13 Questions on yoga teacher training for couples

Most of us fall deeply in love with yoga and often the next step is taking yoga teacher training. It is a fun and worthy adventure, if not crazy sometimes, or most times actually. But do you know what is even crazier? Signing-up for the course as a couple.

It is a challenge to capture the enormity of yoga teacher training as a couple so we tried to simplify it in the 13 questions below.

Also, we would like to thank our blog friend LeendaDLL for inspiring this post.

1. Why did you sign-up for yoga teacher training?

Markus: Micah had always wanted to do her yoga teacher training, and I decided to go along for the ride.

Micah: I wanted to attend yoga classes whenever I am home and not traveling. But there was no yoga teacher in town so I decided, “Right, I will be the yoga teacher then.

2. What was the hardest part of your course?

Markus: Getting up at 5am for meditation class. I admitted defeat by the third week.

Micah: External structures trigger claustrophobia in my head. I was choking halfway through the course. Adjusting to the packed schedule was also a challenge. Fortunately, our room is next to the studio. Napping in between classes saved me.

3. What surprised you the most during your studies?

Markus: That my body could do strenuous physical things. I had had surgery on my leg twice some years before and never really got back into sports until the training.

Micah: The approach of our teachers to yoga was refreshing. It was grounded; none of the airy-fairy bullshit I commonly see with these “spiritual people”, especially in Bali.

At our school, the teachers focused on philosophy, history, postures, adjustments – very practical stuff. Of course, we talked about chakras, higher consciousness, and had rituals, too, but genuinely, not as a performance or a mask. Nobody spoke with an artificial dreamy and breathy voice. I appreciate that a lot.

4. Did you discover anything new about yourself?

Markus: I rediscovered a lot of my patience and resilience.

Micah: Many things. The most surprising was how uncomfortable I was receiving help. I pulled a rib muscle entering the third week of the course. I could only take shallow breaths and was spasming so bad I was bedridden for three days.

Fortunately, Markus was very kind and took care of me. He would climb five flights of stairs every hour to check on me and bring me comfort and food.

But instead of appreciation, my initial reaction was guilt. Normally, I am the one looking after people. Being on the other end of the stick confused the hell out of me. It was such an ordeal!

This experience was a good lesson on vulnerability, humility, and togetherness. I saw the grace in accepting help from another and was infinitely grateful that Markus was there for me.

5. What did you learn about your partner?

Markus: When Micah really wants something, she will get it. During the teacher training, that thing was Crow Pose.

Micah: Markus is twisty. I was very impressed!

6. How did the yoga teacher training change your relationship?

Markus: It strengthened our devotion to one another.

Micah: It was reassuring to know that no matter how much the tectonic plates of our individual beings shift, we will always work together to find each other and look forward in the same direction.

7. Did you fight during training?

Markus: We struggled, but we struggled together and not against each other.

Micah: In brief, I am irritable when I am ill and exhausted and I was ill and exhausted every day during yoga teacher training.

8. What was the most memorable part for you?

Markus: Watching the sunrise from a mountain temple.

Micah: A big monkey decided to join me for chai, climbed up the table, stared me down, stole the sugar packets on the saucer, and ate it near me while looking at me like a little bitch.

9. How did you spend your spare time?

Markus: We bought tons of sweets from a small organic shop and explored the cafés of Rishikesh, but mainly we tried to recover as much as possible.

Micah: It was a 200-hr course squeezed in a month. Sundays were the only rest days and the school organized excursions that we never joined because we needed space. Instead, we took short walks around town and sat in little shops with nice chai.

There was no time to discover Rishikesh properly, or India at that. We had to fly out immediately after the course to host our wellness retreat in Bali for that year.

10. Do you have any funny or interesting story from your trip?

Markus: We were chatting with a classmate on our balcony, when a monkey came to join us. Then, we were just hanging out together for a bit.

Micah: I overpacked the wrong clothes. We were digital nomads, and before Rishikesh, we came from Coron, Palawan. My island clothes did nothing for me at the foot of the Himalayas, coming into wintertime.

11. How was the food?

Markus: Great! Turned us vegetarian for one.

Micah: We had vegan food the entire time. This is all we found in Rishikesh. I had a shock when I ate eggs after the yoga teacher training course! Also, Indian chai every day was a dream, as well as learning how to make chapati. In fact, this is possibly the best thing that came out of my yoga teacher training.

12. What is your impression of Rishikesh?

Markus: I went to buy medicine for Micah. At the register, I realized I didn’t have any money. The person told me not to worry, to take the medicine and to simply pay another time.

Micah: It was like participating in a David Attenborough documentary – animals big and small everywhere. I must have seen half the variety of monkeys on this planet, which was interesting because the street noise level was on another stratosphere.

13. Will you recommend doing yoga teacher training as a couple?

Markus: As my father said: If you survived this, you will survive anything.

Micah: Yes and no. Yes, if you want to have a unique experience together or test your relationship and are brave enough to risk it all falling apart. Actually, there were two other couples – English and Italians – in our batch and they were lovely.

No, if you want to focus on yourself and explore the depths of your soul and darkest corners of your minds that you often deny exist. It is an excellent opportunity for reflection, healing, and self-improvement.

Yoga teacher training is hard on its own but answering to the needs of another person at the same time puts it at another level of difficulty. Also, you will not bond as much with your classmates since you are focused on your partner while trying to stay sane at the same time.

It all depends on your goals coming into it. Think it through and discuss with your partner. It is not for everyone, but yoga teacher training as a couple is a fun and challenging way to grow as a person and in your relationship. Given the chance, will you give it a go?

Published by Markus + Micah

We are Markus + Micah. We live in a tiny house by the sea, grow our plants, cook plant-based food, travel, and design wellness retreats and mindful programs so we can all live meaningful lives.

101 thoughts on “13 Questions on yoga teacher training for couples

    1. Sorry to hear about your shoulder injury. Have you tried yoga to supplement your rehab? I actually practiced yoga the first time after I sustained a wrist injury from muay thai, and kept going with yoga because it is so good for the body. Yoga also helped in my recovery from an MCL injury and overall well-being.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. How lovely that you did this together. My husband and I used to cycle together and train at the gym together. I was teaching spinning at a local gym at that time. I gave it up when I had my first son and we never got back into it. I must rethink this. Thanks for this inspiring post.


    1. It is fun to share something, right? Gives you something to talk about, for one. Yes, hopefully you pick something up together. Even if it is small, it is fun. And you teach spinning? How cool is that? Do you miss teaching?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I don’t miss teaching spinning, but I am trying to exercise more now. I am an obsessive person and my obsessions have changed over the years. It was exercise for a long time and then I had my kids and it changed. I taught at our local Sunday School for years and ran the programme for about four years too. Now I bake, blog and write. It is how I am. I am trying to achieve more balance in my life and I like your blog. I believe it helps me put things in perspective.


        1. I wish you are my neighbor. I also like the same things you enjoy doing now, and have the tendency to focus on one thing for a period of time and move on. It is nice, no? Keep things fresh and interesting. What sort of exercise are you keen on trying now and what do you bake often currently? And thank you for showing our blog some love!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. I am currently doing a lot of walking and some cycling with my younger son. My husband and older son also walk with us. My younger son has a lot of health problems so it is very important for him to exercise. I do a lot of fondant art and baking. I have another blog for these passions. Roberta Writes is my adult poetry and writing blog. Robbie’s Inspiration is for my artwork, poetry and children’s writing. If you are interested, you can visit it here and you will see my artwork and cakes. I have been doing a series about Covid-19 recently. https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/2020/09/18/the-saturday-symphony-10-sir-chocolate-and-the-gingerbread-church/


  2. You guys are stinking cute! I find it funny that they made you wake up at 5am to meditate… because isn’t meditation supposed to help with relaxation? If so, how is it more important than sleep?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Meditation class starts at 5 and ends at 7 AM. It is early because it is suppose to set you up for the day. It was hard because it was early, dark, and cold. And you spend your time breathing with the different techniques. It was quite interesting actually, how each technique produces a different effect for the body.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s as if I was watching a talk show! It’s nice to know more about you two…
    I think I have seen one photo of Markus being twisty 😀
    and Micah, how does one recover from pulled rib muscle?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It is a good thing of course… it was like hearing you talk about your answers 😀
        ..it was so nice to read…

        I asked about it because my husband tore his rib muscle in a gym a couple of years back, It no longer hurts like how it was back then but there are times when he stretches or reaches out for something, he still feels limited on that particular side and blames it on the torn muscle.. so I was thinking, why hasn’t it resolved. He had it checked thinking it might be stones or something but there wasn’t anything…


        1. Many thanks. Oh, sorry to hear that it also happened to him. Maybe his injury left some scarring or it just remained tight? Stretching affected muscles or joints is important to regain mobility. I sound like my physical therapist. I have done so much rehab, and come to think of it, Markus has, too.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Ok, so he’s doing the opposite of what’s to be done… He hasn’t been stretching that part much because of the pain or the fear of pain…

            He doesn’t join me in yoga either, I am getting frustrated hehe, because I am doing the basics regularly now and I can tell the difference!

            You do sound like one… Your experience and previous unfortunate injuries are enough to warrant the title 😀 May you have less to none in the coming days…


            1. Thank you. I am glad to hear you are starting to feel the difference with yoga. What is your favorite pose so far? Injuries must be moved, with care, otherwise we lose the function of the body part. I mean, nobody wants to stay limited like that, right?

              Liked by 1 person

              1. Haha. I feel embarrassed to say because all I do are the basics… I like the child’s pose because it relaxes me and the warrior pose because Brook would always copy me…


                1. But basics are the best! I enjoy child’s pose a lot, too. Restorative poses are a gift from the heavens. I am glad Brook is taking an interest in yoga. I think for a lot of men, doing the fancy poses attract them to yoga.

                  Liked by 1 person

      1. Probably, hard to say really isn’t it. Perceived challenge is hard to quantify! Some of the biggest challenges are completely unseen after all.
        A topic I do find interesting though, is human potential and the limits of endurance…I read scott Jurek’s bio last year — it’s shocking how much farther some go compared to the rest of us!


          1. With the extreme performance folks it’s physical for everyone else mostly mental at a guess. Most people don’t approach anything like their limits…which is maybe for the best


            1. I suppose. Always fascinating to see these. I remember watching a vegan documentary and seeing a power lifter and other elite athletes perform at such a high level with a plant-based diet and I was so impressed. Have you watched The Game Changer?

              Liked by 1 person

  4. I cannot imagine my husband and I doing anything like this together, but for you it was the right path. What a unique experience, fun to read about. It’s encouraging to learn that your training was based in reality, not something woo-woo.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Do you have opposite personalities? Yes, it is important for us to keep things as they are. We integrate this on our wellness retreats, too. Most times, people mistake retreats as woo-woo but the really good ones are practical and allow us to connect with ourselves and life in a healthy, balanced way.

      Liked by 1 person

                  1. Thank you. I do indeed consider this trial as an opportunity to get to the next level. I wouldn’t have gone on a journey of personal development without these challenges. When I was single my life was way too smooth


                    1. Not smooth at all. It was extremely painful and I almost got to the point of considering separation but fortunately I stumbled upon relationship coaching and that changed everything


      1. The kitties have been busy scratching me up but I’ll give them some love-skritches from you. The rescue-kitten is leaving today so I’ll be giving it lots of hugs!!


  5. You two inspire me with every post. I couldn’t even help but smile and laugh especially when the monkey stole your sugar packets!! I hope one day to also be a yoga teacher, it’s been a lifelong dream of mine.
    Thank you so much for sharing your experience. I hadn’t considered taking instruction outside of my country until reading this. What a powerful and moving experience!

    Hope you are feeling better from your illness also Micah! Glad the two of you enjoyed your time during the course of becoming yoga instructors!!!(:
    xo Bri

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi, Bri! How is uni? And thanks, but that monkey was terrifying and totally not small. Depending on your goals, you can take a course abroad or locally. Both will turn you into a yoga teacher. It is what we are made of and what we put into our practice that ultimately determines what kind of yoga teacher we will be. Of course, abroad, there is the added adventure and a more international group. Rishikesh is a special place for yoga, as you know, and it was the right destination for us to be there. It is not for everyone though, in the same way that India is. I did not know you have a yoga practice! What is your favorite pose?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m currently working my twenty-something year old dream job as a bartender while exploring myself as an author and artist, uni wasn’t really in my cards. Lately I’ve been feeling very grounded lately and my go to has become Malasana! What’s yours?


        1. Bartender, how cool! I imagine your personality fits well – vibrant and fun. Do you enjoy it a lot? Glad you are taking the time to know yourself more. Malasana is a good one. I like pigeon pose and child’s pose, very relaxing.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Definitely love ending a long day in child’s pose and refinding my center. I appreciate that, bartending is so much fun! I work with really great people which makes the job even better. What have you been up to?


            1. I start the day with child’s pose, honestly. It just feels so good. How about the bartending hours and coronavirus risk? I have been attending to our new land and planting more stuff. As you know, I enjoy plants.

              Liked by 1 person

              1. My employer has been great at helping the staff and patrons stay safe during this time while providing the most comfortable experience as well. Living in a college town makes it a bit more stressful but overall this time has made even more mindful and aware of myself and others.
                That’s exciting, I just became a plant mom once again but I’m still trying to identify what kind of babies i have at home hahaha


                1. That is good then. I hope the stress decreases at some point or like you said, you just find ways to manage it better. Love the investment on your self. Oh, super interested in learning what plants you have!


  6. Wow, what an amazing and totally unforgettable experience!! I can’t imagine a better place to learn to teach yoga. Although it does sound incredibly intensive, as you say ending up ill as a result. I work with my husband and I think it can be tough at times, but it is great knowing we are always together. I love what you have created with your lifestyle. It’s very inspirational being new to simple and intentional living x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was intensive. Not just me who got ill, too. Apparently, it is common as the program requires a big adjustment for the body. Worth it though. You work with your husband? How challenging is that? Have you been working together long? And thank you. I think once you realize your values in life, there is no going back. And this is where the fun begins as you start to tailor your day and create a life you love. What pulled you towards simple and intentional living?


    1. Thank you. Like we chatted about before, this one kills my wrist so I would rather pigeon pose it out, right? Lately, pincha mayurasana has been on mind. Not sure where this thought will go but I am curious.


    1. Thank you. Rishikesh is the birthplace of yoga, this is the reason we chose it. The people are kind and used to tourists. There is only vegetarian food and plenty of “millennial hippie” food. The Ganga is clean here. What else can I say about Rishikesh? It gets cold in the last quarter pf the year and there are tons of monkeys and squirrels. Have you practiced yoga before?


        1. Curiosity is a good start. Yoga is a whole new world for the body to explore – really excited for you. I can recommend 15 minute restorative or yoga in bed classes for beginners on YouTube. Cat Meffan and Jessica Richburg are wonderful online yoga teachers.

          Liked by 1 person

                1. I think there is some backstory on our About. We met while we were both traveling individually at a mixed martial arts gym in Boracay Island. Then we bumped into each other randomly two more times in two more different countries. It took about a year and a half of separate traveling before we saw each other again and decided to talk about situation. Maybe we will post about it more. You inspire our posts!


                    1. Maybe you have not yet found yours. Truthfully, we were both not searching for anyone when we met, and this was the challenge of deciding to be in a relationship – Will the addition of this person add anything to my life?


                    2. Maybe I’ll post about it again. It’s been many years since I last did that.

                      Short version: All the love possible; no sex.

                      Longer: He’s the one I loved enough to learn to work through fights. But he got addicted and I had to walk away. He died a few years later from AIDS. I was living almost exclusively in the gay male community and after I list my first friend I thought “I’m going to watch this come closer and closer to my heart until I lose the person I love the most.” That’s exactly what happened. It’s a large part of a lot of aspects of who I am now.


                    3. Yeah. Joel taught me “Never let anyone treat you like 2nd best.” I figure the proof that I learned was not putting up with it from him. But it was still the hardest thing I ever did.

                      I’m nor religous but one night, before Joel and I were serious friends, I was in his checkout lane (he was a cashier at my grocery store) and, clear as can be, heard a voice inside my head say, “Do whatever it takes to be this man’s friend.” I can’t explain it but know it really happened.


                    4. Oh, thank you for sharing this. Much appreciated. I can only imagine how difficult it must have been. It is not an easy lesson to learn, but one we must all learn if we are to have healthy relationships. And I love that you follow your intuition!

                      Liked by 1 person

          1. I put this aside to think about before answering. I don’t think our relationship changed much when we got married. We were college sweethearts and married two weeks after graduation. The big change for me was living in Queens (part of NY City) where no one knew me and few could understand my Southern accent easily. John and I were focused on each other, so we had a honeymoon period of three yeas. Our relationship changed when we moved to the suburbs. John’s commute to Manhattan took four hours round trip, and our first child was born. We simply didn’t have much time together.


            1. Wow, college sweethearts! Thank you for sharing, Anne. I love how you were focused on each other and three years is a good time for a honeymoon. How nice. And how did you cope when you did not have plenty of time together?


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