Yin Yoga & Anatomy Teacher Training I

6 day/50 hour certified teacher training - based on the teachings of Paul & Suzee Grilley  

This training is suitable for experienced and aspiring yoga teachers and students alike who wish to enhance their knowledge of yin yoga – the quiet practice – and discover the anatomical and energetic theories of yin yoga for their own personal practice and/or with the intention to teach.

Welcome to Yin Yoga and Anatomy – the quiet practice

"In the quietude lies the power and out of the quietude arises the power." (Confucius)

Yin yoga – the quiet practice – turns our attention inwards, to connect to the true essence of ourselves.

We practise yin yoga meditatively, using long-held poses without muscle tension, which strengthen and flex our connective, fascial and ligament tissues, mobilise our joints, and stimulate and soothe the nervous system. As a result, the exercises we do have a stress-reducing and regenerative effect.

We learn how to accumulate the subtle energy flow (chi flow) and to feel the enhanced energy flow in our meridians after completing a yoga practice.  This practice nourishes us from our core, with a blend of awareness, calmness and relaxation.

In the fast-paced world of the 21st century, yin yoga offers the perfect balance for teachers and students alike.

Yin and Yang

"The noble man strives for harmony and not equality. The little man strives for equality and not for harmony." (Confucius)

Our world is comprised of yin and yang.  We find polarity in our language, in our environment, in everything and everyone. This polarity and contrast blend seamlessly, as epitomised by the yin and yang symbol.

In the West, we practise mainly yang forms of yoga (Ashtanga, Bikram, Vinyasa Flow, etc.) muscle strengthening and muscle tension through rhythmic, flowing and repetitive movements, and this complements our fast-moving mentality and learned values.

Yang needs yin in order to exist, and yin needs yang in order to exist. When both sides are aligned, balance and harmony are achieved.

Yin yoga complements every form of yang yoga.  While we cannot say that one is better or worse than the other, we can say that both belong together intrinsically, creating harmony between body, mind and soul.


Welcome to Yin Yoga and Anatomy Teacher Training I

“Wherever you go, go with all your heart.” (Confucius)

Our 50-hour intensive course is designed for experienced and aspiring yoga teachers and students who wish to improve their knowledge of yin yoga – the quiet practice – and are keen to enhance their knowledge of the anatomical and energetic theories of yoga practice.

This 6 day/50-hour intensive yoga teaching course comprises 4 sections:

1. Yin yoga asanas

This section covers the theory and practice for teaching 20 yin yoga poses, including their specific characteristics and their effects.

One of the main elements of our yin yoga teacher training is, understandably, the asana practice, so each day we will give at least one 120-minute class.

We learn yin yoga as a calm, meditative practice comprising poses which are executed on the floor, either sitting or lying down.  We wait, calmly and serenely, for our body to surrender to the pose.

Yin yoga focuses on the connective, fascial and ligament tissues of the body around the hips, upper thighs, pelvic girdle and lower back – the main problem areas in this modern age.

Each pose is held for between three and five minutes.

This approach of stretching the ligaments in the spine by means of long-held traction and then strengthening the structure by building up the muscle is already known in the realm of back therapy, and yin yoga offers us and our students the opportunity to adopt this approach as a preventive practice for our joints until we reach a ripe old age.

Yin yoga focuses on the uniqueness of the individual.

It accumulates the energies which flow through the body and releases them, after each practice, to enhance the flow of energy and disperse potential blockages.

An additional quality of yin yoga is the meditative, inwardly focusing, quiet attentiveness from which insight and strength are derived.

Yin yoga prepares both body and mind for longer meditation sessions.


2. Anatomy is the key

Anatomical understanding of not only the individual bone structure but also the muscular, connective, fascial and ligament tissues is an essential prerequisite for an effective yoga teacher.

The backbone of yin yoga (in the style of Paul and Suzee Grilley) – and thus of our Yin Yoga Teacher Training programme – will be anatomy, because it is difficult for us to feel completely secure about our teaching without understanding muscles, ligaments and joints (bone structure). Time and time again students will challenge us.

In this training, we will refresh our basic knowledge and concentrate mainly on the individual bone structure (compression) and unique muscular, ligament and fascial tissues (tension) of each student, to ensure we are fully conversant with their anatomy and thus able to ensure that the practice is safe for them.

This understanding of how to look deeper into the human body, to see the human as a moving skeleton, to read him by observing the way he or she moves and to be able to identify which joints are involved in a yoga pose, as well as where movement or suppleness is required for the pose and to what extent, helps us recognise why some yoga students can hold a position and others cannot.

We develop an understanding of why each person practises yoga poses in a different way.

We recognise that even when two people look the same from the outside, they feel each pose differently.

This allows us to be more certain, when teaching, about which logical variations of a pose to suggest or which individual assists to give the student.

Once one has grasped this principle, yoga (asana practice) becomes an extremely simple combination of muscle and joint movements.


3. 7-point analysis principle for assists - theory

"Whoever knows the goal can decide. Whoever decides finds peace. Whoever finds peace is sure. Whoever is sure can consider. Whoever considers can improve". (Confucius)

The Yin Yoga and Anatomy Teacher Training programme focuses less on teaching set assists and much more on introducing a 7-point analysis principle, which you can then use for every known yoga pose and for each individual student.

This analysis principle for assists, combined with an anatomical understanding of the student’s individual bone structure and the tension lines within their body, helps us to learn to read people when they are holding yoga poses.  We can then give them logical assists and/or offer them alternatives tailored to the requirements of their individual, unique physique and bone structure.

With the help of the 7-point analysis, we can quickly learn to read, analyse and evaluate human bodies.

Once a yoga teacher has developed full anatomical understanding, applying it during a yoga session is child’s play, as an assist is always a logical progression, based on the unique body of each individual student.

This principle helps us, as teachers, to stay alert and present.


4. 7-point analysis principle - practical tests

"One cannot make a jewel shine without rubbing it." Confucius

Learning through touch and learning through practice.

You cannot learn yoga anatomy from a book or a DVD, no matter how experienced you are. We will learn through practising techniques both on ourselves and on our fellow students.

In the Yin Yoga and Anatomy Teacher Training programme, we’ll study and apply a series of practical tests for analysing the bone structure, compression and tension of our students.  We will have the opportunity to learn – in a safe environment – to read a human being, to sense our own limitations and to test and recognise those of others.  Eventually, with the benefit of myriad insights and enhanced self-awareness, we will be able to assess the needs and limitations of any individual student.

Moreover, as a result of practising many repetitions, we will feel more secure and clear about our approach to yin yoga and anatomy.

Upon completion of the programme, the foundations for teaching yin yoga will be securely in place.

On successful completion of this training, students will be awarded a Yoga Alliance 50 hour certificate which can be counted towards our 200 hour Yin Therapy Yin Yoga & Anatomy Teacher Training course or Continuing Education hours with Yoga Alliance registered yoga teachers.

schedule overview

feedback / testimonials from our past students


Yin Therapy - Yin Yoga & Anatomy Teacher Training I Hamburg - backbend analysis
“A tonne of knowledge was imparted with at least two tonnes of fun and clarity. That’s how you can make learning enjoyable! Explanations regarding “false” perceptions were given gently but with perseverance.

I would do the course again at a moment’s notice and would recommend it to everyone. Personally, I am taking so many priceless treasures and skills with me and I feel more free and less bound and can completely allow my body to do what it wants again - thank you , thank you , thank you.” (YYTTI Aachen)

— Stefanie W. yoga teacher - Mallorca
Yin Therapy - Markus Henning Giess - Vertebrae Analysis.jpg
“I am so happy. Thank you that I could be there. The super explanations, the jokes in between, the many eye openers. New insight. When I stand before my yoga students, I see them with other eyes. I’m already so looking forward to the second module!” (YYTTI Vienna)

— Manuela G. yoga teacher, Kittsee (Austria)
“For the first time I was fascinated in an anatomy class and not only did I understand it but I internalised it. Aha factor - super! Your teaching style, you dear Markus and the subject matter - all very inspiring.” (YYTTI Hamburg)

— Mona A. yoga teacher - Andalusia