A debate that has roiled Colorado’s growing yoga world pits studio owners against a state agency that says programs to train yoga teachers must be certified.
Colorado Yogis & State Regulation of Teacher Training
Technically, Colorado’s Division of Private Occupational Schools has required yoga teacher training programs to apply for certification since 1981, mandating that studio owners pay a fee, fill out paperwork and present their program before a board.
But few schools complied.
Then, in October, a yoga instructor named Sandy Kline sent a letter to the agency, naming 85 schools that she believed lacked state certification. Officials quickly began a crackdown, sending compliance letters to 50 yoga programs.
In an interview, Ms. Kline said she had been driven by concerns that “risky” techniques were being taught, and that students could be swindled by fly-by-night operations. “Why should yoga training schools be exempt?” Ms. Kline, 61, said. “Are they that special that they shouldn’t be examined?”
Some yoga school owners, however, were concerned about the state’s demands, and they gathered at a January meeting held by the Division of Private Occupational Schools to voice their complaints. The discussion lasted more than an hour.
Central to the debate is the question of whether yoga instructors are hobbyists or professionals.