Experience a Cozy-Intimate Yoga Retreat in Panamá

This is a last minute opportunity to join me for a semi-private yoga retreat in Panama! How spontaneous can you be? Flights are crazy affordable and it’s a great time to go to the beach!

March 14-18, 2019
$499 – 559 CAD

  • 4 nights beach house accommodation (double or single)
  • All Meals
  • Daily Yoga, Meditation + Ayurveda
  • Private Beach Club – gorgeous!
  • Jungle Hike – optional
  • Golf & Tennis – also available as options
  • Airport transport from RIH – Transport from PTY Airport also possible but might be additional

If you want to stay longer, we can accommodate you.

(DAY PASS for locals $49 USD includes yoga, meditation, breakfast & private beach club)

Yoga Retreat Schedule

Thursday Mar 14

  • Arrival – meet & greet over dinner at the Beach House

Friday Mar 15

  • Morning Meditation & Yoga Practice
  • Breakfast
  • Free time – Walk, read, journal, pool, beach, golf (optional), etc
  • Lunch at the Beach
  • Free time – Beach & Pool
  • Afternoon meditation & light practice (optional)
  • Dinner at the Beach
  • Free time

Saturday Mar 16

  • Morning Meditation & Yoga Practice
  • Breakfast
  • Free time – Walk, read, journal, pool, beach, golf (optional), etc
  • Lunch at the Beach
  • Free time – Beach & Pool
  • Afternoon meditation & light practice (optional)
  • Dinner at the Beach
  • Free time

Sunday Mar 17

  • Morning Meditation & Yoga Practice
  • Breakfast
  • Free time – Walk, read, journal, pool, beach, golf (optional), etc
  • Lunch at the Beach
  • Free time – Beach & Pool
  • Afternoon meditation & light practice (optional)
  • BBQ at the Beach House (with vegan options of course)
  • Closing session

Monday Mar 18 – Departures

  • Morning Meditation & Yoga Practice (optional)
  • Breakfast
  • Free time – Walk, read, journal, pool, beach, golf (optional), etc
  • Departure

An escape for the soul  in a serene tropical paradise is exactly what the doctor ordered and we’re heading to Panamá to get our daily dose of Zen. The marriage of yoga and travel is an incredible transformative experience. It will allow you to escape the fog of your everyday busy lives, which are often filled with to-dos, work, family and commitments. Join me for less stressing and more stretching in the beautiful world of yoga

This is your chance to give yourself time to unwind and just be free. Enjoy Yasmin Yoga + Ayurveda while relaxing in this nature retreat.  The warmth of Panama breeze will give you a magical reminder of how far you are from winter. You will feel refreshed, rejuvenated and most importantly inspired to take whatever comes your way.

Our yoga retreat is open to everyone of all ages and all levels of experience. We are also great for first time yoga retreat participants and a once in a lifetime experience.

Our Accommodations

Panama is completely safe and beautiful. We will be staying in a private villa located in the Decameron Golf Resort. Our comfortable beach house has a private pool and over looks the 14th Green of the golf course. We are a short 20 min walk or 5 min drive to the beach!

 

This is Your time! Time for you to restore your spirit, strength, and peace within. Toss your to do lists out the window and trow caution to the wind. Yasmin + Yoga is here to create a  focus of breathing together to rejuvenate the soul as we fall hopelessly in love with our mind and bodies to create inner peace.

This retreat includes daily yoga classes, Meditation + Ayurveda for all levels; beginners are welcome!

Add to that inspiring destination with cozy and intimate accommodations, you will also enjoy the healthy meals for all diets vegan to omnivore.  Deliciously made to balance your doshas, with selective organic ingredients whenever possible!  As well as exclusive nutrition tips according to Ayurvedic medicine for living a healthy life!

Flights

Look to fly into Playa Blanca Rio Hato (RIH) or Panama City (PTY).

There are some great options right now available with Delta (as low as $299 round trip) and Air Transat along with other charter flights fly directly to Rio Hato, which is 5 mins to the beach.  Check out flights HERE! 

Rio Hato is 5 mins from us and is an easy pick up. Panama City is about a two hour drive. We can arrange transport for you from Panama City. It’s about $80-$100 for private taxi from Panama City to Playa Farallon where we are.  Hotel Shuttles are also available at a cheaper rate – Contact us for details.

Extra Activities (Optional)

  • Excursions available, from extreme adventure to natural treasures.
  • Jungle hikes
  • Golf & Tennis
  • Spa
  • Gym
  • Children’s playground are also options
  • Extensive green areas

What Doesn’t Include

  • Flight – but do check out the options to fly into Panama City (PTY) or Playa Blanco Rio Hato (RIH)
  • Airport transfers from Panama city to the villa – private taxi is $80-$100 USD but we may be able to give you an accessible shuttle bus for a reduced. Contact us for more details. (Airport transfers from Rio Hato airport, RIH, are included)
  • Additional activities and spa treatments are not included in the price.

What to Pack for this Yoga Retreat

  • Yoga Mat
  • 1-2 Yoga Blocks & a yoga strap (if possible)
  • Yoga clothes
  • Beach clothes (it will be hot & humid)
  • Beach Towel
  • Running Shoes for walking / hiking
  • Clothes for hiking
  • Clothes for golf or tennis if you plan do these activities
  • Sun hat
  • Books to read
  • Journal or notebook
  • Sun Screen
  • Bug repellant (optional)
  • Your personal toiletries and personal care products

 

On Panama villa yoga intimate retreat, you will be able to explore breath taking beaches and other natural eco-touristic spots. As a yogi you know that there’s nothing more relaxing than rolling out your yoga mat on a private beach with a secluded midst of nature! There is no better way to enjoy this country’s pleasant beauty other than on a rejuvenating yoga cozy-intimate retreat. So, check our Panama package retreat vacation and reserve your spot today!

Day 108 – Yoga on Facebook Live

It was still dark in Panama when I unrolled my mat and set up my computer on Day 108 (April 18) to lead a yoga practice on Facebook Live. We did 108 sun salutations together online and by the time we finished, the sun was high in sky, Koji was miraculously still sleeping and over 500 people had tuned in!

I am loving doing yoga practice on Facebook Live!  So cool.

I am so happy & grateful I was able to share a yoga practice on Facebook Live this year.

I am so happy & grateful I was able to share a yoga practice on Facebook Live this year.

In various ancestral traditions, and particularly in the yoga tradition, 108 is a sacred number which represents union, spirituality and infinity. The 108th day of the year is the perfect occasion to celebrate this tradition together by joining in a practice of 108 sun salutations. This day is also the anniversary of my 108 days of 108 Sun Salutations. This epic adventure led to becoming the first woman to break the Guinness World Record in 2010 for the Longest Yoga Marathon (32 hours) and raising nearly $15,000 for charity.

(Side note: My Guinness World Record was recently broken by an Indian woman who practiced for almost 60 hours. I just found out and I’m actually pretty happy about this. It’s about time the record was broken and good on her. It’s an unbelievable experience and I am happy to share it. )

This year’s Day 108 practice was really beautiful. Despite being far away, I was so happy to connect with students online via live boardcast. If only this technology had been around in 2010, I might have been able to share my yoga marathon on Facebook Live and maybe we would have raised more funds for the Stephen Lewis Foundation. Isn’t it crazy how fast things change? Who knows, maybe one day, after I’m gone, people will be able to practice yoga with my hologram!

Click here to see the video of the yoga practice on Facebook Live. (I have some technical difficulties, and the video recorded sideways, but I am working on editing.)


 

Timeline of Day 108 Celebrations

2011 - We did 54 Moon Salutations by candle light.

2011 – We did 54 Moon Salutations by candle light.

2010: Yasmin begins a 108 sun salutations for 108 continuous days with the intention to study the yoga practice in the microcosm of surya namaskar. This was life changing.

2011: Yasmin teaches a quiet candlelit practice at her former studio, Om West Holistic Centre in Pointe Claire along with 25 close students. This is also the last day of 54 days of 54 Moon Salutations, her second long practice.

2012: It’s a Leap Year, so Day 108 is on April 17 this year. Yasmin co-leads a smallish but powerful group practice at Lululemon Athletica on St Denis along with several other yoga teachers from around Montreal.

2013: Yasmin organizes a big multi-studio 108 practice connected by video conference. Yasmin is at Studio Wanderlust in Plateau Montreal and there are five other locations around Montreal (Le Studio Wanderlust, Naada Yoga, HappyTree Yoga, Viveka Yoga & H~OM) hosting simultaneous community practices of 108 Sun Salutations.

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2014 – 108 Sun Salutations at Loft108

Yoga teacher David Good also organized a practice in Toronto. Over 30 yoga teachers led sets of Surya Namaskar and we had nearly 200 participants joining us. There are also several online participants tuning in some as far away as Europe and Vancouver!

 

2014: H’OM Yoga Centre and Moksha Yoga NDG join Yasmin and offer yoga mala practices. More than 100 people participate. Gigi Cohen formerly of Café Juicy Lotus caters a delicious dinner for after the yoga practice.

2015: There is a full house at Loft108 for a yoga mala practice led by various Montreal Yoga Teachers, but Yasmin is in Las Vegas for a conference and practices in the dessert with four friends. She sends a greeting video and more than $600 of donations are collected for la Fondation du Dr. Julien, a Montreal-based organism which ensures the development of Social Paediatrics in Community for the benefit of as many children as possible.

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2015 – Yoga in the Nevada Desert

 

 

2016: Yasmin is pregnant with Koji. She offers a recorded 108 Sun Salutation practice for free and encourages students to ‘pay it forward’ by donating to their favourite charity or doing some other random act of kindness.

2017: Yasmin is in Panama and sees an opportunity to connect to her community anyway by offering the yoga practice on Facebook Live. The feed reaches close to 3,000 people and more than 500 tune in. Moksha Yoga NDG in Montreal do their own Day 108 practice. Out in Victoria, British Columbia, Carlo Kuhlenschimdt, Yasmin’s senior student and sometimes teaching assistant, organizes 108 sun salutations for charity.

 

 

Related Articles

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Significance of 108

How to do 108 Sun Salutations

Kutumba Energy: Acroyoga duo

Kutumba Energy is an acroyoga duo based in Montreal comprised of Anna Kowaleski & Jaime Schmidt-Little. They will be teaching at Loft108, so we thought you should get to know them! Cousins Anna & Jaime became hooked on acroyoga after just one class purchased on GroupOn. Originally from Ontario, Kutumba Energy is known for highly creative acroyoga photos on Instagram and their accessible yoga classes for everyone. Coming up, the duo are leading two workshops and a six week acroyoga series at Loft108. (click here for details)

We thought you should get to know Kutumba Energy. Here’s our interview with them:

Cousins Anna (left) & Jaime (right) became close after moving to Montreal.

Cousins Anna (left) & Jaime (right) became close after moving to Montreal.

1- What does Kutumba Energy signify and why did you pick this name?  

Kutumba Energy comes from a Sanskrit expression that we connected with – “vasudhaiva kutumbakam” which means, “the world is one family”. Our family is extremely important to us, and they are the reason we became the people we are today. We wanted to be able to share this feeling of closeness, and safety, and love with the rest of the world – make everyone part of our family! Kutumba means family, so the name literally means Family Energy – which is the vibe we are going for.

 

2- How did you start practicing Acroyoga together?

Anna was looking to reconnect to her yoga practice in 2014 and at the time could only afford to buy a GroupOn pass to a studio near her downtown, and she immediately connected with the teacher, who also taught Acroyoga classes. We went to one Acroyoga class “just to try it out” and became instantly hooked. We’ve been practicing non-stop ever since.

 

3- We know your cousins and close friends, we you always close growing up?

We were somewhat close, but definitely not how we are now. We always lived far apart growing up and only saw each other at family get-togethers. We became extremely close when we both moved to Montreal. As we are the only two members of our family living in Quebec, our relationship is very important to us. We have been very fortunate to also have similar passions and life goals, and to have become not only yoga partners, but business partners as well.

The four pillars of Kutumba Energy are: Communication, Community, Connection & Creativity.

The four pillars of Kutumba Energy are: Communication, Community, Connection & Creativity.

 

4- You have a very cool Instagram account with so many nice photos. What or who inspires you?

Inspiration comes from everywhere! Much of our inspiration comes from other Acroyogis’ social media accounts. It also comes from our many amazing teachers and fellow Acroyogis who we practice with. We also draw inspiration from the beauty of Montreal itself. We’re not from here, and we’re not sure if the novelty will wear off eventually, but the city is just so beautiful!

 

5- Some of your photos look very acrobatic. What would you say the difference is between acrobatics & acroyoga?

We’ve never actually trained in acrobatics, so for us, we can only really speak about it from the Acroyoga standpoint. Acroyoga fuses acrobatics, yoga and Thai yoga massage. Although much of our practice is very energetic, it always incorporates proper technique, alignment and breath, and can also incorporate very relaxing and healing partner/group work. From what we know of acrobatics, it is much more just an emphasis on the aesthetic and the physical acts.

 

6- How do you hope to serve the world through your work? What imprint would you like to leave behind?

For this photoshoot, Anna made sparkly tutus for them to wear. The theme was 'Urban Fairytale'.

For this photoshoot, Anna made sparkly tutus for them to wear. The theme was ‘Urban Fairytale’.

Acroyoga is an amazing tool for helping to get past perceived limitations. Neither of us come from an acrobatic or gymnastic background of any sort and we were amazed at what we could do (in fact it has changed our entire lives!). We also hope to create a sense of family wherever we go and with whomever we meet in our journey, and we believe that through the beautiful practices of yoga and Acroyoga, we can help others to see that at the core, we are all the same and we all belong. By working together and cultivating patience, community, communication, connection and creativity, we can build not only a wonderful Acroyoga practice, but we can also change the world.

 

Acroyoga & Kutumba Energy Events:

30 Day Healthy Living Program for Optimum Wellbeing

The 30 Day Healthy Living Program I have curated has been life changing for me and I love creating content for it.

Designing these 30 Day Programs gives me opportunity to blend all of my knowledge and passions into an incredible online program. It was not and is not intended to be a boot camp or weigh loss program. My 30 Day Healthy Living Program are meant to be a gradual and sustainable integration into healthy habits to last a life time. And from the feedback (see some testimonials below), people got a lot of out it. I am thrilled.

Ayurveda is the oldest medical system in the world. Participants received a personalized program, meal suggestions, tips for improving digestion & boosting immunity.

Ayurveda is the oldest medical system in the world. Participants received a personalized program, meal suggestions, tips for improving digestion & boosting immunity.

30 Day Healthy Living Program Design

The program began with a private ayurvedic consultation with each participant. We discussed goals, challenges and ways to improve individual concerns such as digestive issues, poor sleep, low motivation, etc. I then created a customized nutrition and lifestyle program for each individual.

The bulk of the program consisted of daily lessons emailed to participants every morning at 6am.  These lessons covered a variety of topics: letting go, gratitude, why practice yoga, movement, tips for better digestion, smoothie recipes and how to benefit the most from the Arbonne nutrition products included in the Healthy Living program.

The weeks were structured in the following way with practices to complement each theme:

  • MONDAY – Mindset
  • TUESDAY – Lifestyle
  • WEDNESDAY – Heart & Soul

    Heart & Soul practices included Gratitude journal, Letting go exercises, meditation and ayurvedic self-massage. Guided instruction available as download.

    Heart & Soul practices included Gratitude journal, Letting go exercises, meditation and ayurvedic self-massage. Guided instruction available as download.

  • THURSDAY – Nourishment
  • FRIDAY – Movement
  • SATURDAY – Energy
  • SUNDAY – Review

In addition to the daily lessons, we had (have) a private Healthy Living Facebook Group where participants could share ideas, cheer each other on and I could post additional supporting materials. The Facebook group is still live and you are welcome to join this group for free!

We are starting the 30 Day Healthy Living Program again, but this time with a twist! The theme of the upcoming spring program is Lean, Fit & Strong: Body + Mind Sculpting.

Learn more

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The last week of the Healthy Living program, we went through the chakras. For the heart, participants were asked to “write themselves a love letter.”

 

Testimonials from past participants:

Thank you so very much for creating this wonderful Healthy Living program.  It is clear you put so much thought and care into it.  Hearing from you every morning, helped to keep me on track.  I wasn’t always perfect… but I persisted.  My energy levels have improved so much.  By day 15, I no longer woke up in a fog, for the first time in many years.  With renewed energy, I feel that I will be able to move forward towards some of my other goals- ie weight loss, career, etc.

 Jackie Miller

 

I am down 9 lbs. and feeling great! My stomach/digestive system are thanking me! I have been inspired to cook healthier recipes, read my spiritual books and do more yoga and meditation. A BIG thank you to Yasmin Fudakowska-Gow for all her kindness, wisdom, inspiration and knowledge that she has shared with us. It is a great program that covers the mind, body and soul…can’t ask for more than that. All we have learned can be carried forward in our journey to be healthier and happier! I still have lots to do but feeling so much better.

Patti Kowaleski Hall

 

The great thing about doing this 30 day healthy living program for myself is how comprehensive it has been. It is not just about diet, but also encompassed the physical, meditative, creative, and spiritual aspects of change. I have found it to be a truly holistic approach to change, and because of this I think much more likely to be successful at producing lasting personal transformation. We all want to change, to evolve into our true selves, and this personalized program provides a stable, holistic platform from which to do so. Thank you, Yasmin!  

Bruce Chase Dunn

 

 

Cloud Forest Yoga & Hiking Retreat Panama

Our Cloud Forest Yoga & Hiking Retreat Panama just ended and it was so spectacular. I am thrilled that we are going back for a second Yoga & Hiking Retreat in February. This upcoming retreat will also include a certificate in Ayurveda + Yoga Healing I which can be used as continuing education credits or put towards a 200 or 300 hour yoga teacher training.

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Yoga with hummingbirds

My husband, Arturo and I discovered the Mount Totumas ecolodge about a year ago when we were looking for places of interest near Volcán, a small town near the boarder of Costa Rica where Arturo spent his summers growing up. It took us a couple of attempts to reach Mount Totumas, because to get there requires a 4x4WD vehicle and a lot of patience. It is 10 kms (or 45 mins) on a rocky mountain path into the “Cloud Forest“.  When we finally arrived, we were blown away about its beauty and remote tranquility. We knew in an instant that we wanted to host a Yoga & Hiking Retreat here.

Perched high in the mountains boarding La Amistad National Park, Mount Totumas ecolodge sits 6,300 ft above sea level at the foothills of myriad hiking and nature paths. We trekked through first and second generation rainforests, to waterfalls, hot springs, highland pastures and a coffee orchard. The air is fresh and when the clouds part at night, the sky is a blaze with stars that actually twinkle. It is an idealic setting for a retreat.

Our group arrived on Friday Nov. 26, just days after the tropical storm/ hurricane Otto ripped through Panama causing torrential rains, landslide and school closures across the country. Panama doesn’t get hurricanes, so this was historic.

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What a joy to hike with Koji! He was a trooper!

We drove in convoy along the above mentioned 4x4WD road and as we approached the second of two rivers, it was clear that our CRV would not make it across the swollen waters. So we left it on the side of the road and squeezed into the other vehicles (baby Koji too!) more equipped for deep water. The journey was a nice little adventure and the challenging drive on the mountain road made us feel all that much more removed from the civilized chaos of our daily lives.

Because we arrived at the end of a hurricane and in last days of rainy season, most mornings were clear and sunny. The clouds and rains moved in just after lunch, which made napping and restorative yoga practices all that much more peaceful.

Our Cloud Forest Yoga & Hiking Retreat Panama days looked like this, although the timing of activities was flexible :

  • 7:00 am Wake up, tea, greens and/or fresh locally grown coffee – coffee is the hidden gem of Panama, artisanal and incredible;
  • 7:30 – 8:45 am  Meditation & Yoga flow practice overlooking the rainforest canopy – we frequently stopped to observe exotic birds and monkeys playing in nearby trees;

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    Ayurveda Yoga Flow practices are for everyone.

  • 9:00 am Breakfast of pancakes, oatmeal, eggs or granola;
  • 9:30 / 10 am Departure for hiking – slow trek, pausing to observe and appreciate the miraculous nature surrounding us;
  • 12:30 / 1 pm  Lunch of homemade soup and corn bread or tortillas;
  • 1:30 – 3:00 pm Free time – napping, reading, colouring, day dreaming, etc.;
  • 3:00 – 4:30 pm Yoga practice – restorative, long hold poses, myo-fascial release work, breathing exercises and/or partner yoga, all workshop style;
  • 4:30- 5:30 pm Hummingbird Happy Hour – hummingbirds are very active at this time, so we watched up to 17 different species of hummingbirds swarm around 6+ feeders on the “hummingbird deck”. These little birds are so active that feeders need to be refilled twice daily! 
  • 5:30 – 7:00 pm Late afternoon session – journaling, ayurveda workshop, discussion or free time;
  • 7:00 pm Dinner – delicious fresh meals that catered to all tastes and diets: curries (chicken or veg), lasagna, ratatouille, fish, etc.
  • 8:00 pm Evenings – free time, insect observation (amazing bugs!), movie night, spa night, or discussions;
    + usually an early bedtime around 10pm.

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    Homemade meals made with love.

The owners of Mount Totumas were fantastic. Alma created superb restaurant quality meals for us and made us all feel at home. Jeffrey has a background in biology and ecology and generously shared his knowledge, passion and excitement for birds, flowers, plants, monkeys, etc. with us during our hikes. In short, being at Mount Totumas was amazing experience, kind of like walking through the pages of National Geographic magazine.

 

Here are some of the highlights shared by the group since the retreat:

Seeing three species of monkeys: Howler monkeys, spider monkeys and capuchin monkeys. The spider monkeys are acrobatic and followed us throughout one of our hikes. 

The natural hot springs were so soothing.

The amazing food clearly made with love.

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A natural spa! Hot springs and cool river water!

Seeing how coffee is grown, harvested, roasted was really cool and so was tasting it!

Having a chance to concentrate on developing and deepening a daily yoga and meditation practice in nature.

Spending time with like-minded individuals and getting to know people for who they truly are.

For me, being able to teach, share what I love, spend time and have my husband, parents and baby join me on this adventurous Cloud Forest Yoga & Hiking Retreat Panama.

 

 

Thank you to all participants, to my adventurous husband and to my amazing teaching assistant Carlo Kuhlenschimdt, whose thai yoga massage techniques were appreciated by all.

The best part is that we have another Cloud Forest Yoga & Hiking Retreat Panama Feb. 25 – Mar 3.  Would you like to join us?

 

Day 108 – Free Yoga Mala Download

Tomorrow is Day 108, the 108th day of the year! This year, I am offering you a free Yoga Mala download, a guided audio practice leading you through 108 Sun Salutations.  Click here to register & get your free download!

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Day 108 is a communal celebration. Consider gathering friends!

Day 108

Day 108 holds a special place in my heart not only because the number 108 highly auspicious, but it is also the 6th anniversary of the start of my 108 Days of 108 Sun Salutations, a journey that lead me to breaking the Guinness World Record for the longest yoga marathon in 2010. To celebrate, normally, I co-organize a huge Yoga Mala (108 Sun Sal) practice in Montreal & elsewhere, but this year, I decided to offer something different : a guided audio Yoga Mala 108 Sun Salutation practice available for download.

Pay it forward

On April 17 (tomorrow) this practice will be offered for free. However, I ask that you to pay it forward: help a friend or family member, make a donation to a charity of your choice or contribute some other kindness to the world and tell me about it. My 108 x 108 challenge was all about sharing love. We rallied the community, practiced in parks, rooftops, studios and kitchens, and we raised nearly $15,000 for charity. It was the most powerful experience of my life and changed me completely. I blogged the whole 108 days. You can read it here.

How to do a Yoga Mala

Now, 108 Sun Salutations is not easy per se. It’s a moving meditation, a prayer set in motion and it will surely uplift your spirit in ways you can’t imagine. Know why you are practicing.  Have a clear intention. It have be for yourself or you can dedicate the practice to someone else’s healing.

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Day 108 : A Yoga Mala practice is a prayer in motion.

Also, you don’t have to do the whole Yoga Mala. This practice was recorded in three sets of 36 Sun Salutations (thanks to the help of my wonderful student Carlo Kuhlenschmidt, who is also a fantastic yoga teacher). You can do the first set only or take breaks as you need to. Click here for more tips.

The benefits of doing a yoga mala practice are abundant and will be felt over the coming days. I would love to hear about your experience and I would love to hear about “how you paid it forward”. Please share it with me here or via email : yfgow @ yasminyoga.com

REGISTER NOW

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Black Light Yoga & Dance

Music pumping, neon body paint and glow sticks may seem more fitting for a night club or after hours party than a yoga studio, but this was the setting for Bouge Yoga O’Neon, my black light yoga and dance event held recently at Yasmin Yoga Loft (YYL) in Old Montreal with DJ FREEFLY. What could have been just a yoga practice with cool lighting became a magical, powerful and therapeutic practice.

YYL had hosted a black light event for yoga teacher Lauren Rudick last year, but impetus for Bouge Yoga O’Neon arose when the organizers of the Wanderlust Tremblant asked me to lead a yoga dance party with black lights during their August Festival. Without hesitation, I said yes and I spent several months contemplating how to make this an experience that was fun and also meaningful and purposeful.

Given my background in Ayurveda, I designed the practice in five ‘chapters’ corresponding to the elements and their qualities — Earth, Water, Fire, Air & Space. I also worked with the DJ so that the music would follow the energy of each element. I suggested an intention and loosely guided the first part of each section leaving space for participants to interpret the music and movements themselves. The event ended with a free flow of dance and final relaxation.

Bouge Yoga O’Neon at Wanderlust Tremblant sold out weeks before the festival. It was a blast. We had over 100 participants and the practice was even more powerful than I expected. The lighting, the music, the body paint (yes, we had a body paint station) along with the carefully arranged sequence created an environment for people to loosen up and be playful. As result, the atmosphere was light, joyful and full of community spirit. There was also a palatable authenticity in the room.

With this in mind, we (the team & I) decided to offer this event at the Loft. And it was no less spectacular.

The studio was decorated with black lights, of course, and dozens of glowing neon stars. Doors opened at 6pm. We had a table of brushes and non-toxic, water based glow paint, allowing guests to be creative and paint themselves and each other. This was a great ice breaker.

The practice was about 90 mins and as one yoga teacher present said, “I couldn’t wait to get the yoga part over with so we could dance.”  And we did. DJ FREEFLY was fantastic and the vibe in the room was electric.

After enjoying a post-practice spread of fruit, Roo Bars and Cocos Pure coconut water, people left with big smiles.

Much gratitude to RooBar, Cocos Pure, DJ FREEFLY (aka Marcel Capito), Carlo Kuhlenschimdt, Chrissy Skerritt, Kelly David, Amanda Roemer and the rest of our YYL family for their efforts in making this event a success and thank you guests! Your energy and enthusiasm were invaluable.

Be sure to view our events calendar to see what other interesting workshops are coming up at YYL.  See more photos of the event on our facebook page.

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Words from some of the participants:

The Bouge Yoga O’Neon event at Yasmin Yoga Loft was amazing! This is the kind of yoga event that you do not want to miss! It loosens up the body, and mind and let’s you express yourself however you’re feeling in the moment. Yasmin’s vision for the class is inspiring, and while we travel through the 5 elements, you begin to really feel and understand each of them. I would attend this event 1000 times, and it would never lose its excitement.    – Jaime Schmidt-Little

Yasmin’s imaginative Black Light – Yoga Bouge O’Neon event – with the electrifying beat moving the crowd through the yoga poses to the peak with everyone free flow dancing under the magical black light and fluorescent stars was fantastical and transformative for me.  – Tessa

What an amazing sensorial and social experience! A playground for yoga; Body paint, neon lights, falling shooting stars and the most uplifting yoga instruction. Came in feeling tensed and left feeling uplifted and inspired! Black light yoga won over my salsa night.  – Vanesa
What a magical evening! The loft was filled with this terrific positive energy from all the participants, the amazing music and lighting and that energetic practice, not to mention the dancing! I still feel lifted up by the whole event. Thank you Yasmin, and my gratitude to DJ Freefly for that awesome set. Namaste. – Bruce

If you weren’t able to make it to the Yasmin Yoga Loft for Bouge Yoga O’neon, make sure you don’t miss the next one! The blacklight class, guided by Yasmin with the beats of DJ Freefly, was a great yoga dance party. Yasmin incorporated ayurvedic elements into the practice that made it quite special. There was an amazing energy in the room from all that attended!  – Kelly

 

Moroccan Dinner Masquerade in Montreal

photo 2-9I am really excited about the Moroccan Dinner Masquerade coming upon Sat. Feb 28 at the Yasmin Yoga Loft in Old Montreal. I love good music and a good party!

THE DINNER :  The night begins with a cocktail made from cold pressed juice  (virgin & not-so virgin) and an intimate Moroccan inspired dinner (the first of our Interesting Dinner series) for just 20 guests. Catered by the amazing April Goulding, curator of blog Watch Your Mouth, dinner comprises of four delicious courses that has a vegan option as well as (wild caught) fish option– see the menu below. You are invited to bring your own wine – suggestions available upon request.

THE PARTY :  The evening continues after dinner as more guests join us for the Masquerade party at 21h00. There will be belly dancing, music, merriment and mingling. The party is BYO and open to all with a ticket. You do not want to miss this event! But it’s a masquerade, so you must wear a mask. To entice and inspire you, there will be prizes for the best and most creative masks!

 


 

Menu

UPON ARRIVAL

Signature Cocktail made from fresh cold pressed juice {Virgin or not}

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SALADS

Triad of Salade Cuite

Tomatoes pureed with charred sweet pepper and roasted garlic;
Carrots with Mint and Crushed Chili; 
Chickpeas with Onion and Smoked Paprika.

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SOUP

Harira

Hearty green lentils stewed in a thick vegetable broth with cilantro and cinnamon.

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ENTRÉE

Eggplant Fans

Eggplants sliced and fanned to stuff with slices of fresh tomato. Topped with bread crumbs. Warmly scented with Ras el hanout.

OR

Fish Tagine with Peppers and Olives

White fish marinated and oven-steamed in saffron-turmeric chermoula with rainbow peppers, tomatoes and kalamata olives.

+
Seffa

Fluffy couscous, red and black quinoa steamed with dried apricots, prunes, golden raisins and toasted almonds. Lightly dusted with cinnamon and drizzled with honey.

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DESSERT

Deconstructed M’hanncha
Oatmeal crumb, orange water infused almond paste, fresh marmalade and phyllo cigar.


RESERVATIONS
Dinner & Masquerade Party        $54 {vegan} | $59 {wild caught fish} *
18h-19h  Coctail
19h-21h  Dinner
Masquerade Party (only)              $10 in advance / $15 at the door *
21h – 01h+ … providing we don’t get shut down by the cops this time! 🙂
* BYO – we will provide mixers.  Please note, prices do not include taxes.

 RESERVE NOW

Solstice Yoga Fundraiser for Dans la Rue

Our second annual Into the Light Solstice Yoga fundraiser for Dans la Rue was magical.  Yesterday, more than 60 yoga students came to practice for a good cause at the Yasmin Yoga Loft in Old Montreal. The atmosphere in the studio was incredible. The light from the candles, sent of fresh pin from the glowing Christmas tree and communal spirit in the room made for an amazing winter solstice celebration.IMG_8433

The classes were led by yoga teachers Gisele Seto, Bruce Chase-Dunn, Marta Fudakowska (my mom), Natalie McLennan, Alex Pelland and yours truly. Assistants included senior students from my 300 hour yoga teacher training program, and we had beautiful live music by Matt Wiviott on the Chinese Harp.

Thank you so much to our media sponsors :  YOCOMO, Tuja Wellness and Yoga Directory Canada for help spreading the word about the event.  Big thanks to Vega and Rise Kombucha for the aprés yoga refreshments (so appreciated after a sweaty practice) and to Bota Bota Spa sur l’eau and Mon Yoga Virtuel for the raffle prizes and gifts. We are also super grateful to Green City Couriers for helping us deliver the donations to Dans la Rue so professionally and efficiently.

Here’s the inventory of what we collected for Dans la Rue, a non-profit organization that supports homeless youth in Montreal:

  • Bag of lentils x 3IMG_8375 copy
  • Rice x 2
  • Pasta x 5
  • Cans of soup / beans / veggies x 15
  • Boxes of soup broth x 3
  • Almond milk x 1
  • KD x 5
  • Crackers x 2
  • Salad dressing x 3
  • Box of Granola Bars x 1
  • Box of Hot Chocolate x 1
  • Gluten free corn bread mix x 2
  • Juice x 2
  • Gravy mix x1
  • Bag of chocolate chips x 1
  • Box of Chocolate truffles x 1IMG_8436
  • Toiletry kits with toiletries x 4
  • Toothpaste x 17
  • Tooth brushes x 17
  • Tooth floss x 6
  • Body wash / soap x 9
  • Deodorant x
  • Shaving cream x 2
  • Mouth wash x 2
  • Shampoo & hair products x 12
  • Tissu boxes x 4
  • Box of tampons x 1
  • Bathrobe x 1
  • Underwear / boxer briefs x 12
  • Pairs of socks x 26
  • Tank tops x 3
  • Shirts x 2
  • Backpacks / bags x 7IMG_8443
  • Blankets x 2
  • Scarves x 3
  • Hats / toques x 70 !!! 🙂

+ Tim Horton $5 gift cards for hot meals x 13

+ $935 in financial donations!!  (includes donations from our weekly Community yoga practice – last one of 2014 Dec 23)

 

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

 

Related

How to Donate to Dans la Rue

More photos of the Solstice Yoga event on Facebook

Our weekly Community Yoga Classes – by donation to charity

Winter Solstice Yoga – last year’s Into the Light event