And so, on the magical island of Maui in December of 1980, Guruji reluctantly granted me permission to teach. One stipulation was that I was to send him Guru Dakshina (one tenth of my earnings as a yoga teacher) every month. It seemed a small price to pay for his blessing".
Tim Miller 'Dust'.
"Dear yoga community,
This is my Certification from KPJAYI or AYRI as it was called back then. I'm not sure if you are aware of this, but this is the only institute in the world that can 'Certify' Ashtanga teachers in the lineage of Sri K Pattabhi Jois. I am writing this because I've noticed that there are a lot of people selling Ashtanga Teacher Trainings to unknowing students out there. I have devoted the greater part of the last 20 years to this practice and tradition, for more than 15 years almost every dollar that I have earned I have put into my continuing education and study with my teachers. I am not alone in this: I have seen thousands of dedicated practitioners pouring their heart and soul into this practice day after day and year after year.
I am by no means a perfect human being, so I cannot throw the first stone - but I feel a need to voice my opinion about this since I've noticed that there are students going to Mysore and practicing with Sharath, and then going and running these Ashtanga Teacher Trainings. First of all, there are so many long time students that I know who could not get into the shala this year because it was too full - so those people are taking the place of others that are actually students of Sharath, and not just going to Mysore to get their photo taken outside of the shala, and then claiming to be Ashtanga teachers. Secondly, by 'Certifying' students you are making the word 'Certified' a joke, and you are lying to the students who are paying you.
Call it something else - Hatha, Vinyasa, Power, or clarify that you are teaching Patanjali's Ashtanga Yoga philosophy, but don't mislead people by calling it an Ashtanga Yoga Teacher Training.
I know there is a want and need for people to deepen their studies, so I would recommend you to go to the teachers who have been teaching for 20 years or more, like Richard Freeman, Tim Miller, Dena Kingsberg to name just a few. Don't go to these opportunists who are running a business out of the trainings - because no one can teach you to be an Ashtanga teacher overnight. It takes more than that. You need to be a student first and practice at the source or with teachers connected the lineage". Mark Robberds
If you are a friend of Mark's on fb he includes a very cool photo of his old certification.
I am very much in agreement with Mark's last paragraph but while I too feel that what characterises our practice of Ashtanga vinyasa is a dedicated daily practice over a period of years I do not feel that KPJAYI should have soul authority to Authorise teachers on behalf of the Ashtanga community.
The first AYRI ONLINE teachers list has 133 teachers mentioned
The current (2016) KPJAYI list has 547 teachers mentioned
(Africa -2, Asia-113, Australia and NZ- 40, Central and South America-26, Europe-131, North America-235)
He explained that his father was very generous with his teachings—that his primary concern was with the practice spreading throughout the world because of his firm conviction that Ashtanga Yoga is the very best thing one can do to insure physical, mental, and spiritual health."
Tuesdays with Timji
1. Ashtanga Yoga Nilayam 15 dec 01
Sri K. Pattabhi Jois 876/1 First Cross Laxmipuram, 570004 Mysore Karnataka, India
Please include your full name, home address, arrival date, and duration of your stay.
The class fees are $350 US per month, with a $200 registration fee the first month. Please allow for a minimum stay of one month, however three months are recommended in order to have time to learn the practice properly. Food and lodging are not provided, but there are good hotels and restaurants nearby.
2. Authorized Teachers
Teachers' Listings on Ashtanga.com updated January 2004
The procedure for obtaining a teacher's listing on Ashtanga.com is outlined below. Only Sri K. Pattabhi Jois and Sharath Rangaswamy of the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute (AYRI) can issue teaching authorizations and certifications for Ashtanga Yoga. Inquiries about teachers' qualifications should be directed to the individual teachers. Teachers are responsible for verifying the accuracy of the information in their listings. Ashtanga.com and its creators, producers, and deliverers assume no liability or responsibility for any errors or omissions in the class listings on this site. The teachers' listings on the Classes pages are approved by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois.
1. Starting in January 2003, the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute will issue NEW official authorization letters to authorized Ashtanga Yoga teachers. All authorized teachers are requested to send their original authorization letters to AYRI in exchange for official authorization letters on AYRI letterhead. AYRI will then notify Ashtanga.com of the teachers' names that can be re-listed on Ashtanga.com. Failure to turn in your original authorization letter may result in removal from the teachers' list.
2. "Certified" Teachers: Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to send a photocopy of the official government certificate via email (scanned image of certificate), fax, or post in order to be listed on Ashtanga.com.
3. Verbally Authorized Teachers should write to AYRI to request the new official authorization letter. Please enclose a photograph of yourself with your correspondence.
4. Class Schedule Requirement: In addition to receiving certification or authorization to teach, you are required to teach Ashtanga Yoga in the TRADITIONAL FORMAT. The traditional format consists of daily classes in the Mysore style in correct sequential order and without deviation from the traditional form of the asanas as taught by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois at the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, South India. The traditional format includes the practices outlined in the Yoga Mala, Astanga Yoga by Lino Miele, and Ashtanga Yoga by John Scott. Explicitly indicate on your website and brochures that such traditional Ashtanga Yoga is offered.
5. Omissions from the List: Teachers' names may be omitted from the list if they are on hiatus or are not currently offering classes in the style or quantity required for a listing.
Please send all AYRI correspondence regarding authorization letters to:
Gokulam, Mysore 570002
1. How do I become an authorized/certified Ashtanga Yoga teacher?
You must receive an official Authorization Letter or Certification Certificate through the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute (AYRI) located at #235, 8th Cross, 3rd Stage, Gokulam, Mysore 570002, Karnataka, India. Only the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute issues valid teaching authorizations and certifications for Ashtanga Yoga. Participation in the Sri K. Pattabhi Jois workshop tours and trips to AYRI locations outside of Mysore do not count towards authorization or certification.
NOTE: A student should by no means visit AYRI in Mysore for the sole purpose of getting authorized. Their visit should primarily be for their own education of the lineage to further their own practice under correct guidance of Pattabhi Jois.
2. What is the difference between Authorization and Certification?
There are two categories of teachers, "authorized" and "certified." Both types of teachers receive documents from the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute indicating their teaching status. Authorized teachers generally are permitted to teach only the Ashtanga Yoga Primary Series and generally have made at least four trips to AYRI Mysore of 3+ months. The student must also demonstrate appropriate attitude, devotion to the practice, and proficiency in the Primary Series (and usually at least half of the Second Series) as determined by the directors of AYRI. Certified teachers have completed at least the first three series of Ashtanga Yoga and must demonstrate an appropriate level of proficiency in these series as determined by the directors of AYRI. These students generally have made 8 or more annual trips to AYRI Mysore and have at least 8-10 years of daily Ashtanga Yoga practice.
NOTE: AUTHORIZATION SHOULD NOT BE REQUESTED BUT GIVEN. The decision to give authorization or certification to teach is by no means solely dependent on the number of times a student has visited Mysore. It is based upon Guruji and Sharath’s evaluation of the person, his/her commitment and full respect of the lineage of the practice. Authorization is given with the trust that an AYRI student will teach as he/she has been taught in Mysore by Guruji and Sharath.
These guidelines are subject to change and do not constitute an official published policy of the Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute in Mysore, India. Please use these guidelines for your personal information only.