My Yoga beginnings
In 2001, when my daughter was five months old, I decided to join a local Yoga class to ‘get back in shape’ and to have a little ‘me’ time in a busy week. I was instantly hooked and as I began to reap some of yoga’s immeasurable rewards, an interest quickly blossomed into a new way of life.
The fantastic teacher I had found taught the Iyengar Yoga method. Wanting a greater understanding of this method and having developed a passion to teach, I completed a highly rewarding two year teacher training program at the Manchester and District Institute of Iyengar Yoga.
I qualified as an Introductory Level 2 teacher - 2010 and left my career of 27 years as a Design separation artist to teach full time; I never looked back. My training continued and in 2015 I gained my Intermediate Junior Level 1 teacher certificate. In 2018 I also gained my Introductory Junior Level 2 teachers certificate. My own professional development and training is on-going and I attend weekly teachers classes and regular further training workshops.
I’m honoured and constantly inspired to have learnt from various wonderful senior teachers and visiting teachers from B.K.S. Iyengar's Ramamani Memorial Yoga Institute in Pune, India. My thanks to all those teachers.
I will forever be grateful to have ‘happened upon’ that class back in 2001.
- Sarah Pettitt, Intermediate Junior Level 2 teacher
Qualifications and training
Iyengar Yoga teaching certificates are internationally recognised and are a benchmark of excellence. Iyengar Yoga teachers must be fully trained, qualified and certificated by Iyengar’s Institute (RIMYI) in Pune, India and also bear this Certification Mark:
The Iyengar Yoga method is systematic and thorough. It is carefully structured so you make safe and steady progress. The method is very precise with great attention given to correct practice. You start with asanas (postures), including savasana (relaxation) and gradually more difficult asanas are introduced as your depth of understanding increases. After some time, in accordance with the Yoga Sutras, pranayama (breathing technique) is introduced.
Study in India
In January 2016 I was fortunate to attend a month of classes at The Ramamani Iyengar Memorial Yoga Institute. RIMYI was founded in 1975, is dedicated to Mr Iyengar’s late wife. This is the home of Iyengar Yoga, in Pune, Maharashtra, South India. Experienced students arrive year-round, from all over the world, to learn first-hand from the Iyengar family. Currently, teaching is undertaken by Mr. Iyengar’s son, Prashant Iyengar, his daughter Geeta Iyengar and grand-daughter Abhijata
The RIMYI also houses a library with thousands of books on yoga practice and philosophy, human anatomy and physiology, traditional Indian medicine and modern science. All yoga classes are in English, and they teach both “the essence of yoga” and “values of life”.
My next visit to the RIMYI will be in 2018 for more first-hand teaching from the Iyengars.
I am also a mentor for Newly Qualified Iyengar Teachers in the UK. In this role I support and advise NQTs taking their first steps into the world of teaching. If you are a newly qualified Iyengar Yoga teacher and are interested in this support please contact me directly or see the MDIIY website for our next meeting.