Teacher Training FAQs

How do I get to Pavones Yoga Center?

Pavones Yoga Center is happy to help you to arrange all of your travel needs to and from San Jose. We work with Nature Air, an excellent, local carbon-neutral airline that flies into Golfito. From there our taxi or shuttle service will bring you directly to Pavones Yoga Center or, if you are staying off-site, to your hotel.

If you are making your own travel arrangements, there are twice daily buses from Golfito and Paso Canoas into Pavones. Sansa and Nature Air both fly into Golfito, and there are daily buses from San Jose to both Golfito and Paso Canoas with Tracopa Bus Service.

We have dedicated a page on our blog PYC Journal to answering all questions regarding travel between San Jose - Golfito - Pavones Yoga Center. Check out Planes, Trains, and Automobiles for detailed driving instructions, rental car agencies, and links to airlines and buses.

How big are the group sizes in a typical program at Pavones Yoga Center?

At Pavones Yoga Center, we limit our group sizes to twenty-one people in order to ensure that our graduates fully understand the subtleties of physical alignment, emotional connection, and spiritual wellbeing that are crucial components to the yogic path. This commitment to our students' individual questions and priorities is just one of the ingredients that makes our programs unique and beloved by our graduates.

What's the weather like?

The Costa Rican dry season typically lasts from December to April. This means that during these months one can generally expect sunny skies and very little rainfall, mostly at night. The southern zone begins to receive rain sometime in late May. The rainy season usually arrives casually: gorgeous mornings with light afternoon showers to cool things off. There is a fairly reliable "Indian Summer" called "veranito" (little summer) in July when the weather takes on typically dry season characteristics. As the season progresses, the rains come earlier and earlier – by October (when we close for the wet season) it can sometimes rain all day. In the past, September and October were the months with heaviest rainfall. However, weather patterns over the past six years have shown a trend toward heavier rainfall in October and November.

What happens after I graduate? Is there a support system for PYC graduates?

At Pavones Yoga Center, our teachers are committed to nurturing real and ongoing relationships with our graduates. Indira responds to all questions from students directly, and in addition to the private Facebook groups for each program, we maintain a graduates page where all PYC people connect and bounce questions and inspiration out into the world off. Ethical inquiries, questions about new yoga music, job postings, yoga articles and photos from the programs are ways that students from each program have stayed connected to one another and to their PYC experience. Because of the real connection and deep mutual respect that our programs cultivate, many students come back to our programs again and again; the word "coming home" is one we hear a lot regarding the PYC experience.

How far is Pavones Yoga Center from the beach?

Pavones Yoga Center is located 800 meters from the beach up a very steep hill. Our property overlooks the world-famous Pavones surf break so that, during swell season, you can actually watch people surf from our yoga studio. The center of "town" (more like a very small village) is right at the bottom of Alta Mira (the name of our road). There is a beautiful fresh water river, Rio Claro, near our entrance to the beach where you can cool off and chill out before heading back to PYC. Most of our guests and virtually all of our yoga teacher training students walk up and down the hill daily but if you are not accustomed to the tropics or to walking up hills then you may prefer to have a car while visiting us. (If you rent a car make sure it has 4-WD.)

What should I bring? ... Do I need to bring my yoga mat?

Bring a passport (your passport must not be due to expire sooner than 6 months from entry date into Costa Rica and should have at least one blank page for stamps), yoga wear, swimsuit, walking shoes, toiletries, flashlight, beach towel, sunscreen, sunhat, insect repellant, and rain gear (from May to September). All beach and travel wear is casual. Dress for the tropics. Yoga teacher training students should also bring an alarm clock, journal, pens, and a backpack. If you are attending a teacher training program, pack a travel towel or mat cover to use over the yoga mats provided (many students prefer to bring their own mat). Pavones Yoga Center provides linens, bath towels, and kitchen supplies and our onsite accommodations include housekeeping services. There is a weekly laundry service ($12 per load) for yoga teacher training students. Please consider the environment when packing your toiletries. Natural shampoos, soaps, and lotions are softer on the local ecosystem.

What kind of food is available?

The local grocery stores carry basic food items and, in recent years, some surprising imports such as wasabi, soy sauce, tahini, and kalamata olives. Our quaint town still receives vegetables and fruit via a "fruit truck" that arrives twice weekly, on Mondays and Fridays. Shopping out of the colorful fruit truck is an event in itself. The Pavones Yoga Center housing includes a large kitchen that you can either choose to stock yourself, or which we can stock prior to your arrival (contact us for a grocery list if you are interested in the latter option). If you are eating out, there is an excellent vegetarian café, two restaurants serving authentic Italian cuisine, several cevicherias (serving the local specialty of marinated fish with chopped veggies), and numerous Tico sodas. Rice and beans are traditional side dishes that come with just about everything here; if you have specific dietary restrictions contact us so that we can be sure to accommodate them.

Do I need vaccines to visit Costa Rica?

No. There are no vaccines required for visits to Costa Rica.

Do I need a passport to travel to Costa Rica?

Yes, you will need a passport to enter Costa Rica. Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months ahead of your arrival date, and that you have a page or two available for entry and exit stamps. American and most European citizens can enter the country for up to 90 days without applying for a visa; check with your local embassy for Visa requirements if you are entering Costa Rica with a passport from other countries.

What is the local currency and can I use my credit card in Pavones?

The Costa Rican colon is the local currency however, due to our proximity to the Panamanian border, American dollars are widely accepted as well. There are a few places that will take your credit card (the largest grocery store and local surf shop) but it's a good idea to bring cash for incidentals. There are no ATMs in Pavones and the nearest ATM/bank is located about 40 minutes away by taxi.

Is there internet at Pavones Yoga Center?

There is limited internet service at Pavones Yoga Center. We encourage all of our guests, especially those in yoga teacher training programs to think of their time with us as an opportunity for a "digital detox." The digital detox is something that aligns with the ecopsychological and nature-based elements of our programs. Digital devices are off-limits in shared areas. Pavones Yoga Center is the kind of place where people speak to each other over meals, and students browse great novels or textbooks from hammocks (yes, you can read your kindle/iPad in public, you just can't browse your Instragram feed). Many graduates find that this practice revolutionizes their post-training use of cell phones and the internet.

However, because we understand that many people need to occasionally let their family know that they are still safe and happy, there is an area where cell phones can be used. 

I'm a teacher. Can I bring my own group to Pavones Yoga Center?

Yes, most definitely! We would be happy to help you manifest your ideal group vacation and are always excited to introduce new forms and teachers into the village. Contact us for details. 

What about tipping?

Our retreat guests often ask us for tipping guidelines. Tipping is not required nor expected but always appreciated. All gratuities will be split amongst our hard-working staff unless you'd like to specify otherwise.

What if I lose my Pavones Yoga Center yoga teacher training certificate?

We will reissue graduation certificates for any program you have attended. There is a $25.00 processing fee for this service.

What is your refund policy?

For details about our refund policy, please read Terms and Conditions: Cancellation Policy below. 

Terms and Conditions

All students registering for a yoga program at Pavones Yoga Center agree to the following terms and conditions:

1. CANCELLATION POLICY: Program deposits are nonrefundable however full credit of $500 will be granted for use toward a future Pavones Yoga Center program valid for three years when you cancel with more than 60 days to your program's start date. Any payments other than the non-refundable deposit are refundable, less a 25% processing fee, up to 45 days prior to the first day of your retreat or training. Or, if you cancel more than 45 days in advance of your program, you can choose to receive a full credit, with no deductions and valid for three years, toward a future program at Pavones Yoga Center. No refunds are given within 30 days of the start date of your program. No credit is given if you cancel less than 30 days in advance, if you do not show up, or if you leave early for any reason. Final payments are due six weeks (45 days) before the start of your retreat or training. Pavones Yoga Center reserves the right to cancel your reservation if we do not receive full payment within 30 days of the start date of your program.

2. CURRICULUM AND ETHICAL GUIDELINES: Our 200-hour and 300-hour intensive training programs are designed for yoga students and those interested in deepening their personal practice and/or learning how to teach yoga in a non-authoritarian way. Completion and graduation depend upon attendance, participation, demonstrating an understanding of the principles and material presented in the training, as well as following the code of ethics as described by Yoga Alliance. By submitting my payment for this program, students agree to uphold the following ethical principles both during the training and after graduation:

  • Conduct myself in a professional and conscientious manner.
  • Acknowledge the limitations of my skills and scope of practice and where appropriate, refer students to seek alternative instruction, advice, treatment or direction.
  • Create and maintain a safe, clean and comfortable environment for the practice of yoga.
  • Encourage diversity by respecting all students regardless of age, physical limitations, race, creed, gender, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation.
  • Respect the rights, dignity and privacy of all students.
  • Avoid words and actions that constitute sexual harassment.
  • Avoid alcohol, illegal substances, and all other intoxicants while on the Pavones Yoga Center premises and especially during or prior to training sessions.
  • Follow all local government and national laws.

3. PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY: Students agree to the following statement: I fully understand that I am solely responsible for my health, safety and well-being while participating in all program activities. I agree that I will inform my instructors of any activity which I cannot perform safely, and that I will not perform any activity which I feel is likely to cause me to injure myself. I understand that there are risks associated with any physical exercise. I agree to hold Pavones Yoga Center, and all instructors and assistants associated with this training harmless from any and all responsibility for any injury that may arise during any activity. I understand that my failure to comply with the above guidelines could result in my dismissal from the program and furthermore I understand that no refunds will be given should I fail to comply with the agreements listed above.

AGREEMENT: By completing the online registration form and/or the appropriate payment, I agree to be bound by the terms and conditions stated here and as noted on the registration form.