This Memorial Day Weekend won’t be about the thumping bass, thong bikinis, alcoholic beverages and leftover trash as Miami Beach is getting its first Kundalini Yoga Festival.
Mia Glick, a Kundalini yoga practitioner and the festival founder, has been working to make this event happen for the last year. She coordinated to have it fall on the same weekend as Urban Beach Week.
“I liked that it was a three-day weekend allowing people to fly in for the festival. It’s also going to be a drug- and alcohol-free weekend,” Glick said. “It gives people an alternative to what's currently offered. It’s a safe place for teens, for people recovering from addiction and families. I wanted to provide another option that was festive, celebratory and community oriented.”
The practice of Kundalini Yoga guides people on the spiritual path of finding one’s purpose and learning to listen to self-instinct. In Kundalini Yoga, a kriya is a series of postures, breath, and sound that work toward a specific outcome.
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Glick joined the practice back in 1996 under the study of Yogi Bhajan. Glick met with him to speak about a decision she was trying to make that would affect her modeling career and life. The conversation led her to one of her life’s most important decisions.
“I wanted to move to Colorado, but I listened to Yogi Bhajan and stayed in Miami and ended up meeting my husband here. He asked me why I wanted to move to Colorado, and I said because I loved the mountains and he looked at me and said, “Don’t you know the mountains are inside of you?” I never thought about that before,” Glick said. “Luckily I met my husband. He’s my soulmate, and he’s made my life so much better and because of his support, I was able to make this festival happen.”
Over the weekend, there will be more than 30 different classes and activities including a Temple Twerk Bhangra Dance, Kids Yoga, and Portuguese and Spanish classes. The celebration is also a music festival and will include food vendors, crafters, sacred chant singers and a kirtan concert.
Shweta Oza, who goes by her spiritual name Onkarjeet Kaur, is a Kundalini student and teacher who got into the style of yoga over a decade ago and believed in its healing properties. As a professional and after achieving personal accolades, she said she still felt like something was missing. After taking a class a colleague suggested, she found what she needed. Next Sunday she’ll be teaching a class on fears, using Kundalini Yoga as a means to turn the negative into empowerment.
“It’s not like I did yoga and everything in my life became beautiful, but I started having more fortitude within me,” Kaur said. “Kundalini Yoga was a gateway for me that allowed me to use it as an anchor and go through all types of modalities in life. Everything I was doing was to feel more empowered in myself and Kundalini Yoga became that anchor for me.”
Ana Pizzorni knows all about that anchor.
Pizzorni, who was about to become a first-time mother, was anxious and nervous about the changes to come. She started taking classes with Glick seven years ago and credits her with transforming her life and helping her find relief from her fears.
“The anxiety of pregnancy and post pregnancy and the unknown was challenging, and I think Kundalini Yoga opened me up to being a better mother and being more patient and dealing with my anxiety in a different way,” Pizzorni said. “I have to thank her. I’m very relieved that I met Mia because the practice changed my life completely.”
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If you go
▪ What: Miami Beach Kundalini Yoga Festival
▪ Where: North Beach Bandshell, 7275 Collins Ave., Miami Beach
▪ When: Memorial Weekend, 4 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday, May 28, and Sunday, May 29
▪ To purchase tickets: www.miamibeachkundaliniyogafestival.com/tickets