I stayed a week at the Samasati Nature Retreat close to Puerto Viejo in Costa Rica. Disconnected from the online world, connected to the nature, animals, myself and yoga. I took a few yoga classes with Max and then also one with Stephanie. Their style is very different but I always love to practice under various yoga teachers as it stretches more parts of my body and it also shows me what I want to do and do not want to do one day when I become a yoga teacher myself.
Max has been practicing the attitude for some 35 years, and hatha yoga as exercise for 18 years. He’s been in Costa Rica for 20 years already.
What I learned at yoga at Samasati Nature Retreat with Max:
No goal, movement itself is the goal. Being in the present moment is the goal.
Savasana is art of conscious meditation.
Yoga teaches us patience.
Use the breath to go deeper into the pose, not muscles. Using muscles can cause injuries, using breath is softer. Do the positions according to your own breath.
Max kept telling us not to follow him, but our own inhale and exhale instead.
Yoga for me is not only a workout, it’s more about lifestyle and incorporating it into life. It’s the attitude towards life.” Max said. ”Yoga is better with a mind of a beginner. Then we are open to learn new things.
Our body changes and it’s different every day.
Seated forward bent – East towards the Sun (in Sanskrit it’s what it means) vs. reversed plank pose should be done towards the West.
Steady and easiness (suka means good space) are the 2 main principles of yoga. It’s balance between strength and struggle.
When doing the headstand – torso should be on top of the shoulders so then we don’t need to kick but just to put the legs up.
Women have to practice more arm strength, men more hip opening.
After Savasana at the end of the class ”May all people be happy. May all people be free. May all people be in peace.”
Face the fear – it’s painful but it pays off. It’s worth it.
We have emotions, it’s natural to have them but there’s a way to deal with them. If you get angry, it’s ok, but you can choose to forgive.
Forgiveness is to forgive yourself, not the others.
Being responsible for everything sets up free. It’s the most we can achieve in life – to be free. If we blame other people or things for what happens to us or what we do, we give away our freedom to them.
I had at least 15 new mosquito bites from today which was not fun when I had to practice yoga and keep calm.
Om is a special vibration. Let it penetrate into us.
Ujjayi breath = victorious breath: ud = power, ji = victory
Meditation = when we touch the 2 fingers together it means knowledge and wisdom. The thumbs represent universal power while the index fingers mean individual power.
Patanjali speaking about yoga – the 1st three sutras are the most important.
Yoga = to quiet the mind. It’s experience in mind to realize the true self.
We did a meditation when we closed up all the holes on our faces. Nose counts as 1 and it was the only one we did not close completely but left some space to breathe through as we were not experienced enough yet to not to breathe like life long yogis.
Yoga is meditation, pranayama and asanas together. Hatha yoga is focused on positions.
Meditation – we have to be in it. There’s different ways of meditations. We meditate to get rid of negative thoughts, harmful thoughts and shut the feelings for a certain time in general. It calms us down.
What I learned at yoga at Samasati Nature Retreat with Stephanie:
We started in a seated cross-legged position with a sort of meditation when Stephanie guided us trying to realize parts of our body.
Meditation in the middle of the class before going down for shoulder stand and twists and final savasana.
OM MANE PADNE OM mantra at the end of the class – to reach intellectual and emotional balance.
Steph really appreciated us waking up so early in the morning (it was a morning yoga class) and she was also thankful for our beautiful practice. Steph encouraged us to use yoga practice every day of our life which could help us.