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Fun Outdoor Activities to Spice Up Your Yoga Holiday

by Alberto G. Güitrón

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Yoga helps to increase your physical and mental health; when you combine it with other types of aerobic exercises, the results you can get are amazing!  

There are plenty of ways to make your yoga retreat a little bit more active and have a nice time outdoors. From cycling and walking to more adventurous activities like diving or surfing, here are some combinations you can try to double your fun and spice up your yoga vacation.

Note: BookYogaRetreats offers a flexible cancellation policy. Should you not be able to travel as scheduled, we’d be happy to help you alter your booking with the same organizer or with a different organizer.

Hiking and Yoga Retreats

hiking

Hiking brings serenity and fulfillment to your life; and it relates to yoga more than you may think. Just like your practice on the mat isn’t about performing the toughest asana, but about learning to let go, hiking is not about getting to the top of the mountain, but about enjoying every step on your way up.

During a yoga and hiking holiday, you’ll be able to hike at your own pace while enjoying the delicious smells of flowers around you, the sounds of birds chirping and the fascinating landscapes of the destination of your choice. However, a hiking and yoga retreat in Nepal has no rival thanks to its location right in the heart of the Himalayas.

Plus, you’re already one step ahead as a yogi; since yoga teaches you breathing techniques, provides you with good balance and helps you be more aware of your body, you’re already prepared to face any challenge that may come during the trail. In return, you’ll get many benefits for your yoga practice. Hiking improves the cardiovascular system, strengthens your muscles, reduces stress and helps you to live in the moment.

Walking and Yoga Retreats

walking

If you want to reap all the benefits from a yoga and hiking holiday but don’t feel quite sure about the challenges that might come in a long hike, then choose a yoga and walking holiday. On a retreat like this, you’ll get plenty of time to go walking, breathe fresh air and set your own route; just enjoy every step.

And just like hiking, yoga and walking complement each other greatly since both activities allow you to work out the body while silencing the mind. It will let you increase your heart and lung fitness, strengthen your muscles and make new friends.

Cycling and Yoga Retreats

cycling

The feeling of freedom you get when you’re on a bike is incomparable; you enter into a state of flow that makes you lose track of time and feel like nothing can go wrong. Indeed, for some people, cycling is the ultimate mindful activity, as it helps them feel connected with the world and with the here and now by just pedaling.

Cycling is also a great workout that takes good care of your body, just like yoga. It has a lower impact than most other forms of exercise, it doesn’t require high levels of physical skills and it can be as intense as you want.

Moreover, it perfectly complements with yoga, since both practices teach the importance of setting an intention, to breathe steadily, to tune into the movement of your body, to maintain a good posture and to remain focused.

Sailing and Yoga Retreats

sailing

Combining yoga and sailing is the perfect way to have a truly relaxing holiday. Just picture yourself out on a deck, overlooking the gorgeous ocean with a glass of champagne in your hand, feeling the wind on your face gently caressing your skin. The sun’s shining and you can hear the sparkle on the water in the distance.

Sailing feels as being in a constant flow-state of mind, like when you profoundly get in the flow of a yoga sequence and let yourself get carried away. Also, it gives you a sense of freedom, it connects you to nature and it helps you find peace and quietness. Plus, there’s something really cool about doing yoga on a boat.

Kayaking and Yoga Retreats

kayaking

Kayaking and yoga retreats are perfect for yogis who want to add a little bit more adrenaline to their holiday. You get to explore nature in a very original way and strengthen your upper body for those inversions on the mat. Also, kayaking builds muscle and adds power to your core, which is very important since almost everything you do on the mat requires you to engage your core muscles.

Just a piece of information to convince you to try one of these retreats: one hour of kayaking can burn over 350 calories! So, would you like to go on a double kayak? Or do you prefer going solo?

Diving and Yoga Retreats

diving

If you want to experience weightlessness and freedom of movement in a 3D environment, then a yoga and diving holiday is for you! If you’ve never done this before, you’ve just found the perfect excuse.

Being underwater for the first time is an amazing experience that you’ll remember forever. Not only is it amazing to be suspended above a stunning reef full of life, colors and biodiversity, but it also brings you back to the feeling of when you were in your mother’s womb, which makes you feel really calm, increases the feeling of security, happiness and well-being.

And don’t worry if you’re a bit scared of depths. During a diving and yoga holiday, you’ll have professionals that’ll guide you all along the way. Let your Pranayama calm you down and take the plunge!

Surfing and Yoga Retreats

surfing

Credit image: Balsa Surf Camp

Yoga and surf are not that different from each other as both practices teach you to be focused and patient. With every fall, you’ll remember to take failure as an opportunity to learn, to leave your comfort zone, to have no fear and find balance.

Every year, more and more yogis decide to try surfing. It gives them the extraordinary opportunity to put into practice everything they’ve learned on the mat but in an uncontrolled environment.

That’s why it comes as no surprise that yoga and surfing holidays are one of the most popular active vacations. There are plenty of great destinations to choose from, but some of the favorites are Costa Rica, Bali and Portugal.

SUP and Yoga Retreats

SUP

Stand up paddling is a variation of surfing that consists of standing on a board and using a paddle to propel yourself through the water. When doing SUP, every move you make is crucial to avoid falling in the water, which forces you to enter into a state of total awareness.

Researchers have called this state of mind “flow,” a state that can offer you many health benefits, like improving your mood, increasing your memory and making you more creative. SUP yoga holidays allow you to enhance your yoga skills on the board and to enter into a meditative state that’ll leave you totally relax.

And there’s also SUP Yoga, a very fun style where you perform your asanas on the board. There’s no need to explain to you how much concentration is needed to achieve a single Downward Dog, but that only makes every pose more satisfying.

Kitesurfing and Yoga Retreats

kitesurfing

If you’re looking for sheer excitement, a yoga and kitesurfing holiday is what you need. While yoga will provide your body with the flexibility it needs for kitesurfing, in return, it’ll strengthen your entire body to perform the toughest poses.

During this type of yoga vacation, you’ll feel the joy of being immersed in nature, the adrenaline rush all over your body and the ecstasy of weightlessness flying up in the air.

There are retreats for advanced kitesurfers, but most programs are designed for beginners who want to spice up their yoga vacation with a good dose of adrenaline in the water.

Fitness and Yoga Retreats

fitness

If you’re looking for a type of yoga holiday that helps you tone up your body, lose weight, or simply improve your physical skills, a fitness and yoga holiday is a great option for you.

These retreats not only add a bunch of training sessions such as Pilates, walking, weightlifting and running, but you’ll also be guided by professionals who will lead you in many other aspects of a fit lifestyle. You’ll learn how to eat healthier, maintain your ideal weight, watch your carbs intake and other habits to help you stay in good shape.

There’s something for all tastes. You can choose from intensive workouts programs to detox or weight-loss plans.

Pilates and Yoga Retreat

pilates

Yoga and Pilates is the perfect combo for a healthy lifestyle. Both practices help you develop core strength, increase flexibility, improve your posture and boost your energy levels. The Pilates principles of centering, concentration, control, precision, breath and flow will help you integrate your body and mind and improve your yoga practice.

Horse Riding and Yoga Retreats

horse riding

Image credit: Aventuras del Sur

When riding a horse, you get a wonderful sense of freedom and a unique connection with another living being –the horse. There are also a lot of physical benefits you get from it, like improving circulation, strengthening your core and increasing muscle tone.

Horse riding is good for exercising the mind and engaging with other riders. Plus, spending time with animals is believed to raise levels of serotonin (the happy hormone). All of it combined with the practice of yoga can greatly help you let go of fear and increase your confidence.  

Martial Arts and Yoga Retreats

martial arts

If you want to push your human limits and discover new things about yourself, a yoga and martial arts holiday will suit you well. While you can certainly practice indoors, many martial arts and yoga retreats usually have their practice sessions outdoors.

On this type of vacation, you’ll gain mental and physical strength, learn how to handle pressure and develop a solid sense of self-assurance.

Just as yoga, the different martial arts allow you to enhance the mind and the body. They’ll improve your focus and stillness and teach you great morals to live a better life. Some of the most popular martial arts on these holidays are Boxing, Muay Thai and Tai Chi.

*Cover image credit: OceanDream Yoga​


Can’t go away on an outdoors holiday right now? Join an online yoga retreat to stay physically active while being at home!

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