Uttar Kashi, Himalayas, India ( Yoga Teachers’ Training Course – level I - YTTC-I )
Sivananda Yoga Vidya Peetham (www.sivanandapeetham.org) is conducting a Yoga Teachers’ Training Course – Level 1 at the Chinmaya Tapovanam in Uttar Kashi, Uttarakhand state, Himalayas,India. The main teachers for this course are Swami Govindananda, Robert Sankara Moses, Swami Janardhanananda and Mani Raman.

DATES: September 02 – October 01, 2017
(Arrival on Sept 02, Departure on Oct 01, 2017)

Chinmaya Tapovanam
Ujjaili, Uttar Kashi,
Uttarakhand state
Himalayas, India

The course will be held in the ashram Chinmaya Tapovanam – a branch of Chinmaya Mission founded by Sri Swami Chinmayanandaji. Uttar Kashi is a holy town on the banks of the Holy river Ganga deep in the Himalayas. A travel about 160 km from Rishikesh takes one to this place.

Course Donation (for non-Indian nationals and non-resident Indian nationals)

Single accommodation: US $ 3200, Double sharing : US $ 2900, Dormitory of 3 or 4 beds: US $ 2700

Please email to sivanandapeetham@gmail.com for the information on subsidized donation scheme for resident Indian nationals.

The course donation includes all tuition, accommodation in sharing rooms, uniform (two pairs of trousers and two t-shirts), course manual, kriya materials and meals. This donation does not include transport to and from the Ashram, yoga mat, cushion, and blanket. All donations are non-refundable. A student can transfer from one course before the start of that course, to attend another, once only. After this time donations are forfeited.

Course details
    This four-week course offers a profound personal experience, designed to build a firm foundation of inner discipline and provide the proficiency to teach yoga to others. The essence of yoga is learned through a combination of repeated practices and inspirational lessons. The approach to teaching is personal, focusing on the individual student. Among the many benefits students report are increased strength and flexibility, greater spiritual awareness, improved power of concentration, enhanced self-esteem and a new found sense of self-discipline.
    This training course fulfills the requirements for the Yoga Alliance 200-hour certification, for which graduates of the program are invited to register.
The course will be taught in English.
This course is open to all students who wish to deepen their knowledge and application of some of the highest teachings of yoga. Participants do not need to be yoga teachers. Mastery of any yoga practice is not necessary, only your sincere desire for knowledge and your commitment to personal growth. Even if one does not wish to be a yoga teacher, one may attempt this course for the deeper understanding of the philosophies as well as for the intense purification experience and for all round development of the personality.
Five points of Yoga as per the teachings of Sri Swami Vishnudevananda
1. Proper exercise – Yoga Asanas
2. Proper breathing – Pranayama
3. Proper relaxation – Savasana
4. Proper diet – Vegetarianism
5. Positive thinking and meditation – Vedanta & Dhyanam
Yoga Asanas
  • • The sun salutation and the twelve basic yoga postures
  • • Advanced variations
  • • Effects of asanas on the physical and astral body
  • • Proper posture alignment, deep relaxation, release of blocked energy
  • • Benefits of Yoga Asanas

  • • The basic practices: kapalabhati, anuloma viloma pranayama (alternate nostril breathing)
  • • Advanced pranayama exercises

  • • The six classical exercises for purifying the body

Hatha Yoga / Kundalini Yoga Theory
  • • The astral body
  • • The nadis (energy channels) and chakras (energy centers)

How to Teach
  • • How to teach the sun salutation and the twelve basic postures
  • • Setting up a proper environment for class
  • • The basic class
  • • How to teach beginners and intermediate students
  • • How to teach children, the elderly, and prenatal yoga
  • • How to correct postures

Yoga Philosophy and Psychology
  • • The four paths of Yoga: Karma Yoga (selfless service), Bhakti Yoga (the path of devotion, including attendance at devotional rituals); Raja Yoga (mind control), and Jnana Yoga (the path of wisdom and realisation).
  • • Psychology of the spiritual aspirant
  • • The law of Karma

Anatomy and Physiology
  • • The effects of hatha yoga practices on the major body systems

Yogic Diet and Nutrition
  • • Influence of diet on the mind
  • • Proper diet
  • • Nutrition according to Ayurvedic guidelines
  • • Ethical, health and spiritual reasons for vegetarianism

  • • Twelve-step guideline to meditation
  • • The benefits of meditation
  • • Mantras, mantra-initiation (if requested)

Kirtan (Chanting)
  • • Positive effects of chanting on the emotions
  • • Correct pronunciation and mental attitude
  • • Learning classical Sanskrit chants

Bhagavad Gita
  • • Study and commentary of the classical scripture

Daily  schedule
05:00 am 
Wake up
05:30 am Meditation, chanting and lecture or silent walk (90 mins)
07.00 am Tea time
07:30 am Asana and Pranayama Class
09:30 am Brunch
10.15 am Seva - selfless service (60 mins)
11.30 am Bhagvat Gita/Chanting time
1.00 pm Tea
1.30 pm Main Lecture on philosophy
3.30 pm Asana and Pranayama class
5:30 pm Dinner
7:30 pm Satsang (meditation, chanting and lecture or special program)
09.30 pm Lights out
• Attendance at all activities is mandatory.
• Changes in the program may occur from time to time
• There is one day off in a week. Students are required to attend morning and evening satsangs, attend the morning hathayoga class and to complete their Seva duties. The rest of the day is free for their personal study and activities.

Recommended texts

• Sivananda Training Manual – by Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre.
• The Complete Illustrated Book of Yoga – by Swami Vishnudevananda
• Bhagavad Gita (with commentary by Swami Dayananda Saraswati)
• Meditation and Mantras – by Swami Vishnudevananda
• The Chant book
(These texts are included in the course donation )

In Addition

Sivananda Companion to Yoga - by Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre
Sivananda Beginners Guide to Yoga – by Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre
Yoga Mind & Body – by Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre
*The above-mentioned texts are available for purchase at the retreat subjected to availability.

Assessment and Certification

The students are continuously assessed throughout the course at all levels. Participant should pass all different aspects of the course to be eligible for the course diploma. There will be a written exam at the end of the course to evaluate the understanding of the philosophy of Yoga and skills of the students.

Assessment is based on:

1. Regular attendance of all classes
2. Attitude and behaviour inside and outside of the retreat while attending the course
3. Performance and attitude in the practical asana, pranayama, bandhas and kriya classes
4. Hatha yoga teaching skills
5. Leading spiritual chanting in the satsangs
6. Written daily summary of the main philosophy classes and hatha yoga theory classes
7. Written examination of 3.30 hrs on the theories of Yoga and Vedanta philosophy.

Main Teachers
Swami Govindananda Saraswati

A direct disciple of Swami Vishnudevananda, Swami Govindananda started his Ashram life in Sivandanda Ashram, Neyyar Dam, Kerala in 1987. Swami Govindananda spent more than 20 years with the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre Organisation.

After establishing the Meenakshi Ashram in Madurai for the organisation, he left to continue spreading Guru's messages. Having shared his Guru’s teachings throughout many teachers’ training courses and Yoga Vacations, Swami Govindananda is much loved by his students for his unique style and humour. For more details visit www.sivanandapeetham.org

Robert Sankara Moses

A direct disciple of Swami Vishnudevananda, Robert Sankara Moseshas44 years experience as a teacher of Yoga and Vedanta philosophy. He is a gifted teacher, loved for his unique style and humour and his ability to teach complicated philosophical concepts in a simple way. Born in South Africa, Robert studied architecture, travelled abroad and met his guru, Sri Swami Vishnudevananda, in 1972 in Israel. Robert spent the next 22 years with Swamiji, studying and serving in the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers (ISYVC).He directed ISYVC centers and ashrams and taught yoga teacher training and advanced training courses worldwide, includingthe ISYVC ashram in Neyyar Dam, Kerala from 1982 to 1994. In the early 1990s, Swamiji appointed Robert as one of seven original members of the newly formed executive board of ISYVC.

After Swami Vishnudevananda left his body in 1994, Robert left ISYVC to marry and raise a family. Robert continues to teach Yoga and Vedanta, and maintains his daily sadhana based on the teachings of H.H. Sri Swami Sivananda and Sri Swami Vishnudevananda. He also works as a graphic artist and photo/videographer and editor. In 2003 he founded and continues to co-publish Namarupa:Categories of Indian Thought - a magazine about the philosophies and arts of India.Robert also leads annual pilgrimages to the sacred places of India. www.namarupa.org. He lives in New Hampshire, USA with his wife and three children.

Swami Janardhanananda Saraswati

A direct disciple of Swami Vishnudevananda, Swami Janardhanananda started his Ashram life in Sivandanda Ashram, Neyyar Dam, Kerala in 1984. Swamiji spent about 10 years with the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre Organisation. Since 1993, Swamiji has spent all his time in the holy town Uttar Kashi undergoing sadhana. For the last few years a small hermitage - Vishnudevananda Tapovanam - was built in Uttar Kashi and Swamiji does his Guruseva taking care of the children of the nearby villages by giving spiritual and academic education.

Swami Nivedanananda

Swami Nivedanananda is born and brought up in Kottayam district in Kerala, India. After formal schooling, at a young age itself Swamiji joined the Sivagiri Sree Narayana Math, Varkala, Kerala and underwent traditional education on Sanskrit, Vedanta, Yoga sutra, Gita, tantric poojas and rituals for 7 years. This led him to take the sannyasa initiation (a vow of a monk ) from the same ashram at a very young age and served the ashram for many years.

Swamiji took formal training in Yoga at the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centres in India undergoing the Yoga Teacher Training Course as well as the Advanced Yoga Teacher Training Course. During his stay in Sivananda Ashram, Neyyar dam, India Swamiji taught many hatha yoga classes and Veda chanting. Many of Swamiji’s friends and students will fondly remember him as the priest of the same ashram daily following the ritual performance for about 10 years. After leaving the Sivananda Ashrams in 2011, Swamiji now a days is engaged in performing Tantric poojas and havans ( fire rituals ), teaching hatha yoga classes by travelling to different places as well as helping in the administration of Sivananda Yoga Vidya Peetham

Mani Raman

Having grown up in India where he met and learned from numerous yogis, saints and spiritual teachers, Mani developed a strong foundation deeply rooted in Vedic tradition. He took to the practice of Yoga at the age of 12. In 1996 at a very young age, Mani devoted himself entirely to Yoga and joined the gurukula of the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Dhanwantari Ashram in Neyyer Dam, Kerala, India.

He has served in the tradition of Swami Sivananda and Swami Vishnudevananda at the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta centers. Mani conducts Yoga and Meditation retreats in India, USA, the Far East, Japan and Europe and has transformed the lives of thousands of seekers of Yoga. Much loved by students from beginners to advanced, he teaches Hath Yoga and gives inspiring discourses on Vedanta philosophy, Bhagavad Gita, and other ancient scriptures.

For more details visit www.maniraman.org


The potential course student may download the application form here.
Please send the filled up application form to sivanandapeetham@gmail.com
Once the application is accepted, the applicant will get the instruction how to make the deposit donation transfer via bank.
The entire course donation needs to be paid latest by one month before the course begins through wire transfer.

One can travel to Uttar Kashi either from Dehradun or Rishikesh/Haridwar which are situated on the foothills of the Himalayas. Dehradun is the closest city, where one can reach either by train or flight. Haridwar/Rishikesh are also major centres where one can reach by train or bus or taxi service.

By Plane

All major Indian domestic carriers serve Dehradun Airport from New Delhi (1 hour), Kolkata (45 minutes). Prepaid taxis (approximately Rs. 2500) are available from Dehradun to Uttar Kashi, which is approximately 6 hours drive on the winding road alongside the gorgeous Bhagirathi - Ganga river. Those who alight at New Delhi International airport may travel to Haridwar or Dehradun either by train (about 6 hours travel) or by arranged taxi service. From Haridwar/Dehradun the best way is to hire taxi to Uttar Kashi.

By Train
The closest railway stations are Haridwar and Dehradun. These stations are connected to all different parts of India. The journey on the all air conditioned Rajdhani or Jan Satabdi Express is 5 hours from Delhi. Like at the Dehradun Airport, pre-paid taxis are available for the 6 hours drive up to Uttar kashi.
If you want us to arrange for your pickup, the approximate cost of sending a taxi from Uttar Kashi to collect you is Rs. 2500. Please email your train/plane arrival details to: sivanandapeetham@gmail.com if you want us to arrange your pick up. (This is not included in the course donation).


Casual comfortable clothes, yoga mat, meditation shawl, toiletries, notebooks, pens, slip-on sandals, Warm clothing for very cool nights & cool mornings/evenings and clothes for warm days, flashlight, insect repellent, alarm clock, travel mug/tumbler, water bottle, sunscreen

General Information
Please read course details as well as the course location information carefully before making a decision to register.
Admission is on first-come first-serve basis.
Students should plan latest to arrive on the arrival day Sept 10 at Chinmaya Tapovanam and depart on the day of departure Oct 9.
It is recommended that participants spend at least a few days in the course location before the start of your course. This allows the body and mind to have a little time to rest, re-energize and be nourished by the retreat environment. Participants can then begin their study feeling relaxed and refreshed.
If one decides to arrive early and also to stay longer, please register for the course program for those additional days. We will arrange your stay in a hotel near-by for these additional days, for this accommodation charges should be directly paid at the hotel reception.
The Ashram reserves the right of admission and students may be asked to leave if their behaviour goes against the Ashram rules and teachings
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