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Why MBSR Instructor Training Matters

Ultimately, it is the depth of your own personal commitment to learning, growing and healing – as well as a dedication to the well-being of others – that will contribute most to your integrity and effectiveness as a teacher. 

~Center for Mindfulness, UMass Medical Center

What does MBSR Teacher Training mean for you?

As the benefits of mindfulness become clearer through research and experience, you may come across many different options and approaches for learning about mindfulness.


The MBSR Teacher Training program at UMASS Medical School’s Center for Mindfulness established the bar for training future generations of MBSR Instructors. The MBSR Teacher Training program is now offered through Brown University and UCSD.


Rigorous, thorough, and grounded in personal practice and experience, instructors trained via UMASS CFM, Brown University, or UCSD must meet the following prerequisites prior to beginning MBSR Teacher Training:

  • Participation in an 8-week MBSR class

  • Completion of a Master’s or Doctoral degree in a health, mental health, or education-related field (or equivalent experience). Many MBSR teachers are also licensed health care professionals, having education and training specific to practicing with high ethical standards and accountability

  • An established, daily, personal meditation practice

  • Participation in at least two silent, 5-10 day, teacher-led meditation retreats

  • Dedication to ongoing personal and professional growth


Training to become an MBSR Instructor consists of several phases of intensive instruction, practice and support from senior teaching staff. This process typically takes place over the course of several years, supporting a deep integration of knowledge  and practice with a view to developing stability, flexibility and a non-judgmental stance.


MBSR instructors are committed to teaching MBSR with fidelity to the model that has been researched for more than 40 years – and to do so with authenticity and a connection to their own deep practice experience.

What is MBSR Teacher Certification?

Certification in MBSR is an additional credential that lets you know your mindfulness teacher has spent many supplemental years developing their skills with regular training, supervision,  and review by senior instructors.  Teachers must have completed at least eight full MBSR teaching cycles before they may be considered for Certification Review.

“MBSR teacher certification is available to people who have demonstrated a deep commitment to this work over a period of years. They must have completed all of the training requirements…These requirements include not only training courses but also a great deal of teaching experience and a depth of practice in mindfulness meditation.”  ~ Center for Mindfulness, UMass Medical Center

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