The Yogasara Advanced Teacher Training Course

300 hours leading to YAP (Yoga Alliance Professionals) teaching qualification, starts April 2025

The Yogasara Advanced Teacher Training Course is a journey of Self discovery and Empowerment. We will dive deeply into the rich and diverse body of knowledge known as Yoga. Honouring tradition alongside fresh and innovative approaches, you will be supported to foster and enrich your own authentic teaching style. Become a more confident, inspiring teacher and empower your students with deeper knowledge and presence.

This course is an immersion into the Yogasara Method. An immersion intended to elicit more from you as a teacher. It is also a journey of personal transformation. The Yogasara Method includes practices that can facilitate revelation so that your teaching is inspired by your own ‘knowing’.

Who is this course for? Yogasara Teacher Training graduates; those who have completed a minimum of 200 hours with any other accredited school; it is also suitable for 500 hour graduates who want to undertake a training in Yoga Tantra.

We offer the content of this training in response to feedback from teachers who want to go deeper, along with our own insights and reflections after many years of offering teacher trainings.

Therefore this course has a dual focus: to take you deeper into your own personal Sadhana and to equip you with more knowledge and teaching skills.

The course takes place over 10 weekends and a one week retreat. Led by Sarah Harlow with assistants and guest teachers who are experts in their field.

Why Yogasara?

  • “Yogasara” means “the Essence of Yoga”. We are passionate about upholding the essence of Yoga as a profound wisdom tradition that facilitates empowerment on and off the mat!
  • We are one of the longest standing studios in Bristol and have been offering TT’s since 2008.
  • We have trained many of Bristol’s most popular teachers including some who have now gone on to offer their own trainings.
  • Our course director Sarah Harlow has been practicing Yoga for 30 years and is also a transpersonal psychologist / psychotherapist. She brings a wealth of knowledge and experience.
  •  All our course tutors are senior teachers and bring expertise from their related professions into the mix.
  • All our courses are in-person. We flourish in and feel safer in the physical presence of other humans, and there is greater potential to deepen relationships and embody the teachings.
  • You will receive a warm welcome from Yogasara, our studio is a CIC and we hold Community at the heart of our offerings.
  • Previous students consistently feedback how safe, loved and seen they felt and that they make meaningful and lasting connections with other students.
  • All our courses are trauma-informed and the integration of Body, Psyche and Spirit are at the heart of our approach.
  • We include the spiritual and philosophical aspects of yoga in more depth and detail than many other trainings, and frame these in an applicable and embodied way for people living in the world now.

  • We understand the importance of retreat for going deeper into practice, with focused intention as a community. Our training includes a one week retreat in Portugal.

Dates and Times

The course takes places over 10 weekends, and a week long retreat in Portugal.

2025

April 12th – 13th / May 10th – 11th / June 7th – 8th / July 5th – 6th

Portugal Retreat: 26th July to 2nd August

September 13th – 14th / October 11th – 12th / November 8th – 9th / December 6th – 7th

2026

January 10th – 11th / February 7th – 8th

Timings are 9.30 to 5pm each day at Yogasara Studio in Bristol

Portugal Retreat

The purpose of retreat is to dive deeply into your own experience and to live in close community with your fellow travellers. We will support one another to go deeper than we can alone. We will create a crucible for transformation by engaging with the personal Sadhana practices. These can serve as a gateways to transformation, insight, wisdom, healing, deeper love and thus a more integrated and powerful teacher.

The retreat is held in Azula, an off-grid retreat and permaculture centre in Portugal. Located on the south west coast, only 20 minutes drive to the beach, Pnina and Alon (the owners) are transforming this land into an abundant garden and forest, where humans and nature can thrive.

Azula offers a precious immersion into living in community, in a beautiful natural environment, with a yoga platform on the hill, delicious home-cooked food, and a swimming lake.

Those with children are welcome on the residential. If there are a few students with children we will look into organising childcare during the retreat (at additional cost).

Accommodation, food and teaching for the retreat are included in the course cost (travel costs are not included). We can accommodate any dietary needs you have.

FAQs

What happens each weekend?

Most weekends there will be breathwork, pranayama, chanting, mantra, kriyas and asana. The asana will be a combination of a led classes and self-practice spaces. In the led classes we teach you the art of Vinyasa – linking breath with movement (‘Vinyasa’ was not originally a ‘style of yoga” but a meditative practice that supports the nervous system and facilitates the synergy of breath, movement and awareness). We facilitate you offering opening and closing chants, so that you can share them with your students. We will break down postures in detail and explore them in depth physically and energetically so that you can embody them, teaching from direct experience is a very important aspect of teaching pedagogy.

The self-practice sessions are our Yogasara signature offering. As long-term practitioners we know the importance of personal practice – which is how the tradition of modern yoga evolved. The led class is a very contemporary format and so much of the nuance of practice can be lost. In the self-practice space we have several experienced teachers on hand to help you develop your personal practice with 1-1 attention, and room to explore postures in more depth with guidance. It also allows you time to create a bespoke practice that takes into account things like: your energy levels, mood, menstrual cycle, injuries, the season, more challenging postures that might not be offered in the average led class, or maybe things you avoid – which may hold real treasure for you!

During the self-practice sessions we also teach you foundational knowledge of Bandhas, Kriyas, Breath and Pranayama, Mantra and prayer and help you explore and embody the Vayus and Koshas, essential Yogic maps that bring the practice to life! If you have not yet fully committed to a personal practice, don’t worry we will help you build one and there is a Yogasara sequence to help you with this.

This space also means we can support teachers from different styles and diverse needs and integrate you into this further  training. The self-practice style of class really lends itself to supporting modifications that can be hard to incorporate in a led class.

The afternoons are a combination of yogic philosophy and transpersonal psychology, including trauma awareness, embodied anatomy, and teaching skills. Other teaching sessions include how to hold space, teaching practice, voice work, Movement Medicine, and a roots of yoga workshop. Please see the course overview for more details.

What are the timings of the days at Yogasara Studio?

We generally run from 9.30-5 or 5.30pm. Lunch is an hour, and we aim to take this at 1pm but, alongside breaks, we will respond to the needs of the group and move with the energy of the day.

How will my progress be assessed?

Assessment for the course has three components:

  • After the first weekend you will submit a ‘learning in practice’ (LIP) proposal . This is a personalised commitment to your own unfolding. You need to choose regular practices that you can commit to for the duration of the course from each of the following 5 domains:
    • Body/Physical: this could include your regular asana practice but also things like dance, receiving bodywork, walking in nature.
    • Intellectual: this could include studying a specific Yogic text or topic related to your role as a Yoga practitioner and teacher.
    • Interpersonal + Emotional: this could include personal therapy or setting up a co-counselling or embodied listening practice with a peer.
    • Spiritual: this could be engaging with a deity through mantra and or yantra, meditation, prayer or exploring the mystical dimension of any religion or spiritual path.
    • Creative: Explore how you can engage with creativity in a way that nourishes your life, this could be through song, dance, crafts, art etc.
  • You will submit a reflective essay about your LIP process at the end of this course to reflect on how this process has affected your journey.
  • Teach a 25 minute yoga session OFF the mat giving only verbal and hands on teaching.
  • Submit a workshop plan for a 2-3 hour workshop with the theme of your choice. We will help you decide on a theme that helps you step outside of your comfort zone to get the most out of the process.

How much practice do I need to do?

We suggest you attend at least 1-3 classes a week alongside your daily home practice. This could be asana, meditation, mantra, prayer, pranayama or a combination. It could be a few minutes a day or as long as you wish, depending on your lifestyle. Yoga is a beautiful and empowering way of life and the more you are able to embody the practice the more profound your teaching will be and the more benefits you will receive personally.

We suggest you keep a practice diary during the course to help you track your journey.

How many hours a week should I plan to spend outside of class?

Students spend on average 2-3 hours/week for reading and homework assignments. This varies depending on the lifestyle demands of each student. Most students report wanting to dive in due to their passion and fascination with the course material! Depending on how you manage your time, you might have nothing to do some weeks and more to do at other times.

What style of yoga do you teach on the course?

You will learn to teach in the style of Yogasara Krama Vinyasa Tantra (the ‘Yogasara Method‘) – Kramas are modifications to make your teaching accessible to all bodies. This has been inspired by the training that the course tutors have completed. Influences include, Astanga, Anusara, Vini, Bihar School and Forrest. This provides you with an integrated approach that honours the depth and breadth of the practice. We aim to inspire and empower you to develop own unique offering, so that your teaching is congruent with your own embodied integrity and wisdom.

Who’s teaching it?

Your course is led by Sarah Harlow (YAP senior teacher-trainer and IYN Yoga Elder). Sarah is also a transpersonal psychologist, embodied psychotherapist and body worker, so all our trainings naturally have a therapeutic and trauma informed dimension.

Sarah is supported and assisted by several of Yogasara’s most senior teachers, and guest teachers, who also bring expertise in other areas such as anatomy, psychology, neuroscience and more. We are supported by experts in related disciplines to offer you an in-depth and transformative journey on many levels.

How many hours is the course?

This is a 300-hour course. This means that we have a minimum of 210 hours direct contact time with tutors and the remaining hours are through self-study and apprentice hours. In reality you are likely to exceed both of these figures.

What books do I need to read?

You’ll receive the Yogasara handbook and a reading list. The handbook contains essential information for the course, and an introduction to many of the topics we will cover. It serves as a great quick reference but does not replace the vast and in-depth knowledge contained in the books on the reading list!

The reading list is for life – we don’t expect you to read everything on here during this course! The authors have dedicated years and years of their lives to being able to share knowledge in this depth. We want you to be inspired and curious and digest the material at your own pace. We will give you specific chapters to read and also send you video resources and shorter articles to support you in your learning.

Do I have enough experience to join the course?

We welcome teachers who have completed 200 hours at any training school in any style. In fact we are passionate about demystifying the multitude of approaches to yoga out there to facilitate a deeper understanding and thus enable you to modify your teaching for any body.

You don’t need to have started teaching yet! In fact many students don’t feel prepared after 200 hours, especially the quick fire month intensives. You also don’t need to want to teach at all, maybe you are joining this course to keep deepening your own personal Sadhana. Some arrive with no teachings, some have many years – and everything in between.

We are passionate about upholding and engendering a deep respect for this path, and will do everything we can to inspire and support you to feel this awe too.

I’m not teaching yoga right now; can I still join the course?

Yes, we very much encourage people to join this course for their own personal development and transformation. This is the bedrock of teaching anyway, as teaching can arise naturally from your own personal practice. Whether you are teaching or not, our course can help you be more resourced and supported to flourish in your current work, your relationships, your community and in the wider web of life.

What if I’m pregnant?

You can still take part. We have had a baby conceived or born on every teacher training so far! Our course leader has 4 children, is also pregnancy and womb yoga teacher trained, and is very passionate about supporting your journey during pregnancy.

What happens if I need to miss a day of training?

Students are allowed to miss up to one weekend (or equivalent) of contact hours (this meets the minimum requirement of Yoga Alliance Professionals). Any more than this and these module(s) will need to be rearranged and completed on one of our future teacher training courses or a relevant CPD course, at additional cost.

Where can I get insured?

You can join Yoga Alliance Professionals as a student and benefit from their group insurance. You can also obtain insurance from many other yoga insurers online.

What if I need learning support?

We will do our best to support you with any neurodiversity needs such as dyslexia or ADHD – for example many of the books are also on Audio and we can support you to fulfil the written work in other formats – please ask for details.

How do I apply?

Get in touch with Sarah – training@yogasara.co.uk. She will arrange an informal interview in person, by phone or on zoom. We know the relationship you have with your teachers is sacred and personal, so we like to have a chance to meet you, and help you decide if we are the right place for you to take this intimate journey. If you decide to go for it, you will then fill out our application form and our finance and admin director Laurence will follow up with you on the practicals. Sarah will then follow up with all the course preparation material.

Do you offer bursary places?

If genuine financial difficulty would inhibit you from attending this course we offer several bursary places ranging from 10-20% discount. We also offer payment plans that are spread over a longer duration. Please email us to discuss your needs and we will endeavour to support you as much as possible. We are really passionate about helping people from all walks of life to be able to access this training, so don’t be shy – reach out ASAP – these places are limited!

What is included in the course cost?

The course cost includes all the teaching throughout the course, and accommodation and food costs on retreat. Travel to Portugal and purchasing of books on the reading list is not included.

Course Content

The areas of practice and study on this course are outlined below (not necessarily in this order). We will also cover material not explicitly shown here because it will arise in response to the group and individual needs.

Yogic Psychology and Trauma Awareness

  • Somatic psychology, transpersonal psychology + relationship with Yoga
  • Trauma awareness: understanding neurobiology + the nervous system

Philosophy and Tantric Practice

  • The interweave of yogic philosophy, consciousness & spirituality from different perspectives
  • Explore Tantric practice and philosophy inspired by the VBT, Siva Tantra & Sri Vidya including intro to the Mahavidyas
  • The Tantric Yamas and Niyamas
  • Engaged Tantric practices, Darsana, breathwork, Yantra, Mantra + Deity worship and how this can be integrated with psychological archetypes

Anatomy and Physiology + Applied Theory

Diving deeper into Anatomy with Nick Pepper

  • The endocrine system + moving with the emotions (stress vs. stimulation)
  • The spine, skull and bones + moving from the skeletal body
  • Muscles, tendons and ligaments + moving from the muscular body
  • Bringing it all together – fascia, unpacking postures and global / local body reading skills

Hands on Teaching

  • Getting off your mat and learning how and when to offer verbal cues, hands on teaching and demonstrations appropriately and simultaneously.
  • Hands on Teaching with awareness of subtle body maps: Koshas, dimensions of being, Chakras, lenses of awareness.
  • Triaging in hands on teaching: who, when and why

Teaching Skills, Learning Labs + Embodied Anatomy

  • Pedagogy: The study and practice of how to teach / embodied teaching and effective communication
  • Working with themes, seasons and cycles and class Choreography / sequencing (kramic approaches).
  • Explore the physical body and nervous system as a resource: integrating Bandha + Mudra, orientation, gravity, Vayus (directional forces) from a trauma informed perspective.
  • Body reading + posture analysis
  • Working with specific health conditions and injury + use of props
  • Handstand workshop (Michelle Toll)

Breathwork and Voice

  • Exploring the relationship between contemporary breathwork and yogic pranayama
  • Voice work and ceremonial breath work (Eliza Kenyon and Benjamin Tree)

Yoga Nidra

  • Experiential workshop + practicum
  • Learning to facilitate a basic yoga Nidra

Developing your Place in the Yoga World

  • Workshop to reflect on your strengths + areas for development (this will be informed by your LIP process and the Sadhana sessions).
  • Demystifying the Guru principle
  • Navigating the ‘business’ of yoga teaching including ethical, moral and relational issues such as the teacher-student relationship: understanding transference and countertransference, boundaries etc

Movement Medicine

  • Embodiment in free movement and dance, finding the dance of Yoga & the Yoga of dance
  • Accessing the elements as resource
  • Exploring archetypes and shadow through movement medicine and IFS (Internal Family Systems)

Bhakti Yoga

With Dr Michael Geary + Sarah Harlow

  • The essence of the Bhagavad Gita
  • The Path of Bhakti
  • Dharma: the Yoga pathway to living a full and healthy life
  • Satsang with Dr Michael Geary and Sarah: Living the View

Facilitating Liminal Space

  • What is liminal space and how do we create it
  • What do we need to learn about ourselves in order to hold space well
  • Workshop exploring these themes, inspired by ritual theatre (Roxana Vilk + Sarah Harlow)

Contemporary Kriya Yoga

  • Yoga as a naturally systemic approach to life.
  • How to bring Kriya Yoga (yoga of action) into a contemporary context- Yoga off the mat, exploring yoga in the contemporary lens discussing consumerism, cultural appropriation, diversity and inclusion
  • Experiential workshop – Systemic Constellations

Integration, Celebration and Closing Ritual

The Yogasara Method

Yogasara means ‘the essence of yoga’. It is the name of our studio where we have chosen teachers whom we believe are congruent with this meaning.

The Yogasara “logo” is actually an ancient Yantra. We chose this symbol to represent what we wanted Yogasara to offer our community. A Yantra is a sacred geometrical shape, and this one represents the Goddess Kamala. She is all about unconditional love, abundance, kindness, creativity, wisdom, kindness, beauty, inclusion – imagine the most love you can conjure up and more and this might get close to what Kamala is all about! We acknowledge and respect the roots of the Yoga traditions and this Yantra represents our shared devotion to this path.

Yogasara has also become short hand for our teaching method – Yogasara Krama Vinyasa Tantra. This is a system of transformational yoga that invites you to realise your deepest self and enable you to re-source through relationship with self, others, the natural and phenomenal world and spirit.

The Weave of Practice and Teaching

This course has a dual focus: to take you deeper into your own personal Sadhana and to equip you with more knowledge and teaching skills.

Personal Sadhana

Your personal practice is the source that inspires and informs your teaching. As you travel deeper into your own power and wisdom, you naturally have the capacity to take others to greater depths.

We know that transformation can happen in many ways.

Abhyasa – dedication and commitment to practice, practice, practice! Abhyasa is to dedicate and align with that which is most sacred with the intention of freeing the soul from the binds of conditioning or ‘vastu’.

Neuroscience has shown we really can change our brains, including the ‘gut brain’ and the ‘heart brain’ through imagination and repetition. Through clear intention and dedication we can grow new neural pathways and create a mind and body that reflects the experience of the life we want instead of the habits we have formed. We can re-orientate ourselves physically, mentally, emotionally and energetically. The brain, mind and body are, of course, one continuum of being human. Our yoga practices can be tailored to each individual so that we can all create what we want more of in our lives and be of service to others and life on earth.

We will lean into the wisdom of ancient practices but offer them through contemporary means. We incorporate ‘medicine’ from other disciplines that deeply support the traditions from Yoga; which are many, varied, complex, paradoxical and at times confusing! Our intention is to provide you with information and opportunities to have direct experiences that genuinely bring more depth and meaning to your life, so that you can share your yoga with integrity.

We aim to demystify some of the complexity you may have met in the realms of Yogic philosophy to make the principles accessible and available. Our aim is to bring philosophy to life, to inspire you through storytelling and leave space for the imagination and the soul to explore freely!

We do this by going deeper into Asana, Breath, Pranayama, Bandha, Mudra, Kriyas, Mantra, Devotion, Dance, Voice, Philosophy, Psychology and Community. See Yogasara Method. We incorporate Movement Medicine and Systemic Constellations to give you new ways of exploring the past, present and future you. A place to explore shadow, power and embodiment from different perspectives. These invitations from other systems are included to help you awaken the intrinsic, natural, intuitive intelligence of the moving body and the wisdom of soul and spirit.

Tantra tells us that by opening to the life force that is everywhere we can allow Grace to move through us and bring about healing and awakening in ways that are often mysterious! Grace is not something you can ‘get’ but something that we believe is more likely to arrive if you can ‘get out of the way’! By this we mean continuing to bring the light of awareness to all of the ways that we hold back from being our most vibrant loving selves. Grace is opening to the beauty and profundity of life in simple everyday ways. We believe that Grace can arise naturally when we are in a state of openness, gratitude and oriented towards love and kindness.

Empowered Teaching Skills

This course will get you off your mat and into the room to be of greater service to your students. We will enable you to offer more presence and knowledge through an in-depth exploration of teaching the physical and philosophical aspects of yoga. There will be a strong focus on applied Anatomy and Physiology with a view to developing skilled ‘Hands on Teaching’. This will be rooted in our training in structural bodywork and will include body reading and individual assessment; including working with injury and other specific health conditions. We will explore the postures from the Yogasara Method Sequences in depth and teach Kramas (modifications) that can enable students of different abilities to practice safely and intelligently.

The course provides continuity and community, an environment that is supportive, where learning and exploration spark reflection, self-inquiry, and the development of evaluation and appraisal skills. Throughout the course, you will have lots of opportunities to reflect on the effectiveness and progression of your teaching skills with the support of teachers and peers.

Investment

Earlybird (if booked before 21st December 2024) – £3,750

Paid by £670 deposit to secure your place. Followed by 14 monthly installments of £220 (from January 2025 to February 2026)

Regular – £3,950

Paid by £760 deposit to secure your place. Followed by 11 monthly installments of £290 (from April 2025 to February 2026)

For terms and conditions see here

For our privacy policy please see here

Want to find out more?

Please get in touch – training@yogasara.co.uk / 07789 501884 (SMS / WhatsApp)

Ready to apply?

A place on this course is subject to a successful informal interview with Sarah, which can be done before or after the application.