Yoga Teacher FAQs

Do I get paid for teaching in prison? Can I teach voluntarily?

Almost all our teachers get paid for their prison classes out of the budget of the prison department that’s hired you (this might be the gym, education or the chaplaincy). This will be in line with other external teachers coming in to do adult education classes. We do not recommend that teachers work voluntarily.

Is it safe?

While few environments are entirely without risk, prisons are closely managed environments where the staff will contain any situation that arises. It is extremely rare for there to be an incident in a yoga class. If you are worried about this, please get in touch.

Do I need to do training to teach in prison?

The Prison Phoenix Trust offers training to yoga teachers who want to teach in prison. When we are looking for a teacher to fill a class, we will always look to those who have completed our five-day course first, but we will also place other teachers who’ve made contact with us, especially if they are willing to undertake training in the future.

How likely am I to be able to teach in prison once I’ve applied to you?

It is not guaranteed that we can find you a class, though we will always try to place an appropriate teacher with a prison. Many factors can influence your chances (such as your proximity to a prison and how flexible you can be) but it is always worth getting in touch with us if you feel especially called to do this work. Circumstances can change quickly and we may need your help with a regular prison class, covering classes and teaching in other secure settings.

I love what your charity does, but it’s not going to be possible for me to work in a prison. Are there other ways I can help?

Although we mainly work in prisons, we also set up classes in other secure settings such as approved premises (bail hostels), secure medical units and immigration removal centres. Many teachers who aren’t able to teach in one of these places choose to support the work by setting up a standing order, donating the proceeds from one of their classes each year or organising a benefit yoga day. We can send materials for you to give to participants if you wish.

I’d like to do your 5-day residential training but I’m not a British Wheel of Yoga teacher. Can I still apply?

You don’t need to be a Wheel teacher, but you do need to become a member (£40). You don’t need to be a BWY member to attend our one day events.

Do you have posters I can use to advertise my prison classes?

We do have posters you can use to advertise your class. We’ll happily send you a pdf – please email us to request one.