The University of Minnesota Hatha Yoga Teachers’ Program provides the opportunity to enrich your practice and deep understanding of yoga. This comprehensive, high-quality, evidence-informed program is open to yoga enthusiasts, instructors, healthcare practitioners, teachers, and clinicians alike. It is designed to support you in pursuing your yoga-related passions and interests. 

Students will increase their theoretical understanding of yoga while studying with seasoned teaching faculty with years of experience and expertise in the field. Along with an in-depth study of yoga history, theory, and philosophy, students will be provided with considerable opportunities for hands-on teaching experience. The 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) program is recognized by Yoga Alliance and, upon completion, qualifies graduates to be 200-hour Registered Yoga Teachers.

The Yoga focus area is led by graduate faculty member Katie Schuver, PhD, E-RYT, RPYT, 500hr RYT, and C-IAYT Yoga Therapist. Faculty teach classes and conduct workshops and conferences for the local, national, and international community. 

Hatha Yoga Teacher Training (YTT) or Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) 

Students can take three courses in Hatha Yoga, a popular type of yoga that combines asana (postures), pranayama (breath expansion), and relaxation. These courses are based on exercise science, yogic philosophy, and scientific evidence.

Successfully completing these three courses, A-F or S-N, means you would be eligible to register with Yoga Alliance as a 200-hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT).

Learn more and become a registered yoga teacher at the University of Minnesota

CSPH 5317: Yoga: Ethics, Spirituality, and Healing (2 credits)

This course introduces students to ethics, spirituality, and healing from the perspective of Yoga, an ancient Indian discipline. Students will examine the claim that systematic Yoga practice leads to optimal health. Using critical thinking, students will evaluate philosophical knowledge, scientific evidence, and practical application, and propose research-based programs for integrating Yoga into personal and professional life. 

Learn Abroad with CSPH 5319: Yoga & Ayurveda in India (4 credits)

While studying with expert practitioners at the University of Minnesota and in India, students will examine the claim that the systematic practice of these traditions promotes healing and optimal health. Using critical thinking, students will investigate scientific evidence for Yoga and Ayurveda and propose additional research needed. Students will synthesize the philosophical, psychological, and ethical teachings of Yoga and Ayurveda with their experiential knowledge to meet the course objectives and their needs personally and professionally. 

Students fly from MSP to New Delhi, where they can visit the Taj Mahal in Agra. They then travel by Jeep to Sadhaka Grama Ashram near Rishikesh and study with expert Yoga practitioners. During their free time, students walk along the Ganges River and visit Vashista Cave. At the Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust and Ayurveda Center near Dehradun, they learn about research and integrative care using Yoga and Ayurveda. They then return to New Delhi and fly back to MSP.

Discover the Center’s learning abroad courses

Partnerships & International Collaboration

The Bakken Center has formed strategic partnerships with diverse organizations, including the Men-Tsee-Khang and Sadhaka Grama Ashram in India, healthcare institutions in Minnesota, and the Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota. Events have included the “Second International Tibetan Medicine Conference at the University of Minnesota,” “Silence: The Deeper Dimension of Yoga” with Swami Veda Bharati, and “Tibetan Yoga: Awakening the Sacred Body” with Dr. Alejandro Chaoul. Annual academic trips with students to India foster international and interdisciplinary partnerships.

Faculty collaborate with Hatha Yoga Teachers, Yoga Therapists, Tibetan Medicine Practitioners, and Ayurveda Practitioners to carry out their work involving research, education, and service. We also collaborate with international organizations in the U.S. and India. Students study at Sadkhaka Grama Ashram and Himalayan Institute Hospital Trust and Ayurveda Center near Rishikesh, India, during Winter Break in CSPH 5319. 

Relationship between Yoga and Ayurveda

Yoga, union within and with the universe, is a way of life to develop optimal health. Ayurveda is a holistic healing tradition from India that can teach us how to create and sustain a healthy mind and body to live a yogic life. Yoga and Ayurveda are like two sides of the same coin. One tradition is insufficient without the other.