Master of Science in Yoga Therapy

Overview


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Credits Per Trimester
6-7
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TOTAL CREDITS
39.5
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Duration
6 trimesters
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Trimester of Entry
Fall
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FORMAT
Hybrid

COVID-19 PANDEMIC UPDATE: This program is enrolling students for the Fall 2020 Trimester. This program is designed to be offered in the hybrid format; however, the program accreditor, the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT) has granted approval for MUIH to offer online courses and virtual clinics via telehealth during the COVID-19 global pandemic. Students entering the program in the Fall 2020 trimester will not be required to come to campus in Fall 2020 for any classes, orientations, or other learning experiences. The first on-campus learning experiences are scheduled to occur in Spring 2021; MUIH will assess the need for this format on an ongoing basis and will make adjustments to alleviate the need to come to campus should health and safety concerns warrant such changes. The first year of the program consists of lecture-based and experiential courses (Fall 2020 through Summer 2021). The second year of the program consists of clinical experiences (Fall 2021 through Summer 2022).

For fall 2020 classes, some aspects of remote online classes require live and real time (synchronous) participation on specified days and times, while other aspects involve asynchronous participation at days and times that fit individual student’s schedules. This synchronous remote model helps to facilitate the sense of community that is a hallmark of MUIH’s acupuncture and Oriental medicine programs and ensures the opportunity for ongoing engagement between students and faculty. Generally, synchronous participation is required one weekend per month. See the Program Format and Schedule section below for the specific dates and times when students are required to participate synchronously online.

As a yoga therapy practitioner positioned at the forefront of this emerging field, you will be able to design a fulfilling career and develop one-on-one therapeutic relationships in a wide variety of health, wellness, and conventional medical settings. MUIH’s Master of Science in Yoga Therapy is the first and only master’s degree in yoga therapy in the U.S. It offers a unique approach to this field by providing you with a comprehensive and highly experiential classroom experience taught by nationally renowned experts, culminating with an on-site, mentored clinical experience that prepares you to build or grow your practice. This 39.5-credit program is delivered in the hybrid format and can be completed in 6 trimesters (2 years).

Audience


The Master of Science in Yoga Therapy is designed for individuals who have previously earned a minimum of 200-hour yoga teacher training, such as a Yoga Alliance 200-hour registered school program or its equivalent, and have one year of personal practice experience and one year of documented teaching experience after the completion date of their 200-hour yoga teacher training. It is designed for yoga professionals who wish to gain deep and academic knowledge and skills in the philosophy, science, and research underlying yoga practices, apply them to develop one-on-one therapeutic relationships with clients to address their unique health goals and challenges, and be qualified to work in conventional healthcare and medical settings.

Program Description


This program provides yoga professionals with a comprehensive foundation in the theoretical, scientific, and experiential training of yogic teachings and practices. The curriculum is anchored in a relationship-centered philosophy, honoring most yoga traditions, and acknowledging the complex interrelationship between body, mind, and spirit. When you complete the program, you will be able to teach clients how to tailor the practices and teachings of yoga to address their individual health needs and to cultivate a lifetime of wellness.

The program provides a comprehensive understanding of the classical and theoretical foundations of the field of yoga therapy, as well as extensive knowledge of biomedical systems from an integrative and holistic perspective, and the ability to integrate diverse approaches with yoga therapy practices. It provides a strong foundation in the theories of health and disease relevant to the practice of yoga therapy and embraces the diversity of styles and approaches to yoga therapy. It offers a unique mentored clinical experience with clinic supervisors in MUIH’s Natural Care Center and off-campus conventional healthcare and medical settings. The terminology and language of conventional medicine are taught to enable students to effectively communicate with a wide variety of professional colleagues and to effectively integrate yoga therapy with other healing disciplines. The program provides the skills to integrate the teachings from this curriculum with those gained in previous yoga teacher trainings to assess the needs of clients, design and implement effective programs, and evaluate the effectiveness of these programs. As an academic program, it provides the critical thinking and information and research literacy skills needed to excel in the program and in a future career. The cohort-based model builds a strong yoga community within and across cohorts of students and faculty that continues after graduation.

Learning Outcomes


Students who complete the Master of Science in Yoga Therapy program will have

  • Knowledge of classical and theoretical foundations of the field of yoga therapy.
  • Knowledge of biomedical systems from an integrative and holistic perspective, as needed for the practice of yoga therapy.
  • Ability to apply knowledge learned in this curriculum and in previous yoga teacher trainings to assess the needs of clients, to design and implement effective programs, and to assess the effectiveness of these programs.
  • Ability to effectively use yoga as a therapeutic modality through the integration of diverse approaches to this field.
  • Knowledge and ability to use professional conduct during the practice of yoga therapy.
  • Ability to use relationship-based approaches to catalyze positive change or transformation with clients. Critical thinking skills and science-based literacy to advance the evolution of yoga therapy as an integrative health practice.

"MUIH has the best faculty and administration, people who have deep knowledge and understanding of this field and the field of integrative health, and they all are extremely valuable to the advancement of yoga therapy as an accepted and pioneering field."
Suzanne Ludlum, '15 Alumni

Curriculum


Required Courses

The program consists of 39.5 credits of required courses:

  • IHM662 Professional Practices for Yoga Therapy Practitioners I (1 cr)
  • IHM663 Professional Practices for Yoga Therapy Practitioners II (1 cr)
  • ISCI613 Mental Health and Mind Body Science (3 cr)
  • ISCI643 Anatomy and Kinesiology (2.5 cr)
  • ISCI644 Physiology and Pathology: The Internal Organs (3 cr)
  • ISCI651 Structural Pathology in Integrative Health (3 cr)
  • YOGA611 Theoretical Foundations for Yoga Therapy (2 cr)
  • YOGA612 Health and Disease: Yogic Perspectives and Practices (3 cr)
  • YOGA614 Theoretical Foundations and Practical Applications of Yoga Therapy for Mind and Spirit (2.5 cr)
  • YOGA615 Breath and Health 91 cr)
  • YOGA634 Therapeutic Relationship and Client Education I (1.5 cr)
  • YOGA635 Therapeutic Relationship and Client Education II (3 cr)
  • YOGA640 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices (2 cr)
  • YOGA642 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices II (2 cr)
  • YOGA643 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices III (2 cr)
  • YOGA644 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic I (1.5 cr)
  • YOGA645 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic II (1.5)
  • YOGA646 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic III (2 cr)
  • YOGA649 Clinical Case Reporting in Yoga Therapy (2 cr)
  • YOGA6EX1Comprehensive First Year Examination (1 cr)
  • MUIH550Academic Research and Scholarship (0 cr)

Course Descriptions

Course descriptions are available in the Academic Catalog.

Program Accreditation & Approvals


The Master of Science in Yoga Therapy is accredited by the Accreditation Committee of the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT). For more information, visit: www.iayt.org.

Career Opportunities


86% of recent graduates of MUIH’s M.S. Yoga Therapy program were employed or self-employed within one year of graduation. Graduates of MUIH’s yoga therapy program are employed in a variety of settings including private practice; integrative group practices; health care systems; hospitals; U.S. military; veterans and military organizations and agencies; school systems; and colleges and universities. Many graduates chose to have a portfolio career in which they have multiple positions and employers within one or more profession, rather than one full-time job. A portfolio career provides such individuals with variety in their work life and the opportunity to develop a wide and varied professional network.

The use of yoga in the U.S. continues to grow steadily leading to an increasing need for professionals trained in the field; individuals who complete the proposed program will be prepared to meet the growing expectations of the general public that yoga and meditation approaches be applied to support them. The 2017 National Health Interview Survey revealed significant increases in the use of yoga-based mind and body approaches. Yoga was the most commonly used complementary health approach among U.S. adults in 2012 (9.5%, 22.4 million individuals) and 2017 (14.3%, 35.2 million individuals) and demonstrated an increase in usage during that five-year period. The use of meditation increased more than threefold from 4.1% in 2012 to 14.2% in 2017. Similar increased usage of these modalities was observed in children aged 4-17 years. The percent of children who used yoga increased significantly from 3.1% in 2012 to 8.4% (4.9 million children) in 2017. The use of meditation among children also increased significantly from 0.6% in 2012 to 5.4% in 2017.

The earlier 2016 Yoga in America Study conducted by Yoga Journal and Yoga Alliance also indicated significant and widespread use of yoga. 28% of all Americans had participated in a yoga class at some point in their lives. The number of Americans practicing yoga increased to over 36 million in 2016, up from 20.4 million in the 2012 study. There were more older practitioners than ever before; nearly 14 million practitioners were over the age of 50, up from about 4 million in 2012. One in three Americans had tried yoga on their own (not in a class) at least once. 34% of Americans said they were somewhat or very likely to practice yoga in the next 12 months, equal to more than 80 million Americans. Since 2012, the percentage of Americans aware of yoga grew from 75% to 90%.

Health care governing bodies such as the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Hospitals, the federal government’s lnter-Agency Task Force on Pain Management, and the American College of Physicians recommend and, in some cases, require nonpharmacologic treatment as part of patient treatment planning. Yoga is among the key modalities cited for such non-pharmacologic approaches.

The job market for yoga professionals is robust. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics projects jobs for yoga professionals (included in BLS’s fitness trainers and instructors category) to grow 13% at much faster than average rates for the years 2018-2028. There are currently 90,000 registered yoga teachers in the U.S. who possess the base level of non-academic training. MUIH’s Master of Science in Yoga Therapy provides such individuals with the opportunity to differentiate and distinguish themselves from others and to their clients and potential employers.

View more about career opportunities.

Program Format & Schedule


Program Format

This program is offered in the hybrid format. Click here to view MUIH’s definition of online, hybrid, and on-campus course and program formats.

The Master of Science Yoga Therapy program is composed of a required set of hybrid and online courses.

COVID-19 PANDEMIC UPDATE: This program is designed to be offered in the hybrid format; however, the program accreditor, the International Association of Yoga Therapists (IAYT) has granted approval for MUIH to offer online courses and virtual clinics via telehealth during the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Program Schedule

For trimester start and end dates, see the Academic Calendar.

The schedule accommodates working professionals by limiting on-campus weekends to three weekends per trimester. Online assignments are completed in between these on-campus weekends.

Students meet on campus nine weekends per year (three weekends a trimester):

  • First year (didactic) – Friday noon to 9pm and all-day Saturdays and Sundays
  • Second year (clinical practicum with in-person supervision) – Thursdays noon to 9pm and all day Friday through Sunday.

COVID-19 PANDEMIC UPDATE: 

Students will not be required to come to campus in Fall 2020 for any classes, orientations, or other learning experiences. The first on-campus learning experiences are scheduled to occur in Spring 2021; MUIH will assess the need for this format on an ongoing basis and will make adjustments to alleviate the need to come to campus should health and safety concerns warrant such changes.

Fall 2020 Classes – Required Online Synchronous Requirements

All times noted below are U.S. eastern time zone. For questions contact Suzanne Zolnick at or Diane Finlayson at .

Yoga Therapy Program Orientation

The following online live session is required: Thursday September 10th noon to 2pm. Meet other students and faculty and ask questions regarding the program and the university. 

YOGA611

The following online live sessions are required:

  • September 10, 5pm to 9pm
  • September 13, 10am to 1pm
  • October 16, 5pm to 9pm
  • October 18, 10am to 1pm
  • November 13, 12pm to 6pm

ISCI643 and ISCI644

An optional online live orientation session is scheduled for August 31, 6pm to 7pm. Review the expectations and question and answer period for both courses. 

ISCI643

The following online live sessions are required and focus on anatomy experiential learning:

  • September 11, 9am to 6pm. Lecture and discussion.
  • September 12, Experiential Learning. The class is held from 9am to 6pm, however each student will only need to be present for a 90-minute time slot with the instructor. These time slots will be assigned during the first week of the course based on preferences indicated by students. Students can meet with their classmates to practice, if they like, during the times they are not assigned to be present with the instructor.
  • October 17, 9am to 3pm Lecture and Discussion – all students will need to be present. From 3pm to 6pm Experiential Learning – a selection of small groups will need to attend for 90-minute time slots, which will be assigned during the first week of the course based on preferences indicated by students.
  • October 18, 2pm to 6pm. Experiential Learning. A selection of small groups will need to attend for 90-minute time slots, which will be assigned during the first week of the course based on preferences indicated by students.
  • November 15, 9am to 11am – all students will need to be present. From 11am to 6pm students will only need to be present for a 2-hour time slot, which will be assigned during the first week of the course based on preferences indicated by students. 

ISCI644

The following online live sessions are required:

  • September 13, 2pm to 6pm
  • October 16, 5pm to 9pm
  • November 14, 2pm to 6pm

Schedule of Classes

Trimester 1

  • ISCI643 Anatomy and Kinesiology (2.5 cr)
  • ISCI644 Physiology and Pathology: The Internal Organs (3 cr)
  • YOGA611 Theoretical Foundations for Yoga Therapy (2 cr)
  • MUIH550 Academic Research and Scholarship (0 cr)

Trimester 2

  • ISCI651 Structural Pathology in Integrative Health (3 cr)
  • YOGA612 Health and Disease: Yogic Perspectives and Practices (3 cr)
  • YOGA615 Breath and Health 91 cr)

Trimester 3

  • IHM662 Professional Practices for Yoga Therapy Practitioners I (1 cr)
  • ISCI613 Mental Health and Mind Body Science (3 cr)
  • YOGA614 Theoretical Foundations and Practical Applications of Yoga Therapy for Mind and Spirit (2.5 cr)
  • YOGA6EX1 Comprehensive First Year Examination (1 cr)

Trimester 4

  • IHM663 Professional Practices for Yoga Therapy Practitioners II (1 cr)
  • YOGA634 Therapeutic Relationship and Client Education I (1.5 cr)
  • YOGA640 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices I (2 cr)
  • YOGA644 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic I (1.5 cr)

Trimester 5

  • YOGA635 Therapeutic Relationship and Client Education II (3 cr)
  • YOGA642 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices II (2 cr)
  • YOGA645 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic II (1.5)

Trimester 6

  • YOGA643 Yoga Therapy: Principles and Practices III (2 cr)
  • YOGA646 Mentored Yoga Therapy Student Clinic III (2 cr)
  • YOGA649 Clinical Case Reporting in Yoga Therapy (2 cr)

Licensure, Certification, & Credentialing


Graduates of the Master of Science in Yoga Therapy are eligible to apply for the Certified Yoga Therapist (C-IAYT) credential offered by the International Association of Yoga Therapists and the RYT300 credential offered by Yoga Alliance. Interested individuals are encouraged to check for the most recent requirements.

Admission Requirements


Trimester of Entry: Fall
Application Priority Deadline: Application deadline by Trimester
General Requirements:
Program Specific Requirements:
  • Earned a minimum of 200-hour Teacher Training, through a Yoga Alliance 200-hr registered school program or its equivalent
  • One year of documented personal practice of yoga
  • 100 hours of documented teaching experience after the 200-hr Teacher Training and by the time of application to the program. Documentation should include the list of teaching experiences, locations, and hours that comprise this 100 hours.
  • A professional letter of recommendation from an employer in the yoga industry

Complete Essay Questions in application:

  • How does this program relate to your future personal and professional goals?
  • In addition to the optional clinical work in partner institutions where a client stream is provided, students of the MUIH Yoga Therapy program are required to deliver 50% of their clinical sessions to clients in their clinical sessions in the Natural Care Center during their second year of study.  The coursework is designed to help you develop the skills you need to do this in school and succeed after graduation.  What strategies do you already have in place to attract clients to the NCC to receive your care?  How will you overcome any hurdles you may perceive in this new situation?
  • Please tell us about your personal use of Yoga (emphasizing how long you have been practicing and how your practice evolved) and any previous training or experience related to the yoga therapy program. (For example: apprenticeships, consultations, certificate programs, prior work experience.)

Program Administration


Diane Finlayson, M.L.A.
Department Chair

Suzanne Zolnick, M.A.S.
Department Manager

Matt Mazick
Academic Advisor

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