Welcome to the ParaYoga® Certification Information Guide
We sincerely look forward to supporting you during your journey with ParaYoga. Be warned: this page has a lot of information! No need to be overwhelmed; we have simply included a lot of details here, in an effort to answer lingering questions you might have about certification. If you still have questions after reading this page, feel free to email or call the ParaYoga office, we are here for you. The journey to certification with ParaYoga takes dedication, and every step of the way is profoundly worth it.
On this page you will find:
• An overview of the ParaYoga® Certification process
• The schedule and sequence of ParaYoga® Master Trainings to be taken
• Support along the way
• Benefits to being a Certified ParaYoga® teacher
• Steps to certification summary
• Requirements for ParaYoga® Level I Certification
• Application instructions for ParaYoga® Level I Certification
• Requirements for ParaYoga® Level II Certification
• Application instructions for ParaYoga® Level II Certification
• Requirements for ParaYoga® Level III Certification
• Application instructions for ParaYoga® Level III Certification
• Yoga Alliance information for RYT 200, RYT 300 and RYT 500
• Requirements for maintaining accredited status for Level I, Level II and Level III certified teachers
• Standards and requirements for all classes titled ParaYoga®
• Detailed certification steps
• Book report requirements
• Details regarding teaching, asana and meditation requirements for certification
Certification in ParaYoga® requires mastery of the teachings. Yogarupa Rod Stryker has developed a curriculum that gives students the opportunity to grow leaps and bounds in their own lives and the ability to pass that knowledge along to others. Candidates who demonstrate excellence integrating the lessons and the ability to teach them are rewarded with the benefits of Level I and Level II-III status.
The Certification Team is here to help guide you along the way. Once you have enrolled in ParaYoga® and begin taking the Level I Master Trainings, you may start working on the requirements for Level I Certification. Once your requirements have been met, and you have completed all Six Level I Master Trainings, you may apply for the ParaYoga® Level I Certification Exam. (Steps to certification are listed below).
Requirements for Level I take a minimum of 2 years to complete. After one year, Level I Certified ParaYoga® Teachers who have completed the Level II Master Trainings may apply for the Level II exam. Additional requirements are listed below. When you enroll in ParaYoga®, you are expected to begin fulfilling the requirements right away (book reports and quarterly logs). Deadlines must be met to remain on track for both levels of certification.
The ParaYoga® certification process has been developed to ensure that certified teachers have accomplished and/or met the following qualifications:
• Proficiency in teaching ParaYoga® to all levels of students
• Skill in designing a variety of classes, as well as ability to tailor them to the specific needs of individual students or groups
• Excellence and refinement of his or her own personal practice in the lineage of the ParaYoga®
• ParaYoga® Level II Certified Teachers, in addition to all of the above, are required to have more in-depth training as it relates to prescribing personal practices for individuals using the techniques of Pranayama, Asana, and specific meditation practices.
The Schedule of ParaYoga® Master Trainings (PYMT)
Level I: (Six PYMT’s required for Level I Certification)
1. VINYASA KRAMA: The Energetics of Sequencing
2. TANTRA SHAKTI: The Power and Radiant Soul of Yoga
3. SECRETS OF THE SUTRAS: Light on Self Mastery
4. PRANA SHAKTI: The Power and Path of Yoga
5. PARAYOGA MARMA: Principles of Enlightened Practice
6. THE FOUR DESIRES: Yoga of Fulfillment, 3-day
Level II: (Four PYMT’s required for Level II Certification)
The Schedule of PYMT’s is designed for you to flow seamlessly, from one Master Training to the next, building on the foundation. While we prefer that you take the trainings in order to get the most out of your learning experience, we realize this isn’t always realistic. Out of the 10 trainings, Kundalini and Guru Parampara have firm prerequisites.
Support along the way
The ParaYoga® Certification Team (PYCT) is a group of ParaYoga® Level II Certified teachers that have been selected and trained by Yogarupa Rod Stryker to aid you in your process and evaluate your exams. They will interface with you directly and mentor you in your evolution toward becoming certified. These teachers exemplify what being a ParaYoga® teacher is all about. They are dedicated and compassionate about supporting you in this tradition. You are encouraged to seek them out, to study with them and to utilize their counsel to help you grow in ParaYoga®.
ParaYoga® Certified Teacher Benefits
ParaYoga® Level I Certified Teachers are entitled to:
• Hold the legal license to promote themselves as ParaYoga® Level I Certified teachers
• Market classes as ParaYoga® classes
• Use the ParaYoga® logo to promote their classes
• A listing on the ParaYoga® website Teacher Directory page
• Receive a 50% discount on tuition fees when repeating a PYMT (not accommodations and/or meals)
• Receive a 25% Discount on Para Yoga® hosted workshops.
•Receive a 10% Discount on any of the ParaYoga Continuing Education Trainings (Sri Vidya and Gheranda Samhita)
ParaYoga® Level II and Level III Certified Teachers are entitled to:
• Hold the legal license to promote themselves as ParaYoga® Level II Certified teachers
• Market classes, workshops and retreats as ParaYoga® events: workshops must conform to the list of approved workshop topics
• Use the ParaYoga® logo to promote their classes, workshops and retreats
• A listing on the ParaYoga® website Teacher Directory page as a ParaYoga® Level II/III Certified Teacher along with their scheduled ParaYoga® classes
• Priority registration for all advanced ParaYoga® events, including special trainings, retreats, intensives, and PYMT’s
• Receive a 70% discount on tuition fees when repeating a PYMT (not accommodations and/or meals). 70%!
• Receive a 30% Discount on Para Yoga® hosted workshops
•Receive a 20% Discount on any of the ParaYoga Continuing Education Trainings (Sri Vidya and Gheranda Samhita)
Steps to Certification Summary:
Requirements for ParaYoga® Level I Certification:
• Enroll in Para Yoga®, pay the $150 enrollment fee
• Receive Para Yoga® Enrollment Package
• Take the six Level I trainings
• Submit required book reports within 6 weeks of each PYMT (see Resources Page for book report form)
• Submit 2 years worth of quarterly reports for asana and meditation (see Resources Page for summary forms)
• Have a private session with a ParaYoga® Level II or III teacher
• 2 years minimum practicing Para Yoga® (trainings, classes and workshops)
• 2 years regular ParaYoga® home practice
• 2 years regular ParaYoga® home meditation
• 1 year teaching ParaYoga® influenced classes (see Resources Page for teaching history form)
• 125,000 repetitions Gayatri, MMM or Guru mantras
• Memorize and be able to recite ParaYoga® Invocation, Gayatri, Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra. Prana Pratishta, Invocation to Patanjali and Vishve Deva mantras
• 30 day consecutive practice of Cave of the Heart and Bhuta Shuddhi kriyas
Level I Certification Exam:
• Send in application for Level I Certification
• Pay the $350 exam fee
• Request Level I exam (10 days to complete it)
• Within 30 days receive notification from evaluator
•If pass – receive an email with instructions for submission of your teaching video (6 months to complete)
•If you do not pass the first time – receive a PYCAP (ParaYoga® Certification Action Plan) from evaluator and submit $125 retake fee
• Submit video
•If pass – You will be sent the ParaYoga® Licensing Agreement to sign and return
•Submit $150 licensing fee (may be pro-rated depending on time of year you certify)
•Submit bio, headshot and contact information for ParaYoga® Website Teacher Directory
•If you do not pass the first time – receive a PYCAP (Para Yoga® Certification Action Plan) from evaluator and submit $125 retake fee
• Submit signed copy of the ParaYoga® Code of Ethics, Code of Ethics
Requirements for ParaYoga® Level II Certification
• Complete remaining four Level II trainings
• Complete at least one more year practicing Para Yoga® for 3 years total of:
documenting your personal asana practice, meditation practice and teaching history of Para Yoga® influenced classes (see Resources page for all submission forms)
• Continue to submit quarterly asana and meditation forms
• 30 day consecutive practices of Manas Pujas, Color Purification and Tattwa Shuddhi kriyas
• Begin 2 case studies to be turned in with Level II exam. Requirements can be sent to you as early as six months after Level 1 completion
• After minimum one year as a Level I Certified teacher you may submit Level II application
Level II Certification Exam
• Send in application for Level II certification
• Pay the $350 exam fee
• Request Level I exam (14 days to complete it)
• Submit case studies
•Within 30 days receive notification from evaluators
•If pass – receive an email with Level II Licensing Agreement, sign and return
•Update bio, Bio Page Submission Form
•If you do not pass the first time – receive a PYCAP (Para Yoga® Certification Action Plan) from evaluator and submit $125 retake fee
Requirements for Maintaining Accredited Status for Level I, Level II and Level III Certified Teachers
• Complete a minimum 12 hours of continuing education every two years with Rod Stryker (this can also include assisting at Rod Stryker-led ParaYoga® events).
• Submit annual dues of $75. This fee covers licensing fees and website listing of classes and workshops.
• Follow all ethical guidelines outlined in the ParaYoga® Code of Ethics
The following activities are not acceptable and may result in losing your status as a ParaYoga® Level I, Level II or Level III Certified Teacher:
• Any involvement in romantic and/or sexual relations with current students. It should be understood that this is strictly prohibited.
• Using and distributing printed teaching material included in ParaYoga® Master Teacher manuals without permission.
• Not following the ParaYoga® Class Blueprint for Vinyasa Krama (i.e. shoulder stand at the end of class).
• Publicly disputing or dishonoring the validity of any other style, teacher or practice of Yoga.
• Teaching and/or promoting ParaYoga® workshops prior to being a ParaYoga® Level II Certified Teacher. PYCT Level I Teachers may offer branded workshops with prior permission. A workshop outline must be submitted to the office and approved prior to promoting it.
Standards and Requirements for all Classes Titled ParaYoga®
In order to uphold the highest standards, intention, and consistency, all classes designated as ParaYoga® must adhere to the following guidelines and principles:
• The ParaYoga® Class Blueprint––this framework for sequencing is one of the most critical elements that defines a ParaYoga® class and is outlined in Vinyasa Krama.
• Each class led by Level I Certified Teachers adheres to the general format of one 6 of the six ParaYoga® Asana sequences, modified as necessary to teach beginners. Level II Certified Teachers are given more creative freedom in the sequences they teach provided their classes have a clear theme and intention while applying the principle of sequencing for an apex pose (themes are derived from at least one of the Six Gems© of ParaYoga®).
• Each class must include the principles of Vinyasa Krama, Tejas and Smarana.
• Each class must include appropriate time for Savasana.
• Each class must include meditation and pranayama.
• Each class honors the tradition and source of the teachings.
*Yoga Alliance RYT status through ParaYoga®
FOR STUDENTS WHO HAVE COMPLETED PYMTS PRIOR TO DEBUT OF THE FOUR ONLINE TRAININGS:
200 RYT Eligibility:
• Student must take the first five Level I PYMTs as live trainings (180 contact hrs.)
• All book reports must have been completed on schedule.
• Request the ParaYoga® 200 hour, Yoga Alliance Certificate of Completion.
500 RYT Eligibility:
• Student must complete all Level I and Level II PYMTs.
• All book reports must have been completed on schedule.
• Request the ParaYoga® 500-hour, Yoga Alliance Certificate of Completion. (If you are currently a 200 hour RYT with Yoga Alliance, you must complete 8 PYMTs as live trainings + corresponding book reports.
Please Note: When submitting your paperwork to the Yoga Alliance for 200 hr/500 hr Certification, you will need to obtain a 200 hr/500 hr Certificate of Completion from ParaYoga® as proof of having completed the requirements through us. The 5-day ParaYoga® Certificates of completion that one obtains at the end of a particular training will not be sufficient to submit to them.
FOR STUDENTS STARTING WITH THE ONLINE TRAININGS:
300 RYT Eligibility:
• As the PYMT is designed to be a Master Training, it is optimally utilized as a 300 hour RYT; when added to an already existing 200 hour certification, the completion of all 10 PYMTs credentials you at the YA 500 hour level. All online trainings count fully towards ParaYoga certification through the ParaYoga Master Training (PYMT) program and also count toward prerequisite requirements for other ParaYoga trainings.
*Please Note: Yoga Alliance and ParaYoga are not set up to teach courses designed to diagnose, treat, or cure health conditions. Rather, our focus is on improving general health and well-being, avoiding injury to those with health conditions and empowering our students to thrive.
Required Reading Google Quizzes: for certification in Para Yoga®, candidates must read and submit required reading google form quizzes (link sent out by the PY office) to the Para Yoga® office within 6 weeks of completing the related training. Failure to do so will inhibit your certification process. Here is a list of the PYMT’s and their corresponding books:
VINYASA KRAMA: The Energetics of Sequencing
–THE HEART OF YOGA by TKV Desikachar
TANTRA: The Radiant Soul of Yoga
– TANTRA UNVEILED by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
SECRETS OF THE SUTRAS: Light on Self Mastery
– THE SECRET OF THE YOGA SUTRA by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
PRANA: The Power and Path of Yoga
– THE PATH OF FIRE AND LIGHT by Swami Rama
THE FOUR DESIRES: Yoga of Fulfillment
– THE FOUR DESIRES: CREATING A LIFE OF PURPOSE, PROSPERITY, HAPPINESS, AND FREEDOM by Rod Stryker
YOGA MARMA: Hands-on Correction and the Art of Teaching
– YOGA AND AYURVEDA by David Frawley
YOGA NIDRA: Relax Into Greatness
–ENLIGHTENMENT WITHOUT GOD: MANDUKYA UPANISHAD by Swami Rama
KOSHAS: Unleashing the Science of Soul
– YOGA AND PSYCHOTHERAPY by Swami Rama
KUNDALINI: The Grandeur and Spirit of Yoga
– AGHORA II: KUNDALINI by Robert E. Svboda
GURU PARAMPARA: Transmission and Lineage
– MANTRA AND THE MYSTERY OF INITIATION by Pandit Rajmani Tigunait
Teaching History Documentation
Documentation is required for ParaYoga® Accredited teacher status:
•A minimum of 75 teaching hours for ParaYoga® Level I Certified Teachers (ParaYoga-influenced classes).
•A minimum of 150 teaching hours for ParaYoga® Level II Certified Teacher status (must be ParaYoga-style classes).
Asana practice requirements: Two years of documented asana practice is required for Level I certification and 3 years of asana for Level II. Your home practice needs to consist of at least one half hour three times per week. You are encouraged to keep a journal to document your practice. This journal should be used exclusively for the purpose of recording your practices, not to submit to the ParaYoga® office. You will need to submit the Quarterly Hatha Practice Summary forms if you wish to apply for certification.
Once you begin the process of journaling, fill in each day including those days you do not practice. If you do not practice on a given day, simply enter the date and leave the rest blank. Describe what you did along with a brief reflection on your experience doing it. You might focus on a particular insight, the general quality of the practice itself, or any thing that seems relevant about your experience on that given day. Don’t force your reflections: they don’t have to be groundbreaking, profound, or even different each time. You are encouraged to be honest, straightforward, and practical.
Applying for ParaYoga® Level I Certified Teacher status requires a year of journaling about your on-going practice. Applying for ParaYoga® Level II Certified Teacher status requires three years of journaling about your on-going practice.
Meditation practice requirements: A minimum of two years regular meditation practice in the ParaYoga® tradition is required for Level I certification. A minimum of three years of regular meditation practice is required for Level II Certification. This practice requirement must be documented and submitted by email to ParaYoga’s office as outlined in the Quarterly Meditation Summary Form, found on the Resource Page. Quarterly updates are due at the end of March, June, September, and December (there is a two week grace period). ParaYoga® will not accept all your required Quarterly Summaries at once or at the time of your application for certification.
Ok, so you’ve decided you want to get certified. Great news! Here is the breakdown of the certification process, already mentioned above, with even greater detail.
Requirements for Level I Certification:
1. Enroll – Please submit the ParaYoga® Master Training Enrollment Application along with the $150 application fee. This may be submitted after completing one PYMT, but it is required before participating in your fourth PYMT. Your enrollment package includes audio practices and materials for you to begin your at home practice.
2. Practice ParaYoga® – You must have at least two years practicing ParaYoga®. This includes classes, workshops, PYMT’s and retreats taught by Rod Stryker and/or a ParaYoga® Level II or Level III Certified Teacher.
3. Meditate – You must complete a minimum of two years of regular, ParaYoga based meditation practice of at least 15 minutes per day, six days per week. This practice requirement must be documented and submitted by email to the ParaYoga® office as outlined in the Quarterly Sadhana Summary Forms (see Resources Page). Quarterly updates are due at the end of March, June, September, and December (there is a two-week grace period). ParaYoga® will not accept all your required Quarterly Summaries at once or at the time you are applying for certification. Please note: you need to be enrolled in the PYMT program before you can submit these quarterly summaries of your practices (see number one above). Therefore, we recommend that you officially enroll in the PYMT program as early as possible. If you find it helpful to track your daily practice consider using the ParaYoga Meditation Log.
4. Practice japa – Each student must complete 125,000 repetitions of: the Gayatri, Maha Mrityunjaya, or Guru Mantra (given at initiation). These will be recorded in your forms above.
5. Practice at home – It is required that you have a minimum of two years of regular home asana practice. Documentation must be provided at the time of your application showing a practice of at least 30 minutes per day, 3 days per week. We highly suggest you record your practices in a journal on an on-going basis to track your daily practice.
6. Teach ParaYoga® – Students must teach ParaYoga® influenced classes for a minimum of one year (That is 75 hours teaching or one 1.5 hour class for 50 weeks). Documentation of teaching history should be submitted with your Level I application. Please use the Teaching Hisory Form found on the Resources Page.
7. Complete all Level I PYMT’s – Complete all six Level I ParaYoga® Master Trainings, Vinyasa Krama, Tantra Shakti, Secrets of the Sutras, Prana Shakti, ParaYogaMarma and the 3-Day training, The Four Desires.
8. Turn in your book reports – There are reading assignments for each PYMT. You must submit your book reports within 6 weeks of completing the training. See instructions below.
9. Meet with a teacher – An essential part of your ParaYoga® journey is your own personal practice. Your Level II or Level III teacher can direct you to an asana and meditation practice, specifically designed for you. You can use the teacher directory on the ParaYoga® website to help you find the right teacher. You may contact them directly, or if you are not sure who to choose you can call the office and we will help you. Private session fees differ from teacher to teacher. Be sure to ask upfront how you can meet (in person or by Skype) and how to handle payment for your session.
10. Learn the mantras and invocations – All students must be able to recite the following mantras and invocations found in your manual: The ParaYoga® Invocation, The Gayatri Mantra, Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra (MMM), Prana Pratishta, Invocation to Patanjali, and Vishve Deva mantra.
11. 30 Days of kriyas –You will need a minimum 30-day practice (consecutive) of Cave of the Heart and Bhuta Shuddhi Kriyas. These kriyas are given in the trainings.
Application and Instructions for ParaYoga® Level I Certification
1. Apply – Upon completion of all requirements, you may submit the following to the ParaYoga® office:
•Level I Certification Application
•A signed copy of the ParaYoga® Code of Ethics
•Certification Fee of $350
2. Request the exam – After submitting all the necessary documentation and fees to the ParaYoga® office, you may request the exam. You will have 10 days to complete it. This test demonstrates your understanding of and ability to apply the fundamental principles of ParaYoga®, with particular emphasis on sequencing, correct application and adaptation of Asana, Pranayama and meditation as well as their energetic effects (i.e. Prana Vayus, Gunas, and Doshas. You will then be contacted within 30 days by your PYCT reviewer, to discuss the results of your written test. Please note: if the results of your written test are less than satisfactory, you will be guided as to how to prepare to retake the exam. A $125 fee will be charged for retakes.
3. Film your video – After passing the written exam, you must submit a video of your teaching for review. The video, in digital format, should demonstrate your proficiency in teaching a ParaYoga® class. You will receive documents which provide detailed instructions regarding the requirements of your teaching video. Please be certain you have read and feel prepared to implement these requirements before you start filming. You will have 6 months to submit your video (via Dropbox to the PY office) after passing your written exam and receiving the guideline documents. After your video has been reviewed you will be contacted within 30 days to discuss it. If the video is not approved, you will receive detailed feedback and guidance as to what aspects of your teaching need improvement and a ParaYoga® Certification Action Plan (PYCAP) from your evaluator. A second video can be submitted no less than six months from the review and requires an additional processing fee of $125.
4. Get Licensed – After passing your video exam, you will be sent the ParaYoga® Licensing Agreement, which you must sign and email back, along with your $150 Licensing Fee (to be pro-rated, depending on the time of year you certify).
5. Get Listed – After receiving your signed agreement and fees, you will then be listed on the ParaYoga® Teacher Directory on the ParaYoga® website; please email the ParaYoga office your bio, headshot and contact information
6. Congratulations! You will be sent your ParaYoga® Level I Certificate of Completion.
Requirements for Level II Certification:
1. Complete all Level II PYMT’s – You must finish all ten ParaYoga Master Teacher Trainings in order and associated reading assignments and book reports to be eligible for Level II.
2. Practice ParaYoga® – All candidates must have been practicing ParaYoga® for at least three years. This includes classes, workshops, PYMT’s and retreats taught by Rod Stryker and/or a ParaYoga® Level II Certified Teacher. You must have been a Level I ParaYoga® Certified Teacher for a minimum of one year.
3. Teach – Continue teaching another year of ParaYoga®-style classes. (Minimum 150 hours or one 1.5 hour class for 100 weeks over two years). Documentation of teaching history should be submitted with the Level II application. Please use the Teaching History form found on the Resources Page.
4. Practice at home – Continue another year, for a total of three years of regular home asana practice. Documentation must be provided showing a practice of at least 30 minutes per day, 3 days per week. Submit verification via the summary forms found on the Resources Page.
5. Meditate – Keep meditating for another year for a total of three years of regular meditation practice (in the ParaYoga® tradition). This practice requirement must be documented and submitted by email to the ParaYoga® office as outlined in the Quarterly Sadhana Summary Forms found on the Resources Page. Quarterly updates are due at the end of March, June, September, and December (there is a two-week grace period). ParaYoga® will not accept all your required Quarterly Summaries at once or at the time of your application for certification.
6. Complete two case studies – You will be required to work privately with at least two individuals and document your results. Candidates need to show proficiency in working with individual client needs. Case studies must be submitted using the Case Study Form, which will be sent to you 6 months after completion of Level I Certification, if requested.
7. 30 more days of kriyas – you must complete a minimum 30-day practice (consecutive) of the following ParaYoga® meditation/kriya practices: Bhuta Shuddhi, Cave of the Heart, Manas Puja, Tibetan Color Purification, and Tattwa Shuddhi (Dark Man of Sin).
8. Know the mantras – You must be able to recite the following mantras and invocations: ParaYoga Invocation, Gayatri Mantra, Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra, Prana Pratishta, Invocation to Patanjali and Vishve Deva mantra.
9. Have another private consultation with ParaYoga® – Another private session with Yogarupa Rod Stryker, Karina Ayn Mirsky or a Level III Certified ParaYoga Teacher is necessary for completion of your training.
Application and Instructions for Para Yoga® Level II Certification:
1. Apply – Once all of the above requirements have been met, you may submit an application for Level II Certification. All required documents must be submitted to the ParaYoga® office. Please review this checklist so that your submission is complete:
• Teaching History form
• All Practice and meditation Quarterly Summaries forms (must have been submitted on a regular basis prior to receiving the written exam)
• Certification Fee of $350.00 (non-refundable)
2. Request the exam – You will have 14 days to complete it, at which time you will submit the completed test and completed case studies to the ParaYoga® office via email. You will then be contacted within 30 days by your PYCT reviewer to discuss the results of your written test. In the event that you do not pass the exam, you will be coached as to how to prepare to retake it, and be given specific guidance. An additional fee of $125 will be required to retake the exam.
3. Get Licensed – After passing your written exam, you will be sent the ParaYoga® Licensing Agreement, which you must sign and email back, along with your $75 Licensing Fee.
4. Get Listed – After receiving your signed agreement and fees, you will then be listed on the ParaYoga® Teacher Directory on the Para Yoga® website as a Level II teacher.
5. Congratulations! You will be sent your ParaYoga® Level II Certificate of Completion.