I’ve been a traveling yogi for 4 or 5 years now, and I came down to the Keys 2 years ago to see someone I was dating at the time. That didn’t work out, but I ended up staying in the Keys. That was just the catalyst to get me here!
What is a traveling yogi? Well, I’m from Gainesville, Florida, and I went to the University of Florida and studied exercise science. But I was already studying yoga. I think the movement of the body is good on so many levels, physical as well as the spiritual aspect. And, I was always interested in travel. My parents fostered that spirit in me, and as soon as I was old enough I started to go on small trips, and then bigger and bigger ones. I had some friends in New York City so I’ve gone up there to teach some classes, and I’m back and forth to the Bahamas a lot. I can teach anywhere, so that’s how it started; as a way to make money while traveling and pay for the trip. It has matured from there, with a more rigorous teaching schedule and hosting my own retreats. But I love coming back to the Keys between my trips. It’s where I touch down and regroup.
I’m proud that I haven’t been afraid to travel and get outside of my comfort zone. It has added quality to my life and I think will continue to add quality. I’m very happy with where I am. I feel like I’m affecting a lot of lives and that’s my goal…to inspire people. I’m also proud of the beautiful friendships I have in my life. I have been truly blessed with a wonderful family and inspiring friends and teachers. Every relationship I’ve ever had has created the life I live today, which I am proud to say is full of adventure, passion and happiness!
My retreats are my biggest highlights. I went to Costa Rica for my first yoga retreat when I was 18, and it changed my life. There was no electricity, we were just on a mountain top doing yoga and it really changed my perspective of what life is about. We are so much more than what our daily lives make us think we are. It opened my eyes and spurred on this desire to bring that experience to other people, which is why I host the retreats and teach yoga in places you wouldn’t expect like breweries! Yoga can be anywhere you are. That just means being connected and remembering to be yourself, and not be all the things that we get distracted by. I think that’s the reason I’m here, to teach that to people.
Usually my retreats are all inclusive with yoga, lodging, food and transportation, everything you need. In the Bahamas I rent a house and I bring a chef in for the meals. We all live in a house together doing yoga and connecting. I want people to be able to turn off their stressors and think about what it really means to be themselves right here in this moment without all the distractions, just being fully present in the moment.
Everybody needs to get a dog as great as mine. I have my Folly. He follows me around. He is amazing. He co-teaches all my retreats and he is at every yoga class I teach; he lays on my mat until I’m done. He has followed me around the world. Everyone should be lucky enough to have a dog like him.
If I could impart anything to people, it would be to encourage them to travel more, to be nicer, and to remember what it was like to be a younger version of themselves before they got distracted by reality.