SOLD OUT (But our spring training is open!)

Room to Breathe Psychologically-Sensitive Teacher Training + Deeper Study

200-Hour Yoga-Alliance Certified.

September 2019 - June 2020

schedule organized into modules (see full calendar below)


Study Options:

Certified Yoga Teacher Track: The full training will be limited to ten students to preserve the integrity of the training and allow us to give each student individual attention. You can apply here (no application fee). Please review the below schedule and all requirements to make sure you're able to fully participate in the training before applying. Questions? Want to set up a 1x1 call? Email


Going Deeper as a Student: Looking to dive into this material as a student and want to skip the pressure of learning to teach yoga? You are welcome! This program lends itself well to deeper exploration of yogic practice, philosophy, lifestyle, applications to psychology. Program schedule, price, and features are the same except that Going Deeper Students will receive 30 minute private yoga sessions with an instructor each month (rather than the training check-in.)

Individual Modules: We are opening up a space or two in each of the individual modules for continuing study. If you are interested, please see the descriptions and schedule below and reach out to Serena at ( Reserve your space early, as space is extremely limited and we expect it to fill right away.

Why This Training is Special

This yoga teacher training is unique in that it will focus on the psychological roots of yogic thought and practice, even as you learn how to teach postures and public classes for a general audience. We will break down some of the gorgeous symbol systems and complex philosophy in a way that helps you to both integrate into your own practice as well as teach to your classes. Finally, we will do a deep exploration of how yoga fits into a modern self-care or healthcare context, drawing on the knowledge and experience of experts in the field. 

We founded Room to Breathe to meet a need present in both the yoga world and the US healthcare system: a clinically supported public yoga studio with programming that is compassionate, clinically supported, evidenced based, and accessible to all. We want to share some of what we’ve learned along the way with you. Whether you’d like to become fully certified as a yoga teacher or just continue your practice or training, we have a curriculum that suits your needs. Please email with questions.

Extra Features

  • Lots of one-to-one attention with the lead trainer (Serena) to customize the training to your specific goals. This includes 1x1 sessions (30 min each) every month of the training.

  • Learn from a wide range of top teachers in Chicago.

  • All of our programming is supported by an intelligent psychotherapy practice.

  • Receive teaching while still maintaining your 9-5 regular job.

  • Learn to teach a wide variety of students in a compassionate, intelligent way.

  • Learn how to incorporate yoga into the healthcare system.

  • Finish with a set of polished sequences and practices you can utilize right away.

  • Learn how to apply mindfulness to the business of yoga.

  • Unlimited free classes at Room to Breathe.

  • Gain community support from teachers and therapists at Room to Breathe. Includes ongoing continuing education and panel discussions on career tracks and modern healthcare.



This training has been prepared so that it can appeal to a range of practitioners, from those wishing to be certified yoga teachers or continue their yoga teacher education to those looking to deepen their practice.

  • (Module 1) Going Deeper:  Introduction to Psych-Sensitive Yoga and the Psychology of Yoga

    • Going deeper means digging into the roots, philosophies and ethics of the yoga practice and its teachings. This module is appropriate for anyone who is just getting started in teacher training as well as those who have already completed a 200hr training. Along with studying the basic principles and theories of yoga, we will also explore: how to create and sustain a personal yoga practice, the neuroscience of yoga, an introduction to teaching from a trauma informed perspective and yoga’s sister science, Ayurveda.

      FAQ: How do we define Psych-Sensitive Yoga?

        • PS yoga acknowledges yoga as having a great effect on the psychological wellbeing of the student.

        • PS yoga acknowledges that most people deal with some degree of mental health imbalance and that yoga practice should be tailored appropriate to that.

        • PS yoga acknowledges that vast numbers of the yoga students who will arrive in public classes have experienced trauma, depression, anxiety, or a combination. PS yoga believes that a yoga practice should be tailored to this fact.

        • PS yoga believes in empowering the student to make their own decisions about what is right for them to practice.

        • PS yoga believes in educating teachers not only on the physical benefits/cautions of the practices but also the psychological/mental ones.

        • PS yoga believes in a lot of modifications!

        • PS yoga believes the goal of yoga is a more balanced body, mind, and overall life. PS yoga rejects yoga as merely a performance, fitness activity, or the like.

        • PS yoga acknowledges that healing occurs in a holistic way and would never discourage a student from utilizing care from other professionals, including taking medication prescribed by a doctor. PS yoga does not presume to be a “snake oil” for all that ails you. PS yoga teachers are interested in working with the current healthcare system and the reality of modern life to make yoga practice accessible, relatable, and powerful for the student.

  • (Module 2) Yoga For Everyone Who Can Breathe: Modifications, Sequencing, and Theming to Keep this Promise

    • Within the first words spoken, what a teacher says and how they say it can set the course for an individual’s perception of yoga, and their ability to participate. Module 2 will give you the tools and confidence necessary to create a classroom environment that is inclusive and safe. You will learn specific language, modifications, theming and sequencing meant to strengthen your ability to hold space for every body that walks into your classroom.

  • (Module 3) Modern Ritual: Yogic Symbol Systems and Their Contemporary Relevance

    • Module 3 will focus on demystifying the chakra system and significant deities referenced in yoga. You will learn from a Tantric perspective, how to integrate these concepts and ideas into a modern context, and teaching methods that will be useful and digestible to the average yoga student.

  • (Module 4) Relaxation for Resistant Relaxers: Restorative Yoga, Yoga Nidra, and Somatics)

    • How do you share still, and quiet practices like meditation and restorative yoga within a culture that puts so much value on being busy, and always moving? Putting students in a supported, resting posture and watching the whole room fidget and squirm can be incredibly intimidating, but we’ve got you covered. There are ways to approach and adapt traditional practices like Yoga Nidra and Restorative Yoga that can bring even the most ‘overstimulated’ of us into deeper relaxation. This module will also dig into Somatics Yoga and teaching private yoga lessons.

  • (Module 5) So Good They Can’t Ignore You: Modern Teaching Skills in a Western Context

    • Teaching a yoga class encompasses so much more than showing up and calling out yoga poses. A great class is a balancing act of holding space, and staying true to your teaching voice, as you carry a diverse group of people through a practice that acknowledges their assorted abilities, and needs. Another key part of being a yoga teacher is inspiring a sense of community within the studio and your classes, and motivating students to keep coming back. Along with personal teaching skills, classroom management and student retention, this module will include how to use visualization to evoke deeper yogic states and prenatal yoga.

  • (Module 6) The Next Frontier: Yoga in a Healthcare Context

    • Yoga is an incredible tool for fostering resilience and recovery. Module 6 dives into the research being done on yoga’s efficacy in supporting physical and psychological well being, followed by exploring how to work with various physical, and psychological conditions. Yoga and its teachers are being integrated into the healthcare industry, it is imperative to have a clear understanding of terminology, and a yoga teacher’s scope of practice. This module will make you ready to work alongside healthcare professionals and give you the knowledge to create adaptive practices for specific conditions.

  • (Module 7) Self-Care and the Path of the Yoga Teacher

    • A yoga teacher’s commitment to self care is one of the most important influences on the health of their yoga business. It is almost impossible to keep up with the hectic schedule of a yoga teacher without saving space for oneself. Topics of this module will include: mindful marketing, building a manageable teaching schedule, the how-tos of operating a successful yoga studio or independent yoga practice and prioritizing self care

  • (Module 8) Find Your Voice: Final Project and Practicum

    • This is the moment we have been building up to! An opportunity to share your unique passion and voice by writing a research paper and creating a class/workshop to be presented on your topic of choice. Each teacher trainee will present their project to the group, and teaching staff for an opportunity to receive constructive feedback, and valuable teaching experience.


Fall 2019-2020 schedule (begins in September 2019)

Is This Training Right for Me?

Committing to a yoga teacher training this rigorous is a big deal. How do you know if it is right for you?

Our students have come from a wide range of backgrounds and no specific credentials are required. However, students who have enjoyed/benefitted from our program the most have been:

  • interested in practicing and/or teaching gentle flow yoga

  • interested in the philosophy and psychology of yoga

  • interested in learning more about the esoteric symbols of yoga and their modern relevance

  • willing to commit the time and energy to being fully present to the training

  • are self-aware and willing to continue their own healing journeys and personal work throughout the training

  • want to learn in community and connect with others from all walks of life

  • are drawn to Room to Breathe’s mission and psych-sensitive yoga

We highly recommend taking classes with our instructors prior to committing to the training. This will help determine if there is a good fit for you and the instructor.

What you will NOT learn in this training (but we can recommend you to wonderful teachers to learn from if you’d like!):

  • how to offer hands-on adjustments

  • how to practice or teach complicated poses, such as arm balances, headstands, and so forth


($3,400 for Room to Breathe training + $299 online anatomy training +books)

A deposit of $340 is required to hold your spot. The remaining cost will be deducted monthly ($340 for 9 months). No interest because we know shelling out thousands at once is not feasible for most of us. Our training is all-inclusive so you know the price you pay up front.

There is one work-study position available to experienced marketing professionals only. If you qualify and would like to talk more, please fill out the application and reach out to Serena ( directly.

Who you will learn from


Serena Roschman (lead trainer): I have studied yoga and several traditions of meditation for over a thousand hours with some of the most renowned teachers throughout the world. My teaching is primarily informed by my studies with Gary Kraftsow, Leslie Kaminoff, and Pema Chodron. I consider myself a lifelong student of yoga and continue to train extensively to keep my classes intelligent, fresh, and inspired. I have completed rigorous advanced teacher training in Viniyoga with Gary Kraftsow. I have taught yoga in studios, boardrooms, retreat centers, and one on one settings. In 2015 I co-founded Room to Breathe, a public yoga studio within Center (psychotherapy). I work with therapists and other healthcare providers to ensure that programming is compassionate, clinically supported, evidenced based, and accessible to all. In addition,  I am now a graduate student at Northwestern University studying how yoga can be integrated into the US Healthcare system.


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Natalie McGreal I am a teacher who specializes in trauma informed yoga, yoga for addiction recovery, and restorative applications of yoga. I have logged thousands of hours as a teacher and even more as a forever student of yoga. I currently teach full time, and maintain a regular schedule of group classes and long standing private sessions. Along with receiving my advanced 500 hour certification, I was trained in clinical massage therapy at The Soma Institute in Chicago in 2007 and in the art of Thai massage at The Sunshine School in Chiang Mai, Thailand in 2011.


Sara Buxton Sara is the owner of Room to Breathe and Director of Center. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Sport Psychology Consultant. She works with adolescents and adults, athletes AND non-athletes. She specializes in solution focused work to help individuals overcome obstacles, gain personal strength and clear vision of their goals and plans for attaining them. She believes in the healing power of connection between mind and body. Her work involves cognitive behavioral therapy techniques, mind-body work, acceptance and commitment therapy as well as many other solution-focused skills. Sara is recently certified in Yoga-Informed Therapy, and is currently training to become a certified Yoga Teacher. She is a graduate of Adler University, where she earned her Masters in Counseling with a Specialization in Sport and Health Psychology. She is a 2010 graduate of University of Vermont, where she played four years of lacrosse. She pursued the field of Sport and Health Psychology driven by her experience as an athlete, working through injury, developing leadership skills, and forming great compassion in creating a space for athletes to meet their full potential mentally, physically and emotionally.


Amber Cook Amber is a yoga teacher who creates a safe environment for students to discover their bodies physically and emotionally. To begin, Amber guides students mindfully through intelligent physical alignment and breath awareness in strong vinyasa and hatha classes. By cultivating this exploration in the classroom her students discover deeper vitality and happiness. By sharing her own evolving story, Amber next guides her students to honor their personal authenticity and to feel more present, free, and confident. Then, grounded in your body and breath you are free to travel beyond the physical into your profound truth. Amber is there to support you on your journey to the truth and joy that lie within your heart.

Having taught yoga now for 7 years she still feels she is learning all the time. With over 2,000 hours of trainings with many amazing teachers, leading 200 hour teacher trainings herself, and facilitating numerous retreats around the world she believes it is important to always be a student. She walks into every classroom, every conversation, every experience with humility.


Stephanie Bour I'm Stephanie, a French-native, Chicago-based yoga teacher. Yoga found me 10 years ago when I was working in the corporate world in Paris, my home-town. The practice of Vinyasa and Integral yoga in the lineage of Satyananda Saraswati, helped me to offset stress, find balance in my daily life, and connect to my deep intuitions. Deeply moved by the practice, I felt the need to share the incredible benefits I've received. I truly believe Yoga and Meditation are powerful tools for healing transformation and sparking the creativity we all have in us. With over 500 hours of training, including 200-hours certified by Moksha Yoga Chicago, and 95-hours certified Prenatal Yoga teacher by Amala School of Prenatal Yoga, both certified by the Yoga Alliance, I keep my passion and curiosity drive with inspiring teachers such as Tias Little, Uma Dinsmore-Tuli, Mia Park, Gabriel Halpern, Leeann Carey and many more. I also have completed additional training in Restorative Yoga and Yoga Nidra, a powerful ancient Tantric technique of guided, progressive relaxation. As a teacher, I strive to establish a safe, nurturing and loving space to support my students on their own journey to awareness, empowering them to feel good in their body and mind, and find their inspiration to grow.

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My name is Renee Zambo, and I am a Registered Yoga Therapist through the International Association of Yoga Therapists. I work with the patients at WholeHealth Chicago, in community centers and work spaces throughout Chicago, and in the homes of my private clients. My goal is to help people feel better through movement, awareness, breathe, and meditation.

I began teaching in 2010, and fell in love with meeting students from all walks of life and with different needs. My interest in Yoga Therapy began almost immediately, as I felt the need and desire to make the benefits of Yoga accessible to a larger population. In 2013 I started my three year training with Integrative Yoga Therapy. Training with IYT has provided me with an immense toolbox of Yogic practices that I use frequently while teaching and within my own practice.

Today, I teach patients and students with chronic conditions such as Fibromyalgia and Lyme Disease, Musculoskeletal conditions including Osteopenia/Osteoporosis, past or recurring injuries, functional ailments such as digestive disorders, migraines, or blood pressure, as well as conditions involving anxiety, sleep disturbances and depression.

I work with individuals, and if appropriate, their physician, to build a yoga practice that can be easily implemented into the life of the individual, meets their goals and needs, and contributes to their overall health and wellbeing.

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Nicole Vitale: Nicole’s intention as a teacher is to meet her students where they are and guide them through creative practices that help cultivate mindfulness and connection. In particular, she believes that simple, evidence-based practices, such as slow movement, deep breathing, and sensory meditation, can be a wonderful adjunct treatment for stress and anxiety. Nicole loves to bring people together and her classes foster a sense of community and support. Nicole specializes in adapting yoga to the individual, and she is grateful to have witnessed the physical and emotional transformation that occurs when students practice regularly.

Nicole has studied yoga and meditation for thousands of hours, completing advanced teacher training with Rich Logan in 2014. She has done specialized study in the therapeutic application of yoga, in particular for those with chronic anxiety. Nicole continues to study and practice extensively to keep her practices well-rounded and intelligent.


An artist and designer who initially came to the mat to relieve tension, Adam Grossi has personally experienced the miraculous range of therapeutic effects yoga offers, while also coming to understand his practice to be a vehicle through which he can inhabit the world more fully and express himself more deeply. Adam’s teaching comes directly from his daily experiences on his own yoga mat. He is grateful to be an avid student of Jim Bennitt and James Tennant and is strongly influenced by their approach to vinyasa krama (intelligent sequencing) and the application of Ayurvedic principles to the physical practice. He has also studied intensively with Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor. As a teacher Adam’s intention is for students to walk out the door with increased energy, focus, and inspiration for whatever challenges life might hold for them. In 2015 Adam released Wind Through Quiet Tensions, a book that chronicles his experiences with mental health and personal healing through yoga practice.