Become a guide for a global shift in consciousness.
Dear fellow yoga teacher,
Welcome to the best day of your life. We are excited you are here, now, and that you have checked in to see what our 300-hour advanced yoga teacher training is all about. As graduates of The Hard & The Soft 300-Hour Yoga Teacher Training program, we are a global family of 500-hour (and beyond) certified yoga teachers and practitioners working for the healing of our world. We are all yoga teachers but we are also full-time mothers, fathers, doctors, farmers, artists, professionals, and are taking our yoga out into the world in a million different ways. We teach in prisons and corporations, to veterans and seniors, to at-risk youth and to people recovering from cancer. We believe that the practice of yoga is a powerful evolutionary tool that can help people to become more conscious, more compassionate, and more concerned with the welfare of all. Whatever we do, we embrace the 8 limbs of yoga and speak up, calling out injustice. We are proactive leaders in our communities – working for clean food and drinkable water, for the rights of animals, women, minorities, and for the sustainability of Mother Earth and our environment. Yoga makes a difference in people’s lives, and we get to see that every day. We hope you will join us.
Beryl Bender Birch, Founder & Director
The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute Community
WHY CHOOSE THIS TRAINING?
There are eight reasons our yoga teacher training courses rank so highly when compared to hundreds of other programs, and are consistently rated in the top 5% nationally by our graduates and those who evaluate our programs.
- The students. Our programs attract top quality students and genuine, bright, compassionate human beings from all over the world. We consistently hear from our trainees and graduates that “this is the best group of people I have ever been a part of – I look forward to the training weekends because it feels like I am coming home.”
- The Sangha (community). Students meet and are supported by like-minded practitioners and forge lifetime friendships.
- The faculty. Unlike many other programs, our teachers have all been practicing and teaching for many years. Most are Certified Yoga Therapists (IAYT) and nationally renowned specialists in a wide variety of fields and yoga applications. Students would need to combine several different professional trainings in order to duplicate the comprehensive quality of our single program.
- The practice. There are many ways to teach yoga and many ways to practice. Every weekend includes study and practice in asana, pranayama, and meditation, in order to help students find and define their unique path. The foundation and primary focus of our asana study for the 200 hour training is a brilliant vinyasa sequence of postures called Present Power. It can be as challenging or as accommodating as desired. Every student is certified to teach this power vinyasa system, plus more moderate styles of the practice that are capable of being amended for all limitation and disability, as well as beginning forms of pranayama and meditation.
- The depth of training. Because all our faculty have actually been studying yoga and practicing all its aspects – asana, pranayama, meditation, service – for so many years, we can offer insight into the deeper dimensions of yoga that, frequently, the staff of other trainings does not have the experience to provide.
- The emphasis on service. Through our affiliation with The Give Back Yoga Foundation, we prepare our graduates for a career in yoga service and help them to take their practice out into the world and be the change they want to create.
- The Individualized Yoga Plan (IYP). Every student develops an Individualized Yoga Plan with help from faculty and the director of the studio where they are training. This provides students with a way to identify their dharma and pursue a path into the specialized field of their choice.
- The Director. Our Director, American yoga pioneer Beryl Bender Birch, is the founder/director of The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute and co-founder of the Give Back Yoga Foundation. As a best-selling author, (Power Yoga, Beyond Power Yoga, Yoga for Warriors) and teacher, Beryl has been teaching yoga and meditation internationally for over 40 years and is a longtime faculty member at Kripalu and Omega Institute. She graduated from Syracuse University with a degree in English and Philosophy, and began the study of meditation in 1971 with her teacher, Jain monk Munishree Chitrabhanu. She traveled to India in 1974 to further her studies and started practice of the ashtanga vinyasa asana system with her teacher, Norman Allen, in 1979. She continued to study with Sri K. Pattabhi Jois from 1987 through 1993. Her book Power Yoga (1995), an accessible form of the ashtanga asana practice, sold nearly 300,000 copies and was primarily responsible for introducing yoga to the athletic community. She, more than most, walks her talk…and is one of the brightest, most down to earth, knowledgeable, accessible, funny, and joyful people you will ever meet. One of her gifts is making authentic and therapeutic forms of asana accessible to all. Everyone on faculty has trained with her for decades and is at least a 1000-hour graduate of her school, The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute. Beryl’s vision trickles down from the top and infuses the program, the faculty, the community, and the students.
DELVE INTO A RICH CURRICULUM, AND GET CERTIFIED TO TEACH THE 8 LIMBED PATH OF CLASSICAL YOGA AS AN RYT500
The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute is a Registered Yoga School with Yoga Alliance at both the 200 and advanced 300-hour levels. After graduation from our 300-hour program, teachers are certified at the 500-hour level through The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute, and eligible for registry with Yoga Alliance. This course is open to any students and teachers who have already completed a 200-Hour training from any school registered with Yoga Alliance, including The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute; or by special permission from the course director.
Delve into a rigorous, in-depth study that includes:
- Supervised practice and observation of asana, yoga techniques and methodology
- Pranayama, meditation and yoga Nidra – practice and teach
- Training in diverse asana styles
- Asana modification and variations for special populations
- Safe, supportive and appropriate hands-on assistance
- Anatomy, physiology and correct posture alignment
- Reading energy fields and prana flow
- Subtle energies, prana, and the nadis and chakras
- The art of sequencing asana, pranayama and meditation
- Specialized study in adaptive yoga and practices for trauma and anxiety disorders
- Study of the angas (eight limbs) and the Yoga Sutra
- History of yoga and the ancient yoga texts (Bhagavad Gita, Upanishads, etc.)
- Ayurveda, nutrition, plant-based diet and wellness
- Living the yoga lifestyle
- Leadership training and exploration of social activism
- Marketing your studio or your programs
- Selling your Self without selling your soul
- Healing the World and finding your dharma
BUILD A FOUNDATION FOR YOUR CAREER IN YOGA SERVICE.
Is your dream to share with others the ongoing benefits you derive from your own practice of asana and mindfulness? This outstanding course curriculum will help you to expand your class offerings, and reach a wider variety of students. It will also provide a strong foundation to establish a career in yoga service, and begin to work with special populations.
Find your dharma and tell us your dream. We will help you devise an Individualized Yoga Plan (IYP) based on what you hope to do, and where in the world you want to focus your teaching. Your IYP also prepares you to continue your studies in any of the specialized yoga service programs of the Give Back Yoga Foundation: working with veterans and trauma survivors through Mindful Yoga Therapy, sharing tools for transformation through Prison Yoga Project, helping survivors maintain wellness through yoga4cancer, and supporting long-term recovery from addiction and eating disorders through Yoga of 12-Step Recovery and Eat Breathe Thrive.
The Hard & The Soft’s 300-hour Teacher Training program is open to all 200-hour certified teachers who sincerely wish to make a difference in the world by sharing the transformative practices and philosophies of classical yoga. Get started by finding a training near you, and applying to the program.
About Heartsong Yoga Center
Heartsong Yoga Center, located in East Longmeadow, Massachusetts, is spacious and beautiful, and fully equipped for every class. Two large rooms are devoted to yoga and meditation. The core class schedule is designed so that new students can begin their yoga practice in any class, at any time.
Established in 1993, our classes are taught in authentic traditions, steeped in the lineage of Kripalu and Ashtanga Yoga. We are proud of our professional, experienced teachers, and our full schedule of a variety of classes held seven days a week.
The studios are air conditioned, cool and inviting in the summertime, and are warm and cozy in the winter! Ashtanga and flow classes are always done in a warmer room, so expect those classes to stay hot all through every season! You will enjoy the newly renovated studio, with bamboo hardwood floors and eco friendly design.
All of Heartsong’s yoga teachers are encouraged to meet or exceed the National Yoga Alliance’s 200 hour certification standards, with many hours of study in yoga philosophy, asana, pranayama, anatomy, and specialized training. Each teacher brings to the classroom their personal passion, life experience, and unique gifts. Many of Heartsong’s teachers are certified at the 500 hour professional level and beyond.