Our Trainees Speak

Our AHEM trainees blow us away with their eloquence, sincerity and intelligence. We love sharing what they have written and said about the course!


Rebecca Rothberg

Christine Waljeski

christine waljeski head

If you have been considering doing a yoga teacher training, I want to share this opportunity with you. I was looking to do a training two years ago. I literally stumbled upon the Awakened Heart, Embodied Mind course and something seemed so right. I signed up, completed it and everything I learned two years ago still serves me today in my daily life. I listened to my body (my gut, my intuition) and I went for it. I invite you to do the same!!

marlee delia headMarlee Delia wrote this article —her’s an excerpt:

In January 2015 I took the Awakened Heart and Embodied Mind 200hr Yoga Teacher Training with Hala Khouri, Julian Walker and Jay Fields at Exhale in Venice, CA. I learned the technicalities of yoga (asanas, muscle groups, chakras) the real foundations (how to sequence a class, how to teach for different populations, meditation and body awareness through somatic psychology), I found a community and most importantly found myself within it. 

The honest truth is that I didn’t feel ready when I started Yoga Teacher Training.

Was I was fit enough?

Had I done enough yoga?

Was I spiritual enough?

Would I fit in? 

Looking back on those questions they are all unimportant. You don’t need to be an expert and you definitely don’t need to be perfect. Here’s what you do need to do:

Read more…

Dennis Lyons

Charlotte Underwood


Tim Martin

The AHEM Yoga teacher training was a wonderful, enriching experience!  Julian, Hala, and Jay created such a warm and nurturing container for learning and experimenting, free of the judgement which could potentially hinder development of one’s young teaching voice, and encouraging of our own personal teaching styles, yet also grounded in constructive critical feedback.  An essential part of that nurturing container was the amazing group of students in our group, most certainly a reflection of the powerful forcefield of Love and balance formed by the union of Julian, Hala, and Jay.   Overall, AHEM is a very well organized and structured program that not only expertly teaches asana postures and sequences, but also brilliantly integrates the key ingredients of meditation, physiology, trauma/compassion, and social justice.


Sarah Thomas

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I am forever grateful that I was able to partake in awakened heart open mind, yoga teacher training. The teachings were life changing, I learned a lot about myself in a safe environment. Hala and Julian are very knowledgeable, grounded and open minded yoga teachers; both have authentic teaching styles and experiences. I highly recommend this training to anyone who views yoga as a healing tool and wants to learn how to teach yoga responsibly.


Laura Sharkey

laura sharkey headI feel so fortunate to have participated in the AHEM training. This training is special to me for a lot of reasons. First and foremost, Hala and Julian are both at the top of my list of authentic, ethical and compassionate yoga teachers; both also have the experience, technical skill and avid interest required to teach the next generation of teachers. (And although I don’t know Jay, I have no doubt that she is an excellent addition to the AHEM team.) The training is a “best of breed” blend, combining “traditional” yoga philosophy and practice with the modern science-based disciplines of psychology, neurobiology and anatomy/physiology. The teachings are grounded in critical thought, the importance of rigorous self-inquiry and shadow work, and an awareness of the role that unresolved trauma plays in our personal experience; the practice is about learning to live fully in the real world, rather than trying to escape from it. This philosophy requires a realistic yet spiritual curiosity about both the pleasant and unpleasant aspects of self, community, the world, and the ways in which they are all interdependent. As a yogi living with a chronic illness, I also greatly appreciate the expansive and inclusive perspective of the teaching, wherein the practice is approached as a framework for personal growth, rather than a boot camp requiring adherence to one-size-fits-all alignment. Through this training, I learned as much about myself as I did about teaching yoga, in a safe and supportive space held by these two amazing teachers. I would highly recommend this training to anyone who views yoga as a resource for personal growth and healing, and wants to learn to teach it responsibly, ethically and inclusively.

Dawn Marie

Mia Rue Robbins

mia rue headThrough participating in Julian and Hala’s teacher training, I accessed an alignment with my Self, anchoring my wisdom through physical practice and cultivating an ability to bring forth and embody my essence in service to myself and others. I felt supported and safe to stretch beyond my comfort zone and actually begin teaching. I received real and usable feedback that I could incorporate and build on and was given the opportunity to practice using this muscle in realtime. The community we formed as a class is still of great value and close to my heart.



Here is Sarit Rogers’ article “My Journey”

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This is Talia Kahan’s insightful perspective of the key points she wants to integrate from our training into how she will approach teaching yoga.





These are some short testimonial videos from our trainees. We asked either “what did you LOVE about the training?” or “why would you recommend the training?”