Commonly known in the Los Angeles yoga community as a straightforward and disciplined teacher, Emilie Perz uses a very hands-on approach and channels her strength to draw out a similar character trait in her students. She believes that yoga is a practice of whole body wellness and that we must achieve understanding of that connection to truly heal ourselves of life’s predicaments.
Emilie has extensively studied eastern philosophies abroad and fuses this exposure with her knowledge of physical anatomy and relationships with health practitioners to provide her students with unparalleled healing through yoga. In 2014, Tiffany Cruikshank appointed Emilie the position of Community Builder for her renowned yoga teacher training school Yoga Medicine.
Her Dive Deep in Puerto Vallarta Yoga Retreat will be held here at Xinalani this May 16-23, 2015. This unique retreat is about planting new seeds of intention and taking your practice to the next level, so we are thrilled to present you this interview with Emilie.
Xinalani: Thank you for taking the time to do this interview with us and allowing our readers to learn more about you and your Dive Deep in Puerto Vallarta Mexico Retreat. How did you find out about Xinalani Retreat and why is it important for you to bring your group to our retreat in Mexico, Puerto Vallarta?
Emilie: I was looking for a jungle-esque retreat center in Mexico that wasn’t next to any commercial real estate. My best friend Tiffany Cruikshank recommended Xinalani and said they also had amazing food.
Xinalani: What is the focus of your retreat here at Xinalani?
Emilie: Since Xinalani translates as “seeds” – this week’s focus will be on planting new seeds of intentions for our individual practice and lives. Our classes and meditations will focus around cultivating healthful and mindful change that can better serve us.
Emilie: My role in Yoga Medicine is very important and dear to me. I’m responsible for keeping our growing community of global teachers in contact with one another through advanced teacher trainings, weekend immersions and workshops with Tiffany Cruikshank. In addition, we offer our community many online resources such as private forums where we can stay connected and current to all the latest yoga developments in health & wellness.
Xinalani: When you first started with your yoga practice, how did you feel? Back then, did you think about bringing together all these people to follow your lead?
Emilie: Not at all. I started yoga to help recover from the tragic loss of my father at age 18. Yoga was something I did to make my life better, not something I did for a living. I never imagined my personal practice would evolve into a flourishing career. But I have to say, sharing this practice with others is my everything.
Emilie: My yoga practice is a reflection of my life and I would think that most people see me as a very loving, happy, outgoing person. I try to emanate love to everyone around me.
Xinalani: What is your favorite music and/or artist? Would you have recommendations for those who would like to find inspiration in music?
Emilie: I live in Los Angeles so I’m pretty obsessed with all music & art of my city. I would say LA street art influences my classes more than music does. I love noticing a new tag on a building or sidewalk. It’s all relevant to our current political/media state and it’s all pretty brilliant. This city is bursting in talent and my only dream is that we all get recognized for what we offer the world through yoga & media.
Emilie: My students.
Xinalani: What is your mantra today?
Emilie: My mantra today is “when one door closes, the entire Universe bursts open.” I’m currently in Chicago packing up my mother’s home of 26 years and am moving her to Los Angeles. It’s a big change, and it’s hard watching her shed tears of sadness in letting go. But above all, I’m reminded that this is a great opportunity for her and I.
Xinalani: What is your main goal for this Year 2015?
Emilie: To keep growing as a community leader. I want to cultivate change here in Los Angeles and then foster that same change around the globe.
Xinalani: If you could spread your love for life with the world what advice would you give from your own personal experience?
Emilie: At age 30, I decided to never pity myself again. Self-pity is wasted energy. Life is mega hard, but don’t let unfortunate setbacks ever get you down. Do what you can do to always make yourself happy. Always.
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