• Nikki Richardson
  • August 08, 2020

Hi friends! Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Nikki Richardson and in 2019, I completed my Registered Yoga Teacher 200-hour training here at YoBa (also known as YTT - Yoga Teacher Training)

I've been practicing yoga since early 2014. But up until my experience at YoBa, my practice was usually in a gym setting. In January 2019 (almost one year ago) I decided that I wanted to join a studio to go deeper with my practice. After visiting several yoga studios in Raleigh, Cary, and Durham area, I finally felt like I had finally found my home with the YoBa community.

One of the reasons I was hopping from studio to studio was that I wanted a variety of classes. I was pleasantly surprised to find I could experience that with YoBa. Getting to sign up for cardio-based classes like Groove, strength training classes like Barre, PLUS having a fruitful yoga experience was what really sealed the deal for me.

Now here we are, almost a year later and I just graduated from YTT. Since I'm so fresh off my training, I thought I would share a little about my experience and highlight five thoughts regarding Teacher Training at YoBa.

  1. I wasn't entirely sure WHY I signed up, but something prompted me to say YES
    Some people might say that's not a good enough reason to do a process like YTT. But honestly, I was tired of holding myself back from trying new things just because I didn't know what the outcome or purpose would be. I needed to make a commitment to myself, so I decided to put my yes on the table. Originally, I wasn't even sure if I wanted to teach and several people in my group felt the same. Another reason I felt called to say yes was that I knew I LOVED the practice of yoga and I was craving a way to educate myself on something I was truly passionate about. No matter the reason, one benefit I can say we each experienced was deepening our own personal practice. Having moved through YTT, I now see the purpose in this process and I'm so thankful I took a leap, even though it was scary!
  2. I made a great group of friends
    By the end of the program, my YTT classmates and I were no long acquaintances. They were truly people that I could call friends. I had been able to share things with them that I hadn't even shared with my closest group of friends. This experience not only grows you closer with your own being, but those surrounding you in class. It's comforting to be surrounded by humans who can understanding and share in your victories and struggles because they are right there alongside of you.
  3. Get ready to be challenged
    I won't lie to you and tell you this was easy. It was certainly challenging. I was (and still am) flexing new skills that had never been awakened before. Seems easy enough to cue poses and breath, right? Ha! Phew - I have a newfound respect for anyone who leads me in practice now! On weekend days we started in the morning and worked, studied, read, taught, and learned up until later afternoon. There is also homework outside of class to complete such as practicing, reading, and studying for exams. Not enough to feel crazy overwhelmed, but enough to feel accomplished in all you're doing. I think that most of us have heard that saying "what you get out of something is in relation to what you put into it." So come prepared to put in the work.
  4. Yoga is MORE than just poses
    I mentioned having a newfound respect for teachers, but this point deserves its own section! Of course, you're going to learn the asanas (i.e. poses) in YTT. But there is so much more to uncover! Anatomy, word choice for cueing, mediation, mantras, chakras. There are so many pieces that can go into creating a yoga class. It may seem intimidating, but I promise you will begin to wrap your head around all the pieces and how they fit together. The best part is that you learn what pieces you really connect to and how you can put your own special twist on your class. After all, isn't that part of the fun of attending different people's classes?
  5. Something magical happened during and after YTT
    I feel like I'll leave this to your imagination a little bit. What I will say, is that for me, this was a life-changing experience. I learned things about myself that I was unaware were inside of me. I grew immensely through each class, every book, each paper we wrote (I could go on and on here). Circling back to my first point of not being sure why I signed up: I'm SO thankful I said Yes and made a commitment to myself. The cherry on top was completing my training at YoBa. Sam and her team were beyond amazing throughout the 4 months. They were encouraging and understanding while not being afraid to challenge and push you. There's a reason why this place seems so special. It's because it truly is.

I can't say enough things about my YTT experience. If you're on the fence, my suggestion is to take the leap! No matter what you think you're goal will be post YTT, the amount of heart work you do personally is well worth it.

The next round of Yoga Teacher Training is coming up very soon (starting January 17th) If you have any questions about YoBa Studio's YTT program, please don't hesitate to reach out to us! The team would love to help you decide if applying is a great fit for you!