Yoga - The art of balanced living

Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence
Waldhotel Health & Medical Excellence
Body & Mind
Whether you aim to improve your overall fitness or experience a wellness holiday with a difference, read on to discover more about yoga’s origins and how it can help restore your physical and mental equilibrium.

The Waldhotel now offers several yoga retreats that will appeal to anyone wishing to find out more about this ancient practice and benefit from the many advantages of an intensive encounter with the discipline.

The history of yoga in a nutshell

Yoga can be traced back in India over 5000 years to about 3000 BCE, where stone-carved figures have been found showing the discipline’s original postures, or asanas, and practices. It was probably developed during the sixth and fifth centuries BCE, primarily as a means of achieving harmony between body and soul, and was practised regularly in ashrams, or spiritual hermitages. However, it soon became evident that yoga offers many other practical health benefits, ranging from curing diabetes and high blood pressure to easing chronic pain and aiding convalescence. Over the centuries, yoga has spread to every corner of the globe and today enjoys unprecedented popularity.

What is yoga?

The word ‘yoga’ comes from the Sanskrit ‘yuj’, meaning to yoke or bind, a reference to the fact that it is believed to unite the mental, physical and metaphysical domains of our beings. It comes in various forms, such as Hatha yoga or Ashtanga, which are combined with Pranayama, for exampIe, the formal practice of controlling the breath. Yoga's principle aim is to help us develop spiritually by training both body and mind. Practised regularly and correctly, preferably daily, and combined with other disciplines such as Ayurveda, it helps us to generate greater awareness of both ourselves and the world around us, encourages discernment and self-regulation, and accompanies us on the path to enhanced consciousness. Ultimately, the desired result is improved mental and physical equilibrium.



Who can practise yoga?

The answer to this question is simple: anyone. 

There is no need to be a contortionist or even ultra-flexible. Even if you have done nothing remotely similar in the past, you can begin a yoga programme by practising gently and progressing at your own pace. Combined with massage and our spa treatments, the daily yoga classes will teach you to become increasingly aware of yoga’s benefits. First, physically, as you become more flexible and body-conscious. But also, because yoga is a holistic discipline, you will notice differences in your mental attitudes. You will feel calmer and more relaxed, more at peace with yourself and your surroundings. And as you embark on this journey, you will see the world with far greater clarity.


Why a yoga retreat?

There are many reasons for choosing a retreat when you decide to approach yoga seriously, and we would like to consider just a few of them here.

  • A yoga retreat is a special kind of holiday and helps you escape the stresses and strains of everyday life. Weather permitting, our tailor-made yoga classes are held outside in the open air, in natural, peaceful surroundings where you will learn techniques that de-stress, relax and rejuvenate.
  • Leave the digital world with all its annoying distractions behind you: a yoga retreat is a digital detox at its most extreme.
  • When you leave your everyday life behind, yoga sessions give you the chance to see it from a different perspective and take stock of yourself and your world.
  • You will consciously be improving your life and putting yourself at the very centre of it.
  • You have the opportunity to spend more one-on-one time with your yoga teachers and instructors than if you see them once a week for an hour or so.
  • Meet new, positive, like-minded people, who are purposefully in search of a better way of leading their lives.
  • The fact that meditation plays such a central role in the retreat programme will enable you to break free of the negative thoughts that so often plague us. You will learn to meditate free of everyday distractions and, in the process, improve your powers of mindfulness: the essential human ability to be fully present in and aware of our situation. It will give you the sense of detachment needed to view the world from the outside and not to overreact or be overwhelmed by what you see.
  • On a retreat, you will be free of the stress that so often plagues us when we are on holiday. We have all experienced the situation of returning from vacation only to feel that we need another one. The energy released here is positive because you have the time and space to be. Purely and simply.
  • A yoga retreat is an ideal way to improve your physical and mental health but also to come to terms with emotional issues. Remember: a retreat gives you a safe place in which to confront your fears head-on. It is hugely beneficial if you are convalescing or recovering from sickness or an accident.
  • Finding a slot in your busy life for a discipline like yoga is not always easy. A retreat, however, allows you to make yoga part of your everyday routine.
  • Our yoga retreats are accompanied by light, healthy, seasonally influenced meal using fresh produce that will probably change your ideas on healthy eating.
  • By taking time for yourself and focusing on your physical wellbeing and emotional needs, you will discover the secret of pure relaxation. This is a travel and vacation experience with a true purpose that will you feeling refreshed and reinvigorated, and ready to face life’s challenges with a radically different attitude.


Healthy by Nature

Part of our current Healthy by Nature programme is Body & Mind Balance, a package designed to help you benefit from the natural surroundings and energy radiated by the Bürgenberg mountain. In this ocean of tranquilty, you will learn invaluable, life-changing meditation and mindfulness techniques that take you on a journey of discovery, enabling you to turn inward and draw on your inner strengths.


Body & Mind Balance ProgramS