5th April-12th April & 14th April- 21st April 2015
Our spring elemental retreats will leave you grounded and revitalised......
I qualified in September 2013 from my Ashtanga training and September 2014 from my Yin training. My lessons will be a combination of Yang and Yin yoga taught from a very meditative, spiritual perspective. Students will be encouraged to treat each yoga class as a moving meditation, focussing on the breath and being fully in the present moment.
Minimum contribution of £350 per person.
Includes all accomodation, food, workshops, yoga and equipment. Not inclusive of flights and tranfers.
Your workshop programme:
Five Elements Yoga Retreat
“yoga chitta vritti nirodhah”
Yoga leads to the cessation of the fluctuations of the mind. At its core, yoga is an opportunity to calm our minds. As our mental chatter decreases, we gradually find space, opening up for new ideas and new ways of thinking. A healing, invigorating retreat exploring earth, water, fire, air and ether, the archetypal building blocks of our bodies, our energy and everything in existence. In addition, we will discover the chakras related to each element. You will be given the opportunity to quiet your mind and find inspiration. Traditionally yoga philosophy had a deep connection with nature and we will base our discoveries on the eight limbed path set out in the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali. The eight limbs are not so much a hierarchical path, rather eight interconnected facets, whereby focussing on one limb will inevitably affect the others aswell. The eight limbs emanating from the central core are as follows;
- yamas and niyamas; ethical precepts allowing us to live at peace with ourselves and
- asana; postures which keep the body strong, flexible and relaxed
- pranayama; breathing practices, the movement of prana/life force
- pratyahara; the drawing of one’s attention towards silence, rather than towards things,
withdrawal of the senses
- dharana; focussing attention and cultivating inner perceptual awareness
- dhyana; sustaining awareness under all conditions
- samadhi; return of the mind into original silence
Each day will begin with a silent meditation, followed by a dynamic flowing asana practice exploring one or more of the elements. Each day there will be an afternoon workshop, including discussions relating to the philosophy of the 8 limbs of yoga, introduction to Reiki, chakra work and more. The day will close with a yin yoga session and a guided meditation, such as chakra meditation, yoga nidra or others.
Day 1 - An Introduction; bringing together the concepts
Silent meditation to open the retreat space and bring ourselves fully into the present moment.
Dynamic vinyasa practice in the morning introducing some basic pranayama techniques.
Workshop/discussion introducing the concepts of the eight limbs of yoga and how we can link these to nature and the five elements & the chakras.
Evening Yin practice and guided metta (loving kindness) meditation to close the first day.
Metta meditation is used to increase positive mindstates such as patience, compassion and acceptance towards ourselves and others. Some more pranayama too.
Day 2 - Earth; a day of grounding
Earth, the base element, created using all the other elements, and thus can be perceived by all senses. Related to the first chakra - muladhara.
Silent meditation to open the day.
Dynamic Vinyasa practice focussing on creating a strong connection with the Earth and cultivating a feeling of grounding and security. Strong focus on standing poses, creating a feeling of stability, vitality. Introducing some of the concepts of the eight limbs. The yama associated with the root chakra and the element of Earth is aparigraha - non greed and the niyama is saucha - purity/cleanliness. Introducing alternate nostril pranayama.
Workshop focussing on acupressure/reflexology.. Looking at acupressure points, trying some yoga poses on the acupressure
mat. Further development of relationship to Earth element.
Evening yin practice and yoga nidra to close the day. Beginning to introduce pratyahara,the fifth of the eight limbs - withdrawal of the senses.
Day 3 - Water; Flowing through yoga
Water, the binding element. Bringing about change through fluid movement. Also associated with the second chakra - svadhisthana.
Silent meditation to open the day.
Dynamic vinyasa practice focussing on cultivating a feeling of freedom of movement.
Focus on wave imagery, spinal movements (cat/cow), hip opening, moving fluidly - like water. Feeling of sensuality in movements. Building of prana, the ‘energy shower’. The yama associated with the second chakra and the element of water is brahmacharya -
appropriate use of energy and the niyama is santosha - contentment.
Workshop - introduction to Reiki, discussion and showing of how to do a Reiki self
Evening yin practice and guided meditation to ground the energy and manifest the Water
Day 4 - Fire; building our inner fire
Fire, the transformative element. Our intention is to generate internal fire, agni, to maintain vitality. Fire is the element of the third chakra - manipura.
Silent meditation to open the day.
Dynamic vinyasa practice focussing on building internal heat - agni. Asanas targeting to core/abdominal area. Can explore some daoist movements, gathering/cultivating of prana/chi - Golden Seed routine. Introducing some more pranayama - kapalabhati perhaps or
more advanced alternate nostril pranayama. The niyama associated with the element of fire is tapas - fiery energy/heat.
Workshop - aromatherapy exploration
Evening yin practice and candlelight meditation furthering our exploration of pratyahara.
Day 5 - Air
Air, lightens the body and spirit. Air is the backdrop of our environment. Our intention is to bring about lightness through movement. Air is the element of the fourth chakra - anahata, the heart.
Silent meditation to start the day.
Dynamic vinyasa practice cultivating a feeling of light and smooth movements, backbends and heart opening poses. The yama associated with air is ahimsa - non harming. A focus on being kind to our bodies during practice.
Workshop - tibetan singing bowl sound bath and chanting or introduction to crystal healing.
Evening yin practice and guided meditation - sound meditation for heart chakra
Day 6 - Ether
Ether, the element of freedom. The ‘spiritual sky’, bringing us into an expansion of consciousness. The space from which our consciousness arises represents the mind.
Silent meditation to start the day
Dynamic vinyasa practice focussing on accessing space in the body and mind to allow for evolvement. Cultivating a feeling of curiosity and wonder while practicing; noticing the space between inhale & exhale, noticing the space created in your body after coming out of a posture, the space between your feet and hands as they touch the floor, the space behind you, to your sides and in front of you.
Workshop - bija mantra chanting or exercises exploring space. How we perceive space,using the different senses.
Evening yin practice and guided meditation, guided pranayama, directing our attention to the sound of the breath, listening to both gross sounds and more subtle ones too.