Trauma Yoga and Service Teacher Training

Upcoming Training Dates:

Saturday, December 4th and
Sunday, December 5th

  • Saturday 12pm – 6pm EST
  • Sunday 12pm – 5pm EST

Are you a yogi who wants to give back, help others in need, and change the world? Three and a Half Acres Yoga offers a weekend training course that covers all the basics you’ll need to know to be able to work with trauma-specific populations.

Our training will assist you in working with vulnerable and underserved communities including low-income families, homeless shelters, LGBTQ youth, previously incarcerated youth. drug and sex workers, HIV survivors, and other marginalized populations.

More info, Email:

Who is this training for?

This training is perfect for yoga teachers with a 200-hour certification or more who are interested in working with individuals or communities that have experienced trauma.

What will I learn in this training?
We will cover the following topics:

  • The best practices for working in service yoga settings
  • How to build and teach a trauma-sensitive yoga class
  • How to incorporate mindfulness into classes
  • The effects of trauma and post-traumatic stress and why yoga is helpful
  • Race and Culture in Yoga w/ Donna Noble
  • Basic ashtanga yoga sequences and principles
  • How to transform any yoga practice to a chair
  • Opportunities for practicum, volunteering, and mentorship

What makes this training unique?
Lara Land, teacher training instructor and founder/director of THAY, has been working with trauma victims and vulnerable communities since 2008 when she first traveled to Rwanda to bring the healing benefits of yoga to HIV genocide survivors. She holds a decade of experience in trauma and service yoga and draws upon this wealth of knowledge in her efforts to empower other yogis to make a difference in their communities. In taking this course, you will walk away with all the tools needed to bring the benefits of yoga and mindfulness to vulnerable populations in need.

What if I have no previous yoga training?
As this course builds on prior yoga knowledge and terminology, we require all students to have completed a 200-hour yoga teacher training before registering. If you are a yoga student with 2+ years of Ashtanga practice, this requirement may be waived.

What are the payment options?
Tuition: $550
We offer two work exchange options where you can volunteer with us in exchange for receiving the training at half price or even for FREE! Volunteering with THAY can include teaching trauma yoga classes for our partners, helping out with events or small admin projects such as research, newsletters, social media or marketing.

Volunteer work exchange options:
* Limited amount of full scholarships available. Please apply to learn more

6-month volunteer commitment (26 hours) in exchange for half off the training: $250 plus a $50 deposit returned after completion of your volunteer commitment.

1-year volunteer commitment (52 hours) in exchange for FREE training: $100 deposit required, which is refunded after completion of your volunteer commitment.


the Faculty

Lara Land

Lara is the founder/director of THAY and the lead teacher training instructor. She has been working with trauma victims and vulnerable communities since 2008 when she first traveled to Rwanda to bring the healing benefits of yoga to genocide survivors. She holds two decades of experience in trauma & service yoga and draws upon this wealth of knowledge in her efforts to empower other yogis to make a difference in their communities.

“When I did my teacher training years and years ago there was no mention of best practices for trauma survivors. I was only made aware years later of the things we were doing in the room as teachers that could be potentially harmful to someone who had suffered an abuse. It makes me cringe to think the harm I could have caused. Standing over someone, touch without explicit consent, and other triggers are a part of regular yoga classroom. Even the words we use as teachers can reinforce improper power dynamic. We must change this for the next generation of yoga teachers and practitioners. We never know who is in our classroom and what they have been through in life. We should treat each individual with care, sensitivity and autonomy. That’s why I believe it is so important to make sure every single yoga teacher gets trauma-informed yoga training.” -Lara Land

Nikki Walker

Nikki (spiritual name Charan Kavita Kaur) is a certified kundalini yoga teacher and senior teacher with THAY. She began working with THAY in 2018 and currently teaches trauma yoga classes at The Bridge, TOP-Goddard, and Thrive for Life.

Nikki will be leading a Healing with Naad & Laughter workshop where students will explore the healing modalities of the vibrational sound current. Using safe and fun mantras that anyone can say and connect with, Nikki will show the healing power of breath, sound and laughter. Learn what sounds and words to avoid in trauma-informed yoga classes and how to incorporate the right vibrations into your asana flow.

Here’s what some of our grads
had to say about this training:

“I would ABSOLUTELY recommend this to anyone looking to teach in trauma affected populations and would go even further to say that it should be a requirement. A regular YTT does not prepare you for trauma affected populations. It would be so easy to trigger a student/students with one word, one posture.”

“Any yoga teacher who doesn’t know what they would do if they had to teach a trauma-informed yoga class, or doesn’t feel comfortable teaching students that may have physical limitations, should take this course.”

“I think ALL yoga teachers should go through Trauma Yoga Training. In my experience there is trauma everywhere. In this day and age of high stress and dis-ease, the mindfulness practice I learned in the training was invaluable and enlightening. I’d recommend it to all teachers.”

“Even if you don’t plan on serving in and teaching to an underserved community, this training can enlighten your teaching practice since many people in comfortable circumstances also have experienced traumas in their lives.”

“I would share this training with everyone, as it is where teachers should come right after their 200 hours.”
-Fall 2019 THAY TT grad

Trauma Yoga Trainer: Lara Land
Trauma yoga training testimonial

Training FAQs

Q: What exactly does the volunteer commitment entail?

A: The two main ways of volunteering with THAY are through teaching trauma yoga classes at some of our program locations and helping out with events throughout the year. Generally most of our trauma yoga classes are held during the day between 10-7pm Monday-Friday as this is the time most of our partners have requested for their students. We currently have a few classes that take place in the evenings and hold one Saturday class every other month. If you work full-time, this could mean that the bulk of your volunteer hours would likely come from volunteering at events instead of teaching. That being said, it is possible to get your volunteer hours completed through assisting with events as long as you're able to help out with all of them.

Volunteer duties at fundraiser events range from checking attendees in to showing guests where to go, selling tickets at the door, and passing out and collecting donation forms. Events take place on evenings or weekends.

Throughout the year we also have small admin-related projects that come up from time to time where volunteer help is needed such as assisting with flyering, social media, newsletters, research, storage help, etc. So that is another way to complete volunteer hours.

Please note, if you will be doing a volunteer commitment with THAY and would like to teach as part of that commitment, there are additional requirements. We require you to observe a minimum of two of our trauma yoga classes and then trial teach two classes.

Q: Can you elaborate more on exactly what is covered in the training?

A: Teacher training covers Ashtanga Basics, What is Trauma and How to Teach Someone Who Has Been Through Trauma, Chair Yoga, Diversity Training & Race and Culture in Yoga w/ Donna Noble.

Q: I have a certification in hatha/ashtanga/power/vinyasa/Birkam yoga. Can I take the class?

A: Yes! We'd be delighted to have you join us!

Q: I have no yoga training. Can I take this course?

A: 200+ hour yoga teacher training is required or a daily Ashtanga practice for 2+ years. You can volunteer with us in other capacities! Email for more information.

Q: I live far away. Will I be able to bring THAY to my area?

A: Possibly. You can discuss with Lara at the time of training.

Q: What are the payment options?

A: Payment options:

  • Free for those who make a one-year commitment to volunteering one hour a week. ($100 deposit returned at year end)
  • $250 for those who make a six-month commitment to volunteering one hour a week. (plus a $50 deposit returned after six months)
  • $550 for those who would like the training with no volunteer commitment
Q: Sign me up! What do I need to do to register?

Click on the "Register Today" button on this page to fill out the registration form. We will review your application and contact you by email to confirm your acceptance to the training.

Please email with additional questions.

Q: What should I bring to the training?

A: Just yourself in clothes you are able to do yoga in and a pen.

Q: Where is the training located?
A: Training takes place virtually online via Zoom. Training will run as much as possible like an in-person course with participation on camera required. Trauma yoga does not involve any touching or the use of any props besides a chair so this training can easily be taken at home.
Q: What is required to obtain my Trauma Yoga Teacher Training certificate?
A: Full attendance at both weekend training dates is required to receive a certificate. We also require you to observe a minimum of two of our trauma yoga classes and then trial teach two classes.
Q: I have a full-time job/a busy schedule or I live far away. Is there a way I can fulfill volunteer commitment?

A: Our programs are based in the NYC and DC areas only. However, all yoga classes are currently operating virtually and for as long as they remain virtual, you may volunteer remotely to teach. Please note teaching for your volunteer commitment is not guaranteed - this really depends on class availability and scheduling which impact whether we can place you in a teaching position. You may need to do other work to complete your volunteer commitment with us if a remote teaching opportunity is not available (such as research, newsletters, social media, spreadsheets, help with events, etc).

Q: Is the training Yoga Alliance certified?

A. The Trauma Yoga Teacher Training is a supplemental continuing education course for students who have already completed a 200-hour yoga teacher training. At this time there is no certification process for continuing education trainings on Yoga Alliance; they only certify 200 and 500-hour courses. However, the training is registered on Yoga Alliance and will count towards fulfilling YA continuing education credits.

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