Mindful Parenting training is a new application of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, for parents who have (had) (mental) health problems that interfere with parenting, or whose child or children have (mental) health problems.

Mindful Parenting training is also provided for parents who experience parenting stress, parent-child relationship problems, or to parents who want to improve the quality of their parenting, the interaction with their child and the family.

Mindful Parenting is a program of 8 weekly sessions, and a follow-up session 8 weeks later, in groups of 8-20 parents, with sessions of 2-3 hours, depending on the target group. Mindful Parenting is suitable for parents of children of all ages, from babies to adults. The children are not involved in the training.

The goal of Mindful Parenting is to support parents in their parenting, by cultivating present-moment and non-judgmental attention for the child, the parent-child relationship, and parenting, by dealing differently with parenting stress, by focusing on the reality and accepting it for what it is, and by becoming aware of automatic patterns of reacting tot heir children and how these are related tot their own experiences in their family of origin, and by taking better care of themselves as parents.

The program has been developed and tested over the last 20 years by Susan Bögels and her colleagues and is found to have profound and long-lasting effects on parental and child psychopathology and wellbeing, on parenting stress, over reactive parenting, parental sensitivity, the parent-child relationship quality, and co-parenting. These results have been found in clinical and in preventive settings.

In this five-days and-one-evening intensive is intended for international (mental) health practitioners with a background in mindfulness training and meditation, who want to use Mindful Parenting with their clients. Participants will receive training in both the clinical and preventive program. It is advised to reserve enough time for studying the literature and manual before start of the training, in order to get most out of the training days. The training will be given in English.


In the teacher training the theory, research, but mostly the practice of the Mindful Parenting training is reviewed. Ways of working are:

  • 1. Studying literature (theory and research) and reflection
  • 2. Experiencing mindful parenting practices/meditations in the role of a parent or partner, and reflection upon these experiences (teach back)
  • 3. Practicing mindful parenting practices/meditations in the role of instructor, reflection upon this experience, and by feedback by the group and teacher further cultivate own skills and attitude
  • 4. The inquiry process with parents, horizontal and vertical
  • 5. Working with group dynamics: the magic of the group
  • 6. Practicing with “difficult” groups/parents, and own reactivity
  • 7. Discussing setting up mindful parenting courses in own context, including intake and assessments

Participants receive a Mindful Parenting trainer certificate when having been present sufficiently, having shown sufficient (development in) attitude and skills, having shown sufficient self-reflection in the practices during the training, all as judged by the teacher(s).

Quotes about 'A guide for mental health practitioners', by Bögels & Restifo, 2014:

“This “how-to” program will surely be an important resource for couples- and family therapist, and a refuge for distressed parents, for many years to come”. - Christopher Germer

“A briliant book with enormeous practical implications for all parents”. - Mark Williams

“This book and the program it offers are a pioneering effort to bring mindfulness into the domain of parenting and the mental health care of stressed families, for the benefit of both children and their parents”. - Jon & Myla Kabat-Zinn

Quote of participants:

“The Mindful Parenting training was an excellent opportunity to extend my knowledge and skills in mindfulness based approaches to supporting families. The training was very engaging and enjoyable. Susan is an inspirational trainer. She has a wealth of clinical and personal experience, which brings the training to life.” - Dr. Lisa Emerson, Griffith University, Australia

"The Mindful Parenting Training at UVA Minds led by Susan was well worth flying half way across the world. It was a week filled with tears and laughter and deep learning. Susan's style is authentic and real. She teaches from her heart and that is precisely what helped create a safe and warm space for all of us to share and BE.” - Masooma Kachelo, Marriage & Family Therapist, mindfulness trainer, Beijing

Course material:

To receive: A reader and workbook.

To buy (please study in advance): Mindful parenting : A guide for mental health practitioners, by Bögels & Restifo, 2014, New York: Springer, or Norton.

For whom

The teacher training intensive is for psychologists, counsellors, psychiatrists, and other (health care) practitioners who work with parents. Because experience is the best teacher, we also work with own parenting experiences from our own family of origin, and for those who are parents, own parenting experiences, and partner experiences. After completing the teacher training intensive there is the possibility to receive supervision about own mindful parenting groups. These supervision needs to be paid separately.


  • A master in psychology, counselling, psychiatry, or other health care master.
  • Having participated in an MBSR or MBCT training for oneself, at minimum, or preferably having completer a mindfulness teacher training.
  • Having participated in at minimum a 5-days meditation retreat.
  • Having one’s own meditation practice.

Please note these preconditions clearly in your CV that you upload. In a conversation with the teacher these preconditions may be checked.

Starting dates

List of startdates for training Teacher Training Mindful Parenting