WHY GO ON A YOGA RETREAT?
By: Bob Ferry, Tai Chi Instructor & Yoga Enthusiast
I was asked why you should go on a yoga retreat and my first thought was “because they are fun!”. Not to mention educational, relaxing, exciting, uplifting, and a great opportunity to meet like-minded members of your tribe. I have been to several retreats over that past few years and found them all rewarding. I have had the opportunity to discover other cultures and to experience deeply spiritual sites. I walked in the footsteps of my ancestors in Ireland and Scotland while experiencing ancient stone circles and the vibrations that still resonate from the ancient rituals. I have floated down the Ganges River with the Himalayan Mountains standing tall on both sides of me. I have walked through the ruins of Machu Picchu, totally amazed how the Mayans built up with their bare hands what we still can’t do today. I climbed to the top of the Crestone Ziggurat overlooking the mountain of the dragon and the Baca Grande valley. I relaxed at a tropical beach near Cancun and participated in daily yoga classes, not to mention experiencing some amazing and healthy meals. I have attended the annual Texas Yoga Retreat (now in its nineteenth year) several times. Held at an ashram outside of Austin, over a hundred participants experience ashram living and multiple classes with teachers sharing a variety of yoga styles and modalities.
The people that I have met on these journeys have been wonderful and I have made lifelong friends based on our shared experiences.
There are different types of yoga retreats you can find. Some last for many days and involve long airline flights and more travel. Some are much closer and may last just a weekend. What they all have in common is a commitment to providing the participants with an experience that will deepen their experience of yoga and meditation. The leaders of the retreat will try to provide you with all the things that are needed to make for a successful worry-free retreat, such as accommodations, transportation (once you are there), and meals. They also want to give the retreaters an experience that will resonate with them, opening a deeper understanding of the spiritual path that they are following.
Some retreats have specific themes, such as a writing retreat, an Ayurveda and yoga retreat, or a women’s only retreat. You can also find retreat centers where you can experience a solitary retreat in a wonderful area. An internet search of retreat centers around DFW shows several that you might be interested in. A scan of the events section of Facebook shows a few retreats being advertised, including retreats to Greece, Bali, and Thailand. Some of our local yoga studios offer retreats throughout the year.
After attending many retreats, I decided to organize a retreat to the spiritual community around Crestone Colorado. Me and my partner, Rica Potenz, have fallen in love with the beauty of this area and the spiritually charged energy it contains. We will be staying at the Joyful Journey Hot Springs Spa and visiting some of the over two dozen spiritual centers and communities in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains (that some say resemble a reclining dragon). Besides relaxing soaks in the healing hot springs water, we will include yoga,
qi gong, energy work, sound healing, dream interpretation, and hikes in the mountains. Contact me at email@example.com or Rica Potenz at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Whichever retreat you decide to join, your time, energy, and money will be well spent, and the benefits will remain long after you have returned home.