Without a doubt, my dharma is teaching. Besides being a yoga teacher, I have been a Spanish teacher for 23 years. My love for learning and for sparking love for learning in my students are my life mission.
– Marga Cava, Co-Founder and Owner of Align Amar Yoga
Marga Cava truly is a teacher’s teacher; she has dedicated her life to growth, transformation, “aha” moments, and helping students of all ages get excited about experiencing something new.
After many years in conventional classrooms, Marga opened her heart and mind to yogis who were ready and eager to learn from her. Today, she is fully immersed and fulfilling her dharma as the co-founder and owner of Align Amar, a beautiful studio located close to Route 18 in Tinton Falls, NJ. Maria’s studio offers alignment-based classes for all levels and abilities, 7 days a week.
Marga and her team of highly trained teachers are dedicated to sharing the therapeutic benefits of yoga so that all students can attain healthier, more peaceful lives. Amar means “to love” in Spanish and “eternal” in Sanskrit. It’s the love for yoga and a commitment to align with our best selves that has formed a truly supportive community at Align Amar Yoga.
We sat down recently with Marga for an interview about her life and work. Here is all the amazingness we discovered!
How long have you been practicing yoga and why did you start practicing yoga?
As a sophomore in high school, my family and I moved to a new town. I started taking modern dance and ballet classes. It was soon after that I began to feel tight and in pain. I happened upon a rare ad in the local ‘Penny Saver’, and ended up in the living room of a quirky middle-aged woman taking yoga classes. Yoga quickly became part of my life, as I found that it not only strengthened and relieved my physical body, but also untangled complicated emotions that came up in my life as an uprooted, misfit teenager.
Why yoga? How did you feel after your first yoga class?
I was lucky enough to stumble upon yoga at the age of 16. I really was not sure what to expect. After my first class I felt an incredible lightness and ease both in my body and my mind. It only took a couple of yoga classes to convince me that this kind of mindful movement was right for me: nurturing and healing.
What is yoga to you?
For me, yoga is an awesome gift! And I love to share my gifts. That’s why I teach! Yoga is a practice in paying attention. It has taught me to cultivate a witnessing awareness, as well as a compassionate presence that lets me stay present and not get sucked into strong emotional reactions.
Who is your greatest teacher?
My mother was (and is) my greatest teacher.
How would you like to “be the change you want to see in the world“?
I would like to help promote peace and wellbeing for those that surround us. I am a life-long student and hope to inspire others to continue their own journey to knowing themselves and awakening compassion and love for themselves and others.
Why did you decide to start teaching yoga?
Yoga had always been a very personal practice (maybe selfishly) and one day, I was asked to fill in for a class whose teacher was leaving. Soon after, I began to feel blessed to be able to share this cherished practice.
What led you to open your own studio?
I was a student and teacher at Dancing Foot Yoga for 15 years. I followed one of my greatest (and youngest) teachers there: Emily Huresky. DFY had wonderful teachers and a strong community of dedicated students. I practiced with some of my favorite teachers: Regina Grassia, Robin Candrea, Kat Grasso, Dina Crosta, Ellen Mosko, and other greats! I am forever grateful to each of them. When in 2013, Robin and Emily had to close the studio, some of the students and teachers decided to open another location. And lo and behold, Align Amar was born. Barbara Sager and I are so pleased to offer unique classes such as Limited Mobility Yoga and Nia Technique. We also have an incredible group of teachers that constantly inspire our students and me!
What style of yoga do you practice? Why?
I am accredited in Anusara Yoga and I have practiced and studied Iyengar, Vinyasa, Yin, and Kundalini. I love the art and science of teaching yoga. John Friend’s Universal Principals of Alignment make so much sense to me and serve as an extremely effective tool for my students to understand Hatha yoga. In addition, the Buddhist and Tantric teachings enrich our approach to life, both on and off the mat.
Share one of your favorite quotes with us.
I have so many but…. “Let the beauty that you love, be what you do.” Rumi
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