Lightrail Yoga Teachers
Our outstanding teachers are the core of our community. Certified teachers, each of our instructors is committed to deepening their studies, growing as teachers and guiding their students along the path of self-discovery. They are inspired by and instruct from their own practice — experimenting, innovating and sharing with you what they discover.
Benjamin Smielowitz’s upbringing in a tight-knit Jewish community in New York instilled him with a curiosity about spirituality which eventually led him to begin searching for more purpose and meaning early on in his life. In his 20s, he began studying meditational practices in Brooklyn, and it was through these experiences that he serendipitously found himself in the studio of Sri Dharma Mittra at The Dharma Yoga Center in NYC. There, he was an assistant and an apprentice of Sri Dharma Mittra and came to understand much about the scientific and spiritual resonance of yogic practices. He received his E-RYT 200 and 500 certification from The Dharma Yoga Center in NYC.
More about Benjamin:
Radha-Krishna Lila (Cristiane Silva) is a native Brazilian who after receiving her law degree at UFRJ, decided to forego practicing law to pursue her passions through a career as a professional dancer and dance teacher. She first encountered yogic practices through the teachings of Bhakti Yoga where she fell in love with mantra and song. At the time, Radha was a professional dance teacher and dancer who toured internationally to Japan, Korea and the USA. It wasn’t until her career brought her to the US that Radha began to deepen her yogic practices by studying Hatha Yoga at Prana Yoga in Miami. In 2009, she encountered the renowned master yogi, Sri Dharma Mittra, whom she began to study closely with. Under his guidance, she received her E-RYT 500 certification from The Dharma Yoga Center in NYC.
Born and raised in Cuba, Carmen’s childhood passion for athletics went from diving to gymnastics, to Track & Field, then from tennis, basketball, judo & aikido to dance. As a teenager, the discipline of Tai Chi kindled something in her that ignited when a friend gave her a book on the spiritual practice of yoga, and that book changed her life. She practiced for more than five years with that book alone, using her own strength, curiosity and creativity to forge a strong personal practice. The first time she experienced a group yoga class was at Dharma Studio in 2010, and she has never stopped evolving as a yogini. She became certified through the Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centre in the Bahamas, studied with Sri Dharma Mittra, and traveled to India to study Kriya Yoga at the Yoga Vedanta Forest Academy of Rishikesh. Today, as a teacher, she leads her students through an organic bland of movement, breathing exercises and yoga philosophy in order to build physical strength, endurance and alignment while relaxing the mind and balancing the body from the inside out. Carmen’s approach to life and yoga is forthright and honest; she is as disciplined as she is light-hearted, and she imbues her classes with a grounded sense of personal freedom.
To learn more about Carmen, check out CarmenAnaYoga.
Born in Dominican Republic and raised in Puerto Rico, Natalia is a Caribbean soul at heart. She found her love for movement and dance at a very young age, and trained in classical dance, ballet, jazz and flamenco. She has been practicing yoga for more than 15 years and began her yoga practice in 2001, while taking extracurricular classes in high-school. Part tech business strategist, part spiritual wellness fanatic; Natalia holds an MBA degree from the University of Miami and is also a certified Yoga Instructor, IIN Health Coach, Reiki Level III Healer, and more importantly mother of two boys. She completed her first 200hrs in 2009 with Rina Yoga and is now a Rocket Certified Teacher having completed 100 hrs with David C. Kyle from Ashtanga Yoga Puerto Rico in 2017. She is a firm believer that our thoughts shape our reality and that together we can co-create a more conscious society. She brings a sweet voice and open heart to guide others through their practice.
Paula, is a true believer to build movement into your life!
She has been in the fitness industry since 2008. As a certified personal trainer she has been training clients getting them not only fit ,but educated them to use their bodies mindfully. With an extensive knowledge of anatomy she started practicing yoga to connect more deeply and in different way with her body and mind. Her true love for yoga started to flourish, completing her RYT200 with Lightrailyoga becoming an avid student of Radha and Benjamin.
Her classes combined a creative sequences, a spirit of playfulness and a dose of inspirations to move freely. Either you are 20 years or 90 years old, she will awake your inner athlete finding your freedom on movement, nurturing your body and reclaiming your magic.
Alicia La Grave
Alicia's first encounter with yoga was 16 years ago and was a visual one. Looking through gym windows, she felt an immediate connection without knowing that it was yoga, her new passion to come. Since then, she has been practicing and exploring different yoga styles, such as Anusara, with the late Peter Barber and Luciana Feltrin, and Skanda Yoga with Ken “Anand” Von Roem lll and Lina “Sadhana “ Vallejos. In 2010, she completed her 200 -Hr certification at Yoga Mukta with Bonnie Guevara. In 2017, she completed her 300-Hr certification at Lightrail Yoga with Radha Krishna Lila and Benjamin Smielowitz. Her teachers have left a monumental mark on her lifestyle. This has grounded her physically, emotionally, and spiritually. As a wife, mother, and a grandmother of four, she has the heart and the undying willingness to give and to share her knowledge and experiences with yoga. Born and raised in Venezuela, from Chinese descend, Alicia feels genuine joy exploring all the aspects of yoga. She honors the unique characteristics and capacities of each individual and consequently demonstrating that yoga is, in fact, for everyone, and that its benefits should be experienced by all. For Alicia, all these years of yoga practice have brought amazing personal achievements. Now, her journey goes on with the intact enthusiasm of the first day.
Objective: To develop a path as a yoga teacher in order to help others to bloom in their own experiences and paths. Teaching with knowledge, responsibility and curiosity to people how to realize the importance of living a healthy and spiritual life.
Kennedy Park/February 2016 to current
Vinyasa flow, Sundays 10:00am. Guiding a yoga practice open to all levels. The class start with a few minutes of yoga philosophy conversation with the students, and then the physical practice.
Vita Studio/February 20017 until July 2017
Gentle yoga stretch, Fridays 7:00pm. Guiding sequences focused on stretching and strengthening the muscles holding the poses for longer breathings. During the classes I focused on alignment and give the students the opportunity to relax their bodies in more basics poses. This class it was designed for yoga beginners and people with lesions.
Yoga Wisdom Training Workshop, with Doug Keller. Farmington Hills, Michigan, April 26-30 2017.
Certification 200 Hour Yoga Teacher Training with Rina Jakubowicz. Miami, Florida, December 2016.
Master Degree in Investigative Journalism. Florida International University, December 2009.