Styles of Mentoring

Formal, Informal & Curriculum-based


2. Styles of Mentoring

Towards a continuum of life-long mentoring opportunities  

Yoga Australia supports a range of mentoring opportunities from informal to formal. This can be one to one, group, occasional or ongoing. Mentoring can be skills/curriculum-based or support inner reflection and spiritual growth and all shades in between.  

Curriculum-based Mentoring  

In some circumstances mentoring is required or strongly recommended to help teachers meet external criteria in training or in upgrading their membership level. The three main areas where this ‘curriculum-based mentoring’ is used are:  

1. Mentoring in Teacher Training Courses  

Yoga Australia recommends mentoring as part of all yoga teacher training courses; however, it is not a formal requirement for registration of a teacher training course by Yoga Australia except for courses running for less than 6 months.  

2. Provisional members progressing to full, level 1 membership  

Teachers with 200 hours training in the required curriculum areas can obtain Provisional Membership with Yoga Australia. Mentoring sessions can be used as training hours towards these goals. Good records of all mentoring hours must also be kept. There is a Sample Mentoring Agreement and Record template which can be modified to suit different situations. These can be found under Resources and Background. At the conclusion of the mentoring period, the mentor will provide documentation confirming the length and nature of the mentoring process.  

3. Upgrading from Level 1 to Level 2/Level 2 to Level 3  

Registered teachers who wish to upgrade their membership from level 1 to 2 and from level 2 to 3 can enlist a mentor to help them achieve additional competencies and experience as detailed in the Summary of Curriculum Areas and Associated hours.  

Formal Mentoring  

One-one arrangements with a more senior yoga teacher or other professional (eg psychologist, social worker, physiotherapist) who has relevant specialisations’/experience can be an effective way of dealing with specific professional and related personal development. Yoga Australia have created a Register of yoga teachers who offer mentoring to members in order to refine and reflect on your teaching and the issues it brings; and, to meet professional development requirements and curriculum requirements for upgrading membership.  

A level 2 registered Yoga Australia member may apply to Yoga Australia for special consideration to be engaged as principal trainer under the support and supervision of a senior Yoga Australia registered teacher. Evidence of the engagement of a senior teacher as a mentor plus a detailed plan of engagement must be in place and provided to Yoga Australia to support the level 2 teacher in the delivery and assessment of the course. The senior teacher acting as a mentor does not need to be a registered mentor with Yoga Australia. Further details can be found here. 

Informal Mentoring  

Many teachers draw support, advice, wisdom, cause for reflection and inspiration from each other in casual chats at the studio door, meetings, professional development workshops, and conferences. Face to face contact on a regular basis brings ongoing opportunities and yet some forms of informal mentoring are more random, often found in surprising places.  

Yoga Australia offers regular state events, workshops, and conferences that allow informal opportunities between all teachers, regardless of experience and level of seniority. The growing pool of senior teachers registering as mentors with Yoga Australia can offer presentations and workshops in their local area/state on the value of mentoring and related skills. The aim is to encourage the culture of reflection/mentoring at teachers’ gatherings and a growing interest in engaging in formal mentoring. 

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