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Teacher Training & Advanced Learning Opportunities


We invite you to join us to deepen your understanding and practice of yoga!  We are hosting teacher training and advanced studies weekend workshops in the spirit of humility and and exploration.  Join us and explore yoga in a non-intimidating, playful environment.  Focus on your own health and wellness and find what your body and mind need to feel balanced.  Find your voice as a teacher, or fine tune it, if so desired.  This training is designed for you to connect with your true self and to be comfortable with what you find.  


This training program has been created by Smiling Dog Chief of Inspiration (Owner / Director) Roxy Banta and will be led by Roxy & Senior Smiling Dog Teachers, Jonathan Gabriel and others.  We have combined teaching experience of over 10 years and bring our diverse backgrounds to share and explore the practice together.  We’ve spent lots of time researching curriculum and documenting teachings that connect with us most and hope that you’ll join us for this great opportunity.

We’ve split this training into 8 separate weekend workshops so the casual and committed student alike can participate.  The sessions will take place one weekend per month for 8 months with summers off and will begin again each fall.  The meeting times will be Friday evenings for 4 hours, Saturday & Sunday for 10 hours each for a total of 22-23 hours per weekend.  There will be about 4-8 hours per month of homework and self-study.  Ideal candidates for the training will have been practicing yoga for at least one year, are open to exploration, have a playful attitude towards their practice, and are interested in learning more about yoga.  The asana / physical part of practice will be about 3-4 hours per daily session.  YOU DO NOT HAVE TO WANT TO TEACH TO PARTICIPATE!

  • Study your own practice and habitual behavior & learn to stop practicing “egoga”

  • Study the various branches, limbs, philosophies, and yoga practices that make yoga the powerful 2000 year old exercise trend that we know and love

  • Understand 80+ yoga poses and their effects

  • Learn how to adjust postures for better alignment and effects

  • Study yoga philosophy and historical texts like the Yoga Sutras in an open & non-judgemental setting

For those interested in following the teacher certification track…

  • Learn to develop yoga sequences with themes and peak postures

  • Learn how to teach clearly and specifically, using proven strategies and language

  • Practice teaching with feedback from self and peers

  • Written final exam, private evaluation and feedback at the end of the training

  • Get certified to teach by Yoga Alliance & Smiling Dog Yoga both

  • Get the opportunity to teach community classes during the training
  • Get the opportunity to interview & audition to join our instructor team afterwards


Free Info Session!
*We will host our next info session August 2016* It will be a mini teacher training class led by one of our lead instructors and followed by a Q&A and will include sample training activities.   It is a wonderful opportunity to meet our teacher trainers and get an opportunity to voice any questions or concerns before signing up.  We will also be offering discounts for signing up this day only!  We look forward to meeting you soon!



We meet one weekend per month, October - May.  For 2015-2016 session we'll meet the following weekends: 10/9, 11/6, 12/11, 1/8, 2/12, 3/11, 4/8, & 5/13. Our meeting times will be Fridays 4-7pm, Saturdays & Sundays 6:45am-6pm. Check out our online schedule for more details on the topics of each weekend.

Yoga Roots & Foundations I: Free the Hips, Free the Mind - Oct
Yoga Roots & Foundations II: Root Down to Rise Up - Nov
Introduction to Flow and Fluidity - Dec
Igniting and Transforming with Strong Vinyasa - Jan
Fanning the Heart Fire with Backbends and Twists - Feb
Space to Be With Inversions, Meditation, and Ayurveda - Mar
Sacred Vision with Yin and Restorative Yoga - Apr
Culmination of Sadhana and Art of Teaching - May

Payment Options

Sign up by 8/31/15 to get a discount on our next session October 2015 - May 2016!  All students must pay in one of the following ways to attend any or all of the weekend sessions.  If you are attending with the intention of becoming a certified instructor, please also follow the instructions to "Apply for Teacher Certification" as follows.
  1. Monthly payment plan:  Pay $500 deposit / sign up fee initially + make 8 payments of $225 to a credit card on file (total paid at the end will be $2300).  (Payments go up to $290 and total will be $2800 after 8/31).  Payments are charged on the 8th of the month September - April.  If you sign up after September 8th your first payment will be when you sign up and future payments will be adjusted to the 8th moving forward. 
  2. Pay in full and save $300:  Pay $2000 total tuition for all 8 weekend sessions if you pay up front. (This options goes up to $2300 after 8/31.)
  3. Sign up for individual sessions for $400 per weekend on a drop-in basis.  

To Apply For Teacher Training Certification


To officially become a certified yoga teacher through this training you must submit payment as detailed above and do the following tasks.  Those who aren't interested in teacher certification may simply register and submit payment.

Prior to your first weekend of the training:

  1. Submit payment as detailed above
  2. Fill out the application onine (link to application)
  3. Submit a referral form online (link to form)
During the training:
  1. Attend all 8 weekends within a one year time frame and/or make up any missed weekends & hours as detailed below
  2. Attend 30 classes within a one year time frame or one class per week for 8 months
  3. (Optional) Complete suggested homework
After attending all weekends and completing all required practice hours 
  1. Submit completed take home exam
  2. Schedule practice teaching and asana evaluation with lead instructor
  3. Submit completed hours on

E-mail Roxy if you have questions or concerns


Program Details

We’re offering this training in the spirit of humility, continually growing and learning, together, in the yoga space we call home, in the town we love.  We are offering it in a cost effective, slow learning format because sometimes slow and steady just feels good.  We know there are lots of yoga teacher trainings & advanced learning opportunities out there for you to choose from.  The secret is out that yoga can be a solution to much of our suffering!  If you feel a connection to our studio, if you feel a draw to study & play with us, then that’s all that really matters.  Our training is unique in it’s cost, variety of dedicated teachers, and it’s down home approach.  We are offering this because we love yoga, we love our yoga family and yoga space, and want to spend more time exploring and playing together. We will focus on our favorite aspects of the practice, the aspects we draw upon each day in the studio.  We will focus on the physical practice, to help us fine tune our bodies in the spirit of becoming healthier, happier versions of ourselves.  At the same time, we hope to explore beyond the physical practice together in a non-dogmatic, verbose, or intimidating way, learning the practices and theory that we can put to work tomorrow to help us and our families heal.  

Rockstar teacher trainings are great if you have the budget and don’t mind learning in a large group.  Yoga intensives & bootcamps are great if you don't mind stuffing your mind to the brim and can keep the inspiration going after the initial high wears off.  You can take other trainings with more experienced teachers, some with less, some in retreat centers, some online.  With our training you can keep up with normal householder life.


Our training draws inspiration from the many teachers we've been blessed to study with from the masters to our weekly yoginis at the studio - including but not limited to - Iyengar, Desikachar, Shiva Rea, Lisa Pittelli, Kira Ryder, Baron Baptiste, Maya Tiwari, each and every teacher and student who practices with us daily. 

Required Reading / Book List
The following books will be referenced often during our studies.  We suggest our trainees purchase these to be part of their private yoga library.  These are not included or supplied as part of the cost of the training although we will offer these for sale at cost.
  • Eastern Body, Western Mind by Anodea Judith
  • The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali translated by Satchidanda
  • Scientific Keys Volume II:  The Key Poses of Hatha Yoga by Ray Long
Optional Books
We will draw upon the following books at times during our training and will share the aspects of these books we feel most relevant to our studies.  They are great to have as part of your yoga library or to draw upon for inspiration beyond our training but will not be required. 
  • Light on Yoga by Iyengar
  • Light on Pranayama by Iyengar
  • A New Earth by Eackhart Tolle
  • Teaching Yoga by Donna Farhi
  • Yoga for Wellness by Gary Kraftsow
  • Tending the Heart Fire by Shiva Rea
  • Ayurveda:  The Science of Self Healing by Vasant Lad
  • Insight Yoga by Sarah Powers
Why I'm Excited to Offer Our First Teacher Training
From Smiling Dog Owner, Roxy Banta


I have taken a large number of teacher trainings and have had the privilege of working with a large number of extremely good yoga teachers in my experience working with Smiling Dog, MINDBODY, and Yoga Journal since 2005. I am thoroughly excited to share my experience with you as we embark upon a deeper yoga journey together.  Here are some of the reasons I think you'll love our training.


We are able to offer you a training schedule that I feel is "just right," as Goldilocks would say. While I love all yoga growth opportunities, I have often found the intensive format to be too hot, too much, too fast. It is difficult to digest so much information so quickly and really integrate it into your body, practice, and teaching. Nevermind the travel expenses or the cost of taking off work. I am always left super inspired for a week or so after these, but then grappling with keeping the inspiration going after a few weeks of normal life.  On the other hand, my first training was one Saturday a month for two years. It left me craving more at the end of each session. By hosting our training one weekend per month over the course of a year, I feel like we are able to learn slowly and steadily and put what we learn to use.


To Serve
We offer this training to serve you, the world at large, to help us grow as a community, and to help us grow as teachers.  We love yoga, we think it can help you become a better version of yourself, and we want to give you the opportunity to explore the practice more fully in our studio.  We offer this in the spirit of humility knowing we still have lots to learn as teachers and students and want to continually grow and evolve together. 


Regarding the cost of this training, please compare apples to apples when considering teacher training & advanced learning programs. We think you'll find our training is being offered at a comparable price in our community.  You can pay monthly or up front.  Plus, get your yoga membership as part of the training fee.  Think also of the amount of money spent at a gym, on a therapist, on long term health care...


So, if you are ready to invest in yourself and nerd out on yoga, join us! 


If you have questions regarding any aspect of this training please call Roxy at 805.546.9100 or or e-mail her at


Policies & Need to Knows

Unlimited yoga membership is included in the total cost of the training.  It will be valid two weeks prior to our first weekend of study and will end one week after our last weekend of study.

Books and study materials are not included in the registration fees.  Trainees can borrow books from the library or friends or buy new copies to keep in their personal yoga library.  We will offer at cost pricing for materials a few weeks before we begin.

If you are participating in this training as an Advanced Studies participant and are not interested in becoming a certified yoga teacher, you will pay the same rates and you can either skip practice teaching exercises or use that opportunity for self study.  We will have a detailed schedule each weekend and you can pick and choose which sessions to attend or not. 

No refunds for teacher training fees paid.  No sharing or exchanging of teacher training unlimited yoga memberships.  Per our typical membership offering, you will get 3 guest passes to share with friends during the training for classes + 10% off purchases at the studio. 

Our teacher training manual will be online and shared using google docs and will not be printed.  Participants are welcome to print sections as they see fit.  We will share materials one week prior to each study weekend.  We will print and share some worksheets to help you integrate our teachings, but are trying to use technology to save trees and headaches!

Cancellation Policies

To request refunds and/or prevent future charges please submit written notice of cancellation to or leave this handwritten notice at the front desk of the studio.  The notice is to indicate the expected last date of attendance and be signed and dated by the student.  We will confirm any refunds / final charges within 7 days via email.  Cancellation requests must be received at least 14 days prior to weekend meetings and automatic payment dates to prevent future payments.

Cancellation Prior to First Weekend Session:
 Any student who submits written cancellation request within seven (7) days of paying the initial deposit or full tuition will receive a refund of all monies paid.  

Denial of Enrollment: If an applicant is denied enrollment, 100% of all student fees and tuition paid will be returned upon denial confirmation.

For those who pay in full for the training up front, refunds will be calculated based on the weekends lapsed.  You will receive a refund of your total tuition paid minus $100 administration fee and minus $250 (if paid early bird pricing) or $290 (if paid regular price) for each weekend lapsed.  For example, after attending 2 weekends and you paid early bird pricing you would get $2000 - $100 admin fee - $450 for two weekends attended = $1400 refund. 

For students who cancel who are on the monthly payment plan, remaining payments will be cancelled and deposit / initial payment forfeited.  

Missed Sessions

If you are enrolled in the teacher certification program and miss any sessions of the training, you have the following options to make up your hours towards certification, if so desired.  We do not offer refunds for missed sessions after the fact nor do we cancel monthly payments in the case of missed sessions for those who have committed to the entire course / all 8 weekends.
  1. Pay for an additional private session with the teacher training leaders for an extra fee of $150 for a 120 min session to get a summary of what you missed in the case you do not want to wait to take the weekend again in the following year.  In this case you must make up the difference of missed hours by taking classes at the studio totaling 20 hours.  You can schedule a private yoga > teacher training makeup session through our MB system here or email your instructors to find a time that works.
  2. Make up any missed hours less than an entire weekend (22 hours) by taking classes at the studio totaling your missed hours to ensure you meet the required hours set by yoga alliance, 22 hours per weekend required.
  3. For those on the payment plan who wish to pause/cancel payment for a missed weekend, please contact us with at least 14 days notice before your scheduled payment.  We will cancel payments for a $50 cancellation fee.  You will be required to pay the weekend drop-in price if you wish to retake the weekend down the road and can make up hours as detailed above with private yoga and/or attending classes within 1 years of being accepted into our program.
  4. Those who wish to become certified must attend at least 7 weekends at the studio and cannot use the make up hours for more than one weekend.
A student will be automatically withdrawn if s/he has not attended any of the regularly scheduled teacher training classes for six (6) consecutive scheduled class sessions. In this case, the withdrawal date will be the date of the sixth consecutive missed class.

We look forward to deepening our practice together.  Questions/concerns, email:!