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The Awesome Benefits of a Yoga Retreat

3 June 2013

What is a retreat? It’s a quiet or secluded place where you can rest and relax.

What are a YOGA retreats: Quiet and secluded places where you can rest, relax, eat healthy, gain knowledge, insights, personal strength and PRACTICE YOGA.

Is your daily routine getting you down? Have you ever wondered what might happen to you and to your life if you would just make the time to retreat to a place where you’re offered delicious, nutritious food and someone leads you in daily yoga and meditation practice? Where you’re in the company of other like-minded/like-hearted seekers of truth, love and beauty? Once you’re on a yoga retreat (or yoga holiday, as they’re sometimes called) all your regular daily obstacles will be gone and your day to day hassles will be put on hold, while you’re hooked up to a program that offers solutions for you when you return, so that your “normal” daily routine will have some pizzazz, a new energy and a new and refreshing feel. You’ll return rejuvenated and recharged and with a whole new attitude, plus you’ll be feeling energy you haven’t felt since you were a kid.

Most yoga retreats take place in very special (and secluded) corners of the world (like National Parks, remote beach areas, or camps in the mountains), special places where time seems to slow down, providing a new and insightful perspective. If you’ve never had the opportunity to participate in a yoga retreat (or even if you have) and/or you feel your practice could use a bit more spark, your adventure is not as far away as you might imagine, why put it off, with a little planning you can make it happen! This unique type of getaway tends to bring like-minded/like-hearted seekers of truth, love and beauty together and creates a fertile ground for awakening the miracle that is you. A yoga retreat will affect you physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, basically producing a profound and positive effect on your entire being.

Retreats provide a break from your normal routines and time to focus on releasing, discovering and applying new found tools. Retreats that are well constructed allow for personal attention given to your own specific areas of need. This personal attention gives you a tool box filled with plenty of options. There is nothing more inspiring then returning from an experience empowered with new found strength. The power gained on a yoga retreat continues to help you as you return to your regular daily life with a new set of tools to release pain, regain strength, and find deep rest and peace plus you’ll be able find and open doors to possibilities where there were just blank walls before.

There are times on a Yoga retreat when adventurous activities like hiking, biking, swimming, kayaking, etc. are offered and other times when silence is to be observed while doing cooperative communal service. There will be new dietary experiences to taste and enjoy, learning to practice “Ahimsa” (non-injury to others) while savoring plant based foods – both raw and cooked. There may be a time for cleansing/detox and giving the body a break from un-healthy habits.

On some retreats you’ll be surrounded by beautiful settings, while on others you may focus on sensual pleasures like massage, energetic healing or bodywork. A Yoga retreat may involve early morning meditation to stop the constant chatter of the mind. Also, there’s Vipassana (insight meditation) for those interested in self-reflection or looking for a more spiritual experience. There may be instruction which will help you learn Pranayama and other advanced breathing methods.

What kind of people go on Yoga retreats?

∙ Some are young; others are elderly (and all in between).

∙ Some are loose and flexible, while others are a stiff as a board.

∙ Some may be exhausted or at a crossroads in their life.

∙ Some simply want a chance to get away from it all.

∙ Others want to take care of just themselves for a change.

Here are a few of the most common reasons people go on a yoga retreat:

∙ Deepening an existing practice

∙ Restarting a practice that was dropped

∙ Testing the waters (if you’re new to Yoga)

∙ Finding a new direction in life

∙ Meeting new, exciting people

When you leave your daily routine and go for a yoga retreat, you set the stage for:

∙ Stress and pain relief

∙ Deep Rest

∙ Increased knowledge and understanding

∙ Greater appreciation for all things

∙ Diet improvement with delicious healthy food

Tip: Knowing exactly what kind of experience you’re looking for before signing up will help ensure you pick the retreat perfect for your needs. Selecting retreat with a time frame suited to your schedule is also important; whether it’s a day retreat, a few days, a week, or even longer. And, perhaps most importantly, it is always recommended that the retreat you select is lead by certified yoga instructors who are prepared to work with you at your skill level. Spending intimate time with an experienced yoga teacher is one of the most potent opportunities for change available today; being a mixture of instruction and inspiration, it will guide you toward being a more authentic and powerful human being.

In conclusion: Yoga retreats are the latest trend in yoga where you will be able to gain many profound benefits beyond those found when participating in a few hours of yoga sessions or classes. Those who attend such retreats and are guided by a yoga master, report experiencing a silent, inward revolution; one that produces a conscious growth and outward “evolution” of their body and mind. Contrary to the general belief that yoga is limited to an individualistic practice, a yoga retreat allows you the opportunity to explore the social aspect of yoga. Plus, the closeness to nature and having the time and opportunity to re-examine your motivations, goals, and beliefs helps you to become re-united with yourself and the awesome person you really are, both when you’re alone and in the company of others.

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