The top reason to go on a Surf Yoga Retreat

Mar 24, 2015

~ Flow is the new black ~ We keep it real and take you on a quick journey here to SHOW you our top reason to go on a surf yoga retreat. Drawn from first-hand experience, this sneak preview is relayed with a touch of cheekiness and includes photos of our partners' retreats to give you a better idea of what it's like attending a retreat. Enjoy!

Spiritual_Retreat_Bali.jpgDiving into meditation and culture with Mind Body Soul Surf Bali

“Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”
~ Rumi

To find your Self you must lose it first.  What better way to get lost than getting out of your comfort zone by attending a surf yoga retreat.  You’ll learn to navigate the middle ground of your life by flowing from the rush of catching a wave to the chilled out sensation of savasana at sunset.  You’ll be challenged but nurtured, excited but relaxed, and laughing with new friends but also enjoying some solo time.

Diving into a daily practice of yoga and surfing, you naturally become more connected with your inner being and at ease with the flow of life. We use the term in the flow to describe what is happening when you connect to yourself and the world around you. During these moments, you are essentially losing your mind - not as in you are going insane - as many of you know losing your mind is not referenced in OM Land as a negative thing. In effect your developing better sanity: your attention turns from your mind, which is always on constant overdrive telling you nasty things about yourself and the world around you, and you begin experiencing the moment through your heart, which is the preferred internal compass to help you navigate through your life! Heart trumps our drunken monkey minds. Explaining this feeling of being in the flow is not easy (hence devoting our blog to it!). Why do we love and explore the notion of flow? Because being in this state allows the body to rejuevenate, heal and come alive; it allows us to experience authentic joy and freedom.

holly_spray_profile_1.jpgLiving through the heart, letting yourself become one with nature and riding the stoke vibration: this sense of flow happens when all these magical elements simultaneously combine, providing a sense of freedom and elation.

Many people are already catching the ride to inner freedom while others are still wrapping their mouths around the term ‘surf yoga retreat.’  We could think of many reasons and pull them into a tidy ‘Top Five Reasons to go on a Retreat.’ But we think it is more fun to provide you with a cheeky sneak preview of why we think these retreats offer the best experience out there in terms of a vacation these days. 


Surf with Amigas Founder Holly Beck Obermeyer flowing with the elements

So here are is our top one reason in all its glory:

1. They provide the best value for those looking for inside-out transformation.. and fun!  Retreats are in; old-school all-inclusives are out. You know those all-inclusives where you end up at a huge resort with people that are disconnecting themselves by binging hard on buffets, drinking way too much and lazing about. Ya maybe that doesn’t sound bad - but imagine this:

You make the commitment and schedule some 'me time,' deciding on something called a surf yoga retreat. Learning to surf is on your bucket list and you like yoga a lot, so why not! You did consider an all-inclusive because it was such a great deal. Yet when you sat down to compare this new shiny surf yoga retreat to it, you were surprised to see it offered nearly the same benefits along with additional adventures, healthy food and bonus - you can learn to surf and get deeper into yoga! It also includes a retreat host (insider tips on the local scene, check!), a massage (relaxation, check!) and transportation to and from the airport (no stress, check!). So you book and finally the time comes - you arrive at your new retreat. Now you are already way better off than your buddies drinking rum until they get escorted back to their rooms on their old-school all-elusive-vacay. Well done friend!


thumbnail_present_moment_yoga_retreat.jpgIn of itself this act of self-love - devoting time to improve your health and have fun - provides you with a blank canvas to paint the next chapter of your life. We don’t often give ourselves the kind of time out we need to reflect on how we are showing up in the world and whether we are happy with our current perspectives on life.  Naturally when you carve out time to give yourself space to reflect, questions will come up like, Am I allowing joy and happiness to flow into my life? Where am I blocking ease and comfort? Am I being authentic in my life? Do I feel like I’m living the life that I truly dream of living?

By simply traveling to an unknown place you have already done yourself a huge favor. For many of us, we come to know our true selves through the act of traveling, getting away from perceptions of how people know us back home and their expectations of us. When you are faced with new situations, you come to understand more about who you really are and what you are capable of.

Retreat time: in the morning, you wake up to a healthy smoothie, juice or some comforting tea. You look out your window and notice the lack of cement and tall buildings and the abundance of sunshine, trees and salty air. You head off to a zen-full yoga class, making you feel centered and grounded. This is the direct portal, the key, to helping you Know thy Self: you go inward, you slow down, you tap into your own vibration and how you are feeling at this very moment. During your classes you are catching glimpses of where you need to start your healing and this journey. The yoga purifies your spirit and body and your yoga teacher gently guides you to the places you need to go for transformation to take place.



This is already the best day of your life and it’s only 10am!

Next you are lulled back to the dining area for a sit-down breakfast or brunch with a group of strangers who are all there to have fun, learn and be healthy ( - and who by the end of the week have magically turned themselves into your best friends).



 Guests at Sanga Retreats going deep in their practice with owner Jamie Wood.

Mmmm, and breakfast is light but filling; healthy but in a way that you’re not thinking about food afterwards. Later, when the waves are just right - because your surf instructors will know exactly where to take you for your skill level - you are whisked away into elemental exaltation. Let the nature therapy part of your journey begin! Spending time in the water, catching waves or even laying in savasana on your board in the water: whether you are aware of it or not, you are tapping into the power of nature to heal yourself on so many levels. The secret to the success of the Surf Yoga Retreat is that it provides opportunities to realign with the vibes of mother nature, which is essentially tapping into our own internal strength. Learning to surf and learning to surf better, forces you to truly flow with nature. If you fight the waves, the ocean will continually teach you that fighting doesn’t work in her playground.

carly_chivers_5.jpgSo there you are, frolicking in the waves with your new surf instructor friends who make you laugh and are kind of silly but you take them seriously because underneath it all, they have some magical wisdom to impart. You get up on your first wave!

Ok, now you get it, now you understand what the hype is about and why everyone wants to feel the sensation of a board gliding over water that’s joined forces with an invisible moving wave of energy.


The owners of Papaya Wellness playing in the waves

Later you don’t even care when you get pummeled by a rather large wave that strips you of half your bikini and throws your hair off to the side like some hilarious interpretation of a man’s toupée gone wrong.  Stoked and laughing, you’ve just crapped out all your worries during your tumble, completely forgetting why you were ever worried about anything - ever - in your life.  

Surf_Yoga_Retreat_Bali.jpgSand up your butt and tummy sore from laughing (or is that a bit of a rash you have there from the board? - oh ya, you don’t care!!!), you head back to the retreat centre to just chill and eventually take up some more delicious food.

Now, what to do next?  Will you surf again or practice more yoga or simply explore the local area with your new best friends?  This will be the only stressful thing to decide during your stay. But not to worry, your super friendly retreat hosts will help you make all your decisions for you, you won’t even need to think for yourself on the retreat. The only thing they won’t do is wipe your bum or brush your teeth - sorry there are no retreats like that, just something to look forward to when your old and grey, at the end of your life.

Salty and stoked guests at the Chillhouse in Bali

Ah! But life is happening right now! And








Journalling like you’ve never before, releasing old shit that doesn’t serve you and lapping up the new shit that will make you chill-but-strong, like the real spiritual warrior you are.

delicious_food_ireland_holiday.jpgAs if the day wasn’t perfect enough already, you’re about to lose your monkey-mind all over again: dinner is served and it’s the best meal you have ever had. Your taste buds are high-fiving each other, because after stretching and using all your muscles all day long everything tastes that much better. This is total Bliss!





  Friendships form around delicious food with the Driftwood Travelling crew.

Then you relax some more with your friends, maybe satsang or kirtan later around a fire.. and subtlety the world opens up to you and you open up to it.

And it’s only the first day! You still have the rest of the week to learn, laugh and love your life.

At the end of the week you leave with a more positive attitude, some sweet photos and skills out in the waves. You might even confess to people now that you are indeed ‘a surfer’ or you can at least say ‘i Surf.' You come away feeling a little lighter in the heart and definitely more flexible in your body and mind.

The surf yoga retreat is the enlightened version of the all-inclusive vacation with the added bonus of surfing lessons, like-minded people, healthy food and yoga classes, so you really get so much value in terms of money and your time. The very best part is these are experiences that you take with you and integrate into your daily life well after the retreat ends.

Check out our listings if you feel inspired and let us help you find your next adventure!


Del Mar Surf Camp guests looking proud and happy.

Category: ISIY Journal

Stacey Jones

Profile_stacey.jpgMarketer, Writer, Teacher.  Having been a yogi and surfer for over a decade, Stacey decided to attend a surf yoga retreat.  She found it time-consuming sorting out which retreat to attend and who to support with her hard-earned money. From this hatched iSurf iYoga, a website for wave-sliding yoginis to come together to share their journeys and where they can easily find inspiring, sustainable adventures. Other passions: mountain biking, skiing, boarding (all kinds), raw food, turtles, chocolate, Sci-fi and traveling.  She fell in love with traveling on a four month trip to South East Asia on her first adventure 14 years ago. "Just like the experience of surfing the first time, I felt like I came alive."

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