Tripin 2017 - 2018 - page 74

While Ayurveda is growing in popularity in
Western cultures as part of the general trend
toward natural wellness and as attention
around ancient health traditions grows, Sri
Lanka has also long been a popular haven for
the practice of yoga.
Like Ayurveda, the practice dates back many
centuries in Sri Lanka. Originating in India,
the word `yoga’ is derived from the Sanskrit
root ‘yuj’ which means to merge or unite.
Yoga is based on the concept that the body
and breath are intimately connected with the
mind. By controlling breathing and holding
the body in steady postures, known as ‘asanas’,
stagnant energy centres open up, contributing
to better physical health, mental peace and
well-being. Yoga exercises help with their
preventive and curative effects to bring the
metabolism of the body into a natural order,
helping to deal with the effects of stress in a
natural way.
Increasingly, people are turning to yoga
for many reasons from managing stress to
maintaining optimum levels of health and
well-being. And where better to do so than
in a place with beautiful surroundings such
as Sri Lanka? There are an abundance of yoga
retreats and resorts on the island, catering to
all levels and tastes.
The island is home to some of the most
beautiful and relaxing yoga retreats in the
world. Many can be found on the southern
beaches, where you can also enjoy an array
of other activities such as swimming in the
ocean, beachcombing, sunbathing or even
surfing. Some retreats are remotely located in
lush former tea plantations, in line with the
philosophy that we will find harmony only
once we can bring ourselves into balance with
nature. In some extreme cases, Wi-Fi is not
available in order to truly disconnect from the
modern world and be at one with nature, so
be prepared!
Yoga teachers travel from all over the world to
teach and train in Sri Lanka. For those looking
to increase their ability levels, many places
also offer a variety of specialized workshops
or training to become a teacher yourself.
Another option is to book some time at a
holistic wellness retreat, with the aim to
rejuvenate and refresh the body and mind
through a variety of activities and treatments.
These retreats may include both yoga and
Ayurvedic practices, as well as other activities
such as meditation, and tasty food that
nourishes the body and mind.
Sri Lanka is an island rich in many aspects; art,
history, customs, stunning flora and fauna,
gemstones, and delicious food, to name just a
few. It is no surprise then that for centuries
this vibrant island has also been a wellspring
of ancient wisdom, knowledge and practice in
support of holistic, natural health and balance,
drawing dedicated practitioners and the
curious alike from around the globe.
As a westerner experiencing Ayurveda and
yoga for the first time, it was fascinating to
learn more about these traditions. As many
aspects of western cultures and societies
encourage hectic and unhealthy lifestyles, it
was extremely refreshing to experience and
learn more about these alternatives which
aim to calm and balance the body and mind,
all while in the beautiful setting of this island.
*It should be noted that Shirodhara should not
be given to women in their third trimester of
pregnancy and to those with a rash or sunburn on
the forehead or scalp. Also, if you have an aversion
to oil this is not recommended. Please check with
our doctor before proceeding, and always use a
certified Ayurvedic practitioner.
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