A retreat is a beautiful opportunity to dive deep into the philosophy and practice of yoga, learn more about the backgrounds and get insight into practices and techniques that often get a raw deal in open classes. In addition, you not only get to know yoga, but you will get to know yourself a little better. When we dive deep into the practice on the mat, we not only encounter restrictions or resistance in our body, but also in our mind. Mindfully working through the practice on the mat, we learn to equally observe ourselves and breathe through challenging situations in life and to find joy in the experience.
If that little intro wasn’t enough to convince you, here are some of the reasons, you should definitely go on a retreat:
Indulge in a positive atmosphere.
The participants of a yoga retreat might be there for different reasons, but they all have one thing in common: they want to feel good. Nobody is there to spread bad energy, instead they are looking for relaxation, joy and healing. And the teacher(s) and the staff are there to support you and make sure you have a lovely time. Expect to be surrounded by kind and loving people in a place far away from traffic, stress at the office and other unavoidable conditions of daily life.
Take time for yourself.
A retreat is different from other travel experiences. Your trip will mostly be organized for you, food should be provided and a convenient accommodation. You won’t have to take care of too many travel arrangements, cooking, cleaning, driving or anything else. This way you can fully focus on yourself and the experience. This means you will not only enjoy classes that provide tools and techniques for well-being and self-care, but even beyond that you will have the time in-between all to yourself. You can rest, read, talk to the other participants, enjoy the nature or other activates. Completely carefree and free of responsibilities!
Start or deepen your practice.
This is a chance for you to really learn about and indulge in the practice of yoga. There is plenty of time for different practices, in opposition to a 60- or 75-minute class. Spending a couple of intense days with personalized instruction by the teacher, maybe group or partner work, gives you input and time enough understand everything and actually progress in your practice, regardless of your current level. You will learn a great deal in just a few days, much more probably than you will over a long period of time of going to open classes just once or twice a week.
Make new friends.
Whether you join the retreat with a friend, your partner or alone, you can be sure to meet interesting and open-hearted people. It is a beautiful and easy way to make honest and inspiring connections and even form new friendships outside of contexts of work and party. Sharing movement classes, meditations, meals and other moments together is a completely different and profound way to get to know people. In my experience, a lot of retreaters finally dare to take a trip alone, knowing that once they arrived, they will be part of a community.
Establish healthy routines.
You get to stay in a safe space after class instead of heading right back out into traffic after a studio or gym class, allowing you to fully enjoy the effects of the practice. And these effects last even longer, often for days, weeks, some memories last forever. Plus: Retreats often include special nutrition and depending on the program other self-care practices. Learn how to meditate, get inspired by the healthy cuisine, take home your own yoga practice or adopt some of the heathy habits you learned during the retreat long term.
Discover new places, connect with nature.
Most yoga teachers and retreat organizers take great pride in providing the best experience and take the retreaters to carefully selected places, often in remote locations or equally curated within a city trip. What a beautiful way to travel to new places, whether it is right outside your city or in a country far away - there are endless options.