Yoga Teacher Training Spotlight: Interview with Martina Butler!

Like so many of us, Martina Butler found yoga as a result of injury, and became dedicated to the practice after she experienced significant transformation. After Martina graduated college, she (also like many of us) realized she felt uncertain around her career path, and so; she looked to the one thing she’d been looking to for her answers all those years: yoga. Martina followed her passion for the practice and began her 200HR Yoga Teacher Training in San Francisco soon after; after a life-changing experience, she has been teaching ever since!

We are happy to share a moment with Martina in which we got to speak with her about her personal path to teaching; her reasons for choosing to sign up for a yoga teacher training program and, her reflections thereafter:
Why did you choose to sign up for a yoga teacher training? After graduating from college with a degree in broadcasting, I realized that I didn’t want a career in the television industry. I had been practicing yoga since high school and turned to it during every big decision in my life… so a yoga teacher training seemed like the obvious next step.

How did your experience impact your life during the training? During my yoga teacher training, I fell so much deeper in love with the practice… as I’m sure many other YTT graduates would agree. My teaching training was a month long intensive (6 days a week 9am-5pm) so my life became solely about yoga. I found this very helpful to have no other distractions and I was able to dive deep into my study.

How did your experience impact your life after the training? After my TT, I realized the huge responsibility I would be taking on as a teacher to keep my students safe, but to also keep them eager to advance their practice. I was terrified to say the least. Because I felt that my training lacked actual practice teaching to a group, I decided to do a 6 month mentorship with one of my teachers to help build my confidence.

What was your favorite part(s) about the training program? The prenatal portion of my training was easily my favorite part. I ended up doing a 50 hour prenatal YTT certification about six months after my 200hr graduation.

Was there anything in specific you feel like you achieved personally, as a result of the experience? I realized the importance of happiness in my life. Choosing my passion and allowing that lead me through life was the best decision I could have made. Money will follow if you are doing what you are meant to do in this world.

Did you teach yoga after/do you teach yoga? Yes

Does your yoga teacher training program still influence your life today? Absolutely. I pull from my various teachers from YTT in all of my classes. The greatest thing I learned during my training was to be yourself, not your teacher. Take inspiration from those you admire, but don’t try to emulate them. Your students will keep coming to your class for what your teaching offers them, not someone else’s.

If you could describe your training experience in one word/phrase what would it be? Life-changing

Why would you recommend someone go through a yoga teacher training program? If you’ve thought about it, do it. Even if you never end up teaching, there is nothing that will gain you more respect and understanding of the practice than a 200hr. My relationship with my yoga practice pre-teacher training was very surface level, even though I thought otherwise. You will realize exactly why you love yoga and why you found the practice once you complete your training.



Bio: Martina Butler is a San Francisco native, a former pre-professional ballerina, has been practicing for yoga for ten years. Yoga continues to serve her in new ways everyday.
Martina found yoga when she acquired injuries from her intense ballet training. Since then, she has been inspired by the strong female figures she has trained with, such as, Elise Lorimer, Dina Amsterdam and Dana Damara. She dreams of empowering women through yoga, the way her teachers have done for her.
Martina completed her 200-hr certification at Yoga Tree in San Francisco with some of the highest acclaimed and most reputable instructors in the country. She also completed her prenatal training through Mama Tree with Jane Austin. Martina is passionate about working with yogis of all levels to build strength, ease pain and relieve stress. When she’s not practicing or teaching, Martina enjoys rooting for the Giants, drinking wine, and exploring her new home in the Pacific.

IG/Facebook @martinabyoga

With our Yoga Teacher Training Spotlight Series, we hope to cast light on the reasons why different people choose teacher training; the wide varieties of experiences throughout and career paths thereafter as well as the life-changes people’s participation in teacher training programs have inspired.