Totally geeking out at the moment, re-reading my favourite yoga books and topping up my inspiration tank as I plan the Reading List for my 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Programme. In the process, I’ve whittled down the list to my top 20 Books for Yoga Teachers. When I look at the Reading Lists for many Teacher Training Courses I see the same old texts, again and again, it’s time to update that list by adding some of these 20 Books for Yoga Teachers. Yes, clearly it is essential for yoga teachers to be aware, knowledgeable and inspired by the true lineage of yoga and the ancient texts but we need to continue evolving the science of yoga and finding ways to update the teachings so that we connect with our students where they are today, with their real world challenges. So here goes my Essential and Recommend 20 Books for Yoga Teachers.
Essential Reads for Yoga Teachers – from 20 Books for Yoga Teachers
The Spiritual Teachings of Yoga
There is an ancient philosophy behind yoga practice that is rarely taught in the west. The ancient wisdom of Yoga gives us a way of life, a path that is at least five thousand years old. This book presents and contains within it the key philosophical texts from the Yoga Sutras, the Bhagavad Gita, the Vedas, and the Upanishads in an accessible and poetic manner.
The Key Muscles of Yoga – Volume One & Two
These two books offer a scientific approach to understanding the practice of hatha yoga. Through four-colour, three-dimensional illustrations of major muscles, tendons, and ligaments. From beginners to experts, this book will become a constant companion.
Yoga The Path to Holistic Health
This book makes Iyengar Yoga accessible to all, while celebrating the life and work of the world-renowned B.K.S Iyengar, a world leading authority on hatha yoga and is globally respected for his holistic approach and technical accuracy. Over 60 step-by-step sequences of asanas, pranayamas and over 20 include unique 360 degree images of classic Iyengar asanas.
The Science of Breath, A Practical Guide
For thousands of years, yogic adepts have claimed that breath is the essential link between body and mind, energizing a “subtle body” which connects the physical and mental aspects of our being. In this landmark book, Swami Rama and two noted American physicians explore the science of breath as the missing key to both physical health and the attainment of higher states.
Meditation for the Love of It
Meditation is like a love affair with your innermost self. At times it can be ecstatic and entrancing; other times simple and still and sometimes you might not even feel its profound effects until later. Sally Kempton shares practical secrets to help us turn meditation into an unconditional embrace of the fullness of our experience on and off the meditation cushion.
Mindful Teaching & Teaching Mindfulness: A Guide for Anyone Who Teaches Anything
Author Deborah Schoeberlein pioneers the practical application of mindfulness in education. By showing teachers how to tune into what’s happening, inside and around them, she offers fresh, straightforward approaches to training attention and generating caring both in and outside of the classroom.
Career Yogi – Marketing Wisdom for Yoga Teachers
In this empowering guide for new and aspiring yoga teachers, you will share the story of how one career yogi found her way to inner peace and success and get plenty of advice along the way. From developing your brand, to marketing yourself, to keeping your intention grounded in love, Blanco offers valuable words of wisdom for anyone looking to pursue a career in yoga.
Recommended Reads for Yoga Teachers from 20 Books for Yoga Teachers
The Desire Map
Danielle LaPorte turns the relationship to goal-setting inside out. She provides hands-on tools to help you first and foremost identify your core desired feelings, and then create practical Goals with Soul to generate those feelings. By chasing the feeling versus the goal, she empowers you to forge substantial life changes that reflect your intrinsic nature.
Guiding Yoga’s Light: Lessons for Yoga Teachers
This book presents 74 easy-to-follow, succinct lesson plans offering instruction in hatha yoga, including asana, pranayama, the yamas and niyamas, the chakras, creating mindfulness and understanding emotions. Lesson plans progress from basic yogic concepts important for beginning students to more advanced material.
Adventures in Human Being
We have a lifetime’s association with our bodies, but for many of us they remain uncharted territory. In Adventures in Human Being, Gavin Francis leads the reader on a journey through health and illness and an adventure through what it means to be human.
Wisdom of the Body Moving
This comprehensive guide introduces Body-Mind Centering. Hartley’s explorations of the images, feelings, sensations, and intuitions of the diverse organs and cells lead to exercises that gently guide students in ways of discovering and integrating their bodies multidimensional aspects.
Four forms of energy pulse through each of us at all times: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. To thrive, we must recruit all four of these energies in the service of a specific mission. In this book they offer their precise understanding of how to help individuals and organizations manage energy to drive full engagement.
The Brain That Changes Itself
An astonishing new science called neuroplasticity is overthrowing the centuries-old notion that the human brain is immutable. Psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Norman Doidge, M.D., traveled the country to meet both the brilliant scientists championing neuroplasticity and the people whose lives they’ve transformed.
The Breathing Book – Vitality & Good Health Through Essential Breath Work
A groundbreaking approach to improving the quality of your life through the most readily accessible resource: your breath. These safe and easy-to-learn techniques can also be used to treat asthma and ease stress, depression, eating disorders, insomnia, arthritis, chronic pain, and other debilitating conditions.
Yoga Adjustments: Philosophy, Principles, and Techniques
The quintessential guide to yoga assisting and hands-on teaching. Covers the philosophy of yoga practice, the sensibilities of touch in teaching yoga and improving alignment, the seven principles of hands-on yoga teaching, and the twenty-five most effective methods of tactile cueing.
Restorative Yoga: with Assists A Manual for Teachers
Master the art of teaching and practicing Restorative Yoga and deep relaxation with this easy to follow and well written manual. A great resource for yoga teacher training programs, seasoned teachers and students of yoga. Includes over 100 photos to help you to understand each posture and a set of simple yet profound assists to take your students into deeper relaxation.
Myths of the Asanas
Practitioners around the world reap the physical benefits of yoga, assuming poses and frequently calling them by their Sanskrit names. Behind each asana and its corresponding movements is an ancient story about a god, sage, or sacred animal. Myths of the Asanas is the first book to collect and retell these ancient stories adding a new dimension to your teaching.
Hatha Yoga Pradipika
Hatha Yoga involves the yoga of the body, and yet this book does not restrict itself to the physical aspects of yoga, but delves deeper to how yoga can awaken the chakras and the kundalini energy, helping the person who practices it achieve spiritual liberation. Hatha Yoga Pradipika is a translation of Swami Svatmarama’s original text.
The Yoga Teacher’s Guide to Earning a Living: How to Claim the Confidence, Mastery, and Finesse of Being a Successful Yoga Professional
This first-of-its-kind guide walks both beginners and established professionals through maximizing their impact as teachers and succeeding financially. While any would-be yoga professional could pick up a business how-to, this resource adapts the visions and values of yoga to the business of business.