In September 2021, we'll kick off our third 200hr Hatha yoga teacher training in Chicago! Our training is 200hr Yoga Alliance Certified and will focus heavily on sequencing, adjustments, and practical teaching experience. Over the 15-week training we will delve into the style taught at Big Shoulders Yoga and by the end trainees will graduate as competent Hatha yoga instructors.

Our yoga teacher training will be led by Nicolette Downs, owner of Big Shoulders Yoga and experienced BSY teacher, Claire Harper. The training is designed to fit around a typical work schedule, with sessions on Tuesday and Thursday evenings and all-day Saturday and/or Sunday.

Learning objectives
for our 2021 YTT.


·Structure and organization
of a sequence

·Sequencing around a theme

·Different styles of yoga and their characteristics

Adjustments & Anatomy

·Adjustment techniques and practice

·Anatomy and alignment

·Asana variation to accommodate a wide variety of practitioners

Practical Experience

·Teach weekly mock classes

·Receive constructive
feedback to help hone your teaching

·Create an ideal class environment for your students


·Sanskrit language study

·Cueing exercises

·Verbal adjustments

·Inclusive cuing

·Tone and energy

Meditation & Breathwork

·Meditation and mindfulness exercises

·Breathing and pranayama exercises

Yoga Philosophy, Ethics & Culture

·History of yoga

·Yoga Sutras and Eight Limbs of yoga

·Westernization of yoga and cultural appropriation

·Business of yoga

More Questions Or ready to start the application process? contact us!
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.



Why should you take our TT?

Our training will deepen your knowledge of yoga, improve your personal practice and equip you with the skills to teach the unique style taught at Big Shoulders Yoga! We emphasize practicality in our training and want trainees to walk away feeling confident they can write a sequence, lead a class, and provide safe and effective adjustments.


What will the schedule be like?

The training will begin the first week of September 2021 and run until December 11th. It will be a hybrid of virtual and in-studio meetings. We will meet virtually on Tuesday & Thursday evenings and in-person on Saturdays and/or Sundays.


What will a typical day look like?

Here’s what a typical Saturday or Sunday session will look like:

Yoga class with lead teacher
Lecture and discussion (topics will include; anatomy, history of yoga, Sanskrit, yoga philosophy, meditation, breath work and more)
Sequencing: theory and exercises
Adjustments: technique and practice or trainee taught class


How much will the training cost?

The training costs $2,700 and includes our training manual and unlimited yoga classes during the training. $2,500 Early bird pricing for those who apply before July 1st! Payment is due at the start of training, but we can offer payment schedules to meet your needs - please contact us prior to the start of training to setup a payment schedule. We are committed to making teacher training accessible, so if prices are prohibitive to you please contact us about scholarship opportunities at [email protected]


What is the application process like?

Send us an email at [email protected] to let us know that you are interested and start the process. We want to hear a little bit about you, why you’re interested in our training, and make sure that our training is right for you! We require you to take 10 classes at BSY to familiarize yourself with our style prior to the start of training.


Who will I be learning from?

Nicolette Downs is the owner of Big Shoulders Yoga. She completed her 200-hr teacher training with Carmen Aguilar in 2012, and has since gained experience teaching studio classes and private students to become an experienced yoga instructor, E-RYT 200. Nicolette has a history of teaching students of all levels and abilities from injured police officers to athletes. In 2019, Nicolette decided to create a yoga community of her own when she opened Big Shoulders. Additionally, Nicolette has had a consistent yoga practice for over 10 years and has  drawn inspiration for her practice from a number of styles including cYoga, Baptiste, and Power Hatha. As a TT instructor, Nicolette brings her breadth of teaching experience as well as her background of owning and operating a successful yoga business.

Claire Harper has been a teacher at Big Shoulders since day one. She started a consistent yoga practice as a teen over 10 years ago. Claire completed her 200-hr teacher training in 2011 with Carmen Aguilar, and is now a Yoga Alliance E-200-hr teacher. Claire has taught in both studios and gyms across the country. She has experience teaching students of all levels through both Hatha and Restorative practices. By day, Claire is a Registered Dietitian and has taught workshops on Mindful Eating and Yoga and for Digestion. Claire’s practice draws from a number of styles including Ashtanga, Forrest Yoga, Restorative Yoga and cYoga. As a TT instructor, Claire brings her unique teaching background of both physically advanced and more subtle yoga practices.

In addition to Claire and Nicolette, our training will pull in a few of the BSY teachers for their expertise on certain topics.

More Questions Or ready to start the application process? email us at
[email protected]

Highlights from past YTTs.