Teacher Spotlight: Zara Gardner

Where are you from originally? I grew up in South Dakota, but lived in Minneapolis Minnesota for years.  
 
What brought you to LA? My husband was invited to join a studio in LA.  We had been wanting to move to California for so long.  We were so excited for the opportunity.
 
How did you get into yoga? I was skating competitively and wanted to work my body and mind a different way.  I had taken yoga in high school and remembered that I liked it so I started to work it into my routine.
 
How long have you been practicing yoga? My first class was 18 years ago, but I became more dedicated about 10 years ago. 
 
What is your favorite thing about yoga? It has taught me strength of mind as well as body.  Like so many, I entered yoga through the door marked physical, but the mental benefits have been so profound. I look at the world completely differently now.  I have deeper peace and satisfaction.
 
How did you decide you wanted to teach? I wanted to share yoga with everyone in the world! I wanted everyone to enjoy the benefits I was enjoying.  I imagine if more people can love their bodies and lives on a deeper level, the whole world benefits from that joy.
 
Where did you do your teacher training? In Minneapolis I participated in multiple Life Power Yoga teacher trainings with many teachers. I also lead teacher trainings which helps to keep expanding knowledge and growth.  
 
How long have you been teaching? 4 years 
 
If you weren’t a yoga instructor what would you be?  Teaching yoga is the best,  but I would love to have someone pay me to ride motorcycles or sing in a band as well.
 
Do you do  any other forms of exercise? I love roller skating, biking, hiking, running and barre classes. I have an on and off relationship with snowboarding and weights.   
 
Do you have any other healthy habits or tips that you want to share? Being vegan feels really good in my body and heart.   If that feels extreme, I would say don’t feel like it has to be all or nothing.  Every time you eat a plant based meal it makes a positive difference.  It’s okay if you are not looking to commit 100%. You probably already love many foods that are free of animal products.  Just do what feels right for your body.
 
What do you like most about teaching at sweat? The community is really special.  The students and teachers are so strong and enthusiastic. Everybody is so welcoming.  It is so cool to see people having so much fun when they are at Sweat.   I have been to so many studios in the LA area and the Sweat community really stands out and is extra awesome!
 
What is one thing you can’t leave home without?   1 thing?! I usually have so much stuff with me. My cellphone is #1 though.
 
What book are you currently reading? Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig
 
What is a quote you live by? Be excellent to each other!  (it’s from Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure). 
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