This is interview twelve of my traveling yoga teacher interview series.

Each month, I will post a new interview of a traveling yoga teacher I meet along my travels.

If you know someone who you think would be a great fit to this series, send me an Email!

I would LOVE to hear from you!

 

This Month Features:

Mara Lileas

Owner of:

NP Rock Yoga

 

Interview with Mara Lileas- Manager of: NP Rock Yoga

 

What type of yoga do you teach?

I teach a few different forms of traditional Hot Hatha yoga, vinyasa yoga, restorative yoga, and rock climber focused yoga.

 

Current favorite yoga pose you’re working on?

My favorite yoga pose is standing bow pulling pose, some traditions call it dancers pose. I can feel my whole body and I love that. But I’ve been spending a lot of time lately working up to handstand. : )

 

What are your three must have items while traveling?

~Special Night Time Clothes. These are separate clothes that you feel so comfy in and you can only wear them to sleep. They stay clean that way too!

~Reusable Liquid Container

~Journal. I’ve learned so much in all of my travels and having something to take notes in, draw in, write songs in has been amazing. Looking back at those journals has been really special.

 

What is something you learned on your first trip/job abroad that you think is key for other traveling teachers to know?

I learned that you will encounter lots of different types bodies when teaching yoga. What’s important is to really look at them, listen to them, have a conversation with them. There’s lots of right ways to do yoga, and lots of right ways to take care of ourselves. I think it’s important for us as instructors to encourage our students to develop a connection with their bodies so they build that instinctual intelligence of how to take care of themselves. It’s important for students to leave your class feeling safe and successful. The more we really look at them, listen to them, and connect with them, the easier it will be to help them achieve those things. It’s not about us, it’s about them.

 

What is the day in the life of a traveling yogi like?

When you’re on the move and have multiple classes in multiple places, it’s important to take time for yourself to get grounded before you teach.

Interview with Mara Lileas- Manager of: NP Rock Yoga

 

How do you handle transition or know when it is time to move onto a new opportunity that will serve your purpose as a teacher?

I think it’s always important to follow your instincts and intuition. When you get a feeling like something’s not right, try and meditate on it.

You know the right answer.

 

Tell me about your classes in New Paltz! What made you start this new journey?

A dear friend of mine opened this studio in 2012. She developed an amazing community. When I came back from South America they were looking for teachers and I was looking to get out of the city as much as possible so I started teaching here. The owners decided they didn’t want to run the business anymore and I didn’t want to see the business close so I took over. So far so good : )

Interview with Mara Lileas- Manager of: NP Rock Yoga

 

Where is your favorite place you have traveled to?

Patagonia was spectacular. Chile in particular. A really remarkable place. The wind in particular blew my mind, pun intended.

 

What should a first time traveling yogi know about the professional yoga life?

Be authentic. Be grounded in yourself, always. Teach about what speaks to you. Communicate honestly. That means you have to be willing to do that same deep self exploration you ask your students to do.

Interview with Mara Lileas- Manager of: NP Rock Yoga

 

What does your dream yoga position or career look like?

My dream yoga position helps me travel more. I plan to give this studio all I’ve got. Give it all of my energy so that hopefully it gets to the point that I can start taking people to other parts of the world. I’ll lead retreats that give us space to explore nature, other cultures, and of course yoga.

What meditation or mantra are you currently living by?

Kindness. I’m trying to approach life with as much kindness as possible. Kindness for myself. Kindness to others. Kindness to the plants and animals and universe around me.


Connect with Mara!

Interview with Mara Lileas- Manager of: NP Rock Yoga

Mara, originally from Youngstown, OH has been traveling and teaching for a combination of six years. You can currently practice with her in New York at Brooklyn Boulders and at her studio NP Rock Yoga in New Paltz, New York.