You may be familiar with the term "wanderlust" — a strong desire for, or impulse to wander or travel and explore the world — but what do you get when you combine the desire to wander with yoga, music, healthy food, art and a mindful community?
The answer: Four jam-packed, fun-filled days of learning, growing, exploring and discovering your true potential, a.k.a the Wanderlust Yoga Festival!
Founded by three friends with a long relationship dating back to their college days — husband-and-wife duo Jeff Krasno and Schulyer Grant, and their mutual friend Sean Hoess — the Wanderlust Festival aims to "create a community around shared values" and "the pillars of mindful living — yoga, the arts, personal spirituality, environmentalism, organics and conscious consumerism."
With events taking place in Vermont, New York, Georgia, Colorado, California, and even up in Canada, the Wanderlust Festival — sponsored by companies such as Gaiam, Kashi, Garnier and prAna (among many others) — brings together the world's leading yoga teachers, top musical acts, renowned speakers, exquisite chefs and outstanding performers for an unforgettable weekend.
"This is what the world is thirsting for right now," said co-founder Jeff Krasno in an exclusive speak easy, which SheKnows attended during the most recent festival on Stratton Mountain in Bondville, Vermont, June 19-22.
From inspirational lectures led by best-selling author Gabrielle Bernstein to asana-kicking yoga classes taught by Seane Corn, Elena Brower and Cameron Shayne (just to name a few) and musical performances from the hip-hop, beat-happy MC Yogi, Wanderlust Stratton was pretty much a yogi's dream come true.
Among the most popular classes at the festival — as well as one of my own personal faves — was Katarina Arneric's Standup Paddleboard Yoga class at a nearby, picturesque lake.
S.U.P. Yoga is one of the biggest up-and-coming trends in the yoga world. This relatively new style of yoga (started around 2010), requires students to take their practice off the mat, onto a paddleboard and into the water! The practice "targets deep muscles that are closer to the bone" and "strengthens your regular yoga practice," according to Katarina. It also builds confidence and helps yogis not take themselves, or their practice, too seriously, she added. As I learned first hand, it's kind of an inevitable part of the S.U.P. Yoga process to fall into the water every now and then.
"People are almost up for anything," Katarina said about attendees of the Wanderlust Festival. "They're just like, 'Let's do it!' — that's what I love about the crew here."
S.U.P. Yoga wasn't the only new style of this ancient practice at the festival, other unique forms of yoga that attendees could participate in included suspension yoga, acro yoga, Hula-Hoop yoga, slackline yoga and, even, ballet-inspired yoga. There were also plenty of more traditional vinyasa-based classes, as well as "morning after" classes (in case yogis had one too many glasses of wine the night prior), inversion workshops, meditation sessions, hikes and impressive acrobatic performances.
Needless to say, if you're passionate about yoga, or eager to learn more, the Wanderlust Festival is just what you've been searching for. From one yogi to another, this is truly an incredible experience that will not only further your practice, but also re-ignite your passion and refocus your purpose.
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