Attending a weekly yoga class is great. You head along to your local studio, church hall, or community centre and for one hour you can forget about your to do lists. Stepping onto your mat, and being guided through breathing techniques (pranayama), yoga postures (asana) and then into a well-deserved relaxation (savasana) are some of the main highlights of a regular yoga class.
But you could get more out of your yoga, by attending a yoga retreat. And they don’t all have to cost the earth or be in beautifully exotic places. Local yoga retreats provide the opportunity for a little pocket of escape, without investing a lot of time or money in booking or travelling.
Preparing to go on a half-day yoga retreat should feel exciting, and possibly a little bit scary too. It’s like heading off on holiday to a place you’ve not visited before – you don’t know exactly what it’ll be like, but you know that you’ll have a great time.
Most day or half-day yoga retreats offer more than one yoga class, and will most likely include a variety of other activities to help you cultivate that much needed relaxation experience. In a few short hours, you can re-create the feeling of a holiday, returning home feeling refreshed, recharged and with a renewed investment in your yoga practice.
We all look forward to Fridays, because the weekend is right around the corner. There is nothing quite like that 5pm on a Friday feeling. But often our weekends are jam-packed with trips to supermarkets, visiting family and friends, or driving kids to their various clubs. The only time many of us make the weekend an opportunity to switch off, is when we have no other choice because we’re floored with an illness.
With all of these activities crammed into two days, 5pm on Friday freeness can rapidly turn into 7pm on Sunday sadness, as the weekend disappears in the blink of an eye.
A yoga retreat gives you the chance to hit pause on the weekend, and enjoy a few quality hours away from your regular weekend routine.
Learn something new
By dedicating a few hours to your yoga practice, you are creating the opportunity to deepen your knowledge and expand your experience of yoga. Perhaps the retreat offers a type of yoga which you’ve never tried before, or one that you’ve been desperate to have a go at.
But most yoga retreats take you beyond the class experience, with plenty of opportunities to learn more about yoga philosophy, start to build a meditation practice or simply to learn how to fit relaxation into your day.
Give it a go
What’s the worst that could happen? You meet some lovely new friends, learn some yoga postures you’ve not tried before and come away feeling lighter, brighter and ready to take your yoga practice a step further. So why not give it a go, come along to a half-day yoga retreat and see for yourself the wonderful benefits of a few hours dedicated to yourself?