6 Tips on How to Spot Scam Yoga Schools

4 min read

Unfortunately, yes. Money is king, and it’s easy to let even the most kind-hearted, strong-willed people slip. We are all human, and we’re not perfect. Although I believe that we all started with good intentions, I do hope everyone can find their way back.

A Bad Experience

The yoga teacher training I attended was a very unpleasant experience. A few weeks prior to the training (without explanation), the tranquil and peaceful location was switched to a busy apartment in the capital city. Two meals per day — organic, homemade, Mediterranean cuisine – turned out to be teachers buying cheap food at the supermarket and us cooking the food in our apartment.

The “teaching style” philosophy was to “look at me, repeat, and if you have questions, just ask.” When we asked for clarification, the response was usually, “you aren’t ready” or “I didn’t want you to be scared.” But if this article were going to cover all the issues, it would have taken us at least 5 minutes to scroll down the page.

These tips will hopefully help anyone who wants to become a yoga teacher avoid my situation and have great yoga teacher training.

Check out the reviews of all teachers.

If I say thoroughly, then I mean to dig as deep as you can on the Internet. There’s probably a good reason why you cannot find any reviews.

There’s probably a good reason why you only see reviews on the company website or reviews that they have given each other. (Yes, this happened.) Look at their Facebook reviews. Just the five stars and no comments? Has anyone commented on their incredible training and retreats?

Check out other events that the school/teachers are organizing

You can also check their social media pages, like their Facebook page.

The events that overlap are probably just an attempt to advertise as much as possible in different places and then choose the event with the most participants. You could receive an email one week before your training stating that the training has been canceled. You can’t get a refund, but you could fly to another part of the world because there is training (true story).

You may also ask, “When are they preparing for the event?” The answer is “They do not.”

You can view their Facebook page to see photos.

Facebook is the social network of choice for marketers these days. Marketing strategies usually involve putting up photos that are engaging and only show what the company wants you to see. Beautiful versions of the environments with people smiling and in yoga poses.

You should be able to tell who the teacher is if you see photos of teachers and students practicing together. No one. Teachers are taking pictures and posing for photos.

Facebook Photos: Check out the photos and the event

It’s a bit tricky, but on the Facebook event page of the school that I chose to attend, there were about 20 participants. But none of them showed up for the training.

It’s likely that their family and friends assist them in scamming other people—sad but true. If you search for an event where twenty people are “ticked as running” but then find photos of only five people training, it might raise some questions.

Send as many questions as you can to the teachers/school by email

I bought the training through a third-party website and only contacted them. They were nice people, and I didn’t suspect anything.

After purchasing the program, I contacted the school and found the communication to be immature and filled with empty words and Namastes. It’s likely that if you contact the school, something seems odd.

Consider Their Marketing Strategy

Are they trying to sell more? That’s not a problem. What matters is how they do it.

I sent an email to each student in my training class asking them to purchase an oval yoga mat. The school then sent out another email saying that all the other students had bought the item. I don’t recall hearing from you. “Did you also want one?”

It is cheeky to use peer pressure. Do they really have to work that hard? Right? If something is great, it will sell itself. If there are only 5-star reviews, that is also suspicious. I have never heard of a product where everyone was 100% happy.

Other clues are also present but are difficult to detect, especially if a scam school uses a strong marketing strategy, as my scam school does.

These tips should help you choose a yoga training. I hope that every future yoga teacher trainee has a magical and life-changing experience!

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