If you’re curious as to what goes on during a yoga retreat, look no further! Our tribe heads out of Richmond and into the world to relax, renew, and explore on a regular basis, so we’re pretty well versed in the ins and outs of retreats. This post will take a deep dive into what to expect on your yoga retreat, what the day-to-day will be like, how to set yourself up for retreat awesomeness, and a whole lot more!
To start, here’s a quick rundown of the main varieties of yoga retreat.
Immersion retreats, sometimes called Intensive retreats, are focused on your practice first and foremost. The majority of your time will be spent on the mat. These retreats stick to a pretty rigid schedule, so you may not have a lot of personal time to explore the area. Immersion retreats often take place at retreat centers, but may also be held at a resort.
Adventure retreats usually take place in exotic locales around the globe – our fave is Bali! – and tend to offer outdoor activities like hiking and surfing, plus lots of time to experience your destination. Yoga is not the focus of these retreats, so they are a good fit for adventurous, active yogis of any skill level. As far as accommodations, there’s probably the most variety on adventure retreats. You could stay at a resort, in a boutique hotel, or even go glamping!
Wellness retreats are generally at resorts or in spa-like environments and are the perfect choice for the yogi seeking a little self-care. They’ll often incorporate more mellow styles of yoga, like slow flow or yin, and offer ample chill time. Expect an emphasis on healthy eating, spiritual healing, and energy work.
Spiritual or Pilgrimage retreats are not for everyone, but if you are looking to deepen the spiritual aspect of your yoga practice, this is a great choice. You will typically travel to India or another spiritually charged place, with direct immersion into the local culture. This retreat offers simple accommodations and adherence to a spiritually inspired lifestyle. On a spiritual retreat, you will more than likely be staying in an ashram.
Silent or Meditation retreats are not exactly yoga retreats, but achieve many of the same spiritual and mental goals. Expect lots of time on your meditation bolster, complete silence, and strict guidelines. This retreat is best for someone who is ready to make a serious commitment to reconnecting with the inner self. Silent retreats generally take place at retreat centers.
No matter what kind of retreat you choose, the most important element of planning and attending a yoga retreat is setting your intention and sticking to it. When you go on a retreat with a good idea of what parts of your life most need renewal and reflection, the odds are better that you’ll achieve your goal. Having that anchor while you are in an unfamiliar place with new people is absolutely vital.
Each retreat varies, but in general, you can expect your retreat to offer twice daily yoga sessions, comfortable accommodations, healthy meals, and excursions or activities. Of course, an immersion retreat will offer more yoga, spiritual and silent retreats offer more stripped down living arrangements, adventure retreats are built around exploration, and wellness retreats often focus on healthy eating. We recommend that you take these things into account when you are choosing a retreat – if you’re looking for a luxe spa experience, sleeping on a mat for five days is probably not going to do it for you.
No two retreats are the same, but to get a feel of what retreating with Om On is like, take a look at this sample schedule from our recent trip out to Montana!
7:30-9:00am Yoga practice
6:30pm Cooking class with private ranch chef
7:30am- 8:30 Led off road hike on ranch
4:00-5:30pm Yoga practice
6:30pm Dinner Alfresco
8am-3pm Horseback trail ride
4pm-5:30pm Yoga practice
7:30-9:00am Yoga practice
As you can see, there’s a lot going on, but you still have plenty of time to practice yoga solo, go on an adventure, get to know your fellow yogis, or just unwind with a good book. Downtime is every bit as important to the yoga retreat experience as yoga itself is! If you never get a chance to slow down on your retreat, it’s going to be difficult to truly relax. We always come back from these retreats refreshed and inspired.
If you’re interested in joining us for our next retreat, check out our upcoming retreats page for more information. We can’t wait to travel with you!