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Abhaya Yoga’s Tara Glazier

Urban Wellness Clinic got on the mat this week with Abhaya Yoga‘s Tara Glazier to get her perspectives on the practice and find out how this Brooklyn game changer lives her passion.

UWC: Your path to yoga was…?

Tara: My first experience was at a dance festival in college in 1999. I had no idea what it was all about then, but it piqued my curiosity. My practice developed into a serious physical practice at Jivamukti in New York where I was practicing twice a day. I fell in love with the non-competitiveness and the solace it gave me. I wasn’t raised religiously or spiritually, so yoga exposed me to kirtan and philosophy, and an element of mystery and mysticism thru the yogic philosophy.

In 2001, I completed teacher training at Atmananda. At the time I was recovering from a serious back injury, and I realized how I needed to further my knowledge of proper alignment and find a clearer sense of how to create space in the body. I began practicing with Elena Brower and Zhenja LaRosa at Viryaoga in 2002 and immersed myself into the process of getting certified in Anusara Yoga. I’ve found that life pulls us in different directions, and that it becomes a beautiful process when you learn to be attentive to your body’s needs.

UWC: What was your teaching experience like before opening Abhaya?

Tara: I was teaching full time in New York, in about 4-6 different studios in a given year while also teaching privately in Manhattan and Brooklyn.  I call this time of my life the “yoga hustle.”  I was also a traveling yoga teacher, leading yoga retreats around the world… Costa Rica, Bali, Ibiza. Through my travels, after a certain point, I realized I wanted a home base to train teachers and create a supportive community for them to share their teachings.

Yoga Instructor Tara Glazier

UWC: What is your morning ritual?

Tara: I could never leave home without my toothbrush and toothpaste – I brush four to five times a day! When I wake up, I drink hot water with mineral clay terramine to detoxify, use a tongue scraper and have honey with black pepper to get my digestion going. I also occasionally do water, cayenne, lemon and turmeric cleanses. Then it’s preparation for teaching, school and my daughter, Samaya.

UWC: Your typical diet is…?

Tara: Full of nourishment and balance. I do two cleanses a year to recalibrate my body with an Ayurvedic approach to how I eat. I’ve tried raw and all vegetable diets but have found a greater vata balance when I eat some meat. I avoid sugar and gluten as much as possible. I love cooking at home and focus on earthy foods like quinoa and dark leafy vegetables for my vitamins and minerals.  I also believe in moderation and enjoyment.  I try to not get caught in a dogmatic diet but to follow my inner wisdom.  Sometimes there is nothing better for your soul than a piece of pizza, chocolate cake or a glass of wine.

Abhaya Yoga Instructor Tara Glazier

UWC: Your favorite restaurant is….

Tara: Gran Electrica in DUMBO for the guacamole and ceviche.

UWC: How do you stay active these days?

Tara: I used to practice yoga for three hours a day, but since having my daughter, I now fit in the yoga practice when I can by practicing at home, at the studio, and salsa dancing two times a week ( which I consider one my “practices” not only for fitness but for wakeful, conscious, moving meditation). I also do chi gong exercises and meditation at home.  I certainly don’t have an issue being active with a toddler, a business, and life as a teacher and teachers’ teacher!  If anything, I have to carve out time for quiet and stillness.  My yoga practice has shifted from a serious physical practice to embracing the yoga in my day to day moments.

UWC: Some of the exercises you’re playing around with right now…

Tara: My current focus and interest is on meditation practices as inspired by my teacher Adyashanti.  His non-dual teachings have allowed me to truly experience a deep presence and connection.  My hope is to bring a greater sense of openness and easeful-ness to teaching and life in general.  In terms of yoga asana, I am practicing finding ease through relying on the architecture of the bony structures.  Also: Salsa, yoga nidra, and I’m studying the endocrine system and subtle body. I’m also looking at how philosophy unfolds in the body. I’m interested in how the essence of the universe expresses its truth in the body, and in Bhakti, tantric thought, and spandakarika.

Check out Part II of our interview with Tara where she gets into the depth of her practice and vision for the future.