How Much Does MBSR Cost?
View our Free Guide - What is MBSR?
By the Mindful Leader Team
People interested in mindfulness and stress reduction have many options to begin or supplement their practice. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is a long-standing, evidence-based program with lasting benefits, which makes it an attractive option. But how much does MBSR cost? Short answer: a Live and Online MBSR course can be a minimum of $300, but there are other options.
The least expensive and committal way to explore MBSR is with a free self-guided practice using MBSR methods, without any structure. This can be a great way to dip into mindfulness without any commitments, but it can be hard to stick to, and without structure, many practitioners will fall off the wagon before learning all they can.
A similar option is a free self-guided e-course that goes through the 8-week MBSR curriculum, but without an instructor or other students. While these free options are a good introduction, they aren’t the true MBSR experience, and won’t be as beneficial as a course with an instructor would be. Additionally, self-guided MBSR courses don’t count towards the prerequisites to become an MBSR instructor at most institutions.
Live, in-person programs are a great option if they’re available in your area. Meeting face to face with your instructor and your classmates is an advantage that’s hard to beat. However, COVID-19 or a simple lack of local access might keep students from being able to attend.
A live and online MBSR program is often the best MBSR option for most people right now. These programs deliver the full MBSR course with the guidance of an expert instructor, a cohort of classmates, all from anywhere with an internet connection. Live and online programs can cost anywhere from $300 to $1,000.
The costs of live MBSR courses are mainly due to the compensation of the instructors, who undergo rigorous training and invest large amounts of time and money into obtaining their qualification and their certification.
An MBSR course with an instructor consists of eight weekly 2.5 hour classes, and in some cases a 2.5 hour orientation preceding the first class. In addition, there is a mandatory day-long silent and virtual retreat that lasts approximately 7.5 hours, as well as around an hour of individual meditation every day during the course. All in all, participants should be prepared to spend around 10 - 12 hours a week completing the MBSR program. The program is a total of over 41 hours of directly instructed time, not counting individual practice and study. Of course, this means that students need to be prepared for the course to be a significant time commitment in order to get the most value from it.
If you’re interested in taking a Live Online MBSR course, Mindful Leader offers the full program, with a sliding payment scale, going as low as 3 payments of $99 for our scholarship tier. Please explore our website for more information about MBSR courses.