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Progression of Teaching: Professional Development for Yoga Teachers

December 1, 2023 @ 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm

Use of Props

Dec 1 – 3, 2023: in-person

Friday at our Berkeley location:

  • 9 – 11 am:  This public class is included in our time together.  We will meet after class to discuss the experience.
  • 1:30 – 3:45 pm :  Teacher education

Saturday at hOMeYoga:

hOMeYoga is located at 2101 Marina Blvd in San Leandro.  It is a fully equipped Iyengar Yoga studio run by Michelle Grady

9 – 4:30 pm pst includes a long lunch break


9 – 10:30 pm on zoom:  This public class is included in our time together and will cover the themes of the weekend

2 – 4:30 pm:  Teacher Education at our Berkeley studio


Program Focus:  Use of Props

Every Iyengar Yoga teacher and teacher-in-training has a basic knowledge of how to use props.  Yet, there is so much to learn about how to harness the full power of props.  Yes, the props can support our physical alignment, make the poses easier or make them more challenging.  But, the use of props goes much deeper.  They can prompt new areas of exploration, unlocking access to our own awareness and expand our consciousness. And, perhaps most importantly, props are empowering!  The use of props can often allow us to heal ourselves, and give us an opportunity to be less reliant on outside resources that are costly or require long wait-lists.

So there is a lot to talk about when it comes to the use of props!

In this weekend we will explore both asana and pranayama including:

  • The importance of supports in our mindfulness and yoga practices.
  • When to use props instead of a hands-on or verbal adjustment.
  • How our everyday props can be used as valuable modifications for common ailments – to relieve suffering.
  • When and how to incorporate the lesser known props so that we may probe our own body and minds on deeper levels.
  • How to incorporate the bigger props in our home practice and private sessions:  the trestle, viparita dandasana benches and halasana boxes for example.
  • How to approach using specialty props in our classes such as the rope and belts.  We will work with the double buckle belt, long belt and short-cut belts over the course of the weekend.

In addition, during our time together you will:

  • Enhance your understanding poses from Level 1 all the way to Level 3 syllabus.
  • Develop confidence in sequencing these poses so that you can progress your own practice.
  • Use the teaching skills at your level to convey the essence of Yoga.
  • Dive deeper into the source materials.
  • Get feedback on your own teaching.

All registrants receive an optional homework assignment prior to our meeting.  Homework is a helpful way to get direct feedback and hone your skills.  Please register by Nov 7th so that you can receive the assignment and get feedback.

“It is the duty of the teacher to know what to teach,

why to teach and how much to teach.” – BKS Iyengar

About Progression of Teaching:

Progression of Teaching is a cornerstone of our teacher support, offering an opportunity for you to develop your personal sadhana and teaching skills. We offer support to teachers at any phase of their teaching and career exploration.

These days, teaching yoga has become a very complex endeavor.  It can be so difficult to know what to teach, why to teach and how much to teach when you are teaching online, in-person or hybrid, with masks and without masks, across diverse venues including public classes in a studio, private lessons at home, corporate venues, college campuses and in community centers.  Our students have a huge diversity of urgent needs and interests.  That is why our time to come together is critically important right now.

Notes about the schedule:

In addition to the four sessions of the program,  there are two public classes offered during the weekend:  Friday 9 – 10:30 am Level 1-2 will be in-person as hybrid class & Sunday 9 – 10:45 am Level 3 asana classes will be on zoom.  These public classes illustrate the concepts being covered during the Progression of Teaching weekend.  They are important to attend, and are included in the weekend.

This weekend is appropriate for anyone who wants to make use of the potency of the Iyengar Yoga syllabi and practice these poses. It does not matter whether or not you plan to teach the poses or go up for assessment.

People who are traveling from far distances, here is more information about our location and favorite places to stay and eat.


This weekend will be mostly in person.  However, the public classes on Friday and Sunday am will have zoom components.  Every registrant will receive access to the recordings of the classes for the 30 days.


$249 per person

Scholarships are available; email for details.




Heather Haxo Phillips is Director of Adeline Yoga and a certified Level 3 Iyengar yoga instructor (Senior Intermediate 1). Her additional certifications include: Certified Yoga Therapist (c-IAYT), Relax and Renew restorative yoga teacher and Yoga Alliance E-500 level instructor. She has specialized yoga therapy training which includes scoliosis, musculoskeletal injuries and pain management.  One of her asana-related specialties is women’s health. Heather has a deep commitment to the ancient teachings which includes mantra sadhana (chanting) and Sanskrit, pranayama and yoga philosophy.  You can expect to find aspects of this in all of Heather’s classes. Heather deepens her own practice by studying regularly with senior Iyengar teachers, Sanskrit and Vedic scholars, and the Iyengar family in Pune.

Heather is an active volunteer for the Iyengar Yoga National Association of the United States.  She currently serves as a member of the Assessment Committee and the DEIJ Committee, and as an assessor and mentor.  She is past President of the Board of Directors for the Iyengar Yoga Association of Northern California.


Progression of Teaching is open to anyone around the world who teaches yoga in the method given to us by the Iyengar family.  We gather together for weekends throughout the year. And then practice sequences and homework assignments will connect you to the source material, your colleagues and teachers in between our meeting sessions.

“Progression of Teaching” is a forum from which to build enduring relationships with peers and teachers to support our personal growth within the Iyengar lineage. Please join us from wherever in the world you live.

These sessions focus on:

    • Approaching poses that may be less familiar to you.
    • Tips for teaching online effectively using Zoom and other platforms.
    • Creating community during these uncertain times.
    • Practice teaching to build your skills and confidence working with a range of bodies and situations.
    • Sequencing for specific categories of poses.
    • Bringing yoga philosophy to life for yourself and your students.

What are the thorny poses you want to look at? Doubts to discuss? Bring your questions. Participants will get feedback on their teaching and gain confidence working with their students in a variety of situations.


December 1, 2023
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm


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