Are you a yogi or a yogini?

By Aimee Hughes | Published: May 23, 2017

Are you a yogi or yogini? Have you been wondering what the difference is between the two terms? Let’s find out what they are.

Masculine and Feminine Energies

To put it simply, a yogi refers to a male master yoga practitioner while a yogini refers to a female master yoga practitioner. The term, yogi, stands for the masculine energy, while yogini stands for the feminine energy. (Learn more about feminine energy in How do I hold shakti?)

If you’re a woman and you’ve devoted your life to walking the spiritual path, then you’re also a yogini. Any woman who dedicates her life to mysticism and enlightenment can rightfully call herself a yogini.

Also a Religious Term

The yogi term also crosses spiritual traditions. Some of the more serious Buddhist practitioners refer to themselves as yogis, and if you’ve ever heard of the Jain tradition, male Jain ascetics also call themselves yogis.

Decide for Yourself

To call yourself a yogi or yogini is to consider yourself a rather serious practitioner of the great yoga tradition. You probably intuitively know that. If you’re a beginner at yoga, chances are you don’t consider yourself a yogi or yogini — not yet, anyway. (Learn why You May Be More Yogi Than You Think.)

I’ve been practicing yoga for nearly two decades now and I feel good in calling myself a yogini, but it’s taken a while. I like to call myself a yogini these days. It feels right, probably because it’s the one thing in my life (besides writing) that’s remained a driving force for so long. Are there themes in your life that you know will always play a major role? Is yoga one of them? Do you do some form of yoga — whether it’s a 20-minute morning flow or even just a five-minute meditation — every single day? Perhaps you’ve been attending yoga classes at your local studio every week for several years now. If so, you can safely call yourself a yogi or yogini! (Read on in 3 Signs You’re a Yogi.)


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Written by Aimee Hughes

Aimee Hughes

Aimee is a yogi and writer who's been practicing yoga daily for more than 21 years. Since a journey to India when she was 20, the practice has been her constant companion. She loves exploring the vast and seemingly endless worlds of yoga. Aimee has also written a book titled, "The Sexy Vegan Kitchen: Culinary Adventures in Love & Sex." You can find her at her new site:

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