Rony, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I graduated from College in 2008 when the market crashed. I had a difficult time finding a job and turned to yoga to help alleviate the stress and anxiety I had from transitioning into the real world. I eventually found a job in real estate and as my career flourished my dependence on my yoga practice grew stronger, as it kept me grounded and balanced. I got my 200-hour yoga certification and began to teach yoga on the weekends to share the benefits of yoga with the community. In 2012 I was so encompassed in my career that I needed to completely disconnect and unplug, so I booked a solo trip to Costa Rica for a yoga retreat. In 2013 I went back to the same retreat in Costa Rica and I led a 7-day retreat. I found myself going to Costa Rica once or twice a year because it was the only way I could unplug from the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles, until in April 2016 where I had this “ah ha” moment. I wanted to bring the same idea of a retreat locally to my hometown in Los Angeles. A way to unplug, practice yoga in nature, hike, eat nutritious meals and gain inspiration from a group of like-minded people were a small list of all the activities I had on my agenda. In 2016, I left my stress-driven career in real estate, purchased a Zen home surrounded by mountains and hiking trails and decided to open a retreat center to help others find their balance in life.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The road has definitely been bumpy. But through the bumps comes learning and experience. I am so grateful to be in the position that I’m in, and constantly remind myself to enjoy the process.
Please tell us about Yoga By Rony.
For a while, my specialty was private yoga sessions for couples. It’s almost like yoga therapy! I love seeing the dynamic of couples during their yoga practice and focusing on their specific needs that day. I still love my privates but transitioned into focusing on leading yoga retreats. I find it highly effective to abandon your phone and technology and turn your attention inward and outward into nature. I am most proud of watching the transition of my students after a day of relaxation and rejuvenation at the retreat center. What sets me apart from others is how much I care about my students and the safe and nonjudgmental space that is created.
Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
My favorite memory from childhood is time spent with my grandpa. He would pick me up from school and take me to the store to buy gummy bears. He taught me strong work ethic and had such a warm and kind heart. He suddenly passed away many years ago but my time spent with him are my favorite childhood memories.