EkhartYoga Functional Yoga Teacher Training

Learn to teach yoga with Esther Ekhart, Marcel van de Vis Heil and Anat Geiger. Three renowned teachers, one exceptional training

D’Alijo centre, Portugal


01 Jun 2020


22 Jun 2020

€ 4,135.00

We are delighted to announce that in June 2020 we are joining forces for the first time to offer a unique teacher training that unites our many years of knowledge, experience and expertise.

For over 20 years, Esther Ekhart has been an international reference for high-quality yoga, both online and offline. Her classes, retreats and teacher trainings have inspired thousands of students to deepen their knowledge of yoga and themselves.

Anat Geiger and Marcel van de Vis Heil have been leading classes and teacher trainings for over 20 years, focusing their programs on strong scientific and philosophical education.

Together we’re offering a 200-hour, Yoga Alliance Accredited, Functional Hatha and Vinyasa Teacher Training.

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This in-depth course will give you a strong grounding in yoga anatomy, theory and philosophy, underpinned with a range of self-inquiry techniques to enable you to be the most authentic yoga teacher you can be. 

This Yoga Teacher Training course will give you the foundations to teach both Hatha yoga and Vinyasa yoga flow classes. The 200 hour course is accredited by both Yoga Alliance US and Yoga Alliance Professionals (formerly Yoga Alliance UK). 

The training consists of two parts: a three-week residential course, followed by homework assignments and a theory exam to be completed within three months of the residential. 

On completion of the residential training, students will also get free access to two online courses on the EkhartYoga Academy:

We will accept up to a maximum of 27 participants to ensure that you get our full support and attention.

Part 1: 3-week residential in Portugal in the beautiful D’Alijo Centre

June 1st to June 22nd, 2019 

inside the yoga studioEach week will focus on a different aspect of the yoga practice. The structure of all three weeks is similar, allowing for a daily rhythm that is intense but also tranquil. We will practice meditation and asana - both Yin and Yang - daily along with lectures and practical sessions. 

Topics covered during the 3 week residential in Portugal:

    •    Anatomy (30 hrs)

    •    Techniques, training and practice topics (120 hrs)

    •    Yoga philosophy, lifestyle and ethics (40 hrs)

    •    Practice and teaching of asana, pranayama and meditation 

    •    Alignment, benefits and potential risks of the foundational yoga postures

    •    How to observe bodies

    •    Refinement of your own yoga practice

    •    Develop your confidence with teaching practice

    •    Finding your voice

    •    Assisting and modifying poses

    •    Class sequencing and planning

    •    Personal development / Mindfulness techniques

    •    Study of traditional texts (Yoga Sutras, Samkhya philosophy and The Bhagavad Gita)

    •    Sanskrit names of yoga postures

    •    Ethics and the business of teaching yoga

Week 1 (1st to 7th June) - Self-development; how to become a functional human being 
led by Esther Ekhart

The purpose of this week is to teach you techniques you can apply during this training and throughout your life to help you let go of old and established habits and patterns that may be holding you back. Using powerful tools, both ancient and modern, you will explore the deeper, more hidden parts of yourself and the more awake, aware parts of yourself so you can learn to open yourself to the beauty of the present moment. This will also help you to be the best teacher possible for your students. 
Some of those methods include:

    ◦    Self-inquiry

    ◦    Here and now practices

    ◦    Meditation 

    ◦    Insight practices

    ◦    Self-compassion

Week 2 (8th to 14th June) - Functional anatomy and technique of the poses
led by Marcel van de Vis Heil

Functional yoga recognises the scientific truth that every single bone in every body is different, and therefore the way we move is unique to us. Instead of focusing on how a pose should look, Functional yoga asks what should the pose be doing for us, for the body we have today. Knowing the answer to that question enables us to find the right alignment for our bodies and for our students, not according to a general rule but according to our own uniqueness and needs.

This dictates everything we do, also the way we study anatomy; we look at muscles and bones not only to learn their names and functions but especially to learn to look at people and identify what adjustments and modifications they need in order for their practice to be safe, pleasant and healthy.

    •    Anatomy foundations:  

       ◦    skeletal variations and their importance when teaching yoga

       ◦    the 14 skeletal segments and their movements

       ◦    the 10 myofascial groups and their functions

       ◦    fascia and modern meridian theory

    •    Yoga poses: 

       ◦    The 7 archetypal poses and their variations

       ◦    Alternatives for different bodies and for injuries

       ◦    Sun salutations 

       ◦    Sequencing

    •    Pranayama

       ◦    Basic breathing techniques and how to teach them

Week 3 (15th to 22nd June) - led by Anat Geiger

Yoga Philosophy, Chakra Theory & Practice 

Yoga is by definition a practice: a method of self-work with the goal of realizing and manifesting our true, enlightened nature. More than anything, it needs to be experienced. But the road can be extremely difficult and frustrating, especially these days when materialism and instant gratification seem to be the drive behind so much in our lives. 
That’s where yoga philosophy can help us: it is packed with information, guidance, support and inspiration, and even though it was written long ago, it carries deep relevance for our times and lives today.
Yoga philosophy cannot be grasped with the intellect alone, it must be felt with the heart. We take the time to explore these ideas using a down-to-earth approach that is accessible and understandable without losing its beauty and depth.

    •    Foundations of Yoga Philosophy

       ◦    The Creation of the Universe according to yoga philosophy
       ◦     The Four Dimensions of Human Experience
       ◦      Karma, Samskaras and Breaking the Cycle
    •    Introduction to the Sutras of Patanjali

    •    Chakras and Human Evolution

    •    Chakra Meditation

views from the retreat centreDaily Schedule:

  • 07.30 – meditation

  • 08.00 – breakfast
09.30 – lecture and practice

  • 12.30 – lunch
16.00 – lecture and practice
19.00 – dinner

Part 2: Homework and follow-up sessions 

To be completed in your own time and submitted within 3 months of return from the residential

    •    Teaching friends and family (10 classes)

    •    Observing a yoga teacher or teachers of your choice (10 classes)

    •    Making a short 20 min video of yourself teaching a functional yoga class

    •    A short video of you explaining a yoga pose to a student, including the function of the pose, its target area, the skeletal segment it belongs to, and the myofascial group it is part of.
    •    A theory exam on anatomy and philosophy

Come and join us and start your yoga teaching journey - the rewards are life-changing! 

Esther, Anat and Marcel

Your teachers

Esther Ekhart brings years of personal yoga and meditation practice, therapy training, spiritual studies and personal development into her teaching.
Anat Geiger combines the strong Yang elements of strength and rhythm with the Yin elements of kindness and silence into her teaching classes, weaving philosophy and humour through it all.
Marcel van de Vis Heil focuses on the body of each individual student. His classes are a combination of a physical workout, relaxation and stretching, philosophy, information and fun.

The Venue

The residential part of the training takes place at the beautiful D'alijo retreat centre in Portugal.

Costs and accommodation options

Lux cabins viewPer person (Includes three delicious vegetarian organic meals daily and the use of the retreat centre facilities): 

Per participant       € 4,135  shared accommodation 4 persons
Per participant       € 4,375  shared accommodation 2 persons 
Single occupancy  € 4,705  shared facilities
Single occupancy  € 5,125  toilet and shower in the room (converted cabin)
Single occupancy  € 5,305  luxury single cabin

These prices do not include:
Your travel expenses to and from the centre (we will help organise shared transport from Porto airport to the centre on arrival and departure days). Also excluded in the price are any extra food, drinks, treatments, massages during the three-week intensive.

Entry requirements

You should have a minimum of two years’ regular yoga practice for this Yoga Teacher Training Course. You will not be expected to be able to do every pose but you are required to be in good physical and mental health as the training is intensive and demanding. 


To confirm your place we ask for a €500 non-refundable deposit. Click the register button to go through to our secure payment system:

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If you have any questions about the training or about payments, please send an email to
retreats @ ekhartyoga.com 

On receipt of your deposit we will contact you with further information and we will also send you the Code of Conduct by which all Yoga Alliance Professionals Registered Yoga Teachers agree to follow, our Terms and Conditions, our Grievance Procedure, and our Payment and Refund Policy.