With the rise of Instagram and exotic yoga retreats, most people, when they imagine themselves doing a yoga teacher training, probably picture themselves doing yoga on the beach, against the backdrop of a glorious sunset, or sipping green juices in the sun in between practice sessions. Most people probably don’t immediately think of the UK, with its ubiquitous rain and stodgy carbs (no offence to those who love a Sunday roast!), as a valid yoga teacher training destination. And yet there are plenty of reasons to consider doing a training in the UK, not least because there are some fantastic – and well-renowned – teachers right here on your very doorstep.
We’ve rounded up the top 10 UK trainings to help narrow down your search and get your teaching journey started today!
Merchant City Yoga
|Glasgow, Scotland||from £2820|
|Leeds, England (or online)||£2750|
|Aberdeen, Scotland||from £2000|
Classical Yoga School
|Scotland and Surrey||from £2370|
Waking Minds Yoga
|Scotland and Cotswolds (England)||£2350|
Himalayan Yoga Institute
1. Merchant City Yoga
Set in the heart of Glasgow city centre, Merchant City Yoga is one of the most established and well-respected yoga studios in Glasgow, specialising in Ashtanga-Vinyasa yoga. What is most exciting about their 200hr training is that, besides covering all the usual basics of anatomy, history, philosophy, and asanas, the course also covers quite unusual and interesting topics such as self-reflection and understanding (including Myers-Briggs personality testing), NLP, mindfulness, and nutrition, providing you a genuinely holistic training to help you stand out from the crowd. There is also a 6-hour emergency first aid course (not included in the fee), plus a ‘business of yoga’ module, covering marketing, insurance and accounting – extremely helpful if you are looking to make teaching your career.
The course is non-residential and takes places over a year (September to August), with classes being held one weekend a month (Friday night and all-day Saturday). This is a great option if you don’t have the time to attend a month-long intensive training, and allows you to incorporate the teachings into your practice gradually, as you go along.
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Price: from £2820
Style: 200hr Ashtanga-Vinyasa
2. Yoga Hero
Yoga Hero has been gaining recognition as one of the leading teacher training schools in the North of England, with a variety of trainings on offer, such as short advanced anatomy trainings, meditation trainings, 50-hour yin yoga trainings, and more. Their 200-hour Vinyasa training places a heavy importance on safety, both in terms of alignment and adjustments, which ties in with their ‘yoga is for everyone’ approach (the name comes from the idea that just stepping on to your mat, and prioritising your yoga practice, is a real ‘hero’s journey’). There’s also a lot of emphasis placed on teaching methodology and giving you hands-on experience of teaching from the beginning, with the option of assisting in their ‘pay as you feel’ community classes. Considering that many traditional yoga schools (particularly in India) tend to focus on theory and philosophy at the expense of teaching practice and methodology, this is a truly invaluable and rare opportunity.
The course is semi-intensive, taking place over 3 months – Thursday to Sunday (all day) plus one whole week (Saturday to Saturday) – so requires a greater commitment and that you can take this amount of time off work, etc. Alternatively, they offer an entirely online version of the same training, which also takes place over 3 months but in the evenings (3 days a week) and every weekend (all day).
Location: Leeds, England (or online)
Style: 200hr Vinyasa Flow
3. LKY Yoga
One of the most reasonably priced 200-hour teacher trainings on offer, the course at LKY Yoga covers all the basic information you would expect as well as some more unusual modules such as Ayurveda and Tantra. The school also offers a wealth of other, highly unusual, trainings for those that wish to continue their studies, including astrology for yoga teachers, teen yoga training, yoga for mental health training, mythology yoga teacher training, and so on. There is also a mentorship programme for teachers who wish to continue receiving support after the training.
The 200-hour course is held monthly (2-3 days), over 9 months. There is also a much cheaper online version (£1300) for those who prefer online study.
Location: Aberdeen, Scotland
Price: from £2000
Style: 200hr or 300hr
No list of UK trainings would be complete with mentioning TriYoga – an institution in London, attracting some of the best and most renowned teachers from around the world. They offer two foundational trainings (as well as advanced and specialist trainings): a 200-hour training with Bridget Woods Kramer, and a 220-hour TriYoga training. Both courses are extremely in-depth, covering the basic foundations such as anatomy, history, philosophy, adjustments, and so on.
The 200hr training takes place over 9 months – one full weekend a month, plus a nine-day intensive. The 220hr training takes place over 18 months and is aimed at those who want to continue working full-time alongside the training. Both courses however require a serious commitment to one’s own practice, and emphasise that certification is not a given; it must be earned (including passing an assessment).
5. Classical Yoga School
Starting out life as the Chi Yoga School in Scotland in 2003, CYS has become known as a “Centre of Excellence” in the UK for yoga training. Under the leadership of June Mitchell the school expanded into the South of England (Surrey), providing Yoga Alliance accredited trainings that focus on Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga, but with modules in Sivananda Hatha Yoga, Iyengar Yoga and Flow Yoga. The course is the same as that offered at Merchant City Yoga in Glasgow (since Judi Farrell, the owner of MCY, is also the leader teacher for CYS), giving those in the South of England an opportunity to take this highly accredited training.
Location: Scotland and Surrey
Price: from £2370
If lineage is important to you, the training at the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre in London is the same course that was originally developed and taught by Swami Vishnudevananda – the “first yoga master in the West” in 1969, now taught by his senior disciplines around the world. With this strong sense of tradition and heritage, you can be assured that the training is the ‘real deal’ – in other words, authentic, and deeply steeped in yogic culture and history. Besides the usual core modules, there are also invaluable teachings on nutrition and ayurveda, kriya (yogic cleansing practices), and kirtan (devotional chanting).
One of the few intensive and residential trainings in the UK, the course is 4 weeks, with accommodation and food provided at the centre, making it a great alternative for anyone who would have liked to undertake a traditional intensive training in India but can’t due to covid restrictions (or just to save money on flights, visas, quarantine, vaccinations, and so on).
7. Indaba Yoga
Another of London’s most famous yoga institutions is Indaba Yoga, based in the centre of the city. Like TriYoga, Indaba offers a 200hr training that, although nothing new in terms of the syllabus, stands out on the basis of their teaching staff and the experience they bring to the training. While the course equips you to teach Hatha Raja and Vinyasa yoga, the lead teacher – Ambra Vallo – is trained in Dharma yoga, Rocket, Forest, and Ashtanga, giving you insight into these disciplines as part of the training.
Taking place over 3 months, the course is semi-intensive and non-residential, involving two long weekends, and two week-long intensives (one at the start and one at the end).
Style: 200hr Hatha & Vinyasa
8. Cam Yoga
Set in the traditional market town of Cambridge (famous for its University and punting!), Cam Yoga offers a 200-hour training that emphasises the practical aspects of teaching (alongside the foundational knowledge of anatomy, history of yoga, etc.) including a 6 week ‘teaching beginners’ module, giving you the confidence to go out and start teaching immediately upon graduation. The course is offered either in a 10-month format (one weekend per month approx.), or as an intensive 3-month training. Both options are non-residential and don’t include the 20-hour online anatomy module (led by world-renowned anatomy teacher, Leslie Kaminoff) that you are expected to study in your own time.
Location: Cambridge, England
9. Waking Minds Yoga
If you’re looking to combine a yoga retreat with gaining your certification to teach, and you don’t want the hassle of travelling abroad (especially in these uncertain times), then Waking Minds Yoga might be exactly what you need! Providing residential, intensive courses in beautiful remote settings (for example, the Scottish Highlands), Waking Minds only accepts 6 residential students on a course, meaning that you will receive a huge amount of personal, one-to-one contact and get to know the other students and teachers intimately. Given the setting, this training also offers a tranquil and peaceful setting to go on a journey of deep personal reflection and introspection.
The trainings take place over around 2 weeks, but you are also required to do homework and assignments after the training (you have 3 months to complete these). The Scottish trainings include accommodation (there is a separate fee for this), while the Cotswold training requires you to find your own local accommodation. There is also a 300-hour training and a pre/postnatal training for those who wish to continue their journey with Waking Minds.
Location: Scotland and Cotswolds (England)
Price: £2350 (not including accommodation)
Style: 200hr or 300hr
10. Himalayan Yoga Institute
If you’re looking for a semi-intensive course, and would also like something a bit different to the standard Hatha/Vinyasa teachings, then the Birmingham training at the Himalayan Yoga Institute may be just what you need! One of the most unique trainings on offer in the UK, the school only accepts 4 students per training, making this a truly personalised and intimate experience. Moreover, the style of yoga taught is based predominantly on Tantra yoga, including unusual modules such as Bio-psychology (how hormones and glands affect the different physiological functions such as emotions) and balancing the endocrine system, nutrition and Ayurveda, Karma and reincarnation, Kundalini yoga, and so much more. The course is also extremely detailed and comprehensive (learning over 66 basic postures!), as well as providing you with 10 teaching templates upon graduation to help you get started teaching right away.
Set in the countryside outside Birmingham, the training takes place over 3 months, beginning with a seven-day intensive course (for which accommodation and vegan food is provided at an extra cost), followed by weekend sessions.
Location: Birmingham (England)
Price: £2100 (not including accommodation or food)
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