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Follow your heart!

So here goes! My first blog post! I set myself a goal to set up and post my own website and blog when I leave my teaching job in July. One of the inspirations for me to begin writing a blog was my article that was published in this month's issue of 'Om' magazine. I was pretty chuffed and blown away to have something published. I have since received some amazing messages from people I don't even know who have read my words and felt inspired, which in turn has inspired me. So I thought, well if it's good enough for 'Om' It's good enough for a blog!

Here's my article which I wrote for my awesome Yoga teacher Ann-Marie Mainprize, to share how Yoga Teacher training changed my life, my expectations of teacher training and the realities! I have always dreamed of being a Yoga teacher. I always had a feeling that I would one day help others through yoga and follow in the footsteps of my first teacher and ‘yogini hero' Hilda Ormerod in Hull. However I always felt this dream was a long way off. Ann-Marie’s encouragement and total belief in me even before I knew I was applying for the course led me onto the right path. Personally I had been through a very tough time and doubted myself prior to the training. I seemed to find reasons that I wasn’t good enough, it was too much of a commitment, or that I would struggle to afford it financially, but I listened to my heart as something was telling me strongly inside that I HAD to do this course! From the first wonderful day of Ann-Maries training I knew I had done the right thing. From that first apprehensive day of meeting everyone and settling in, I expected that I would love the training. I wanted to not only just learn to teach but to deepen my own personal practise and understanding. I had no idea of what the reality of the course was going to mean to me and how it would completely change my life. Each weekend came and went, learning and experiencing far more than I ever imagined. The training gave me focus in developing my home practise which has changed my routine now for life. It also encouraged me to develop a daily mediation practise. Amiyoga training really suited me as it encompasses a wide range of learning styles. We didn’t just only learn about anatomy or posture, pranamaya, philosophy, anatomy and endless other aspects of yoga - but we FELT it, Ann-Marie enabled all the trainees to FEEL what we were learning. Either through our own bodies, models to touch and feel, a life-size skeleton (Stan), visual apps, teaching and learning from each other, reading and discussion. I would never have predicted how much knowledge I was able to retain. I also love that way that Ann-Marie encourages us as Yoga professionals to find our own voice and style and to ask questions. The first teaching experiences were nerve racking but as our group developed we all supported and helped each other through each milestone, each others releases and triumphs. We made amazing connections to each other in our group of trainees as the course progressed. It was a wonderful experience to have so much support with a group of such amazing and inspiring women. We made up our own ‘tribe’ and are still all very close after the training. Through our yoga ‘tribe’ and the support of Ann-Marie this course really effected my life in so many positive and unpredictable ways. I began to really let go of past difficulties, I learned to love myself again and follow my heart. We all laughed and cried and the experiences of those weekends in Hull have touched me deeply. I have since decided to leave my job as a primary school teacher and focus fully on Yoga teaching, I am excited to be on this journey and my dream is to set up a Community Yoga studio in Middlesbrough. I would never have had the confidence to follow my heart without the Amiyoga training. I feel extremely fortunate to have been part of this experience and can’t wait to start our Advanced training in September!

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