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The best yoga retreat…

by Arundhati Baitmangalkar

We headed off into the mountains of Leavenworth, WA again this June. Our 4th year in a row for our annual yoga retreat at Sleeping Lady Resort. We had a smaller group than usual this year as it was father’s day weekend. It promised to be an amazing weekend weather wise not too hot not too cold. And as always I couldn’t wait to get there.

The yoga retreat started with most people carpooling to the resort. Mainly because most people were from Aham Yoga and already knew each other for a long time. And hey, anything that helps reduce our carbon footprint on this planet is always a winner. So community and carpool kickstarted this weekend perfectly.

We arrived at 3pm on Friday, met our roommates and greeted some old familiar faces.  The retreat was a combination of people who come every year as well as first-timers to a yoga retreat. After everyone found their rooms and settled in, freshened up we met for a beverage break at our yoga space with a sharing circle.  We got to know all our participants more intimately – things like why they fell in love with yoga, what are they most excited about from the yoga retreat, and much more…It is always amazing to hear stories about how much yoga has impacted someone’s life and what it means to them.

This was followed by our first yoga class which was a 90 minute no arms yoga class. So we went through a variety of postures that didn’t involve any chaturanaga dandasana or knees chest chin. It was the perfect start to the yoga retreat and helped me understand where the participants were at in their bodies that weekend. We also had a mini-meditation and relaxation as well.

Followed by the most amazing dinner buffet ever. If you have been to the Sleeping lady you already know what I am talking about. If not, you have to join us next year to come to try their food yourself. It is absolutely delightful especially as a vegetarian I am amazed at their vast, mouth watering, organic, farm to table buffets every year. This was followed by some super soothing Yoga Nidra to end the first night at the yoga retreat.

Aham Yoga Retreat 2018

Saturday began bright and early with another 90 minutes yoga class at the wall. We did some amazing, deep work on the wall before heading out for another breakfast. It was a great way to kickstart Saturday – everyone felt lite, spacious and open in their bodies. We followed this up by a self -care yoga workshop mid-morning. Talking about how women in their busy lives can make time for self-care practices and most importantly how it connects to yoga. This was followed again by an afternoon buffet. People had their own downtown in the afternoon – some hit the pool, spa, nature walks while some read in their rooms and took a nap.

Saturday evening was all about the core in our evening yoga practice – we did some new yoga stuff in our practice that was really fun. Followed by an evening dinner and then yoga movie night. We watched 4 documentaries on the science of yoga and was the perfect way to end Saturday night. I called it a night after the yoga movie but I know most of the others stayed up and were sitting around a fire till late.

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Sunday began with a fundamental, simple breath focused yoga practice. Most people were a little more tired by now as it had been an exciting weekend. We ended with pranayama and chanting. And headed off for our final breakfast and goodbyes! It was truly the best yoga retreat…Perfect in all ways possible.

After checking out some of us headed into the touristy town of Leavenworth to walk around and checked out local shops and food. Before heading back home. If you think nothing really happens at a yoga retreat – think again. We are going back up to the mountains in June 2019. If you are local and would like to join us, you will find more details here

And its a wrap...

And its a wrap…



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