumstances.

The cost of online yoga teacher training starts at around $400 and goes up to nearly $3,000, depending on the yoga school's credentials, experience, and reputation. There is also nearly every price point in between.

If you are keen to attend a more “prestigious” training that is more expensive, all schools offer multiple payment options. You can spread the payments out over many months.

In-person yoga teacher training could easily be a $10,000 expense when considering all expenses such as flights, the yoga teacher training itself, food & accommodation, and time away from work. A local in-person training will start at $3,000.

OnlineIn-person
$400 – $3,000$3,000 – $10,000

Takeaway

Now you know the different types of yoga teacher training, you can decide which is best for you. 

With an in-person intensive YTT, you can get your certification quickly and have a transformational experience as well as an educational one.

Meanwhile, part-time in-person courses allow you to study while maintaining your full-time job. Alternatively, a 200-hour online yoga teacher training may be ideal if you want a less expensive and more flexible option.

Whichever you choose, a 200-hour yoga teacher training will bring you many benefits and you will be prepared to start applying for jobs as a yoga teacher should you choose to take that next step!

FAQ about YTT 200

What is the difference between YTT 200 and RYT 200?

YTT 200 is a 200 hour yoga teacher training. RYT 200 is a Registered Yoga Teacher 200 hours. A RYT 200 has successfully completed a YTT 200, and has registered with Yoga Alliance, and they are certified to teach.

What is the difference between a registered yoga teacher and a certified yoga teacher?

A Registered Yoga Teacher has registered as a member of Yoga Alliance. A Certified Yoga Teacher has successfully completed 200 hour yoga teacher training, but they may have chosen not to register with Yoga Alliance, or they may not have registered yet but plan to. Both Registered Yoga Teachers and Certified Yoga Teachers are qualified to teach yoga.

Some online yoga studios, online yoga teacher training programs, and brands that we write about may offer us a small commission should you decide to make a purchase or signup after reading our content. Thank you for enabling us to exist!

Gemma
Gemma

Gemma is a Certified Yoga Teacher of over 5 years. Aside from being a CYT 200, Gemma is also certified in Yin and Yoga Nidra. Gemma is passionate about sharing her expertise of yoga and wellness through words, guiding others along the path of personal and spiritual development. She is in LOVE with everything related to personal-growth and psychology. Aside from helping others find more peace and stillness, Gemma runs a kitten rescue project in Thailand, where she is currently residing. Gemma can be reached at gemmac@theyogatique.com, or you can connect with Gemma on LinkedIn.

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