300 Hour Teacher Training

Evolve and deepen your understanding of teaching the science of yoga. This 300 hour yoga teacher training has been carefully constructed to expand your knowledge, skill set and confidence as both a teacher and a student. The work that we do as yoga teachers is key in both the mental and physical wellness of our communities. Elevate your credentials to teach beyond the introductory information commonly delivered in a 200-hour teacher training. This training has been set up by Hot Asana Yoga University to serve as stand alone continuing education modules or to allow you to build your 300-hour certification at your own pace. You have up to five years to complete your 300-hour certification by compiling modules that interest you.

We offer 50 hour modules (five-day format) , 25 hour modules (weekend format) and shrter Advanced Studies courses in both domestic and international locations.

50 Hour Modules

  • Spine & Chakras: Explore in-depth anatomy of and advanced sequencing toward backbending and twisting postures, and study the subtleties and influences of the energetic body through the Chakra system.
  • Advanced Sequencing for Hips – Standing and Seated Postures: Study in-depth anatomy of and advanced sequencing toward standing and seated postures, centered around deep hip opening, plus learn how to assist and teach a Deep Hips class, influenced by Bryan Kest's Long, Slow, Deep (LSD) sequence.
  • Inversions: Explore in-depth anatomy of, advanced sequencing toward, and specific teaching tools for inversion postures, including handstand and forearm stand.
  • Full Body Anatomy for Yogis: Evolve your understanding of the anatomy of the entire body, as it serves teachers and students of the yoga asana practice.
  • Restorative Yoga & Meditation: Deepen your meditation practice with specific methodology, and learn how to teach and assist a Restorative Yoga practice.
  • Beyond the Poses: 8-Limb Path Study and Business of Yoga: Learn more about the 8-Limb Path, the language of Sanskrit, and keeping balance in the business of yoga.
  • Beyond the Drop-In Class :Sequencing and Assisting: Explore creative sequencing patterns and learn about formatting level-based classes, specialty classes, and workshops, plus learn how to intelligently and effectively assist your students with physical touch and prop use.

25 Hour Modules

  • Hot Yoga TT: Become Hot Asana Yoga University certified to teach a stationary-style class, centered around peak pose sequencing.
  • Yoga Sculpt TT: Become Hot Asana Yoga University certified to teach a powerful, dynamic Vinyasa practice with weights.
  • Hands On Assisting: Learn how to assist a wide-range of postures, from subtle touch to significant leveraging adjustments.
  • Advanced Lower Body Anatomy & Yin Yoga Certification: Anatomical knowledge and an understanding of skeletal variation are tools to elevate your skill and confidence as a yoga instructor. In addition to this valuable information that may radically transform your asana teaching, you will learn the art of Yin Yoga and become a certified Yin Yoga Instructor.
  • Advanced Sequencing- Structure & Patterning: Take ownership of your own creative sequencing through comprehensive study of multiple simple to complex patterns
  • Advanced Sequencing for Hips – Arm Balances: Learn in-depth anatomy of and advanced sequencing toward arm balance postures, centered around deep hip opening.
  • Advanced Sequencing- Twists & Backbends: Learn how to effectively sequence toward and teach deep twisting and backbending postures. Delve into supporting anatomy of the spine, hips and shoulders, explore variations in bodies and in the postures, and learn how to offer choices and challenges for a multi-level class.
  • Prenatal & Postpartum Yoga: Functional anatomy & physical transformation of pregnancy & postpartum, appropriote sequencing & modifications for all phases, exploration of use of empowering mantras & meditation practices, and appropriate hands on assisting teachniques for the pregnant yogi.
  • Functional Anatomy for Advanced Cueing: Functional anatomy as a framework for providing effective and efficient cues. common cueing pitfalls and how to incorporate new knowledge, such as functional anatomy, into cues in an accessible, appropriate and empowering way for students.
  • Reiki Level One Certification: Become Reiki Level One Certified Reiki and receive 2 Reiki Attunements. Multiple Chakra and Reiki based meditations, Learn self Reiki treatments, techniques for clients as well as the business of Reiki.
  • Reiki Level Two Certification: Reiki Level 2 is an advanced level of Reiki energy. Practitioner must have attained Reiki Level 1 before taking level 2.Receive Reiki Level 2 Certification & Level 2 attunements. Learn Chakra and Reiki Meditations, Reiki Symbols, New techniques for self and client & Reiki Speciality Class information and practice.
  • Partner Yoga Teacher Training Learn to teach partner stretches, warm ups, calibrations, poses, transitions, spotting techniques, flows and more! Dynamic acrobatic transitions, helping us cultivate self-confidence, the ability to communicate with others fast and efficiently, as well as the ability to take calculated risks and smart decisions under pressure.
  • Finding Your Voice: Enhance your ability to successively and meaningfully theme your classes, and explore intention setting and vision boarding for your teaching and your life.
  • SUP Yoga Teacher Training: Learn how to effectively transition your students asana practice to the water by becoming certified to teach Stand Up Paddle Board Yoga.
  • Thai & Fly Yoga Teacher Training: Learn to teach partner yoga sequences that incorporate stretching and letting go while suspended in the air using a variety of Thai Yoga Bodywork techniques in supine, side lying, prone and seated positions to provide healing and relaxation, cultivating trust, and the ability to let go of perceived control.

20 Hour Modules:

  • Kid's Yoga Training: Learn to add Children's Yoga to your existing teacher training credentials. Should you chose to join Little Guru Kids Yoga Teacher Training program in the future to receive your 95 hour RCYT certification, these hours will be used and $400 will be deducted from the total amount of their training at the time of registration.

10 Hour Modules:

  • PreNatal Modifications for the drop in class: Pregnancy is a time of tremendous transition in a woman’s body and life. While a specific prenatal class can be an excellent option during pregnancy, many yogis desire to attend their favorite regular drop-in classes. Learn to navigate safety recommendations and pose modifications with confidence.

5 Hour Modules:

  • Evidence Based Yoga:Yoga practitioners often come to yoga to stretch or find stress relief but remain committed due to the abundant and palpable benefits. It’s common to hear the phrase “yoga is so good for you” and as yoga educators it is valuable to be versed in the research supporting our profession.
  • Neuroscience of Yoga :The practice of yoga is best known as a body movement practice of strength & flexibility, however, current research supports the abundant neurologic benefits of the practice. By practicing yoga and meditation, we are directly able to influence the function of the nervous system. This can include influencing sleep patterns, balance, coordination/skill acquisition, digestion, and other mental health benefits.


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Myofascial Release (MFR) II

25 Hours | Myofascial Release (MFR) II: Lower Trunk, Hip/Pelvis & Lower Extremity - Online Advanced Studies

  • Dates: May 21-23, 2021
  • Hours: Friday 5-9pm, Saturday 8am-8pm, Sunday 8am-5pm Eastern
  • Location: Virtual via Zoom
  • Teachers: Casey Backus. Physical Therapist & E-RYT 500
25 hr Yoga Nidra

25 Hours | Yoga Nidra -Advanced Studies

  • Dates: June 11-13, 2021
  • Hours: Friday 5-9pm, Saturday 8am-8pm, Sunday 8am-5pm
  • Location: Hot Asana Southern Pines
  • Teachers: Annie Okerlin
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10 Hours | Hot Holds Teacher Training

Advanced Lower Body and Yin Yoga

25 hour Advanced Lower Body Anatomy and Yin Yoga Certification

  • Dates: July 23-25, 2021
  • Hours: Friday 5-9pm, Saturday 8am-8pm, Sunday 8am-5pm
  • Location: Hot Asana Southern Pines
  • Teacher: Virginia Gallagher
  • Cost: $400 per person
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25 Hours | Reiki Level One

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25 Hours | Partner Yoga One


Virginia Gallagher

Studio Founder/Owner, E-RYT 500, RCYT, YACAP, Certified Yin Yoga Instructor, Hot Asana Yoga University Founder/Owner, Certified Mindfulness Meditation Teacher

We are all on our own personal journey. I would like to share a little bit about my yoga journey with you…

I attended my first Hot Yoga Class in this very studio on August 12, 2007 and fell in love with the mental and physical connection I felt. I began practicing 3 – 6 times a week, shed 40 pounds in 4 months, and was able to discontinue the use of all of my prescription medications. I began to feel healthier and stronger than ever. Convinced of the benefits of yoga, I continued my daily practice and began to deepen my dedication to and knowledge of yoga.

I began my teacher training in 2008 and since then have completed multiple 200 and 500 hour certifications, Yin Yoga training and Mindfulness Meditation Vipasana. My trainings have been diverse but my teaching style has been primarily influenced by Grace and MyLinda Morales, Jimmy Barkan, Rolf Gates, Chris & John Yax , Deepak Chopra, Bryan Kest and Paul Grilley. I fundamentally believe that anyone can change their body and their life. I believe we can in fact, grow younger and stronger. I would love to show you how Hot Asana can be a part of that change. It doesn’t matter when or in what condition you start…JUST START. Your best YOU may very well be yet to come.


Lisa Rischitelli

COS Teacher Director, E-RYT 500, Certified Hot Asana Assist, Hot Asana Yoga University Faculty, YACEP

After years of training in classical ballet and modern dance, Lisa first tried yoga in the hopes of finding a workout which balanced both strength and flexibility. She became hooked when she realized that she had also discovered a community which found beauty in so-called imperfections and encouraged compassion for others and oneself—plus yoga still kicked her butt on a regular basis.

Lisa completed her 200-hour certification with YogaWorks in New York in 2010 and her 500-hour certification with Grace Morales in North Carolina in 2014. She is registered with Yoga Alliance, with more than 1,000 teaching hours. Lisa’s classes emphasize alignment, playfulness, and inclusiveness. With a deep understanding of the body, Lisa gives students the opportunity to make the most out of their practice through accessible sequencing and concise cues.

When not on the mat, Lisa enjoys cooking vegetarian food, sharing a bottle of wine with friends, snuggling with her two cats and three dogs.


Casey Backus

E-RYT 200, RYT 500, Prenatal Certified, Certified Hot Asana Assist, Hot Asana Yoga University Faculty, MPT, C/NDT and BS, Professor of Functional Anatomy

A former collegiate softball player, I found yoga 12 years ago in an attempt to calm my game day nerves. For the first time, my fear of failure and performance anxiety were replaced with a calm, steady awareness, and a deep rooted belief in myself. I learned to breathe and I knew the difference was yoga...

I wish I could say I've practiced every day since, however, in a foolish attempt to chase perfection in my 20's I allowed my work as a PT and other commitments to come before myself,...and yoga. My mat quickly gathered dust in the garage next to my softball glove. Fortunately, I re-committed to yoga in 2009 through LES MILLS Body Flow Certification. I'm eternally grateful for this experience because it brought me back to my mat and began my journey into teaching. It reminded me what I had learned a decade before: "the yoga me is the best me,...the real me." I loved to witness the same transformative experience in others,...to me it is truly remarkable what can happen to the mind body and soul in just 60 minutes.

On a whim, I purchased a Groupon to Hot Asana in 2011. I felt the transformation and once again, a re-commitment to yoga. It's as if YOGA FOUND ME when I truly needed it and for the first time in my life, I began to feel STRONG on the INSIDE. In addition to my regular practice, I have attended workshops/master classes with Seane Corn, Rolf Gates, The Yax Brothers, Tiffany Cruikshank, Grace Morales, Kelly Green and Paige Held. In January 2013 I began my 200hr RYT training with the amazing Grace Morales. The training has been a true gift to me and has inspired me to reclaim the life I always wanted for myself. Knowing now that life begins again many times over, I'm so grateful to Virginia and Grace for the privilege to share yoga with others. Namaste!


Erica Monroe

E-RYT 200, YACEP, Certified Yin Teacher, Certified Reiki Master Teacher, Hot Asana Yoga University Faculty

December 2008 I took my very first yoga class, I still remember where my mat was placed, what I was wearing, the feel of the room, and the Savasana, even though I had no clue then what Savasana was or what I was doing the other 80 minutes of class. I didn’t take my first class for any major reason other than my friend Paula kept asking or telling me to give it a try. Paula would tell me that yoga would make me feel good, I was unaware that felt bad. So I finally went and took my first class with Virginia Gallagher. It was amazing, like I said I had no clue what was happening but I loved it. The Savasana, the part were we lay down for 10 minutes with a lavender cloth and receive a massage, that is when I knew I would be back. I don’t like to admit to myself that I have Attention Deficit Disorder, most of my life I considered it a super power that my brain moved extra fast. My brain was always on, I was always on. Until, Savasana. The perfect combination of heat, music, and a vinyasa class ending with Savasana helped me find the first quiet moment that I have possibly ever felt. It was euphoric, yet peaceful and foreign. The foreign sensation didn’t bother me to much as I begin to practice regularly 3 times a week. I was addicted, chasing the 10 minutes of freedom at the end of every class while getting stronger, more flexible and Hot Asana became my second home. 2014 I signed up to attend Hot Asana Yoga University's 200 hour teacher training, Which has been one of the best decisions of my life. During Teacher Training, Reiki was discussed and I was interested in knowing more. About six months later there was a flyer, a yellow flyer with information about an upcoming Reiki level 1 Certification. I was so excited and called Dana Preshous to sign up. She was beyond lovely and asked if I have ever had a session. Nope, I have not. Dana said I should have a session before class started, which I thought was a good idea myself. My first Reiki session only confirmed that I knew I wanted to learn more about Reiki and become a Reiki Practitioner. Once again, I found quiet, peace, and a relaxation that was unworthy of words. I became a Reiki 1 Practitioner, a year later Reiki 2, and level 3 the following year, all of which I took from Dana Preshous. Then, I was fortunate enough to apprentice under Dana for a year and a half to become a Certified Reiki Master Teacher. Yoga and Reiki were 2 things I didn’t know much about but wanted to try. I will always be grateful to Paula for suggesting yoga, Virginia for training me and introducing the word Reiki, and Dana for seeing who I am. Because of them, and many others I am exactly where I am supposed to be. I am humbled to teach along side my teachers but I will always remain a student.


Lisa Youngclaus

ERYT 500

I’ve practiced hot yoga for 15 years and have taught At Hot Asana for 6 years. As an EYR-T 500 teaching vinyasa and Hot Holds, my learning has continued with additional Hot Asana trainings including Yin Yoga certification.

Adding teacher training in 2020 is a continuation of my devotion to the practice... the profound gratitude I have for what Yoga has done for me and the joy of bringing the benefits of yoga to others.


Christina Pawlikowski

Studio Manager, E-RYT 200, RYT 500, YACEP, Yin and Restorative Yoga Certified, Reiki level II, Hot Asana Online Instructor

I first found yoga in a daily television program called Inhale with Steve Ross on the Oxygen channel back in the early 1990's. I enjoyed his easy, laid back and joyful approach to the practice of yoga. Many, many years later I found myself in my first group class right here at Hot Asana and I was hooked!

Yoga has helped me through more than a few stressful life situations and has become a way I hope to reach out and help others through their stressful life situations and gain a healthier approach to life.

I grew up in a little town outside of Scranton Pennsylvania. After high school I joined the Army and have had a wonderful career. 20 years and several duty stations later, my next life transition happened in August 2013 when I retired from the Army. I am excited and appreciative to include yoga practice in the next chapter of my life.

I received my Pilates mat level I and II training from Pilates Certification Center in Raleigh, NC in 2012 and my first 200 hour Power Yoga Teacher certification from Grace Morales in Charlotte, NC in October 2013. In addition, the planets aligned in July 2015 and I was able to attend another 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training with Virginia Gallagher and Lisa Tiffany in Maya Tulum Mexico! I cannot say enough good things about the resort and training to do it justice, come chat with me at the studio and I will tell you all about it.

My journey with Hot Asana Yoga University to completing my RYT 500 has been fantastic. I love training, getting together with a group of like-minded people to talk about yoga, chakras, meditations, alignment, postures and everything in between is how I like to spend my free time. I feel I can incorporate new themes, ideas and postures and be more creative with all the types of classes I teach because of all the amazing training I have received. My training journey doesn’t end at RYT 500 (it will never end)! I’ll be seeing you in the training modules, in the studios, and on the mat!

I look forward to practicing with you!

Mercedes Ani

Mercedes Ani

Mercedes Ani

E-RYT 500, YACEP, Licensed AcroYoga Teacher, Meditation teacher, Reiki Level 3 certified, Thai Yoga practitioner, International wellness retreats and YTT facilitator, Owner of Healing Arts with Mercedes LLC

My passion is to help others heal through yoga, reiki, AcroYoga, Thai Yoga, meditation and educational wellness workshops and retreats. My own journey with yoga inspired me to deepen my practice and to then share my passion for this practice with others on their journey. As a teacher, I encourage students to turn inward during their practice to experience self inquiry, getting comfortable outside of their comfort zone, and to be an observer of their bodies and minds. My mission is to create a safe space for creative exploration. I aim to cater to the physical needs of the students while making sure to deliver a practice that intends to unify the mind, body, and soul in a safe and supportive environment. My intention is to inspire learning and growth in the practice and for students to leave feeling better than when they arrived.

Annie Okerlin

Annie Okerlin

C-IAYT Certified iRest® teacher, E-RYT 500, YACEP

Annie is a Certified iRest® teacher and uses this modality in a military setting with active duty & Veteran service members on a daily basis. As a Human Performance expert for 02x she presents yoga, resiliency & iRest meditation to tactical athletes & first responders nationwide. Annie leads teacher trainings, workshops & retreats worldwide for everyone!