Zen Spirit is located about 14 km south of Punta Islita airport in the Nicoya Peninsula of Costa Rica. It has been identified as one of the five blue zones on the planet. They are near Cabo Blanco National Park, Karen Mogensen Nature Reserve, Caletas Ario wildlife refuge. Therefore, while visiting the tropical eco-resort you are likely to spot some of Costa Rica’s shyest and most endangered tropical dry forest inhabitants, for example, the black howler monkey, the white-headed capuchin, tropical deer, macaws, eagles as well as sea turtles.

Located at the margin of the more popular hustle and bustle tourist beaches, Zen Spirit guarantees their guests a true retreat experience and the possibility to reconnect with their inner self. For instance, there are no hotels or facilities other than private residences on Costa de Oro beach. Because the premise is set on a wonderful long flat gold sandy beach interrupted by river estuaries. You can enjoy world-class surfing as well as kayaking and bird watching in the mangrove, horseback riding and hiking to waterfalls, star gazing into the dark sky and much more. In short, it is a nature lovers paradise.

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Our Costa Rica Location

"This experience was the most epic journey I have had in my life. My experience has transformed me.  It was so much more than just practicing yoga.  I was able to connect to my true self, truly understand and adapt valuable practices to apply to my daily life and make genuine friendships. I am so grateful for the safe and loving space that Alison and Liz cultivated to help us grow into authentic yoga teachers.  I feel so confident to take all of the knowledge I have learned and integrate it into my personal practice and teachings.  Thank you for everything. 100% I recommend Soma!  See you for the Advanced YTT in Greece!"

- Tracy

curriculum highlights

Please note: This teacher training program is approved with Yoga Alliance (Y.A.) and graduates are eligible to register with Y.A. as a Registered Yoga Teacher at the 200-hour level (RYT-200). The therapeutic perspective & curricular components of this program are based on the instructors' registration as a Certified Yoga Therapist with the International Association of Yoga Therapists (C-IAYT) and not derived from their status as an E-RYT 500 with the Y.A. Registry as the Y.A. Registry does not certify therapists, solely yoga teachers.

Certification as a RYT-200 with Yoga Alliance

A solid foundation in classical Hatha Yoga – including alignment based vinyasa flow and restorative yoga within a therapeutic framework.

An anatomy and biomechanically informed alignment system that helps to address common misalignments and keeps your students safe

Modifications and adaptations for all bodies, including special populations such as seniors, pregnancy, and those with injuries.

Gain insights into your (true) nature through the wisdom of Yoga and its philosophy

Explore breath work, mantra and meditation as tools to create vibrant health and wellbeing in your life

Learn the art of sequencing yoga classes that honors your authentic voice and meets the needs of your student population

Business of Yoga & How to Build Your Yoga Community

Explore breath work, mantra and meditation as tools to create vibrant health and wellbeing in your life

Build self-confidence and tap into your amazing potential in a supportive, nurturing environment

Train with highly experienced, knowledgeable and passionate yoga teachers and yoga therapists

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Liz Heffernan, E-RYT 500, is a recognized international yoga teacher with over two decades of personal practice and 25 years of teaching. She trained extensively in the Hatha systems of Kripalu, Ashtanga and Anusara and works as an Integrative Yoga Therapist.

meet your instructors

Liz Heffernan

more about Liz

E-RYT 500, C-IAYt, MA

more about Alison

Alison is a Trauma Informed IAYT Certified Yoga Therapist and E-RYT 500 Yoga Instructor with over 15 years of teaching experience. It was the gift of chronic pain that brought Alison to her yoga practice in 1993. Through study & practice of all the limbs of Yoga, she found powerful tools to heal her body & mind.

Alison Scola


December 1-18, 2021

meet your instructors

Innately perceptive and wildly passionate, Molly applies a level of determination and delight to her yoga instruction that’s truly one of a kind. Her approach is focused and intense; a union of effort and surrender that she believes is key to unlocking one’s deepest level of awareness and joy.

Molly Masaoka

more about MOLLY

E-RYT 500

Liz Heffernan, E-RYT 500, is a recognized international yoga teacher with over two decades of personal practice and 25 years of teaching. She trained extensively in the Hatha systems of Kripalu, Ashtanga and Anusara and works as an Integrative Yoga Therapist.

Liz Heffernan

more about Liz


January 5 – 22, 2022

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the details

At Zen Spirit - Costa Rica the cuisine is delicious, healthy, locally sourced and organic when possible. Most of the fruits and vegetables are organically produced on the Zen Spirit’s farm. When purchasing outside of the estate, the chefs always privilege local organic products. Therefore, by buying locally Zen Spirit is helping the local Costa Rica community. In brief, it is a truly farm to table experience. Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free alternatives are provided to all students and included in the price of tuition. For those who prefer to add additional protein sources, there is the opportunity to purchase fish by preorder three times a week for an extra fee (aprox. $8.00 per serving). Students who have special dietary requirements are encouraged to let us know in advance as we will do our best to accommodate them.



Tuition Cost: $2497 USD
Tuition price includes yoga teacher training tuition, a comprehensive 200 page Yoga Teacher Training Manual, six month access to our 200 Hour Online Yoga Teacher Training content, an essential resource to support you as you move out into the world teaching yoga, as needed mentoring after the program ends.

A $500 USD deposit will reserve your space and will be applied to the full tuition price listed above. Retreat costs (housing and food) are due three months prior to the start date of the program or within two weeks of registering and your final tuition payment is due no later than one month prior to the program start date. If you would like to discuss alternate arrangements, please feel free to contact us directly and we would be happy to work something out.

If cancellation is necessary due to covid related travel restrictions, student’s deposit and tuition will be fully refundable. If the COVID-19 virus is an immediate threat in the country of residence of each individual or group and there is a government instruction of not traveling or if the destination (Costa Rica) has such a policy, Zen Spirit Retreat Center will refund any payment made for room and food. These late cancellations, must not be made earlier than 3 weeks prior to the event. Determination of these risks will be referenced through official government websites.

In all other circumstances, due to the logistics involved in planning residential programs in retreat settings, we regret that we are unable to issue deposit/tuition/housing refunds 60 days or less prior to program start date. In the case of an emergency, with written documentation, we will gladly apply all payments, minus the deposit, toward a future retreat/training with Soma Yoga Institute.

Meditation by the ocean, pranayama, and gentle movement
Yoga asana practice plus techniques or teaching methodology
Restorative, gentle, therapeutic practice, or Yoga Nidra. Yoga philosophy, lifestyle, and ethics, anatomy, and physiology, practice teaching
Afternoon break to rest, swim or take in the amazing sunsets of Costa Rica
Evening session









Choose Your Dates

Daily Schedule

December 1-18, 2022 

January 5-22, 2022

Program Deposit & Tuition Payment Schedule


Retreat fees include housing and food costs (prices vary base on housing preference): 

Quad Occupancy (Extra Long Single Bed) $1709 
Triple Occupancy (Extra Long Single Bed) $1901 
Triple Occupancy (Queen Bed) $2007 
Double Occupancy (Extra Long Single Bed) $2401 
Single Occupancy $3361


Your wellbeing is our top priority. We are planning for a safe, healthy, and transformational program for you in Costa Rica. Zen Spirit is a lovely location with lots of fresh air and open-air spaces. Expect healthy food, lots of vitamin D from the sun, and a positive, supportive community. At this time, for ALL of our in-person programs, we require all participants and program faculty to be fully vaccinated prior to the course start and in addition to show a Negative PCR test for COVID-19 taken no more than 3 days before the course start date. Masks will not be required in open air spaces and on your mat. Please email us for the complete Covid guidelines. 


Please book your flight to arrive at Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR) or Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO). Transfer from and to the airport on the group shuttle is provided for a reduced fee (specified times only).

From Liberia International Airport:
Arrange to fly into the Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport (LIR) in Costa Rica. The group shuttle departs from the airport at 9:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. on arrival day and returns to Daniel Oduber Quirós International Airport (LIR) for flights departing after 12:30 p.m. on departure day. Shuttle from Liberia to Zen Spirit takes approximately 3 hours. The group shuttle charge is 65 USD per person each way. Some students choose to fly in one day early and stay near the airport in Liberia. The Hilton Garden Inn is recommended as it is very nice, convenient and good rates can often be found on booking sites such as Expedia.

From San Jose International Airport:
Arrange to fly into the Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO) in Costa Rica. The group shuttle departs from the Adventure Inn (15 minutes from the airport) in San Jose at 8:30 a.m. on arrival day and returns departing Zen Spirit at 7:00 a.m. on departure day. for flights leaving after 3:30pm. Shuttle from San Jose to Zen Spirit takes approximately 5 hours. Group shuttle charge is $65 per person each way. The Adventure Inn is a great place for the first night with free airport shuttles if you are a guest and a large breakfast included in the price. You may book a room directly with them here: https://www.adventure-inn.com/. The shuttle will depart directly from this hotel and on the return take you directly to the SJO airport. 

We make it EASY & SAFE  for You!

"This training was so much more than just about becoming a teacher. It transformed my life, and I feel so connected to myself and empowered to express myself unapologetically in an authentic way. Not only am I walking away prepared to teach many different classes, but I also feel as though I understand who I am so much more. I feel like I found myself again through this experience, and it is something I will forever be grateful for. The location, schedule and classes were so beautifully cohesive. I would return to and recommend Soma Yoga Institute to others a million times over and can’t wait to return for my 300-hour in 2021! The universe granted me the perfect program and I now see life through a brighter and more vibrant lens."

-Brooke Langston

"Soma Yoga Institute's 200 Hour Therapeutic Yoga Teacher Training was exceptional.  I really enjoyed the holistic teaching, the variation of activities and the diverse yoga topics we covered. It was great to have lectures, practice, group discussion, exercise, homework, and presentations—the variety was perfect, fun and compelling—from breath to poses, to philosophy, meditation, and history! Alignment and anatomy were particularly informative lessons that were applied to our own bodies and others.   I leave here excited to teach and to deepen my own practice, as I mindfully study how the teachings benefit and transform my life for the better. I really felt that the price, the schedule, the material, the environment, and the exceptionally wonderful instructors were definitely worth my time, money, and energy.  I also highly recommend the Costa Rica retreat location, it was stunning. If you are considering sign up for a YTT with Soma - here's my advice - JUST DO IT!"

-Lauren Kvasnicka

"I loved the intense focus on alignment and loved all of my fellow classmates. The location, Zen Spirit was a beachside paradise with out of this world sunsets, palm trees, bright red bougainvillea, butterflies, families of curious iguanas and cute little geckos, and a jungle and rolling green hills in the distance. The staff and faculty were so helpful, and we were given so much solid, foundational information that we can turn back to again and again as we deepen our own personal practices and develop our sequences for our yoga studios and private clients. The anatomy portion of the training was very accessible. I am so much more aware of my alignment and connected to my breath. I have great confidence that I am ready to teach and look forward to continuing to improve and grow my practice. Both Liz and Alison did an extraordinary job, and I want to say thank you for an incredible, transformative training. "

-Jacqueline Fernandez

"This yoga teacher training was life changing. Alison and Liz are joyful teachers who really cared about us as both individuals and new teachers. I thoroughly enjoyed their attention to detail in every aspect of yoga. The precise language and thoughtfulness in the design of the curriculum was spot on. I loved the idea of safety first in the asanas and understanding the anatomy, this is key. I left this class feeling prepared to teach and this is a direct result of everything Liz and Alison taught us. Thank you, Soma Yoga Institute, for preparing me to be successful."

-Becky Goldsmith

"This was exactly the kind of education I longed for on this journey. Right now, I feel myself softening in the heart, open to all possibilities, yet gentle with my expectations. I also feel more confident than ever in my ability to guide movement in all forms. I loved the variety and depth of this program’s curriculum, the range of knowledge our teachers, Liz and Alison, and the authenticity of their offerings. I relished the balance of discipline and freedom and the time for self-study. I cannot wait to recommend and return to Soma Yoga Institute. I have so much gratitude for our teachers and I’m so grateful I found my way to Soma Yoga Institute."

-Jeanine McCain

"I came for the purpose of learning how to safely get back into yoga after living in chronic pain for over 2 years. I am leaving with no pain in my mind, body, and heart. I was given the space to rest, recover, and to love myself.

The love and care of the instructors was amazing. Sam’s soul oozes with love and gratitude and that spills over to her students. Her zest and love for what she does makes you feel safe, loved, and excited to delve into self-study. She taught me how to calm my mind, open my heart, and know that it will be OK. Peggy gave me confidence and space to feel like I could physically practice again. Her love, patience, and direct approach is amazing. She made me feel safe on my mat and retrained me on proper alignment that has forever changed my practice. The entire experience was so magical."

-Marlo Drago

"There are so many things I enjoyed about this training! The welcoming, non-judgmental atmosphere, the course structure, routine, delicious meals and the kindness of everyone here are things it can be hard to come by these days. I did not expect to become so in touch with myself and others during this training, but we were continuously encouraged to love ourselves and each other. I have “found myself” and have become comfortable teaching. I am now able to accept that I am enough, that it’s ok to slow down, and that everything I really need to be happy is what I already have! I loved my instructor Sam’s consistent message of looking inward and healing the self. I loved our other instructor Peggy’s asana sequences because they provided a great workout. Both Peggy and Sam teach safe, proper alignment and engagement and because of this I would hesitate to train with any school other than Soma Yoga. "

-Dena Hirliman

Video testimonials ->

what our students are saying

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