Yoga Therapy Classes and Certification: 303-499-2910
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Complete class listing

1200 Hour Ayurveda Yoga Therapy Training
500 Hour Yoga Teacher Training
500 Hour Yoga Therapy Training
325 Hour Yoga Therapy Training
250 Hour Pancha Karma Technician Training
225 Hour Postpartum Training
200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training
100 hour Ayurveda and Family Health

certification programs >> 500 Hour Yoga Teacher Training

500 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Program

the Rocky Mountain Institute of Yoga and Ayurveda is honored to present:



Yoga Teacher Training Program

26 days of training offered in two training segments,

daily 6:30-10:30 and 12:30-6:30

JUNE 17-JULY 2        and       OCT 4-14

Professional training which is:

  • genuine in its traditions,

  • sound in its teaching methodology

  • broad in its perspective

  • Taught by ERYT-500s and established senior Yoga teachers who are experts in their fields.

  • Grounded in the classical traditions of the six main Yogas and Ayurveda as well as in modern anatomically- based Yogas

  • Designed to train already- certified or registered 200-hr Yoga teachers

A training which is designed to develop skill in:

Understanding Where we Come From: the History of Yoga in Depth
  • Asana, Musculo-skeletal anatomy, and Ayurveda

  • Ayurvedic Assessment of Students, and Yogic and Ayurvedic Lifestyle Recommendations

  • Structural Yoga : Reading and Adjusting the Body in Yoga Asana

  • Adjustment, safety, alignment, and use of props

  • Restorative Yoga, Stress Response, Deep Relaxation and Yoga Nidra Training

  • Advanced poses, advanced classical vinys, and modern Ashtanga vinyasa styles

  • Intermediate- and advanced- level training in classical Hatha Yoga pranayama, mudra, and shat kriya practices

  • Ashtanga (Raja) Yoga Pranayama and Intermediate and Advanced Hatha Yoga Pranayama and Mudra

  • Teaching methodology for Yoga classes and for guiding students individually in sadhana practice

  • The Yoga Sutras: Books I and II, including practices of pranayama and meditation, III and IV overview

  • Theory and Practices from Jnana Yoga, Tantra Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, and Karma Yogas(Bhagavad-gita)

  • Vedic roots of Yoga, Sanskrit, and Chanting of Vedic Mantras for Peace

Yoga Therapy Certification Option

This Training is 25 days long, divided into two sessions of 16 and 9 days, respectively. It is open to all 200-hr certified or registered Yoga Teachers. The first session of this training, comprising approximately 120 hours, also applies toward RMIYA’s 300 hour Yoga Therapy Professional Certification program. Both certificates may be earned concurrently, if desired. Please check the schedules for each training.

Schedule and Content of Training

Morning Sessions

The morning sessions will focus on the practices of practices of asana, pranayama, shat kriya, Hatha Yoga mudra, and relaxation. On most days, the first two hours of the morning session will be spent in asana practice, teaching methodology, and practicum in asana teaching, with teachers Jamie Elmer and Derik Purna Eselius.

Asana training will encompass both classical and modern methods, methodology and practicum. Use of props, adjustment, and modern methods such as Structural/Iyengar and Ashtanga Vinyasa styles of practice will be complemented by triputi: slow classical vinyasa to attain the union of body, breath, and mind. More advanced poses will be taught and mastered slowly, according to the student’s capacity, with safety in mind. In the last session of the training, advanced classical method of asana with breath retention will be taught.

Similarly, on most days, following a break after the asana session, the remainder of the morning session will focus on the theory and practice of pranayama, Hatha Yoga mudra, and meditation. We will review the entire classical Hatha Yoga system, and cover in the first session the nine classical types of Hatha Yoga pranayama, reviewing beginning methods and learning intermediate ones. In the second session, we will learn additional advanced Hatha Yoga breath methods and Raja Yoga pranayamas, which were practiced at the time of Patanjali. A variety of meditation methods will be presented, from Ashtanga Yoga, Hatha Yoga, and Tantra.

Students in the 500-hr YTT program will, in addition, attend 1) morning sessions from 6:30-10:30am, during both sessions of the Yoga Therapy program, and 2) an additional one-week training in advanced topics in Yoga. The morning sessions will include training in the following: pranayama review, intermediate pranayama and meditation, Hatha Yoga mudras, shat karma practices, advanced classical asana, Ashtanga vinyasa, use of props, sequencing, and teaching methodology. The last week of the training will cover philosophy, sanskrit, and additional practices of the six classical Yogas.

Afternoon sessions

Afternoon sessions will focus on a particular topic, and can include Yoga theory/philosophy, special practices, or teaching methodology. Afternoon session topics are as follows:

Session 1:

  • The History of Yoga & Yoga Therapy (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Ayurveda :the Anatomy/Physiology System of Ancient India (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D.)

  • Shat Kriya morning practice session (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Reading and Adjusting the Body in Asana Therapy (Mangala Warner, M.S, ERYT-500.)

  • Yoga Psychology (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Healing Dynamics of Breath (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Restorative Yoga (Patricia Hansen, M.A., E-RYT-500)

  • The Stress Response and Yoga: Deep Relaxation (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Teaching Yoga Nidra (Swami Brahmananda and Swami Dharmavati)

Session 2:

  • Sanskrit (Renay Oshop)

  • Vedic Origins of Yoga (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., and Sita Sharan, pujarini)

  • Bhakti Yoga (Sita Sharan, pujarini)

  • Yoga Practices from the Tantric Tradition (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Jnana Yoga (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Yoga of The Bhagavad-gita (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500)

  • Yoga Sutras (Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D., E-RYT500), and closing ceremony

Texts for the training:

Training Manual

A History of Modern Yoga, Elizabeth de Michaelis

Ashtanga Yoga Primer, Baba Hari Dass

Structural Yoga Therapy, Mukunda Stiles

The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali—A Study Guide to Books I and II, Baba Hari Dass

The Mahabharata (any lengthy version)

The Bhagavad-Gita, trans.Barbara Stoller Miller (or any verse-only version)

The Yoga Yajnavalkya (any version)

The Hatha Pradipika (Kaivalyadham version preferred)

The Gherandha Samhita (Kaivalyadham version preferred)

The Yoga Vaishishtha, Swami Venkatesananda

The Holy Vedas, Bibek and Dipavali Bebroy

The Kulanarva Tantra (any version)

Required Work Outside of Class


There will, in general, be one short assignment for each topic unit in session I, which will be evaluated by the faculty member teaching the session. No credit will be given without completion of the assignment.

Evaluated Interim projects

Written reports for each of the following are required, hard-copy only:

1) Daily Practice of Sanskrit prayers, pranayama, meditation, asana, and deep relaxation a minimum of five days per week for the three-month interim period. You will be provided with worksheet checklists to hand in, and will be expected to write up a short report on your experience with the practices learned to hand in for the October session.

2) Reading Texts 1) Read the Mahabharata (any version except the radically shortened abridgments is acceptable). Choose a character who typifies Dharmic issues in some way (either negatively or positively). Write a short paper on this character to be presented in the Bhagavad-gita class. What did you learn about ethics, dharma, and Vedic world view from the stories you chose? 2) Pick one story from the Yoga Vaishishta to present in class on the day we study Jnana Yoga. What does the story illustrate?

3) Practice Teaching Meet individually with one very sincere and committed intermediate Yoga student who wishes to advance on the spiritual path. Assess the person Ayurvedically and structurally and ask about their goals and beliefs. Choose and teach an appropriate asana, relaxation, pranayama and meditation daily practice to that person., explaining your reasons for each choice. Follow up with that person several times; spending at least five hours total working with them. Write a brief report on your assessments, your choice of practices, and the person’s experience and progress.

Additional Evaluated Projects

  • Attend at least one full day of a retreat with a recognised spiritual master from a Yoga tradition (eg. Baba Hari Dass, Sri Karunamayi, Ammachi, Anandi Ma, Swami VedaBharati, Swami Satyananda, etc.), if you have never done so before. How did the experience shape your understanding of Yoga and how will it affect your approach to teaching? (Students who wish to instead attend a retreat in a different spiritual tradition should contact the senior faculty member for the training).

  • Daily practice for one week of one of the two Bhakti Yoga methods presented in the Bhakti Yoga portion

of the second session.


Certificates will be granted when:

  • All sessions have been attended and/or any missed sessions have been made up to the satisfaction of the supervising faculty member

  • Students have demonstrated to the satisfaction of their teachers their ability to correctly perform and teach the practices taught in the training

  • The projects described above have been completed

  • Grades have been turned in for each segment of the training, so that transcripts may be maintained for the student’s future use.


Sarasvati Buhrman, Ph.D. ERYT-500

Mangala Warner, M.S. ERYT-500

Jamie Elmer, ERYT-500,

who speaks of a lifelong passion for movement,

received her B.A. from California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), and is a certified Pilates instructor and Gait therapist, as well as a Yoga teacher trained in both Ashtanga Vinyasa and Iyengar styles. She currently teaches asana and applied anatomy in Yoga teacher trainings throughout the U.S. as well as internationally. She is founder and proprietor of First Ray Yoga in Boulder, Co., and describes her practice and teaching of asana as charactised by " knowledge of anatomy, safety, power, and grace. " Jamie is the main asana teacher in the first session of the YTT-500 program, especially chosen for this training because her expertise in modern asana styles balances and complements the more classical orientation of the other program faculty.

Derik Purna Eselius E-RYT500

Patricia Hansen, M.A., ERYT-500

Swami Brahmananda

Swami Dharmavati

Sita Sharan, pujarini

Renay Oshop, M.A.

graduated from the Ayurvedic  Institute with an emphasis in Vedic astrology and Sanskrit, and continued her jyotish studies under Hart DeFouw and Sanjay Rath. She has published several articles in the field of Vedic Astrology.  She  studied Ayurveda with Dr Vasant Lad both in both the U.S. and India. She currently works in Boulder as an Ayurvedic pharmacist, a jyotish consultant, and a teacher of Sanskrit through Boulder Continuing Education.

Detailed Course Descriptions for Afternoon Sessions

The History and Scope of Practice of Yoga Therapy

A review of the history of Yoga as a therapeutic intervention from Vedic times to modern

times. Samkhya philosophy as the philosophical underlay of both Ayurveda and Patanjali’s

Yoga. The historical influence of Ayurveda with particular attention to its influence on the

development of Hatha Yoga. Modern Yoga and Modern Yoga Therapy. Yama and Niyama as

the ethical basis for the Yoga teacher and therapist.

  • Ayurveda for Yoga Teachers and Therapists

Basic Ayurvedic concepts of anatomy and physiology are necessary for understanding the way in

which the originators of the Hatha Yoga system developed and used Hatha Yoga practices for

healing. Concepts such as doshas, agni, aam, dhatus, ojas, etc., and their relationship to illness and

health will be covered. Students will learn how to determine the Ayurvedic constitution and

imbalances of the student, including the use of information gained from pulse and tongue diagnosis.

Simple Ayurvedic lifestyle and dietary interventions appropriate for Yoga therapists and Hatha Yoga

Therapy interventions based on dosha will be described. Students will learn those practices

from the Hatha Yoga Shat Karma (kriya) system which are most relevant to Yoga Therapy’s

approach to healing.

Shat Kriya morning practice session:

Sutra neti, jala neti, vaman dhauti, vastra dhauti, and tratak

Reading and Adjusting the Body in Yoga Asana Therapy

Based on principles of Structural Yoga, this seminar teaches participants how to assess the

musculo-skeletal system of the client, using anatomy of muscles and bones and criteria

for assessment of posture, strong and weak muscular patterns, and range of motion of joints. Participants will be given an opportunity to “see” others, to investigate patterns of body compensations for misalignments, and to explore asanas and adjustments which facilitate restoration of wholeness. Movements which help in chronic musculo-skeletal disorders such as arithritis, sciatica, scoliosis, etc. will be emphasised

Yoga Psychology

The causes of human pain, the workings of the human mind, and the ways to freedom

according to books I and II of the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. These basic concepts form the

basis of yoga therapy for mental and emotional conditions and include major topics

covered in the sutras such as kleshas, vrittis, samskaras, symptoms of distraction , and

Yoga practices for resolving these.

Healing Dynamics of Breath

Understanding the anatomy and physiology of the process of breathing from a western perspective informs more deeply the Ayurvedic and Hatha Yoga perspectives on which types of breathing patterns and pranayama should be used in correcting which types of imbalances and illnesses.

Restorative Yoga

The technique of restorative asana, or passive poses supported by blankets and bolsters, was pioneered by Judith Lasater and is particularly useful in asana therapy for people with injuries, chronic illnesses and flexibility difficulties, vata imbalances, and in elder years.

The Stress Response and Yoga

An exploration of the physiological dimensions of the stress response: chronic stress,

insomnia, obesity. and other related diseases. Yoga therapy as stress management, using

information from brainwave research and autonomic nervous system physiology, and how

to differentially structure guided relaxations for specific problems.

Yoga Nidra

This class builds upon the techniques of deep relaxation, by adding the uniquely powerful healing techniques of Yoga Nidra developed by Swami Satyananda of the Bihar school of Yoga, based on the traditional techniques of nyasa and vital points in the physical and subtle bodies. Although Yoga nidra heals on all levels, it is viewed by many as a Yogic counterpart to Western psychotherapy because of its ability to heal deep psychological samskaras.

  • Sanskrit Pronunciation for Yoga Teachers

Principles of Sanskrit pronunciation, based on positions of sounds in the mouth. Ability to read and pronounce correctly the standard academic transliteration system of English letters marked with diacriticals, which distinguish long and short vowels, and different classes of consonants. Pronunciation of common Yoga terms.

Vedic Origins of Yoga

The origins of Yogic Thought can be found in the earliest of the Vedas, and by the time of the major Upanishads, several of the “limbs” of Yoga known to Patanjali can be found. Students will have the rare opportunity of participating in a Vedic-based Yajna, or fire ceremony, perhaps the earliest form of sadhana known to Vedic humans.

Bhakti Yoga

In this two-day session, students will have the opportunity to explore some of the most powerful practices for transforming the human mind, those of devotion. We will explore such practices as the forgiveness asanas, japa, puja, chanting, and singing devotional songs and stories from devotional sources such as the Ramayana and the Srimad Bhagavatam. Students will learn to perform the arati ceremony for classes and groups.

Yoga Practices from the Tantric Tradition

Sattvic tantric principles, such as nadis, charkas, and kundalini may have entered the Yoga tradition as early as the first century, and practices such as meditation on the chakras, pranayamas to affect nadis, asanas performed with concentration on chakras became incorporated into the main stream of Yoga thereafter. We will study the concepts of tantra

Yantra, and diety, and do some of the practices of asana, pranayama, mudra, and meditation from early sattvic tantric circle practices.

Jnana Yoga

I am the Divine Self” is easy to say, but much harder to directly experience. We will explore

practices on the path of Self- inquiry and study some of the Upanishads and stories from the

Yoga Vaishishta, from those who have walked this path.

The Yoga of the Bhagavadgita

Karma Yoga, or the Yoga of Selfless Service and renunciation of the fruits of action, was a path expounded by Lord Krsna for the purpose of those who seek spiritual fulfillment while living lives which are very involved in the social human world. The Bhagavad-gita is one of the most important texts of Yoga, and we will try to grasp both its subtleties and its great inspirations.

The Yoga Sutras The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali are venerated by Yogis as perhaps the most important text of Yoga. Patanjali’s Yoga equally emphasizes practices (as in Ashtanga Yoga), and self-inquiry and nonattachment. Furthermore, it lays the groundwork for understanding higher experience and what is required to attain kaivalya, the final goal of Yoga.

COST:  $3475 PLUS FOOD AND LODGING AND THE COST OF BOOKS plus a commuting fee of $150

OR   $3275 PLUS FOOD AND LODGING AND BOOKS plus a commuting fee of $150  IF YOUR DEPOSIT OF $900 IS RECEIVED BY MAY 17th, 2011

FOOD AND LODGING WILL BE  $75 a day for the first half and $100 a day for the second half (unless we can get the price down for us)



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