200hr Yoga teacher Training Nicaragua

200hr Yoga teacher Training Nicaragua

Well, that was an amazing three weeks!
Time spent in paradise, in great company, with amazing food, positive energy and endless laughs!
Louis and I have been in Nicaragua for the past 24 days, doing a 200hr Yoga Teacher Training Course with The Yoga Academy International. Lou was participating in the teaching, and I was asked to co-host it!
SO it was a very exciting and new adventure for the two of us both individually and collectively!
P.S If you're interested in doing one of the trainings and becoming a Certified Yoga Instructor click HERE for more info!

Louis joined 13 other students on a journey of self discovery, learning, growth and education that cannot be put in to words. The energy and sheer divinity of taking part in such a thing, can only be felt through first-hand experience. If you have done a yoga teacher training course before, I’m sure you’ll know what I mean! The connections you make with your peers, the memories you make, they are all invaluable! Nothing could ever compare!

Whilst he and the other students (we call them the “kids”) were learning their own lessons, as was I both within myself and also as a teacher and within my own practice. The community created on site was so nurturing, humbling, grounding and beautiful. We were situated on the coastline of Playa Maderas, perched upon a clifftop. Endless oceanic views, surrounded by wildlife, lush greenery and sunsets that took my breath away!

Every day held something new. Every morning, a reminder of hope and rebirth. AND we had a chef on site, Charlotte, who has a history in specialising in plant based cuisine, so naturally we were in a healthy-yogis heaven!
The daily schedule was consistent, but with a scatter of wonderful surprises and treats to keep the “kids” on their toes!

Yoga on the Yoga Deck 
(a ridiculously beautiful yoga deck overlooking the ocean and coastline. These classes were lead by myself or one of the other yoga teachers/instructors, and sometimes we suggested a self practice to cultivate greater self-awareness) 
8:45am Morning Meditation (originally the meditations were guided, and then eventually we welcomed a self meditation practice)

All the meals were DELICIOUS! A few of our favourite breakfasts were “Pancake Tuesdays!” (Pancakes served with a variety of fresh fruit, granola, a passionfruit sugar syrup and eggs for those who desired them) and other days there was dragon fruit chia puddings layered with a special creamy peanut butter sauce and fruit, gallo pinto (rice and beans), fruits, baked goods (pesto and/or cinnamon scrolls, banana bread, eggs and fried plantain.

10am – 11:15am
Morning Class/workshop
(This was a mix of things like Anatomy theory, sequencing, postured, contra-indications, prop use, assisting, inversions and other topics to help the students deepen their practice and knowledge).

Morning break

Continued Workshop/ Morning Class

Lunch time!
We all became very excited for meal times. Not only was all the food to die for! But it was also a fun, social time we could spend connecting with one another! Lunch especially was long enough to be able to go eat and then either study, read, meditate, go surfing or a swim in the pools or ocean. So we had a lot of great moments shared and created throughout our lunch breaks.
Lunch consisted of things like:
Tacos, Salads, falafels, wraps, hearty curries, vegetable burgers, chilli rice and corn bread, Mediterranean bowls, Gallo Pinto etc

3pm – 5:30pm
Afternoon Classes/workshops
These were mostly used for the students to put in to practice what they had learned that morning. Closer to their teach outs (final exam), we offered time to work on their sequences in this time as well.
We also did a few more spiritual/fun things in this time such as soul gazing, Satya circles (circles of truthfulness, these are not conversations, we simply give one person at a time permission to speak openly honestly and completely vulnerably about a certain topic, and everyone else listens with complete presence, compassion and non-verbal reassurance/support. What is brought up in Satya, is also never spoken of again. What is said in Satya, is left in Satya.) dance choreography, mandala drawings, learning about Mala beads, chanting, mantras, pool parties etc.

Sunset time!
We’d all gather, enjoy the sunset together, sing, play music, play, do yoga together and relax. Some people would shower now before dinner.

Dinners, of course were as much of a highlight as breakfast and lunch! Dishes such as creamy sweet potato sauces and pastas, Mediterranean bowls, chicken/vegetable parmigiana, lasagna, vegetable kebabs and rice, salads, soups, quinoa stuffed squash, stir fries and buffet style tacos were all great additions to the menu!
Dessert wasn’t offered typically though, so if you are thinking about doing the training and you know you have a sweet tooth, you may want to do what we did and stock up on a heap of snacks in your luggage or in town if you get the chance to head in!

7:30 – 9pm
Evening Session
These were a mix of Satya circles, chakra education, Kirtan (storytelling, singing and mantras), bonfires, dance-offs and a couple of cheeky things such as Yin Yoga and Yoga Nidra.


One of the teachers was also a massage therapist, so massages were offered (for an additional cost) in off-times too if that was desired.

Once a week there was a day off classes. These days were often spent organising taxis in to town, and wandering the streets, stocking up on snacks/groceries for our own fridges/pantries/rooms and soaking in some of the friendly local vibes!
Avocados weren’t “in-season” and yet they were still found in abundance throughout the little markets and stalls. Sometimes the “avocado man” would walk by holding a HUGE basket of avocados on his head selling them. And these avocados are GINORMOUS! I have never ever seen avocados so big! They are literally as big as my face!! Like one avocado would be big enough to make a generous amount of guacamole for 10 people! Some were a little watery, but others were super creamy! And ALL were delicious! 
There is also a number of cute little ethical/sustainable/eco friendly clothing stores in town, and some amazing (and cheap) taco joints too! (Mine and Lou’s favourite was a little falafel joint called Ali Mamas! And we definitely recommend stopping by! The owner is super friendly and kind and knew us by face and name by the end of the month haha)

Overall, the training was incredible! 
After doing three and a half weeks of training, the students/kids were to finally do their final “teach out”; a half an hour class designed and taught by them. This class was encouraged to be “true” to them and their personality, their style and passions. It needed to meet certain criteria to ensure they had learned enough throughout the teaching to be a qualified instructor. They could include music if desired, personal touches such as essential oils and incense and crystals, they could do a gentle or more intense practice, and they simply needed to show they knew Sanskrit, had an understanding of the principles and philosophy of yoga, Could incorporate some of these principles and spiritual/philosophical elements throughout their practice, based on a theme which was consistent throughout the class, they needed to show they could read the class and students and adjust when necessary. They needed to show they understood safety of their students and had this as a priority at all times, they needed to speak clear, loud and confidently, and instruct their students through a class with fluidity and flow.
I’m happy to inform you that each and every single student brought such amazing and unique energy and personality to their teach outs, and although every class was very different from the next, they were all wonderful classes! I am so incredibly proud of all the students involved, how much they progressed and how capable and confident they grew within such a short period of time!
every single student passed with flying colours, and as a teacher of teacher, I could not be more proud of every single one of them! And so excited to continue seeing where their yoga journeys take them!

I would like to also say that it was such an honour working along side the Yoga Academy International. Being invited to come teach with them was exciting, but as soon as I arrived and I saw and felt just how much of a family and community it was, I instantly felt safe, at home and completely in my element.
To Lauren, the Mother of YAI – Thank you.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.
You are such a ray of light and warmth. You have a gigantic heart and you truly do make every single person feel comfortable to exist within their own truth. You living confidently in your own light, gives permission for others to do the same, and watching your students unfold and find their own lights was extraordinary to witness. Thank you for being a humble reminder of what it means to be human; Love, loving and loved.

If you have been thinking about doing a Yoga Teacher Training course, or maybe you didn’t know you might be interested but are becoming more and more curious, then I definitely recommend looking in to it and perhaps even joining the Yoga Academy International family for yourself!!
If you would like to learn more, you can check out the upcoming training options here
(don't forget to say hi to Lauren for me and mention that you heard about the Yoga Academy through my blog or instagram - she loves knowing how you found the YAI Family!! :) 
But hurry! Spots fill super fast!

Love and light,
Sjana x