209: Online Yoga Teacher Training with Jivana Heyman

One of the things yoga teachers all around the world have had to navigate recently is the shift to sharing yoga online because of the coronavirus pandemic. A lot of yoga teacher trainings have also moved online, as well as conferences, seminars and other aspects of continuing education for yoga teachers. Like teaching yoga online, they come with their own set of challenges, and Jivana Heyman shares more about his experience moving everything online.

Jivana is the founder and director of Accessible Yoga, an international non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to yoga teachings. Jivana is also the co-founder of the Accessible Yoga Training School, and the author of Accessible Yoga: Poses and Practices for Every Body. As a yoga teacher, Jivana has specialized in teaching yoga to people with disabilities with an emphasis on community building and social engagement. 

As a result of the pandemic, Jivana had to move everything he was working on to an online format, including the entire Accessible Yoga Conference and his yoga teacher trainings. This was a big undertaking, and Jivana talks about how this transition went – what went well and what did not, how he managed the tech element of this transition, and most importantly, how he retained the quality of it all when he moved to the online format.

Key Takeaways:

[5:24] Shannon introduces her guest for this episode – Jivana Heyman.

[7:58] Jivana is working on his second book. What are some of his tips for yoga teachers trying to write a book or manual?

[9:48] In 2020, Jivana moved the Accessible Yoga Conference and his yoga teacher trainings online. Which offering did Jivana move online first?

[11:55] Would Jivana continue with offering trainings online if the pandemic ended tomorrow?

[14:03] How is Jivana dealing with missing interaction with people?

“What I miss the most is that at the trainings, I got to watch people meet each other and form bonds and communities.” ~ Jivana Heyman 

[16:16] What technology is Jivana using for the conference and his trainings online?

[18:23] How does Jivana deal with accountability and watching people teach when the training is online?

[22:52] Props are an important part of accessible yoga. How does Jivana deal with attendees having the props necessary?

[25:06] Has Jivana included aspects of how to teach online in the training?

[26:56] How has Jivana managed the sound and tech for all of the presenters and teacher trainers he has been dealing with in the conference and trainings? 

“It’s more tiring to teach online.” ~ Jivana Heyman 

[29:08] Jivana speaks about the challenges of accessibility.

[32:29] Jivana shares how to caption for accessibility on images in social media.

[34:59] In terms of accessibility, being online has helped Jivana reach more people who could not attend in-person events.

“What’s amazing about being online is that we have international groups all the time.” ~ Jivana Heyman 

[38:32] Digital access can also be an issue when people don’t have access to the internet, a computer or have the time to be online.

[40:45] What are Jivana’s tip for using different props for students who can’t get down to the floor?

“For our community, participating in online classes can actually be really beneficial.” ~ Jivana Heyman 

[48:53] Jivana share a bit about the Accessible Yoga Community on Facebook.

[53:28] What is Jivana’s new book about?

[56:59] Where can you find out more about Jivana and his work?

[59:45] Shannon shares her key takeaways from this interview.


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