Yoga Body, Zen Mind - February 2019

About us

Become a ninja by fusing Zen mindfulness with your yoga practice! This week-long retreat aims to restore perfect balance to both the body and the mind. Working with a variety of techniques such as yoga asana practice, pranayama, Zen meditation and philosophical studies, you will have the opportunity to stretch and be active as well as rest, rejuvenate, and relax. Find renewed motivation to pursue your goals and settle into a deeper understanding of who you really are.

Learn about the unconventional foundations of the mind, and find more control over your thoughts and emotions. By examining our own mind, its patterns, strengths, and limits, we can learn to live with more purpose and awareness, revolutionizing the way we react to the world around us. Explore dualism versus non-dualism to understand better how to approach the challenges in your life.

About the Teacher:
Doron is a Certified 550 hour Yoga Teacher (ERYT) as well as the director the Doron Yoga School (RYS 200 and 500) and founder and CEO of the Doron Yoga & Zen Center in Guatemala. He was introduced to Yoga and Meditation in 1992 while traveling and studying in the Far East for 2 years. Since then Doron has returned to India over the years to deepen his spiritual and Asana Practice and continuously has practiced under the guidance of Pattabhi and Sharat Jois. He has been fortunate to have studied with some other great teachers such as Richard Freeman (Teacher Training Course (TTC), advanced trainings and assisting), Tim Miller (3rd series TTC), Rolf and Marci, Adarsh, Shashadri, Cidananda, Chuck Miller, Mati Azrati, Dena Ginsberg, Cidananda as well as the Osho Ashram, with the Dalai Lama in Dharamsala, as well as continuing studies and mentoring with Mark Stephens and other senior teachers.

Doron’s teachings are based on the foundation of tradition with a practical and non-dogmatic way. His classes are strong, but go at a pace that allows lots of awareness and focus. He teaches with extreme detail, shares a lot of informative tips both for body and mind, and keeps the class flowing with a fun energy infused with humor.

Bringing experience from the business world and running his own photography studio, he understands the demands of a fast pace life. He seeks to help people make real change and improvement that is lasting. Not band aids, but rather sustainable health and happiness in all levels of life, starting at the physical, through the emotional and into the spiritual. Practicing with Doron is a no-nonsense practice, yet still infused with humor and compassion.

Doron is also a trained chef, a certified nutrition consultant (registered with the AADP), an artist and a long time Zen student. He uses all his skills to share a holistic experience. You may learn about Ayurveda, a new mind focusing technique or simply how to get that head stand with ease. He is observant and compassionate at the same time.

Doron works towards bringing the experience of yoga on the mat onto all levels of life. All of these components and approaches are now more easily available to the general public with the release of his book, The Yoga Lifestyle: Using the Flexitarian Method to Ease Stress, Find Balance, and Create a Healthy Life. Doron is a teacher of the full spectrum of yoga, creating a healthy sustainable bliss onto all layers of life.

Location & Activities:

Located in the Mayan land of hummingbirds and water (Tzununa), the DYZC is a spiritual, no-nonsense retreat center that seeks practical solutions, based on real experiences rather than religious dogma. We fuse our study of yoga and Zen with regenerative living, permaculture, The Flexitarian Method, and mindful actions. We offer a safe home to unlearn limiting conditioning, and provide guidance for how to live joyfully.

Between your meditation, prananyama, and asana practices, enjoy the beautiful surrounding nature by swimming, kayaking, or stand-up paddleboarding in the lake; hiking up one of the surrounding mountains or volcanoes! You can also venture by boat, tuk-tuk, or foot into one of the neighboring towns for some shopping for traditional textiles and paintings, some traditional cacao drinks or Guatemalan coffee, and holistic healing offerings.

Yoga

The Doron Yoga Method is Ashtanga Vinyasa based with a touch of Zen. It mixes yin and yang, core work and strengthening, with deep stretching. The class offers a challenge and movements, but the flow is slow, mindful and focused. You will work hard, and laugh at the same time. Doron Yoga is a sustainable yoga system, where safety comes first and foundations of correct alignment specifically for each individual. The classes are geared to all levels, from beginners to ninjas. Beginners will always have an option to work on the basics to build strength and flexibility, while the advanced student will receive options to work on fancy poses.

Receive amazing hands-on assists from a loving, compassionate, enthusiastic, and energetic teacher with more than 25 years of yoga practice and studies around the world.

Activities:

Hiking nearby

Swimming in the lake, 10 min walk from the DYZC

Kayaking nearby

Cafes, restaurants, shopping in neighboring towns, a short boat ride away

Things to Do:

The DYZC is located in Tzununa, which is surrounded by hills on Lake Atitlan with great views of the volcanoes on the other side of the lake. Hiking, swimming, and kayaking opportunities can be found around the village, which also has a dock where local lanchas (boat taxis) stop every 20-40 minutes to take you to explore other towns around the lake.  San Marcos, the closest town over, can also be reached by foot along a dirt road. There, trainees can relax in one of the many cafes and restaurants or partake in an array of healing offerings, including shamanism, cacao ceremonies, reiki, massage, and much more. Among others, San Pedro, a short ride to the other side of the lake, has more of a vibrant backpacker’s vibe and is a little less expensive.

On either end of your training, the nearby cities of Antigua and Quetzaltenango (commonly known as Xela) are only a few hours away and worth the visit.

Spa Treatments:

If you are interested in a massage, the Doron Yoga & Zen Center can arrange for a masseuse to come to the DYZC.

All treatment costs will be at the student's expense.

What is Included?

All-inclusive rates include:

All instruction and workshops

6 nights accommodation per person

3 daily nutritious home-cooked vegetarian meals, water, herbal tea, and coffee

Know Before You Go:

Be mindful of food and water hygiene, as travellers’ diarrhea is not uncommon in Guatemala, which can be quite challenging when embarking on a TTC. Bring some grapefruit seed extract, daily maintenance of 7-8 drops in water or juice or any other supplement that suits.

There are no ATMs or currency exchange facilities in Tzununa. It is advisable to carry with you sufficient cash or plan to travel by boat to Panajachel or San Pedro for an ATM or bank. Guatemala is a cash friendly economy


Event Highlights

  • The serenity of a Zen Retreat by a Maya village
  • Amazing lake and volcano views, with river flow through the land
  • Morning yoga sessions – Deepen your yoga practice
  • Understand better alignment and mechanics of poses
  • Pranayama practices to enrich your energy and life force
  • Zen meditation
  • Osho Kundalini meditation
  • Zen Dance
  • Detailed workshops that will change the way you see the world
  • Yin Yoga to deepen flexibility and balance the body
  • Better understand the functioning of the mind
  • Amazing teachings and hands-on assists from a well-seasoned international teacher
  • Lake swimming
  • Temascal / sweat lodge / natural sauna
  • Exciting evening fire-side Zen talks / chanting
  • Explore the distinct and charming towns of Lake Atitlan

Venue Highlights

-The Center-
Doron Yoga & Zen Center is a spiritual eco village, based on permaculture principles with touches of Zen. It manifests the power and energy of the magnificent lake Atitlan. The lake can be majestically viewed from our grounds, with volcanoes and local villages perfectly framing the scene. We are part of the Maya village of Tzununa in Guatemala. Located 7 min walk from the lake. Hammocks hang by the river and gardens, and connecting paths are all paved with local stone.

-Yoga Shala-
We may just have one of the most beautiful yoga spaces in the world, consisting of a sprawling cypress floating floor, surrounded by large glass sliding doors, held up by huge bamboo pillars, and featuring jaw-dropping views. High ceilings with extra insulation keep the temperatures perfect year round. It is a temple sitting along the Tzununa River, allowing for the sound of water to flow softly and soothingly into our practice. Unlike many ashrams, they did not cut corners, and you can see the beauty in the details. The place is kept very clean and has a wonderful vibe to it. The cane, Cyprus, pine, and rocks used in the construction are locally sourced, where local community workers built each house with care. Permaculture principles are followed to ecologically enhance the quality of the construction, garden, and design functionality of the center.

-Buddha café-
The Buddha café is a wonderful meeting place. It hosts a large deck with a variety of seating options and a gorgeous view of the lake. It serves super nutritious, delicious gourmet, vegetarian food. One of its primary highlights is the great company. Travelers meet to share stories, experiences, a cup of tea, and a hug. It offers a place to rest, connect with new friends, read and have some delicious food.

-Grounds-
Permaculture principles are followed to ecologically enhance the quality of the construction, and design functionality of the center. We grow coffee, bananas, avocados, lettuces, beans, yams, radishes, herbs and around 30 other fruits and vegetables (yum, guacamole!).

We have a beautiful fire pit under the grand Jocote tree (which you may want to climb). Additionally, we've built a natural, large, ceremonial-grade sauna to help with detoxing and cleansing. We offer massages and can organize tours around the lake for you.

The DYZC was built on a high-frequency vibration land. We are sure you will feel it as you come stay with us. As one guest stated: “center" doesn't seem to be the most fitting word- maybe something like dream village, or yoga farm, or riverbank Zen oasis.

Amenities

  • Free Wifi
  • Sauna
  • Towels
  • Tour Assistance
  • Coffee/Tea
  • Cafe
  • Restaurant
  • Fitness Center
  • Yoga Studio
  • House-Keeping

Schedule

5:00 – 6:15pm Opening Circle (arrival day)
6:00 – 7:00am Meditation and Pranayama
7:00 – 8:45am Doron Yoga asana practice
9:00 – 9:30am Breakfast
12:30 – 1:30pm Lunch
4:30 – 6:30pm Afternoon workshops
6:30 – 7:30pm Dinner
7:30 – 9:30pm Rest and Optional Activities

Your days begin with pranayama (breathing practices), meditation, and yoga asana. This practice, which lasts a total of 2.5 hours, is the perfect way to start your day from a place of bliss. Practice is followed by a yummy, nutritious, super food breakfast. You then get a break to relax, read or go explore. We are happy to help with arranging activities such as stand up paddle, massage, market visits, Volcano hikes and more.

It’s also fun to just sit on your hammock, relax by the river on the property, or chat with new friends. It’s also an easy walk to the lake, where you can enjoy swimming or sitting on the dock by the water.

In the afternoon you will find inspiring workshops, which are an opportunity to dive deeper into the practice, gain more knowledge from an expert leader and have time to ask specific questions.

Menu Types

  • Vegan
  • Vegetarian
  • Ayurvedic
  • Gluten Free
  • Nut Free

Menu/Cuisine

Food:

Three meals will be served each day – a mix of international, Guatemalan and Doron’s special healthy, yummy and Mediterranean touch made from fresh local produce, organic when available. Each meal is substantial, varied and nourishing, to energize you through your practices without leaving you feeling too heavy. All food at the Doron Yoga & Zen Center is prepared as healthily and nutritiously as possible under the guidance of the DYZC's Founder and Director, who is also a trained chef and certified nutrition consultant. To the greatest extent possible, food is organic and locally sourced, including from the DYZC's own blossoming gardens.

Please let the DYZC know if you have any food allergies or special dietary restrictions. And if possible carry any food that may be specific to your requirement.

Accommodations

The rooms at the Doron Yoga & Zen Center (DYZC) in Tzununa are simple but beautiful; rustic, yet charming. We provide a taste of local culture, using local fabrics, building with natural materials, eco-friendly materials and following permaculture principles. All DYZC accommodations are built for comfort and safety while being ecological. Enjoy a hot gas-powered shower in our semi-outdoor, beautiful stone and wood bathroom with glimpses of neighboring mountain tops and banana and coffee trees. We use locally sourced materials craftily constructed by Tzununa locals following permaculture principles. We believe you will feel the difference! Our showers have hot water, and we have western toilettes (eco treatment). Our water source is from a spring supplied by the municipality and from river water that runs through the property.

The shared bathroom area accessible to the dorms and other shared-bathroom accommodations features 3 western-style toilets, 2 showers, and 2 sinks.

Directions

Be sure to arrive in Guatemala City La Aurora International Airport (GUA) before noon on the first day of the course. This will allow you to take advantage of an affordable shared shuttle to the lake, which is located three to five hours from the airport depending on traffic. Private shuttles can also be arranged at any time. The shuttles arrive at Panajachel, which then requires a quick boat ride to Tzununa.

Once in Tzununa, locals know DYZC as Casa Doron Yoga, so you can take a tuk-tuk from the dock (5 minutes), cost 5Q – less than $1.

Check with us, many times there are spaces for you to stay in the Doron Yoga and Zen Center (for additional fee) a few days before so you can actually get acclimated and be fresh for the beginning of the course. If you are arriving early and staying elsewhere (in Antigua or around Lake Atitlan), we may also be able to assist with transport upon request.

Tags: ashtanga lake atitlan meditation mindfulness power vinyasa yoga zen

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