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Stretching for health

Yoga retreat better than a two-week holiday

With the current state of economics, and increasing talk of a pandemic, the best way for one to have a holiday in the next few weeks might be to just stay in Squamish.

Fortunately, Yoga Outreach's upcoming two-day retreat at the North Vancouver Outdoor School from Friday, May 22 to Sunday, May 24, will give you all the relaxation and healing that the two-week all-inclusive vacation would - but without a tan.

"It's like the difference between having weekends off and going on vacation," explained Kyira Korrigan, the executive director of the Vancouver-based charity organization, when asked what the difference was between a yoga class and a yoga retreat.

"One is a break, and the other is a rest."

The two-day on-site yoga retreat will give both new and veteran yogis the opportunity to stretch, meditate, massage and heal their bodies in a wide variety of classes, which will be hosted by 23 experienced yoga instructors.

"We have yoga therapy for women going through menopause, a focus on lower back through hatha yoga, different kinds of flow and hatha yogaand we even have a couple music events," said Korrigan.

While most of the participants will eat, sleep and yoga on site, there will also be space in some of the classes for those just wanting to drop in and register for only one class.

The best part about attending Yoga Outreach's retreat is that you get to do something for yourself and at the same time, give to those less fortunate than you. The retreat is a fundraiser for the 45 volunteer yoga instructors who teach 30 free classes a week to members of the community who are mentally ill, in prison, in a detox or rehabilitation facility, or are transitioning from a home of violence.

"We want to keep yoga from being some rarified, high-end specialty," said Korrigan. "We want to let everybody get a chance to benefit from what is incredibly accessible - the heart, mind and body coming together and healing."

This year's retreat will be Yoga Outreach's tenth fundraiser. Its goal is to raise $10,000.

There will also be a silent auction, where participants can win gift certificates and products from local companies.

"The retreat is open to everyone," said Korrigan.

"As long as you love yoga you will love this retreat."

To donate to the silent auction, register for the $345 retreat, or to inquire further about classes being offered, email

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