A yoga retreat is a de-stressing and rejuvenating holiday which leads you to a holistic lifestyle. The holiday concept is dedicated to improving your mental health, physical well-being and overall happiness. The benefits of yoga include improved concentration, respiration, energy, and vitality. This ancient wellness technique also helps you develop inner awareness.
There are so many yoga retreats out there that choosing one can be overwhelming. Fortunately for you, I’ve got your back! So, sit back and relax as I give you 5 pointers to use when choosing your perfect yoga retreat in India.
1. Location, Location, Location
The main factor when choosing a yoga retreat is the benefit it comes with it. You want a location that enables you to fully immerse yourself in the programme. India is one of the top places to consider when it comes to yoga retreats. Yoga originated from there after all.
Consider which area you want to visit. Do you want something luxurious, urban, nature-orientated or wellness orientated? You might enjoy something like the Rishikesh retreat which is famous in India and more focused on your spiritual well-being. It also incorporates meditation with camping river rafting. Talk about a wellness treat! If Rishikesh does not go with what you have in mind, you can visit the Goa retreat. It’s more famous amongst young people and includes yoga on beaches as well as meditation.
Your yoga goals and needs will determine which place you visit and which package to purchase. Once you have that decided, finding the perfect yoga location in India should be a breeze.
2. Choosing a Teacher or Guide
Once you have chosen your location, the next step is to choose a teacher for your yoga retreat. Most yoga teachers now have digital profiles giving an intro about who they are and what type of yoga they offer. These profiles can also describe the structure of their classes so it is important to do your research.
Let me simplify it for you. Before I began my yoga journey, I started with pilates and found myself bored out of my skull. Then a friend of mine suggested yoga. Though it also felt a bit slow for me at the start, I eventually stumbled upon a style called Ashangta which is more fast-paced and builds endurance. This was perfect for my yoga needs.
The same thing can apply to you. Do some research about teachers in India and how they work. Get testimonials and familiarise yourself with their styles and methods. Your yoga teacher is the most important person ever. They will assist you throughout your journey and help you feel safe, supported and cared for. This is a decision you need to make wisely and carefully because this is someone that will make your stay in India memorable or horrible.
3. Focus and Goal of the Retreat
Another important factor that you need to consider when choosing a yoga retreat in India is the focus of your yoga retreat. What are your yoga needs? Are you hoping to gain some meditation tools to help you in your everyday life? Are you interested in pushing your body and gaining some endurance and physical well-being? You should also determine whether the retreat is based on a need for personal growth or enriching your spirituality.
Ask yourself what your intentions are for this yoga experience. The answer will help outline your goal and direct you into picking a package that is most beneficial to your needs. Read up on the descriptions of the retreat themes and find the one that speaks to you the most. This will help you find a sense of connection to your end goal.
4. Price Range and Duration
Although my mantra is ‘health is wealth’, I am realistic about how having a budget is beneficial in assisting you to choose something safe, comfortable and luxurious. Having a budget also keeps you in line, making sure that you do not go overboard and find yourself stuck with a price tag you did not sign up for.
You should pick a retreat with all-inclusive packages because it is easy to overspend on food if it is not included. Also keep in mind that the cheapest prices may not necessarily mean quality and comfort. So be careful not to fall for that trip.
Consider the size of the retreat. Do you want an intimate retreat or a community feel? On top of thaT, note that the length of your retreat has a huge effect on its price. The longer your stay is, the more money you might have to spend.
Why not compare prices or packages? This will give you the advantage of getting the best value for money.
5. Expect the Unexpected
India is such a beautiful and soulful place. It is known for its rich history and traditions. Most yoga retreats might want to sell you an idea of fairy tale yoga. It’s okay to visit the country with the expectations of a divine experience but you also need to be realistic about your expectations and what the place has to offer. For most travellers, India might be challenging, exotic and vibrant at the same time. Not to mention the hot weather.
Let me give you two tips to help you survive your yoga trip to India. Firstly, make sure you carry cash around you. Some places still prefer cash over cards. Secondly, make sure you pack light breathable clothes and beware of scammers. The yoga industry has become very popular in India, making it more difficult to spot scammers. So make sure you get a guide and double-check your information.
India is truly a magnificent place to enjoy a holistic yoga experience. Hopefully, these guidelines will assist you in reaching your wellness expectations and goals. Why not practise yoga in the UK next? Here are the top 3 studios to visit in London. Have a wonderful time!