“She is always compassionate, understanding and selfless; a wonderful person to learn from and be inspired by. If you join her classes, you’ll see why she is such a popular yoga teacher.” That’s how Elixr founder, Richard Chew, describes our newly appointed Head of Yoga, Martine Allars. Dynamic and engaging, Martine has been teaching for over 20 years, studying in India, Bali, Australia, Hawaii and Thailand. An integral part of the Elixr team for the past 10 years and with over 16,000 hours of teacher training under her belt, we caught up with her to find out more about her yoga philosophy and what she has in store for 2019.
1. What do you love most about yoga? How has it impacted your life?
My favourite thing about yoga practice is the act of showing up. In the world we live in, there is so much focus on how things look instead of how they feel. I love that yoga reminds me to be in my life, instead of being a passenger. Yoga has impacted every area in my life, every choice I make is framed by my practice.
2. You’ve been at Elixr for almost 10 years. What do you love most about being part of this team?
Elixr has the most wonderful students, team and atmosphere. It really is a place where people can come to focus on being well.
3. Your classes are incredibly popular. What’s the secret to your success?
That’s very flattering. I honestly believe that as a yoga teacher you are only as good as your class. I just focus on turning up and making sure that I give the students what they might need that day. The only thing I want from the class is to make everyone feel better.
4. As the newly appointed Head of Yoga, what’s your vision for Elixr Yoga?
My priority is to make Elixr Yoga a real shala experience. I’m focusing on real practice, with teachers who do ongoing study and live the life. Over the next year, students will benefit from a schedule that offers more experience, more love and more quality.
5. On that note, what changes can members expect in 2019?
There will be 11 new classes and 12 inspiring new teachers. In terms of our schedule, 90% of our classes will be taught by teachers with more than 10 years’ experience (most with 20 years), while the remaining 10% will be taught by the bright new teachers of the future. There will be some more traditional classes with clear focus, and students can also look forward to Fundamentals, a fantastic class for recovering from injuries and working on technique.
6. What are the key ingredients for a successful yoga class?
I think there are just two: show up completely and love it.
7. What’s your favourite yoga pose and why?
It changes, but these days it’s my meditation seat. I love the quiet and calm that comes from being still and present.
8. As an experienced yoga teacher, how do you deepen your own practice?
I constantly study and practise. I seek out teachers ahead of me on the path and just keep digging.
9. What’s a personal goal you’d like to achieve in 2019?
The goal I always revisit is balance, love what you do, but love where you are too. I do my best to treat every day as if it’s my last.
10. What’s something we don’t already know about you?
In a former life, I was a nationally ranked tennis player considering a career as a pro.
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