After making the decision to depart her native country of South Korea, Jihee Choi settled down in the Netherlands, where everything was entirely new to her. Having to learn a new language, assimilate to an entirely new culture, make new friends, and create a new life for herself was certainly no easy feat. Apart from all the major changes taking place in her life, Jihee also worked at a logistics trading company where much of her day consisted of hunching over a computer screen. She began suffering from chronic back and neck pain, along with rounded shoulders. Unfortunately, it was not only her physical health that was impacted; Jihee began developing stress-related conditions, including digestive problems and unceasing fatigue. Feeling overwhelmed, she became set on finding a healthy outlet that would relieve her stress. Yoga proved to be just the outlet she needed.
Before practicing yoga, Jihee admits that exercise was a rarity in her life. However, she found that practicing yoga consistently actually helped tremendously in improving her once-unrelenting pain and stress. She was also elated to find that any time she needed a recharge or surge of energy, yoga always did the trick. Once yoga became a fixture in Jihee’s lifestyle, she came across a yoga studio in Rotterdam that allowed her the opportunity to work as a “karma yogi.” In exchange for free classes, Jihee did her part in maintaining the studio. This included wiping yoga mats down, making sure that the beverages were always flowing, and assisting other students. The perks did not end at free classes: the experience taught her a great deal and provided her with extensive insight and understanding of what it takes to manage a yoga studio. When the Rotterdam studio introduced a workshop exclusively for their karma yogis, Jihee was eager to attend. The major highlight of this workshop was an important one: after participating in a “moving meditation” exercise that entailed vibrationally shaking one’s body to expel all tension buildup, she found herself moved by the experience. This auspicious workshop changed the course of her life, and marks the moment when Jihee made the decision to make yoga her full-time job.
Since this life-altering event, Jihee successfully completed a 200-hour yoga teacher training program and has been a certified yoga teacher since 2019. From there, she has completed an impressive number of teacher training programs, including Pilates, Chair Yoga, Barre, Kids’ Yoga, Mindfulness, and Yin. Just this year, Jihee officially earned her Ashtanga and Vinyasa teacher training certifications. We’re incredibly inspired by all she has accomplished in these past few years, and we’re sure she won’t be slowing down any time soon!
A few fun facts, Jihee edition:
- Her favorite yoga style is Yin; when she’s feeling stressed or tired, Jihee’s immediate go-tos are Yin and Restorative yoga classes. However, her favorite yoga style to teach is Vinyasa!
- Favorite yoga pose: Child’s Pose. Although she has many favorite poses, Child’s Pose has never failed her when she needs a recharge or a relaxing break.
- She would love the chance to travel to India, where her first order of business would be to learn Kundalini yoga.
- She’s the mama to an adorable pup named Mingki! Mingki is a big fan of Downward Dog Pose.
We hope you all enjoyed learning about Jihee as much as we did! She’s a wonderful testament to how yoga can greatly improve one’s quality of life, and how powerful this practice can be when we are dedicated to it. We’re so excited to have her onboard as a MixPose instructor, and can’t wait to see what she accomplishes next!
Check out Jihee’s MixPose class schedule, and help us welcome her to the community!