This morning I had the pleasure of sitting down with the lovely Johanna Rodriquez who runs South Beach as one of the most sought out private yoga instructors ! I consider her an inspiring teacher & a close friend- shes beautiful inside & out ! if you live in Miami or are visiting make sure to book a private with her on the beach !!
Me: Choose 5 words that you think describe you the best?
Jo: I’m Outgoing, Witty, Versatile, Communicative, Youthful, & very Lively !!
Me: I think that’s one more than 5 😉 but its cool we’ll let it slide… so where are you from? tell me a little about yourself ??
Jo: I was born in West New York, New Jersey and raised in Sunny South Beach. I have Colombian and Cuban roots – I grew up in a household where being spiritual was normal and encouraged. My mother was very influential in helping me grow into my own style and shaped me into the fashionista I am today while helping me maintain being grounded through my yogic lifestyle.
me: Wow you’re very lucky to have been introduced to this world at such a young age & to have grown up in a supportive household.. tell me whats your favorite green drink combination & what do you add in ?
Jo: juice- spinach, cucumber, kale, lime, ginger, pineapple, coconut water. smoothie- almond milk, avocado, kale or spinach, banana, bee pollen, macca powder
Me: bee pollen & maca powder are great suggestions- you got me hooked weeks ago ! They both really help to increase my energy ..so thank you ! What is your typical breakfast?
Jo: Ginger shot, Green Tea, 16oz Juice/smoothie, Greek yogurt with fruits and granola. Plus a cup of coffee when I need extra prana !!
Me: What is your typical lunch?
Jo: I have a lot of snacks during the day (nuts, berries, veggies with hummus). I eat whenever I feel hungry. I noticed that I eat the most after practice. For lunch I usually have another juice with a vegetarian salad or wrap.
Me: What is your typical dinner ?
Jo: I love soup and anything spicy… So I might eat Japanese or Thai. I’m not a picky eater necessarily.. I just don’t eat animals.
Me: It sounds like you eat very clean & healthy which I’m sure helps you in your practice.. What is your favorite yoga pose & why?
Jo: I love urdhva dhanurasana! Especially the drop-back sequence of the pose it opens my heart and back. And it shows me that when I fall back I’m letting go and by picking myself back up that I’m firmly grounded.
Me: What do you typical wear when your practicing yoga ?
Jo: I love practicing in Kino Yoga shorts, Lululemon bras… Laundry days I use bikini tops… I like to use color & prints and love headbands from yogitoes. Oh, I also love one piece suits and can’t wait for my friends organic yoga clothing line “YoGiiZa” to launch next year.
Me: What’s the last trip you took, where did you go ?
I just got back from Mysore, India where I stayed for a month practicing Ashtanga yoga in the source with my guru R. Sharatha Jois. I can’t wait to go next year! India has a beautiful energy that only you can experience there.
Me: I loved all of your pictures from Mysore their gorgeous !! I can’t wait to go there either !! Sounds so amazing .. How did you find yoga and how has it changed you?
Jo: Yoga found me when I was 16… I was reading the local newspaper and saw an add for free yoga at a seniors home. I went the following week and was hooked ever since. Yoga has changed me from the inside out! Everyday I awake I give thanks for yoga, I wouldn’t be who I am now if it wasn’t for the beautiful magic of yoga.
Me: I feel the same way about my path to yoga.. so what’s the best advice you have for someone new or wanting to begin yoga?
Jo: Go with the flow & don’t ever judge your practice.
Me: Do you have any spirtual or yogic quotes that you live by ?
Jo: My favorite is “The time to be happy is now, the place to be happy is here.” I have it tattooed going down my spine. I try to always live my life in the present moment.
Me: What are the best places to practice yoga in Miami Beach ?
Jo: Miami Life Center is my yoga home for my daily personal Mysore practice. I love The Standard Spa Hotel, Miami Beach when I want to practice Jivamukti with my teacher Jaya & take the whole day to relax at the pool or steam after practice. We can’t forget Synergy Yoga on Espanola Way; they offer everything you need from thai massage, kundalini yoga, and even sexy yoga 😉
Me: Miami Life Center is my yoga home too.. I can’t wait to try some of the detoxing hot yoga classes at Synergy. And I thought that your morning class at the Standard was great out on the deck ! Whats your favorite healthy Miami Beach Restaurant?
Jo: I like Juice & Java and Under The Mango Tree for juice/smoothie and acia bowls
Me: So what are your other hobbies & interests?
Jo: Beside yoga, I love fashion & art. When I’m not teaching or working at Avant Gallery. I enjoy attending volunteering, art, fashion, music events. I paint and reconstruct my clothes/jewelry whenever I have time off (not often)
Me: Any ALL NATURAL beauty rituals or secrets that you follow?
Jo: I love coconut anything! I do a coconut hair mask for 24 hours once a week. And right after showering I use pure coconut oil all over my body.
Me: I still use that coconut oil you brought me back from India, thanks so much ! I love it too ! How did you know that teaching was the next step for you?
Jo: I started by teaching kids yoga (it never crossed my mind to work with kids before) after working with kids for a while I wanted to get deeper into my practice and spread the word of yoga to everyone in the community.
Me: How do you connect with your students and what do you like to do differently?
Jo: My classes are meant to connect with the now and your inner self. I use uplifting spiritual tunes, scented candles, incense, and essential oils. I’ve been told I give the best savasana in town 😉 .. I fan and massage my students at the end.
Me: I LOVE your classes their the best !! So when your not teaching private lessons or directing Avant Gallery where can people take your classes?
Synergy – South beach
Mon kids yoga at 5pm / Gentle yoga for parents with Kiki at the same time
Wed kids yoga at 5pm
Sat kids yoga at 9:30am / Jivamukti with mateo at the same time for the parents
Sat Ashtanga at 11:15
Coming in January Fight Club– Downtown Miami– vinyasa flow at 7pm
Free hand hotel – beach yoga Sunday 11:30am– coming soon
Karma Yoga – south point park coming soon donation base
connect with Johanna: