The word “retreat” is usually referred to as activities related to spirituality. On a retreat, we withdraw from our routine to reconnect with something more divine, whether it’s nature, a higher being, or ourselves. On a yoga retreat, you can focus more on body and mind healing. As you know, yoga itself is a journey that focuses not only on physical fitness but also a healthy mind. So, yoga retreats promise a lifetime experience if you know how to make the most of it. Let’s take a look at things you can do to have the best yoga retreat experience!
1. Prepare everything well!
The first thing that may seem trivial yet important is getting started! This includes preparation. Be it your first or the umpteenth time joining a yoga retreat, preparation is always an important step. One of the things to note is where the yoga retreat will take place. How far and how long to get there? Make sure you have enough time set aside.
Bring stuff to make it easier for you during your trip. Don’t forget your basic needs, such as your personal equipment. Bring yoga clothes that are comfortable to wear. Even though some retreats provide yoga mats for rent, we recommend bringing your own to ensure comfort and cleanliness.
2. Choose the best schedule
Do not let your routines interfere with your yoga retreat, and likewise. You don’t want to spend your meditation time worrying about your work. It’s best to pick a yoga retreat that takes place when you’re least busy so it won’t hurt to leave your work behind. The purpose of participating in a yoga retreat is to relax and refresh your mind. Wrong timing will hinder you from all of these benefits.
3. Set your purpose of joining a yoga retreat
What is your purpose in participating in a yoga retreat? What type of yoga do like? Do you need physical exercise only or do you also need to find inner peace? These are some of the sample questions to help you set your own goals. These also help you decide which of the yoga destinations to choose.
4. Focus on yourself
How does focusing on yourself help you get the best yoga retreat experience? Going on a yoga retreat is like attending a symposium, where you get to learn with others. The first day may feel the hardest, especially if this is your first experience attending a yoga retreat. This is okay. Just focus on what’s being taught and shared. Remember why you’re on this journey, be it mind relaxation or looking for new experiences. Listen to what the instructor says - what to do and what not to do. But keep in mind that yoga is not a competition. Be sure to listen to your body as it tells you what it can and cannot do. Also, take care of your health during the whole retreat. Don't sleep too late and don’t forget to stay hydrated.
5. Ask the instructor through a one-on-one session
If this is your first yoga retreat experience, one on one meeting options with an instructor can help. Either through an extra session at the beginning or end of the retreat, or perhaps through a quick session in between. You can ask what needs to be fixed, or even your progress in detail. Through one on one session, you can ask questions specifically. Don't be shy to ask as long as it helps you grow.
And if you’re at the beginning of your yoga journey, take this chance to ask what type of yoga would be best for your conditions. Most instructors wouldn’t mind sharing various things related to yoga activities such as what to eat before and after yoga, or what books to read to enhance your experience.
6. Make friends
In a yoga retreat, you’ll find many like-minded people. So, do take time to interact with fellow members of the community. It will help you enjoy group activities even more! Take advantage and get involved the best you can. You can exchange ideas, related to yoga or anything else. Start the conversation by sharing or asking tips on doing yoga itself. Who knows, you may end up having lifelong friends!
7. Low expectations
Not expecting too much will help you get the best yoga retreat experience. When it comes to joining something new and big, excitement is inevitable. So, it’s common to have high expectations, not just on what the retreat has to offer but also on ourselves. Of course, you may look forward to having fun and taking home all the benefits. But you should always prepare yourself for the unexpected.
So go in there with low expectations. Appreciate the small things and breathe in all the positivity they may bring!
Bonus tips: it doesn’t end even after the retreat is over
Just like school, learning does not end just because you have graduated. The real lesson is just about to begin. Whatever your reason in joining a yoga retreat is, the practice does not end when it’s over. The real training will begin after. We recommend recording your progress during a yoga retreat in a journal. Write down your thoughts and emotions throughout the activities that day. Take notes on what needs to improve. Take advantage of what you have learned and apply it to your everyday life.
A yoga retreat can be a lifetime experience!
Optimize your yoga retreat experience with these tips in mind! Yoga offers various benefits, and yoga retreat is the place to scoop everything in one spot. There are many types of yoga retreat you can enjoy. Some prefer doing it on holidays, indulging in the full experience by staying at the best hotels for yoga. Some others prefer a quick retreat over the weekend. Pick whichever suits you best. That said, natural ambiance such as calm beaches and mountains can help increase focus. Thus, we recommend signing up for one with the best natural ambiance you can find!