Report on the 2nd Edition of the 200 hour teacher training in La Artiga, Spain


From the 8th to 29th September 2013, Dharmacharis Sadhita and Sudaka, members of the Triratna Buddhist Order, led the 2nd edition of 200 hour Bodhiyoga IYN (Indepedent Yoga Network) registered Yoga Teacher Training.

We were very fortunate to be in the delightfully remote country house of La Artiga in Teruel, Spain. The house is used regularly by the Valencia Buddhist Centre for their retreats, so we knew it would make an ideal venue for the Teacher Training course. We passed three weeks in the pine-clad hills, the sense of remoteness (actually only an hour and a quarter from Valencia) contributed to a tranquil and concentrated atmosphere, perfect for learning and practicing. The little hamlet ("aldea" in Spanish) evokes the pre-civil war rural way of life, now long abandoned. La Artiga is a two centuries old, recently renovated farmhouse.

la-artiga-2013-2In fact, the house proved to be a boon. It can comfortably accommodate up to fifteen people so the seven Bodhiyoga students, our cook, organiser and ourselves spread out with rooms to spare. La Artiga and a large wooden floored practice attic room with plenty of light and high spacious ceilings.

Arriving with our cars loaded with belongings, yoga mats and provisions, we soon unpacked and dived in! We set up a shrine devoted to Amoghasiddhi “The Fearless Buddha” and began with an “arriving” meditation and Dedication Ceremony.

From Day One, the students began to lead each other into the meditation pose and then onwards to more complex yoga asana. Every morning was led alternately by Sudaka and Sadhita and many afternoon sessions were given over to the exploration of specific poses, exploring the “how to enter” and “how to leave”, to the benefits and contra-indications as well as adaptations for more beginner level students and more challenging variations for the more capable.

A great deal of emphasis was placed on the “Vinyasa krama” method, the step by step development of posture work, that can be applied to all teaching, leading a student from a simple understanding to a more elaborated one. It lends itself to a safe and accessible approach to even the most difficult of poses.

Yoga classes were interspersed by a thorough introduction to anatomy and physiology relevant to yoga teachers. Along with meditation teaching, derived from the traditional Triratna lines of Buddhaghosha and Chi-I, we offered meditation reviews, seeing all the students twice during the course. This provided us with valuable feedback on how the course was unfolding and an opportunity to get to know our students better.

la-artiga-2013-3Although the course is open to any serious yoga practitioner from any philosophical grounding, we offer an effective basic training in Buddhist Mindfulness and Meditation teaching as well as doing some more in-depth study around two key texts on Awareness and Loving kindness by Sangharakshita; “Living with Awareness” and “Living with Kindness”. The format of studying in small groups, in this case in the pleasant shade of the walnut trees, allowed for a more free flowing communication and we could explore themes related to spiritual practice in everyday life.

The group drew from many diverse and far away lands; Scotland, Finland, Melbourne, Australia and Tasmania, London, southern Turkey and Spain. As it happened, there were three participants who had requested Ordination into the Triratna Order and one student took the step of asking to become a “Mitra” or friend to the Triratna community during the course. An important dimension to the work was being in the group context, both in terms of sharing the experience and learning from one another. We set plenty of teaching opportunities in pairs and the collective design and directing of classes. A cursory glance was made to the Patanjali and Yoga tradition in general, in order to see what relevance these traditions have to the modern day yogi.


An excellent contribution came from Bodhin, a friend and colleague who lives in the region. He led us through some basic Mindfulness Based Approaches to working in meditation incorporating working with difficulty, adversity and pain through Mindfulness which complemented the more traditional Triratna meditation teaching.

Excellent vegetarian cuisine was provided by Isabel, who carefully concocted recipes drawing on classical Spanish influences. She keenly advised us how to eat and where the dishes originated from. The mostly light vegan diet supported our physical practice as much as our meditations.

Our students left having developed and deepened their respective spiritual disciplines on so many levels but let them speak for themselves.

Next year we will be back in la Artiga from 7 to 28th September, please contact us if you are interested in training to be a Bodhiyoga teacher.


“I can't quite believe how much I have learnt in three weeks. The depth of teaching is so valuable in terms of yoga practice and also unexpectedly inspiring a transformative for life in general. The course was challenging, however, there was a thread of deep intention that was apparent throughout the retreat.” - Angela McHugh, Edinburgh, Scotland

“Coming on the Bodhiyoga Teacher Training is like doing yoga for the first time – really doing yoga, with my body and mind. I have found the course to be a journey of exploration and discovery, intensive learning and practice and I am leaving confident in my practice, motivated and inspired.” - Holly Murray, London, U.K.

la-artiga-2013-5“I feel like I have gained a much deeper understanding of yoga then I thought possible. A way to approach yoga with mindfulness, that not only gives it more meaning, but also brings an awareness to the links between the body, mind and emotions that will be invaluable to explore in my own practice and in teaching others.” - Lizzie Oh, Tasmania, Australia

“Sudaka and Sadhita enthusiasm and commitment to their own journeys really shines through in their teaching. The bringing together of the yoga and Dharma teaching is very effective, and the two elements complement one another well. I'm astonished at how much I've learned in the three weeks, and feel well equipped to start teaching.” - Katherine Attwood, Newcastle upon Tyne, U.K.

“Bodhiyoga teacher training weaves together the principles of Buddhism with an integrated and intelligent approach to Hatha Yoga. Students learn to understand and later embody what it is to teach awareness via the route of yoga and meditation. I left the course having deepened my mindfulness practice along with a foundation in Buddhist Dharma, and well rounded yoga practice, leaving me inspired to go out and teach.” - Jackie Albert, Valencia

“Sadhita and Sudaka are inspiring teachers and they have created a teacher training which is really valuable. Buddhism, mindfulness and yoga together offers lots of tools to help you grow spiritually. In three weeks I learned such a lot about myself, yoga, buddhism, mindfulness and much more. As a yoga teacher, I feel confident and ready to take my first steps in teaching and I am inspired to learn more on my Buddhist path.” - Saija Taivalmaki, Finland

la-artiga-2013-4“I was very lucky to be invited back on this course as organiser-assistant-porridge maker. It was a great opportunity to go over some of the material again and it has sunk into a deeper level. The course really is unique. Everyone has undergone a transformation, on both a physical and mental level over the last three weeks and has emerged as very centred yoga teachers. The combination of yoga practice and meditation everyday with healthy food, living in nature and living in a community has given rise to very positive states of mind. Each person has blossomed more into themselves, has connected to each other in an authentic way. The material of the course covers all the stuff a yoga teacher has to know with the self-study papers an added addition to help you consolidate the info. I feel stronger in my physical body and very present. It's been a very pleasurable course with fantastic teachers, a lovely bunch of students and the location is stunning in the middle of the Spanish countryside in a spacious “hacienda”. Highly recommended.” - Tina McCallan, London / Spain / Turkey

“The Bodhiyoga Teacher Training course was exactly what I was looking for, even though I didn't know. The teaching was generous and challenging. I learnt so much about myself. I feel like a totally different person after three weeks. I've gained confidence in my yoga knowledge and I'm ready to begin my new career as a Bodhiyoga teacher. A heartfelt thanks and tremendous gratitude to Sadhita and Sudaka for creating and sharing this remarkable gift.” - Sunil Patel, Woodland, Victoria, Australia


Copyright © 2013 Bodhiyoga International, All rights reserved.
Photos by Dharmachari Sadhita, All rights reserved.
Hatha yoga based upon Buddhist mindfulness principles.