RYS Educational Categories

Our Educational Categories are the content areas that a school’s curriculum must cover to meet Yoga Alliance® Standards. A school’s Teacher Training Tracks must devote a minimum number of instruction hours in each category as required per designation. Refer to the individual Standards for each Registered Yoga School (RYS®) and specialty school designation for an outline of the minimum number of Contact Hours required in each category. The Standards also include detailed Requirements for the training faculty who are authorized to teach those hours.

Below is a short description of each category:

Techniques, Training and Practice (TTP)

How to Do (Practice) Yoga - [Video]

Topics can include, but are not limited to: asana, pranayama, kriyas, chanting, mantra, meditation and other traditional yoga techniques.

Teaching Methodology (TM)

How to Teach (Yoga) Effectively - [Video]

Topics can include, but are not limited to: communication skills such as group dynamics, time management and prioritizing; how to address the specific needs of individuals and special populations, to the degree possible in a group setting; principles of demonstration, observation, assisting and correcting; qualities of a teacher, teaching styles and the student learning process.

Anatomy and Physiology (AP)

The Physical and Energetic Bodies - [Video]

Topics can include, but are not limited to: both human physical anatomy and physiology (bodily systems, organs, etc.) and energy anatomy and physiology (chakras, nadis, etc.). This includes both the study of the subject and application of its principles to yoga practice (benefits, contraindications, healthy movement patterns, etc.).

Yoga Philosophy, Lifestyle and Ethics (YPLE)

History, Philosophy, Ethics and Lifestyle Practices of Yoga - [Video]

Topics can include, but are not limited to: the study of yoga philosophies and traditional texts; yoga lifestyle and precepts; ethics for yoga teachers (such as those involving teacher-student relationships); understanding the value of teaching yoga as a service and being of service to others through yoga (seva).


Topics can include practice teaching, receiving and giving feedback, observing others teaching and assisting students while someone else is teaching. The Standards for each RYS and specialty designation outline specific requirements for the minimum number of hours a trainee must spend practice teaching as the lead instructor.


Registered Children's Yoga School (RCYS®) and Registered Prenatal Yoga School (RPYS®) training Standards require Contact Hours in a sixth Educational Category:

General Background in the Specialty Area

Topics can include: understanding the yoga teacher’s responsibilities and limitation (with regards to scope of practice); and navigating relationships involved in working with these specialty populations (such as with parents/guardians or health care professionals). View the Children's and Prenatal Standards above for more details.

Want More Information About the Categories?

Registered Yoga Teachers (RYT®s) must ensure that their Continuing Education training hours are directly related to one of the YA Educational Categories as well, other than Practicum. 

For more information about how these categories fit in with the Continuing Education requirement, visit our YACEP® Educational Categories page.

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