For those of you considering taking breathwork training or adding breathwork facilitation to your existing offerings (perhaps as a yoga teacher, psychotherapist, or coach), the following is a review of the breathwork teacher training programs I’ve researched, tried, and recommend.
The benefits of breathwork are huge, and there’s no doubt (in my mind!) that becoming a breathwork facilitator is a powerful way to show up in the world. How we breath reflects how we live: When life is tense, we hold our breath. When we learn to breathe through whatever it is, we signal our bodies to relax, which helps us to live with more ease. It’s no surprise that the popularity of breathwork is surging worldwide. It’s a powerful practice.
Active or circular breathwork is a technique that’s been practised by indigenous communities around the world for thousands of years and it’s been a game changer for me, personally. More than any other practice, this form of breathwork has showed me how to become connected with my body and it’s helped me tap into my intuition aka my Higher Self in deeper ways, which is what inspired me to become a breathwork practitioner (which has been quite a departure from my usual work running Head + Heart and my marketing agency in Vancouver).
If you’re feeling the call to explore breathwork training, I hope the following overview helps you find a great program.
Choosing a Breathwork Training Program that Actually Equips You
Having done quite a few private and group breathwork sessions with different breathwork practitioners, the four breathwork training programs profiled below appeal most to me personally because they all teach about the science AND the spiritual benefits of active breathwork and because I’ve personally met and resonate with these particular teachers.
Since taking my Level One with Breathwave, followed by Shanila Sattar’s Facilitator Training, I’m realizing how much there is to learn about this ancient practice and how important it is to feel fully equipped before sharing it with others in the role of a facilitator. Akin to psychedelics, active breathwork can feel like it blasts you wide open. Personally, I’m finding there is so much to learn to be able to hold a space for the shift in consciousness that can happen during breathwork, which includes sometimes extreme trauma responses and nervous system regulation. Not to mention being prepared to facilitate hands-on in person, to help support the depth of experience that leads to transformation.
Take a look at the options below, and if you have questions about any of these programs, feel free to comment or send me a note – I’m happy to share my experience.
Four Breathwork Training Programs I’d Recommend
Shanila is one of the younger trainers I’ve come across but that doesn’t reflect her depth and capacity as a teacher. She brings an energetic and decolonized approach to her breathwork training, honouring the indigenous roots of the breathwork practice and teaching others to do the same. Her live, online certification program offers 50 hours of training and guided sessions.
In this program, which I’ve taken myself, you start with two full days of training, where you learn to develop the intuitive skills, boundaries, the practical knowledge, the science, and the deep-rooted cultural history of breathwork. You’ll also learn about energy guidance, techniques of visual meditation, novice crystal usage, and how to actually apply the foundations of breathwork (i.e. practice on others). Shanila describes her approach as a combination of the science and the woo. You’ll learn to hold space, facilitate sessions, and develop grounding practices to equip you to show up in great presence. The live training happens over two days on Zoom, followed by a requirement of 25 hours facilitating breathwork and 25 hours attending breathwork sessions. I’ve personally found this to be a great start to learning breathwork facilitation; it’s given me the confidence to begin facilitating breathwork. If you’re newly exploring your healing gifts, you may like this article and interview with Shanila entitled, How do you know if you’re a healer
Learn more about Shanila’s next breathwork training, which costs approx. $1,222 USD. Details here. Get 10% off any of Shanila’s trainings using code: Head+heart
Tai is a highly skilled teacher who’s created a breathwork training program that covers the spiritual, energetic, and psychotherapeutic dimensions of breathwork. She also addresses what we know (and don’t know) from a scientific and physiological lens, including nervous system regulation, gas exchange in overbreathing and resulting effects, and how breathing affects the vagus nerve and Heart Rate Variability.
Tai’s program emphasizes the importance of trauma-informed awareness and what it means to hold safer spaces for deep and expanded-state work.
Tai has just launched a Level One Online training program that happens over 3 days (15 hours) on Zoom. The program launches in October and costs approx. $475. Details here.
Tai’s level two is a week-long experience with a group of 16-18 people on average. These training offers an intimate, hands-on environment to learn and practice various facilitation techniques, and to receive feedback and mentorship. The next live program is Spring 2022 in Mexico, and will cost $1,695 USD + resort + travel fees. Bipoc scholarships available. Details here.
One of my favourite breathwork teachers ever is Carmen Ganne. She offers a deeply immersive experience—a combination of in-person and online learning with ongoing mentorship and education to safely and effectively equip you to become a certified, highly capable Breathwork Facilitator.
Carmen incorporates the energetic, intuitive, scientific, human connection, and mechanics of this powerful modality. Whether you are looking to infuse breathwork into your current business or practice or you’re looking to move forward as a breathwork practitioner, this Breathwork Training is very comprehensive. You’ll receive in-depth and embodied knowledge, information, tools, and practical, hands-on experience to translate breath patterns in yourself and others, and to confidently, safely facilitate breathwork journeys for clients. As a teacher, she is known for making herself available for personal support.
Learn about Carmen’s next live facilitator training here. Prices vary. Be sure to get on her wait list as she sometimes adds small group intensive trainings to her calendar.
Amada Asta created the Transcend Academy breathwork training program with the intention of giving each student everything they need to serve any type of client that comes through the door. This program takes place entirely online and is a trauma-informed, 21-week long experience that sounds incredibly comprehensive.
It covers both the spiritual and scientific aspects of breathwork. Students begin with a Level 1 that includes private, one-on-one breathwork sessions to help each future practitioner process and integrate all that arises. It also includes business courses and coaching so that students learn how to launch their breathwork business. Follow-up mentorship is also offered for recent graduates to provide support after they’ve begun to take clients.
Transcend’s next facilitator training details can be found here.