Discovering Yoga

discover yogaI went to India for 5 days in the spring of my sophomore year and fell in love. With the culture, the food, the people, the spiritual landscape, and of course, Yoga. Upon my return to the states (New Orleans where I was attending university,) I dove right in – to yoga classes at the campus gym (free to students) and with Rodney Yee and Eric Schiffman/Ali McGraw videos.

I practiced daily in the comfort of my living room. Thirteen years later, yoga is more a part of my life than ever. Over the past decade I’ve taken two Yogafit workshops and taught free classes in my living room, $2 classes in friends’ living rooms and even charged $10 a class to a few friends who supported me in my traveling/artist/needs to make enough money to get by lifestyle.

I’ve worked as a maid, nanny, dog walker, flamenco dancer, freelance health writer, bookseller and house sitter, to name a few. I’ve lived in as many places as jobs I’ve had and the only thing that remains constant throughout the years is yoga. Now, at age 33, it’s time to focus on the thing I love the most and share it with the people I love and those I’ve yet to love. I want to become a yoga teacher because it’s the only thing I’ve ever done that really made me feel like I was sharing something truly great.

Those quiet times after a yoga class when my small group of students thanked me, I knew their gratitude was coming from the heart. Teaching yoga is an authentic way to do some good in the world. I can’t think of any better way to spend my days than working with people in a serving profession such as yoga. I believe that we can all be healthy and happy without popping a pill or turning to other unhealthy addictions.

I haven’t had many yoga teachers because I could never justify the cost of taking regular yoga classes at studios, (one part of my mission as a teacher will be to provide donation-based classes.) I have a steady Ashtanga home practice. My favorite yoga teacher would have to be Richard Freeman. I’ve never taken a live class with him but after following his primary series video for over a year and reading his books and articles online, I feel I have a firm introduction to the ashtanga system of yoga.

In teaching, I am most interested in the therapeutic aspects of yoga and would like to work with people in private and small groups to help foster spirit growth and physical/emotional healing. I hold a degree in naturopathic medicine and write articles for health magazines as well as a vegan food blog. I also speak a fair amount of French and Italian and am continuing to cultivate these languages so that I can communicate with as many people as possible. I’d like to bring all of these interests together someday to have my own health and wellness retreat somewhere in the world. It is for these reasons that I am choosing the yoga teacher training with Jackie Chiodo at the Anamaya Resort in Costa Rica.

2012 Yoga Scholarship Essay

By: Aimee Hughes

If you liked this article and want them to win a free yoga teacher training, then make sure to vote for her by leaving a comment (scroll all the way to the bottom), and sharing this article on Facebook or Twitter. Each comment, Facebook, and Twitter share counts as one vote and you can do all three!

Are you interested in becoming a yoga teacher? Then visit our Yoga School Directory to find the right teacher training. Or, visit our Yoga Retreats page to explore beautiful yoga vacations from around the world.

Join the Conversation

  1. Stacey Siegel says:

    If Yoga is your passion and brings you joy then teaching seems to be the next step. Sharing your experience with health minded applications will be an asset for those who seek you out. The best of luck………..Stacey

  2. Chris says:

    Aimee embodies the true spirit of yoga with her calm and caring nature. I left her classes feeling more relaxed yet energized than I’ve ever felt since with any other type of workout. She would be an asset to any yoga program.

  3. Sarah says:

    I’d love to see Aimee fulfill her dream! She is a wonderful woman who can bless many people with her gift of teaching!

  4. Svetlana says:

    Aimee is an amazing yoga teacher, and a wonderful, talented, and inspiring young woman. I hope she wins this yoga teacher training opportunity – she really deserves it!

  5. Michael Smith says:

    Great article; makes me want to learn more about yoga!

  6. Courtney says:

    Aimee deserves to win this scholarship. She can help so many people with her talents.

  7. Lavant Woolfe says:

    I have known Aimee for many years and expect her to have great success and positive influence as a yoga instructor and life coach. Best of luck!!

  8. Melissa says:

    I would love to see Aimee win this training!

  9. steve says:

    Id love Aimee to teach me some yoga….go Aimee!!!

  10. Natalie Stopford says:

    Aimee would make an amazing Yoga instructor!

  11. caroline hawkins says:

    It sounds like Aimee was born to do this work. I wish her all the best and hope that she gets the training she needs. Good luck!

  12. Mary Devlin says:

    Go Aimee! I hope you win and spend the joy of yoga!

  13. Hollie says:

    My first experience with yoga was thru Aimee over 10 years ago. I’ve taken her classes whenever she’s been in the same city and can say I’ve learned more with Aimee than my current teachers. I was in much better shape as well!
    Aimee desires to bring peacefulness and health to those in her life and what better way to do that then thru teaching yoga.

  14. Angie says:

    I think that Aimee needs to win this training so she can get her instruction to others. This is a very exciting opportunity and I hope she will give instruction to me too someday!

  15. Marko says:

    I’ve met Aimee not long time ago and for short time I’ve noticed that she is the sweetest person and she really deserve to win this. She is so amazing. Fingers Crossed

  16. Mo says:

    Aimee is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. I’m sure she is already a wonderful yoga teacher, but if she feels she is ready for additional training I dearly hope she wins this scholarship.

  17. Bianca- Vegan Crunk says:

    It sounds like yoga teaching is Aimee’s calling!! I really hope she wins the training!!

  18. Kristen says:

    Having known Aimee my entire life, I can truly say she deserves to win this opportunity to pursue her passion!!!

  19. Lauren says:

    I can’t wait to take a yoga class with Amy!

  20. Jamie says:

    Yay yoooga! Good luck!

  21. Martha says:

    There are some lucky people in the wings who will be your students. Wishing you the best, happy travels 😉 and much aloha!

  22. allison says:

    This is your calling, Aimee. Follow your dreams, girl. You derserve this!

  23. Pamela Allardice says:

    An inspiring essay, straight from the heart and soul, it shows. Good luck, Aimee!

  24. Paco Benitez says:

    I encourage you so much to do what you want for your life in the hope that that will be your best contribution to our society!
    Go ahead.

  25. jarrod says:

    From experience, Aimmee is a great teacher. She knows how to push the limits while staying completely at peace!

  26. Alirb says:

    I really think, Aimee, you will be a great yoga teacher, and I want to wish you good luck for this training and for your life.

  27. alison says:

    I have known Aimee since college. She has a wonderful spirit and would make an outstanding yoga teacher. She has many many talents and it is a testament to her dedication to yoga that she has chosen to pursue a career as a yoga instructor. I really hope she will win this scholarship. You will not be disappointed.

  28. Vincenzo says:

    Segui i tuoi sogni e fai di tutto per realizzarli, in bocca al lupo Aimee

  29. lorenzo says:

    “one part of my mission as a teacher will be to provide donation-based classes”, these passionate words prove that what you feel about Yoga is not only a curiosity or even a passion: yoga for you is the life itself. And I hope that you may have as many students as possible. Yhe only regreat is that I live so far from you that is pratically impossibol to attend at one of your class. Thank you Aimee for your spirit.

  30. Claudia says:

    Hope you get the scholarship, it is clearly your passion! 🙂

  31. Daniel says:

    Good look!

  32. Lea says:

    J’espere que ton reve de devenir professeur de yoga se réalisera. Bonne chance Aimee !!

  33. gentlman says:

    good luck

  34. Luna says:

    Aimee, wishing you love, gratitude, joy and inspiration on your journey.

  35. Miel says:

    This would be a wonderful opportunity for you. It would also help to bring yoga to all of us, your friends, family and people who really need classes that are donation based classes. Suerte!! Miel

  36. Allan says:

    Aimee’s devotion to yoga has been a blessing to her, and to all those she has inspired. For her to have this chance to increase her knowledge of yoga, and to advance her passion for it, is a great thing. I hope it comes to pass for her!

  37. margaret kearns says:

    The moment I met Aimee (in the parking lot of Island Naturals in Kailua-Kona!)I felt the clarity in her soul, the kind, peaceful spirit in her heart and mind. Training yoga with her as my guide would be a great gift. So, perhaps selfishly but with love, I am wishing her the win!

  38. stephanie a. says:

    aimee was made for this training, and this training was made for aimee! go aimee! (i wish i could come along, too, LOL)

  39. Luca Italy says:

    Yoga is the doorway to get to know yourself…. good luck …

  40. Roberto says:

    Go go go… Aimee!! I hope you could realize your dreams, and hope your dreams could be ours too…

  41. Pasquale says:

    Follow your eart!

    Fantastica, sono convinto che riuscirai lì dove il tuo cuore ti porta.


    from Italy

  42. Antho says:

    Keep up the good work Aimee!Good luck!

  43. Sindi says:

    She’s perfect for this place as yoga is her passion. She’ll be great! Go Aimee!

  44. Ariel says:

    This would be a perfect fit! Namaste.

  45. mc says:

    I would be honored to participate in your Health & Wellness Retreat someday soon, Aimee ! Feliciations ! Bonne chance ! Bien fait !

  46. Patrick says:


  47. Patrick says:


  48. Julia says:

    Wish you the best!

  49. Clayton says:

    Nice essay

  50. Tara says:

    seems like amy really wants to help people and make their lives better. that’s the kind of yoga teacher that is transformational.

  51. Kelsey says:

    Yoga has become an oasis of peace in the crazy twists and turns of my life, and I’m glad to support someone who feels the same!

  52. Becky Barge says:

    Amiee would be an amazing instructor!

  53. Shay Estes says:

    Get it, Aims! I am so proud of you! You make the world a more beautiful place.

  54. Adolfo says:

    I think you really deserve that chance!
    You wrote “…I believe that we can all be healthy and happy without popping a pill or turning to other unhealthy addictions.”
    I think so.
    Good luck Aimee 🙂

  55. Dana says:

    I think that Aimee sounds lovely, and it would be wonderful for her to get a scholarship. Go Aimee!

  56. ChiChefJames says:

    God Speed Aimee!

  57. Michael Grayman says:

    Good luck

  58. giuseppe says:

    I hope you can teach as soon as possible,

  59. J says:

    Helping out a friend of a friend!

  60. Erin says:

    Bonne Chance, Aimee! You are a truly kind soul, and I have no doubt that with this training, you will make an even more phenomenal teacher than what you are now.

  61. Simone says:

    Aimee already possesses the spirit of a truly great yoga teacher and loves to help others. Her amazing vegan recipes have brought me so much pleasure – I can’t wait to see how creative and blissful her classes will be…..

  62. Katie says:

    I think Aimee deserves this opportunity. Yoga and a healthy full lifestyle are her passions and she desires to share them with everybody. Aren’t those the types of people we want?

  63. angie says:

    No one is more deserving of this than my dear friend, Aimee. I am so proud of her!

  64. Juan says:

    Muy buen ensayo Aimee! espero que ganes y puedas aprovechar esta gran oportunidad. Me alegro que sigas este estilo de vida que es muy sano y que ademas quieras ayudar a la gente. Un saludo desde Argentina!

  65. Jennifer Weinert says:

    I offer Purna Yoga Teacher Training in Hawaii and Aimee has been interested in it for a few years now. She is clearly dedicated and following her heart. These are two indispensable attributes of a fine yoga teacher! Best of luck and warmest Aloha Aimee!

  66. Katie Neff says:

    Bon Chance Aimee mon amie 🙂

  67. Ashley says:

    You are a totally amazing person and deserve this Aimee!!! Good luck!

  68. Gandolfo says:

    GOOD LUCK. sono sicuro che raggiungerai il tuoi obiettivi….

  69. anna rainbolt says:

    Go in the direction of your dreams! Inspiring!

  70. Kathryn says:

    Aimee exudes true peace, great compassion and tremendous love in all she does. She is an enlightened being, of that I am certain. Her teaching abilities are superlative, extraordinary. She is also a gifted dancer, a true artist. Aimee was not born into a family with economic advantage…she has worked hard all her life and has never complained. No one is more deserving than Aimee to win this yoga training scholarship. Truly, no one…

  71. Amy says:

    Aimee is a natural teacher: encouraging, respectful, and kind. The program fortunate enough to train her will reap the benefits of having her as an alumnus.

  72. Maria says:

    Aimee’s dream to become a yoga teacher has also been mine. I often wished I had the resources to sponsor her and make her dream come true – so that I could also benefit by having her as my yogi! She is patient, kind, caring, and motivated – everything a great yoga teacher should be!

  73. Shannon says:

    I’ve known Aimee since high school and she is dedicated and truly wonderful person. She is deserving of this scholarship because her passion is yoga. Go Aimee!

  74. Nins says:

    Aimee and I write for the same natural health magazine, and I can relate to Aimee’s life so profoundly!!! I can feel your passion and your LOVE for yoga and it makes my face beam with a huge smile. Go for it Aimee, continue to dare to live the life of your dreams – you are an inspiration to all! I feel the world would benefit SO much if you were gifted your Yoga Teacher Training, and then how beautiful for you to pay that gift forward by giving yoga lessons by donation. Good luck beautiful woman.

  75. piuzza says:

    Good luck aimee!! 😉

  76. Jolana says:

    I hope you win. Good luck!

  77. Alice says:

    Amy GOOD LUCK! May your dream be fulfilled 🙂

  78. Lacey says:

    we are rooting for you Amiee!! <3

  79. Lindsay Russ says:

    You would be a fantastic teacher Aimee! Best of luck!

  80. Alberto Becerra says:

    I don’t know much about yoga, but I really liked this essay! Good luck!

  81. qskwatsch says:

    excellent post. I think that a great teacher must have different experiences. You cannot “Growing up” as expert if you just practice in your own “milieu”; you’ll have to deal with different ppl, different learners, and maybe different cultures; from this point of view you have a great attitude. And by the way….adaptation, and flexibility (I mean: physical, psychological, and spiritual flex.) is at the core of Yoga, isn’t it?

  82. Paul Sanchez says:

    Appreciation pro this article. Present are categorically tips participating in at this juncture to I choice benefit.

  83. Linda says:

    This would be the best thing to happen to Aimee if she could win this. Her passion for Yoga is more than anything she has ever done, and that is saying alot considering her love for writing. She is one of those people you really like as soon as you meet her. I have seen her twist her body in ways I never thought possible, so if you are looking for someone advanced in yoga, she would be your pick. If your contest is for the most responies, than you will be missing out on the best student(teacher) ever. Even if she does not get the most, please consider her, please!!!

  84. loren says:

    get it gurl!!! 🙂

  85. Dana Davidson says:

    Having known Aimee since she was in high school, I can wholeheartedly recommend her for this opportunity! She is a lovely, talented, passionate young lady, and I think she would be a fabulous yoga instructor.

  86. Jennifer Westlake says:

    Aimee is a passionate person with a CAN DO attitude. I have no doubt that she would be a truly amazing yoga teacher…..

  87. Alexander says:

    Good luck, Amy! I know how passionate you are about Yoga. I wish you all the best

  88. Nanette says:

    I am so impressed with the serene happiness that radiates from your face, in your photo..I can see what yoga has done for you! (It saved my life after Katrina, but that is another story) I hope you will continue your studies and manifest your dream destiny..please let me know when you are teaching, and where,,and best of luck with everything! with much aloha, nanette

  89. megan Houghton says:

    Aimee is such a wonderful person and has such a great energy! I know that students would definitely benefit from her teaching!! Good luck!

  90. Ryan says:

    Aimee would be an excellent choice!

  91. danielle smith says:

    Aimee is the best!! Go yoga go!

  92. Brandon Voss says:

    Aimee has always been a beautiful light.

  93. Salvatore says:

    I enjoyed reading this article as I would enjoy you teaching me yoga!

  94. Tore says:

    There are some island in the world where all is perfect, from the generous nature to the healthy food and warm weather. Only one thing missing: yoga!
    You would be welcome there Aimee!

  95. Jason says:

    Good luck, Aimee!

  96. Eric Klusman says:

    Aimee, you are such a wonderful teacher and such an inspirational person, good luck!

  97. Chris says:

    Yes! Yes, I say! Good luck, Aimee!!

  98. Sharon says:

    You would be great!!! Good luck.

  99. Coleen Marney says:

    Best of luck following your dream Aimee! If you put your mind to it, you can do it!

  100. Annie says:

    Good Luck Aimee!! Your love of Yoga truely shows in your essay and it would be wonderful to hear you pursuing your passion further.

  101. Andrew D. Wimmer, Esq. says:

    Very informative. Yoga is a lifestyle we could all take into our busy lives. Aimee has the gift.

  102. shannon says:

    good luck, aimee!

  103. Kim says:

    Awesome! Anytime you can do something you truely love and share your passion with others is a true blessing! Good luck!

  104. Amy says:

    I wish you all the best!

  105. Eric Wimmer says:

    Aimee is the best!!

  106. Lori says:

    Aimee is very deserving of this. Good luck!!

  107. Patrick Fase says:

    Very awesome, you will be great!

  108. Stephanie says:

    Great article Aimee! Good luck!

  109. Nathan Shyver says:

    Good luck, Aimee.

  110. Joanna Teemant says:

    Aimee sounds like she would be a great yoga teacher!

  111. Magpie says:

    Good luck!!

  112. Heidi says:

    I like Aimee’s philosophy, and would love to take a yoga class with her one day

  113. Jack Saling says:

    Hi. Just simply would like to place a short remark and tell you that in fact I’ve loved visiting your specific blog and am recommending it to my contacts. Keep up the good work! Thanks.

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