According to Authentic Graduate Reviews on Yoga Alliance

UPDATED: Friday, November 25, 2023 @ 11:04 am PST

If you’re in search of the best 200 hour yoga teacher training program that California has to offer, look no further. Whatever your preferred yoga style and whether you are dreaming of teaching yoga or want to deepen your own personal practice, you want to choose the best training for this life changing experience. Below we will walk you through evaluating schools on the worldwide directory to find the best teacher training in the San Fransisco area and beyond!

Yoga Alliance (YA) is a nonprofit serving as a global community of yoga teachers, schools, and practitioners. Established in 1999, it’s mission is to promote and support the integrity and diversity of the yoga community while ensuring high standards of quality and professionalism in the teaching of yoga.

The organization offers services and resources to its members, including a registry of yoga teachers and schools for 200 hour yoga teacher training, upcoming yoga programs, educational materials, and advocacy for the yoga industry and yogic lifestyle.

One key aspect of YA’s work is its credentialing system. Known as the Social Credentialing System, it’s designed to set standards for 200 hour yoga teacher training programs, recognize qualified yoga teachers, and help yoga practitioners and advancing students make informed choices about yoga education and instruction when choosing a yoga teacher trainings.

When a student graduates from 200 hour yoga teacher training course and registers as a yoga instructor, they’re asked to review their experience with their RYS at that time directly on the website. Student ratings are compiled in the Yoga Alliance RYS directory, making it an invaluable resource for students looking to find their dream course!

Alignment Study at Yoga Teacher Training California

Using the real reviews from actual graduates, we’ve compiled a list of the 5 best student-rated Yoga Teacher Training Programs in the Golden State of California.

Alignment Study in the Studio at the California 200 Hour YTT with Soma Yoga Institute

Breakdown of Social Credentialing for Yoga Schools

Yoga Alliance’s Social Credentialing system mandates that before they certify students, individuals who have completed a yoga training program in any yoga style with a Registered Yoga School (RYS) must provide a direct review of their training experience on the Yoga Alliance website. “Direct” means trainees sharing their feedback directly on the platform. Completion of the RYS review is a prerequisite for progressing to become a Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT).

When you explore the Yoga Alliance website, you’ll find that all yoga training schools are required to display their overall school ratings. This serves as valuable information for those seeking a 200-hour yoga training program. We encourage you to visit Yoga Alliance to review the ratings of the programs you are considering.

It’s worth noting that while overall ratings are obligatory schools to post, revealing the Net Promoter Score (NPS) is at the discretion of each institution. Schools that are forthcoming with ratings and student reviews help to boost the confidence and commitment of potential students.

Net Promoter Score on Yoga Alliance

Furthermore, schools can enable or disable student comments. Reading through these comments can provide invaluable insights into selecting a YTT program that aligns with your goals and preferences.

For your convenience, the list below provides a reference that can save you significant time in the process of selecting a California Yoga Teacher Training Course. We hope this list is helpful in deepening your own practice, reaching your dream of teaching yoga, and finding a training that’s s much more than your everyday classical yoga course.

Pose Study of Downward Facing Dog Pose at Soma Yoga Institute’s 200-Hour YTT in Northern California outside San Francisco.

5 Best Student-Rated Yoga Teacher Training Programs in California

We looked at the top 5 yoga teacher trainings in California with over 200 graduate reveiws on Yoga Alliance. Schools were only considered for this best 5 list if they are fully transparent on Yoga Alliance showing their overall rating, NPS score and student reviews. Here is the list, ordered starting from the highest NPS score. The Net Promoter Score (NPS) is a standard business measure of loyalty and enthusiasm– it reflects how likely trainees are to actively promote the course to their friends and colleagues.

Downward Dog Yoga Pose Study at Yoga Teacher Training in California

Soma Yoga Institute

NPS Score: 9.5/10

Overall School Rating: 4.88

446 reviews

“Gain in-depth skills to explore Yoga as a vehicle for vibrant health, self transformation and personal empowerment.”

Soma Yoga Institute’s training in California takes place in the gorgeous Northern coastal region outside of San Francisco. This 200 Hour Yoga Teacher training course takes a therapeutic approach to it’s teaching methodology and offers students in-depth skills to explore Yoga as a vehicle for holistic health, self transformation, and personal empowerment. The curriculum includes a unique blend of alignment-based vinyasa flow, a solid foundation in Hatha Yoga, restorative yoga, and 200 hours of instruction offered within a therapeutic framework. We combine modern day biomechanics and research driven science with ancient teachings. Highlights include:

  1. Pose study with Adaptations for ALLBODIES (includes standing poses, hip openers, forward bends, twists, backbends, inversions, and supine)
  2. Bio-mechanically Sound & Anatomy Informed Alignment
  3. Art of Vinyasa & Flow Yoga
  4. Adapting for Injuries and Common Conditions
  5. Studying and practice teaching with C-IAYT Yoga Therapists and yoga instructors with over 25 years experience.

The instruction will cover a wide range of techniques including Yoga postures, anatomy, relaxation, yoga nidra, breath awareness, pranayama, meditations to calm the mind, contemplations to transform limiting tendencies into life affirming thought patterns, and the application of clear, anatomy-informed principles of alignment to create safety, balance, and freedom.

Alignment of the head and neck yoga practice and study of the anatomy of the human body in yoga teacher training

Aspiring teachers explore yogic philosophy including concepts from Ayurveda, the Upanishads, Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras and the Chakra System as frameworks for the application of Yoga as a spiritual practice and as journey towards radiant health and wellbeing. Graduates of this program feel empowered to teach a variety of class types, including all levels vinyasa Yoga, alignment-based classes, Yoga foundations, senior, gentle, and restorative.

This immersive training is held in a nature lover’s paradise among the world renowned Humboldt Redwoods. Expect stunning coastal and forest views, deep meditation in heart opening community and powerful teachings from beloved and experienced teachers. A graduate of the program can expect to leave this training a confident and certified yoga teacher.

Training Teachers in anatomy and alignment of the head and neck in community at Soma Yoga Institute’s 200 Hour Teacher Training Program in California

The Maze Method Yoga Teacher Training

The Mazé Method

NPS Score: 9.1

Overall School Rating: 4.86

468 Reviews

“Methodology Meets Momentum.

Yoga education that propels your personal growth.”

The Mazé Method, a distinctive yoga training institution renowned for its unwavering commitment to educational excellence, provides exceptional learning opportunities to students worldwide through a range of yoga courses and workshops.

Mazé Method Yoga Teacher Trainings adopt a systematic approach to cultivate adept and self-assured instructors. The curriculum seamlessly blends alignment expertise and intelligent sequencing with vinyasa theory, equipping you with the essential skills to lead safe and effective yoga classes. With a collective experience of over 75 years, our lead teachers have delved into various yoga styles, practices, and associated philosophies. Their profound knowledge, coupled with their experiential teaching methods, creates a rich and multifaceted learning environment. The training covers a comprehensive spectrum, including the deconstruction of asana (yoga poses), pranayama (breathwork), meditation, adjustments, yoga theory, yoga practice, yoga history and philosophy, basic Sanskrit, and ethical considerations.

Each day of training is a valuable opportunity to explore anatomy, kinesiology, applied biomechanics, and how to apply this knowledge to optimize both your personal yoga and movement practice as well as your teaching. Students are encouraged to engage in critical thinking and inquiry within the realm of yoga studies. They participate in innovative teaching exercises, gaining a clear understanding of how scientific principles support training techniques. They delve into the deeper dimensions of yoga practice and depart with a contemporary comprehension of human movement and physiology. In essence, students can anticipate completing this program with fresh perspectives on yoga studies, a deeper grasp of biomechanical alignment principles, and a broadened knowledge base.

YogaSix California Yoga Teacher Training Program classes and teachers from the 200 hour program


NPS Score: 9.2

Overall School Rating: 4.85

307 Reviews

“YogaSix offers an unparalleled 200hr Vinyasa Yoga Teacher Training that will transform your practice and deepen your understanding whilst cultivating an integrative approach to living Yoga.”

Our programs cater to individuals seeking to enrich their yoga practice, obtain foundational certification, or pursue advanced training. Many students undertake teacher training to enhance their knowledge and experience in areas such as posture alignment, the overall benefits of practice, meditation, mindful communication, yoga philosophy, and teaching methodologies.

Beyond the practical aspects of instructing yoga to others, our immersive training experiences provide an opportunity for participants to connect with fellow students, forge enduring friendships, and rekindle the strength and vitality of communal learning.

Cloud Nine Yoga Teacher Training

Cloud Nine Yoga

NPS Score: 8.8

Overall School Rating: 4.79

356 Reviews

“Aloha and Welcome to a Yoga School that has specialized in training Yoga Teachers for over 22 years.”

Our humble origins date back to 1999 in California, and since then, Cloud Nine Yoga has evolved to offer an exceptionally diverse and inclusive range of training programs. These include 200-hour and 300-hour Yoga Teacher Certification Courses, Pre/Post Natal Yoga & Children’s Yoga Certification, and a curriculum that encompasses Trauma-sensitive practices, yoga philosophy, Ayurveda, and Yin/Restorative Yoga.

We’ve been registered with Yoga Alliance since 2002, reflecting our professionalism, longevity, and commitment, which have earned us a strong reputation as a trustworthy community organization. Each of our trainers holds an E-RYT 500 teaching designation and boasts a minimum of 10 years of experience in the field of Yoga.

Erika Faith Calig, our founder and lead educator, has been teaching for over 26 years. She established Cloud Nine Yoga with a focus on embracing diverse learning styles and yoga approaches to ensure that every student feels supported and empowered. Our course curricula combine academic knowledge with intuition, playfulness with methodical instruction, and practicum with heartfelt encouragement.

Our trainers and support staff take great pride in delivering high-quality education to our students. With a specific emphasis on Yoga for Mental Health, we promote ‘permission-based’ Yoga, meaning that all practitioners are guided through movements using alignment cues and inviting language. Practitioners are equipped with tools and a range of options to adapt their practice to suit their individual bodies, moods, and conditions.

We aim to make the practice of Yoga accessible and relevant to everyday life.

Folk Yoga School Yoga Teacher Training

Folk Yoga School

NPS Score:

Overall School Rating:

414 Reviews

“Deepen Your Purpose + Your Practice.

Discover authentic yoga teaching with Folk Yoga Certification Training.

Honor tradition, learn to share its benefits, and grow as a teacher.”

Folk Yoga School, formerly known as Yoga Garden San Francisco, empowers you to develop your unique yoga teaching style. Our hatha yoga teacher training program is rooted in the teachings of Krishnamacharya, the renowned instructor of B.K.S. Iyengar (founder of Iyengar yoga), Pattabhi Jois (creator of Ashtanga yoga), and T.V.K. Desikachar (promoter of viniyoga).

This foundation equips you with a strong blend of technical expertise and profound philosophical understanding, allowing you to effectively convey your own practice. While your yoga teacher training is a time for personal growth and learning, we’ve discovered that the most significant progress occurs within a supportive community.

Yoga Garden’s yoga teacher training program actively fosters a network of professional peers who will assist your practice and career development, both in the present and the future. Our intimate, small-scale teacher training programs provide unmatched access to lead teachers during the program, as well as ongoing mentorship and career guidance long after program completion.

Early in the training, you’ll begin “practice teaching” your peers. Through real classroom experience, teaching groups, and providing hands-on adjustments, you’ll gain the confidence and skills needed to start teaching yoga immediately upon graduation. You’ll not only learn the mechanics of yoga but also ignite your passion for self-discovery and serving others.

Whether you decide to train in the heart of San Francisco or whether you choose to do your 200 hour yoga teacher training program in the many wild and wondrous locations around California, you are sure to have an amazing and life changing experience doing your YTT in the Golden State. We hope this list has helped you find the right 200 hour course to inspire your teaching and deepen your own practice.


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