We recently sat down with yoga instructor and owner of Live Love Maui, Lysha Kamisato Wernig to learn more about what she offers.
How and why did you start yoga?
I got my group fitness certification when I was 19, right out of high school. I was hooked on all the fast paced classes (which I still love) like spinning and body tone and kick boxing, but I was approached by a great friend of the family and a Master martial artist and yoga teacher, Jean Pierre Marques, who asked if I wanted to learn yoga. It took a bit of convincing because I wasn’t very flexible, but I decided to do it with the help of my dad, he was my student. I got my certification in 2002 and started teaching it . . . I fell in love.
Who was mentor when you first started? What one thing that you learned from them will you always remember?
This is a tough question because I learn something new from every class, everyone I come into contact with, every experience. But if I had to say one person as my mentor, that I will always look up to, it would be my Master trainer, Jean Pierre Marques, he inspires me every day just because of who he is, he teaches me more than the asana, he teaches me the essence of yoga, love and kindness, compassion and empathy… that yoga isn’t just a class, it is a lifestyle.
What is your mind set when you step onto the mat?
Every day our bodies are different and our bodies are different than every single person, which makes us unique and amazing. Some days we can hold the asana with no hesitation, our breath is even, our minds are focused and we are one with our body, but some days we can’t seem to get it together, our bodies ache, our breath is labored and our minds are on overload… and on those days we back off, we take a deep breath, we don’t get frustrated and we try again. This is what yoga is… it’s a practice and it forces us to leave our ego at the door and reach into the depths of who we are to grow… much like life.
What is the most rewarding part of being a yoga teacher?
I have studied yoga for many years, but experience is what has made me so passionate about this practice. I’m an only child and proud of it, I had the most amazing parents that supported everything I’ve ever wanted to do and I surely wasn’t an angel growing up. In my early 20’s my dad passed away and four years later I lost my mom and it was the hardest thing I’d ever had to endure, they were my first loves. The one thing I did have was myself and my teaching. I could use this to fuel my passion, to share it with others who feel lost or abandoned or are grieving. So the most rewarding part of being a yoga teacher is being able to have all different people come into my class, at all different levels, with all different things going on in their lives and them leaving my class being completely present, completely blissed out and knowing that they can do anything they want. In one hour… I can do that. It’s breathtakingly beautiful.
What is your favorite quote pertaining to yoga?
This is a tough one because I end every class with a quote. The one that I use a lot and doesn’t pertain to just yoga is this . . . “The person in life that you will always be with the most, is yourself. Because even when you are with others, you are still with yourself, too! When you wake up in the morning, you are with yourself, laying in bed at night you are with yourself, walking down the street in the sunlight you are with yourself. What kind of person do you want to walk down the street with? What kind of person do you want to wake up in the morning with? What kind of person do you want to see at the end of the day before you fall asleep? Because that person is yourself, and it’s your responsibility to be that person you want to be with. I know I want to spend my life with a person who knows how to let things go, who’s not full of hate, who’s able to smile and be carefree. So that’s who I have to be.”
-C. Joy Bell C.
What do you love most about using Maui Elegant Tan?
I love that I get that beautiful golden glow without having to lay in the sun and risk the sun damage. It helps that Wendy is amazing and you just want to be around her.
*Photos courtesy of Erica at TAIT Photography Maui.