Our first Summer Wellness Retreat began with Olga leading a dynamic and balanced morning practice on the flagstone patio outside of George and Joan Hornig’s storied barn in Watermill. Oversized outdoor umbrellas with gorgeous, rustic tree-stump bases (designed by Joan) cast shade over the mats as Olga stretched out our spines and hips, fired up our core strength and let us through a creative standing vinyasa series.
Afterwards, Karen served refreshing green smoothies of pineapple, kale and cucumber, and we sat for a morning discussion on Right Movement.
It was a lovely morning and it set the mood. The entire two days would be intimate, informative and inspiring… relaxing and reinvigorating… and chock full of culinary delights!
The menus, created by Karen and long-time collaborator Jamie Sydney, featured sesame asparagus, cod with orange miso sauce, farm fresh tomatoes with fresh pesto, green quinoa with zucchini and almond sweet potatoes.
The intention was to not only discuss Right Nutrition, but also experience it as we savored Every. Delicious. Bite. We’ll be sharing the recipes and nutritional information in the weeks to come, so if you missed the retreat you don’t have to miss out on the healthy indulgences.
Between a walking meditation led by Jeff Brown, massages offered by Regine Rousseau, and an aromatherapy experience led yours truly, there wasn’t one person who escaped a mini-nap during our afternoon Yoga Therapeutics practice on the grass under the swaying maple trees. It was a net-relaxing day to say the least.
Meg Walsh-Sinkel opened the second day with an Ashtanga-led series — novel to most, and transcendent to all. She guided with precision and heart, helping us deeply connect to body and Right Breathing. We were so in the flow, our discussion that morning quickly evolved into demos, hands-on assists and individual movement labs that went right up until lunch!
Perhaps the juiciest discussion of the event was “Aging Gracefully” that second afternoon. We combined Western and Eastern science for a holistic approach to maintaining vim, vigor and visage!
We’ll be sharing the information and referrals for various anti-aging doctors, facialists and products that have been tried and tested. Plus, of course, Ayurvedic and Yogic methods for sustaining youthful energy — all designed to allow our inner light to shine bright, and, yes, keep us looking and feeling our best.
A slow and succulent two-hour restorative yoga class and guided meditation, courtesy of Jeff Brown, closed the retreat, ensuring that nobody left with even a drop of stress in their systems.
It is an understatement to say that we are awash in gratitude. It simply wouldn’t have been possible without the participation of our registrants, our gifted teachers who gave so much of themselves, our studio manager Brad and coordinator Lauren, and of course our generous hosts George and Joan Hornig. We thank you. It is because of each and every one of you that we are able to contribute all proceeds, plus a little extra 😉 to The Retreat in East Hampton to support the invaluable work that they do.
It was Five Pillars’ first retreat, and it reinforced just how much fun it is to #GoDeep into the practice, movement, food, intention and fun of yoga! We’ve shared this little recap so that you know what to look forward to the next time.
We’ll hope to see you on the mat, by the pool, under the maples, or gathered around the table, each of us the teacher, each of us the student.
Namaste and see you in the Fall!