Nicaragua Yoga Retreat

Nothing beats the winter blues quite like getting on the mat. But after that is done, curling up by a roaring fire with a good book to soothe the soul and rest your muscles is the next best thing.  Dr. Seuss put it best with this sentiment, “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the  more places you’ll go.”  Knowledge is power. And fueling our minds with enlightenment and ideas to help us deepen our practice should be on everyone’s Holiday “wish list”. Here are our Top 7 Winter Picks for yogis this holiday season:

lightonyoga

 

  • LIGHT ON YOGA – B.K.S. Ivengar

 

Written by the man that is accredited with introducing yoga to the Western World, this book is full of knowledge and experience. With detailed descriptions of over 200 poses and 600 photos, this book is perfect for anyone wanting to perfect a posture or learn to instruct others in doing so. His style of yoga focuses on proper alignment, and makes Light on Yoga the “rule book for asanas”.

meditationsfromthemat

  1.  MEDITATIONS FROM THE MAT – Rolt Gates

This book is more of a relaxed read, offering daily reflections on the yoga practice.  The Journey Junkie says, “The writings are simple, relatable, easy to digest, and lighthearted. This is a great book to read first thing in the morning, at night when winding down, or whenever you need some feel good yumminess. It is also perfect for anyone interested in learning the principles behind the yoga practice.”

metaanatomy

  1.  MetaAnatomy – Kristin Leal

One of our favorite authors and teachers, Kristin Leal produces an amazing read on the metaphysical or metacarpals in her book, MetaAnatomy.  In Anatomy of a Yogi Volume One, you are introduced to. . .YOUrself! With chapter titles like “I’ve Got Your Back, Jack” on the glorious spine and “Oh The Nerve” on the magnificent nervous system, she disseminates what can be dense information into fun accessible bite size pieces. Wrapped inside the teachings of yoga philosophy this makes an excellent companion to yoga teacher training programs or for those yoga students interested in learning about their own amazing body. This book covers all the major muscles, bones and joints along with the anatomy of breath and the nervous system forming a comprehensive and lighthearted study for yoga students, yoga teachers or anyone with a body. Meet author and speaker, Kristin Leal in person this March 3-12th for her Meditation in Motion Yoga Retreat in Nicaragua! Or purchase her book directly at http://www.kristinleal.com/.

yogafortravelers

  1.  YOGA FOR TRAVELERS – Jennifer J. Ellinghaus

This gem is great for all our traveling yogis out there! This book includes the personal stories of travelling yogis, the ups and downs of the road, experiencing different cultures and languages, and making connections with others along the way. Whether you find yourself in a cramped hostel or hotel, this book gives creative sequences for practicing no matter where you find yourself in the world. The author shows just how adaptable yoga can be and how liberating it can feel to practice by a prehistoric lake, atop a mountain after hours of trekking, or on a wooden balcony overlooking a rain forest. This winter, it’s a great read curled up by the fire, and even better read when you hit the road this yoga retreat season abroad!

happyhealthy

  1.  Happy, Healthy, Sexy: Ayurveda Wisdom for Modern Women – Katie Silcox

Teacher and yoga instructor, Katie Silcox is a leading expert on Ayurveda. She knows that bringing ancient wisdom into our modern lives does not mean sacrificing the occasional rendezvous with red wine, fashion magazines, and other sensual pleasures. In Healthy Happy Sexy, Katie offers not only a philosophy of life but a time-tested (we’re talking thousands of years!) method for living your most radiant, healthy, and sexually vital life possible. Combining Ayurvedic wisdom with practical tools and her lively, playful, and down-to-earth voice, Katie provides a method to heal, entertain, inspire, and remind you that you are one sexy goddess. After this fantastic read, if you’re craving a bit more, join Katie this summer for her Ayurveda Tantra Yoga Retreat and Training in Nicaragua, ! Check out her website to purchase this book directly: http://www.katiesilcox.com/

siddhartha

  1.  SIDDHARTHA – Hermann Hesse

For those looking for a “gamechanger”, Siddhartha is just that. You will pick it up and not put it down until it completely devoured.  It’s a beautiful story, a quick read, and one that will entirely shift and empower your perspective on life. We could all use a bit more of the wisdom from the pages of this gift: “In the end these things matter most: How well did you love?  How fully did you live?  How deeply did you let go?”

alchemist

  1.  THE ALCHEMIST – Paulo Coelho

This one is on so many “must-read lists”. It’s not just for the yogi, but for all who need a fresh perspective. The Alchemist is a life-changing read, a book that will inspire you to think from an entirely new and uplifted point of view. It’s a story about a boy on his journey of self-realization, and the lessons it contains are things we can take with us everywhere we go.  “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure…. And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”

Hammock Time Nicaragua Yoga Institute

We hope you enjoy our “Must-Read” picks for the season! Some are yoga-centric and others are more secular in nature. However, each one deals with what’s at the core of yoga: self-knowing, self-awareness, self-love, inspiration, and spirituality. So brew a cup of tea, put on your favorite yoga pants, and settle in for some time of reflection and enlightenment this winter season.  Take your mind for a retreat or pack your book or Kindle and join us in Nicaragua for one of our many Yoga Retreats, hop in a hammock and  dig into these great reads.

 

There’s no doubt the benefits that having a regular yoga practice can bring to an individual. Maintaining a habitual practice of meditation and centering your energy can bring resounding enhancements to your body, physically and mentally. Studies have proven the benefits of yoga on the nervous and respiratory systems, not to mention improving your body’s ability to relax, focus, and build strength.

 

Did you know that taking a yoga teacher training can benefit you even further as an individual? Even if you’ve never wanted to become a professional yoga instructor, enrolling yourself in an intensive yoga teacher training could be the best thing that you ever do. Here’s why:

Seated Twist Nicaragua Yoga Institute bw

Knowledge of Your Anatomy and How Your Body Works For You – So many of us take our bodies for granted. We don’t realize the complexity of how we function. From taking breaths to running long-distances, our bodies are working hard to be balanced and in shape for all our daily activities. In a yoga teacher training, you learn the mechanics of how the body works, the muscles and bones and tendons and how everything works together and stays in alignment. This is beneficial in the beginning by learning how to do each of the poses correctly, but understanding why you need the poses and how to get in and out of each pose helps you to understand that yoga is not just about flexibility, but how to maintain your body and prevent it from injury, on or off the mat.

photo 2 (4)

Gaining an Understanding of How to Breathe Properly and How This Affects Everything – Breathing is something many of us never focus on. However, breath is food for our body. Without understanding how to breathe properly, we cannot understand how to best fuel our body with the oxygen it so craves. Respiration is a huge focus of the training, and uncovering the knowledge that each breath brings with it nutrients that our body needs to function. Many of us will never learn to focus on our breath, and balance it in a way that removes anxiety, tension, and many other negative emotions. Delving into the art of Pranayama, you will discover breathing practices that increase your range of respiration, bringing a renewed sense of calm and energy.

photo 1 (7)

Discover the Philosophy of Yoga and How the Mind Works – Thousands of years ago, someone wrote down philosophies that incorporate yoga that still speak to this very time and date. Yoga Sutras explain how yoga is more than just a bunch of complicated poses. The wisdom from these Sutras can be so helpful when we are feeling stuck in any way emotionally and mentally. Each verse has something to offer that will enhance any religion you practice, or give you some meaning if you don’t have a religion. You learn how to think and how to work with your mind when life begins to overwhelm, as it always will.  That, in itself, is invaluable.

Peter Sterios, reknown yoga professional and international yoga trainer instructs hundreds every year, leading them in their intensive yoga teacher trainings. Many, he says, never teach a class.

“Over the last ten years of leading Teacher Trainings, I have observed more than half of the graduates never teach. If you ask many of them “Was it worth it? All the time, effort and money it took?”, rarely is there even a hesitation. They are excited to share how the training was a turning point in their lives – a personal, transformational experience which deepened their understanding of yoga and helped them integrate it into their life back home.. . . At the end of the program, you will possess a very personal and intuitive understanding of yoga, based on your own experience, that will serve your practice and ultimately bring more balance and grace to your life. . .Beyond becoming a teacher, what is beautiful to see is the connection we all benefit from when learning together and from each other, and finding how this moves beyond our yoga practice into all the relationships in our lives. That’s really what our Teacher Training course is all about.”

Join Peter Sterios and James Bailey this winter in an inspiring teacher training in the beautifully cultural setting of Nicaragua, learning about the art and philosophy of yoga on the gorgeous Pacific Coast. Spots are still available for this 200-hour intensive training, February 17th-March 6th. (You can sign up for this transforming training HERE – LEVITYOGA REGISTRATION.)

Experiencing a yoga teacher training abroad allows you to dive deep into your study of yoga and you. You get to walk, talk, breathe yoga. It allows for an opportunity to do all the homework and really digest the material. You get to spend time with your teacher, seeing how he lives the yoga, learning by example. After a period of time in such an immersion, your life does change, for the better. You will find yourself knowing how to sit to keep your lower back happy. You will be less annoyed at family members and friends, using the tips from the yoga philosophy.

Once you’ve experienced something as life transforming as a yoga teacher training, you will wonder why you didn’t do it sooner.  It’s certainly not just for teachers. It’s for humans who have practiced some yoga and now want to learn more about themselves. When we know more about ourselves, we are less fearful and able to be present with anything that life offers us. In this world of constant change and unexpected turns, that is priceless.

 

 

What do the Boston Globe, Travel and Leisure, Men’s Journal, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and the Huffington Post all have in common? They have all named Nicaragua as a must see travel destination in 2015.

In “Where to go in 2015” the Boston Globe says, “Forget Costa Rica — old news. Industry experts are calling Nicaragua the hottest destination in Central America, and one of its best bargains…making it one of the world’s top 10 emerging destinations.” Travel + Leisure listed Nicaragua as 21st on their Best Places to Travel in 2015. The Huffington Post urges travelers to visit Nicaragua and “Discover the Paris of Central America.”

  1. Beaches/Surf

Surfing Jump Nicaragua Yoga Institute copy

Nicaragua is blessed with bountiful beaches and ideal surf conditions boasting more than 300 days per year of offshore winds.   Nicaragua, and San Juan del Sur, in particular, provides beach goers a variety of sandy options from the adventurous surfer (Playas Yankee and Maderas, named by Men’s Journal as one of the “20 Most Adventurous Beaches” in the world) to the lazy hazy book in a hammock days (Playa Coco and Marsella). CBS’s Survivor can’t seem to get enough of Nicaragua, having hosted not 1, but 4 seasons of the hit show on San Juan del Sur’s beaches.

  1. Eco Adventures and Wildlife

Copy of vocano hike Nicaragua yoga institute

Adventurers are quickly replacing Costa Rica with its neighbor to the north, Nicaragua, as an eco travel destination. After all, it is known as the “Land of Lakes and Volcanoes.” Nicaragua boasts diversity in its climate and geography – offering tours of volcanoes, beaches, lakes, islets, rainforests, and reefs.

Nicaragua is home to nearly 5 million acres of protected parks and preserves, filled with wildlife, including exotic birds, howler monkeys, turtles, and giant iguanas.  Zip lines, canopy and rappelling, volcano boarding, boat trips, surf, SUP, kayak and more all make exploring the beauty of Nicaragua accessible and sustainable, without disrupting the biodiversity of the area.

  1. Yoga/Wellness

Copy of yoga on beach (1)

Thanks to its laid-back vibe, vibrant culture, and soothing waves, Nicaragua is attracting a growing community of wellness practitioners. International Yoga Instructor, Vanessa Pattison opened the popular Zen Yoga Studios in San Juan del Sur. Peter Sterios, an internationally recognized yoga teacher from California, and James Bailey, a renowned Ayurveda and Oriental Medicine practitioner, yoga educator and yoga teacher trainer, are now offering annual yoga teacher trainings with Nicaragua Yoga Institute in San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua. YogaGlo’s own Jo Tastula is joining forces with Nicaragua Yoga Institute to offer an exclusive yoga retreat next May and Moksha Yoga International recently announced a 200 hour yoga teacher training in collaboration with the Nicaragua Yoga Institute for early 2016.

  1. Safety

Hammock Time Nicaragua Yoga Institute

A recently published study by Gallup highlighted Nicaragua as the safest country in Latin America and the Caribbean. The once shaky political climate has long since calmed and the country is dusting off the welcome mat to visitors, investing in infrastructure and facilities. According to the economist, confidence in the police is the highest in Latin America after Chile and Nicaragua is less violent than booming Panama, and may soon be safer than Costa Rica, a tourist haven. The Nicaraguan government has also allocated more than $6 billion towards infrastructure in recent years, all of which add to the safety and security of the country.

  1. Accessibility

stock-footage-view-of-clouds-through-window-of-an-airplane-on-a-sunny-day-full-high-definition-video-x

Airlines are catching on, too! Due to its increasing popularity as a travel destination, major airlines are adding seasonal non-stop routes to Managua, Nicaragua’s capitol city.   Delta is offering a weekly nonstop service from Los Angeles to Managua during the summer months. Spirit Airlines recently added 3 new flight times from Houston to Managua and American Airlines recently added weekly flights from Dallas/Fort Worth to Managua. As of March 2015, Nicaragua is served by a total of 11 airlines and there are a combined total of 56 weekly flights operated by American, Delta, Spirit, Avianca El Salvador and United Airlines to Managua. Ground transport from Managua to San Juan del Sur is growing too, with safe, reliable, air conditioned vehicles ready to comfortably transport you to your Nicaragua Yoga Retreat.

There is no better time than the present to come and explore Nicaragua. As the Huffington Post noted, you will want to “Get To Nicaragua Before Everyone Discovers It!”

Contact Sarah at scrosley@nicaraguayogainstitute.com to book your travel!