"Thank you very much for organizing the yoga weekend at Thandeka – since starting yoga with you, it has been a thoroughly surprising experience. I still can’t touch my toes (and am relieved that I am not alone). But I have come to realise that yoga is not about eclectic chanting, muttering in inaccessible languages, group hugs, or extraordinary adventures in extreme suppleness. It is in fact a very complete workout aimed at improving our physical bodies. What we take from it is up to us – for me this was the stretching and lengthening, as well as the relaxing and calming effect of the physical workout. I do recommend your classes to all of us that suffer from any degree of industrial disease – its just a pity that those of us that need yoga the most often take so long to understand what it is actually about. Thank you for the opportunity to spend the weekend away with like minded people, enjoying your instruction, and doing yoga in such a beautiful environment. Ann and I thoroughly enjoyed the weekend and look forward to the next one.

Thank you for the kindness, calmness, and understanding."

Matthew, The Yoga Ogre.

Luxury Safari Tents, Thandeka Lodge. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za Thandeka pool terrace. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za

On May 21st 2006 Yoga Warrior led a yoga retreat to Thandeka Lodge in the beautiful Waterberg Mountain range. This was an opportunity to get away from the city, chill out, be with friends or rest and be silent.

Thandeka Lodge http://www.thandekalodge.com/home.htm, is a Top Billing recommended destination. It is on a private reserve in a wilderness that is inhabited by wildlife, birds and fauna. The lodge offers an Out-of-Africa experience, with the architecture designed around promoting close encounters with the unspoilt South African bushveld. The sleek main buildings are exquisitely decorated in a colonial-contemporary style. The accommodation consists of luxury tents with a bathroom and separate shower.

Yoga Warriors practice around the fireplace, Thandeka Lodge, May 20th 2006. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za

The weather was unusually cold but this turned out to be in our favour as we were forced to experience juicy yoga in front of a roaring fire. We practiced yoga in the dining hall, which had vaulted ceilings, in a circle around the fire, surrounded by candles. After a leisurely lunch we had an hour of restorative yoga which aided digestion and also the delayering of city stresses.

 

                 Clara leading Yoga Warrior Retreat, Thandeka Lodge, May 20th 2006. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za

 

The rest of the afternoon was either spent on a game drive, resting and reading or chatting around the fire. I went on the game drive and was impressed with what we saw in such a short space of time: buffalo, giraffe, white blesbok, black rhino with a 4 day old baby, jackal and a bush baby bouncing along the road. On the return to the lodge, hot baths had been prepared so everyone slipped away to the tents to wallow in the beautiful sunken polished-sandstone baths. After the staff chorused us to dinner we sat banquet style at a long dinner table and mingled and munched the evening away.

 
Dinner banquet style on Yoga Warrior Bush Retreat, Thandeka Lodge, May 2006. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za
 

There was an optional game walk in the morning that some went on, followed by hot breakfast; at this point I was really enjoying the Thandeka malty Hot Chocolates! The sun came out so another game drive was on the menu to look for the baby Rhino.  By late morning we were doing yoga again still in front of the fire, though this time voluntarily, another opportunity to wring ourselves out before beginning another week. After our final meal together we began to collect our things and leisurely departed back home.

Chatting in the sun, Yoga Warrior Bush Retreat, May 2006. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za Chilling out on Yoga Warrior Bush Retreat, Thandeka Lodge, May 2006. copyright www.woodburnphoto.co.za