If you’ve read any number of posts here on Live, Run, Grow you probably know that I LOVE yoga! And not only that, I truly believe in the benefits of yoga for runner’s (and all athletes!).
So, you can imagine how excited I was when I saw there was going to be a Yoga for Athletes weekend at the Kripalu Center with Sage Rountree! Sage is an internationally recognized authority on yoga for athletes and sports endurance coach as well as author of several yoga for athletes books (all of which I own!) and contributor to Runner’s World and Yoga Journal – so basically she knows her stuff!
When another girl in my yoga teacher training mentioned that she was interested in the workshop as well, the two of us immediately registered!
To tell you everything about the weekend this post would get really long. So here’s the plan…today is going to be about the Kripalu experience in general and what we did that is not program specific, later this week in a second post I’ll share more in detail about the Yoga for Athletes workshops and practicing with Sage…sound good? Good.
So, Holly and I arrived at Kripalu on Friday afternoon, the area was gorgeous!
We checked in and went to our room to drop our stuff off. There are several different types of accomodations available, but since we knew we wouldn’t be spending much time in our room and it was only for a weekend we opted to share one of the standard rooms…
No frills here! Just a place to crash for a few nights and we shared a community bathroom down the hall – how college, right?!?
After dropping our stuff off we went to check out an afternoon yoga class. At the Kripalu Center they teach Kripalu yoga which is slightly different from the Vinyassa style both Holly and I practice. I’ve been struggling all weekend to put in to words the actual difference between Kripalu and Vinyassa, but basically I just don’t think Kripalu sequences and flows in the way that I enjoy. Something about it left me feeling unsatisfied at the end of the class, but it’s always good to experience new practices!
After yoga we headed to dinner. OH MY GOODNESS.
This is what the Kripalu website says about their food:
The Kripalu Kitchen uses high-quality, all-natural ingredients to offer an array of nutritionally sound choices at every meal. Whole grains, fresh vegetables, and legumes form the backbone of the menus, with organic poultry, fish, and dairy products as optional protein sources. Meals are served buffet-style. Fresh salad fixings and a selection of delicious salad dressings are always available, as are our famous freshly baked breads.
Everything was SOOOO good!
Huge salads. Fresh vegetables. Almost all vegetarian. And don’t get me started on the Lavender Honey iced tea! (I could go on and on about the food, but I’m starting to drool on my keyboard so I’m going to stop for the sake of my new computer.)
After dinner we had our introduction program session (more on that tomorrow!) and then headed to bed. Saturday was mostly program sessions, but we did get up for a 6:30am yoga and meditation class before breakfast and then we had some free time at night. Oh, did I mention breakfast is silent?!? Yup, no talking allowed in the dining hall! I actually LOVED this…I am NOT a morning person and can be quite cranky until I’m fully awake and/ or when I’m hungry, so trust me, not letting me talk before I’ve has breakfast is actually a great idea! (I’m pretty sure my husband is considering implementing this policy for me at home…)
Anyways, back to Saturday night, the nice thing at Kripalu is that there are always different optional programs and classes you can attend when you have time or you can book a healing arts appointment (massage, Ayurveda, bodywork, etc.).
Holly had booked a massage for Saturday night, but I figured since it was my first time to Kripalu I’d try to check out some of the optional events and was excited to see that Kofi Busia was also at Kripalu that weekend and was offering a Saturday night program sampler called “The Story of Yoga”. Kofi is an internationally known Iyengar yoga teacher who has studied directly with B.K.S. Iyengar himself.
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, and to be honest I was partially preparing myself for a dry boring lecture on yoga philosophy, but I was pleasantly surprised when he started talking to find out he’s actually quite funny!
He did speak for about an hour about yoga philosophy, but he is a wonderful storyteller and instead of talking about everything in a historical context (that usually goes right over my head) he applied it all to the “real world” in a way that everyone in the room could relate to. I loved listening to him talk (especially with his lovely British accent!) and would definitely recommend it to anyone that has the opportunity!
Sunday was out last day at Kripalu. I has been hoping to get up and go for a run before our last program session, but when I saw it was only 10 degrees out I rolled back over, pulled the covers up and slept for an extra hour : )
Kripalu was such a great experience and I’d definitely visit again if there was another workshop or program I was interested in. If you’d like to see more about the Kripalu Center or their upcoming events you can visit their website HERE.
Stay tuned for a separate post on learning yoga for athletes with Sage Rountree!
So fun! Love this recap – the food is definitely a highlight at Kripalu. It’s funny – when I was there years ago, it was all vegetarian, and they were about to bring fish and poultry back to the menu. As you can imagine, it was pretty controversial!
I find the Kripalu yoga style more gentle and spiritual than other types of yoga I’ve tried, but I don’t have enough experience to really know the difference between different styles. Looking forward to hearing about your class.
That’s actually a good way to describe the difference…I have to admit I’m not quite as interested in the spiritual aspect of yoga (I find it very interesting, but I’m mostly practicing for the physical benefits) and so compared to a vinyassa practice it does seem a bit slower and more gentle.
Definitely want to go to a yoga workshop weekend someday, sounds like (apart from the class that didn’t float your boat) the whole experience was amazing! Can’t wait to read about the second part to this post later this week!
P.S. I’m going to a 2.5hr technique workshop Feb 9th, SO excited!!! Might sign up for a core clinic in March too…
A technique workshop sounds great! I just saw one for “Hip Opening and Arm Balances” coming up by me that I’d love to do! I have ZERO arm strength so arm balances are a real challenge for me, but I love the feeling when I finally get one!
Loved the arm balance clinic I took a couple weeks ago! I do have upper body strength, its my core and arm alignment I need to work on most 🙂
Sounds as though you had a great weekend. If the food was half as good as it looked it had to be fabulous.
That looks like so much fun! Love the comment about college and the hall bathrooms lol!
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