Yogathon: 12 hours of non-stop moving for social change!
On Saturday 19th March over 300 people gathered at Desa Seni Village Resort in Canggu, to support, participate, laugh and play their way through twelve hours of yoga and dance. Beginning at 8am with an opening Pranayama and Prana Flow by the Yoga Barn’s Donna Rossiter and international yoga teacher Twee Merrigan, the action continued until the sun set and the full moon was celebrated with live music and a closing ceremony.
The Yogathon brought together local and international teachers from across Bali and with L.j Rock from Pure Yoga in Hong Kong and Anusara teacher Jeff Bass arriving straight from California – from across the world. With 22 teachers in total, parallel classes flowed back-to-back in two different venues. Teachers skillfully passed the proverbial yoga baton to the next guru, who would pick up the flow and keep the energy and prana building.
In the Tri Murti studio, Twee was followed by Radiantly Alive’s Daniel Aaron and then by Manuela Herreros who taught a gentle and inspiring Dynamic Hatha class preparing our hearts for Jeff Bass’s blissful Anusara sequence. Ally Bogard took the energy to the next level with a full power and fantastic hour of Hatha Yoga which left our lips smiling and hearts kissing (literally as yogi’s were guided into backbends and walked towards their neighbors chests 🙂 L.j Rock kept things moving and groovin’ with his charismatic Anusara flow, which picked up anyone who was feeling the midday heat and carried them through (upside down and inside out) to Sri Jane’s beautiful hour of Classical Hatha. Next came Cat Kabira with her unique and energetic Forrest yoga bringing us back to the core and deep into the breath. Angie Grgat from Jiwa yoga guided yogis into their ninth hour of yoga and the passed over to Kate Graham for an incredible Tripsichore Vinyasa Performance. Tara Judelle (who had been holding down the front row since early morning) took over with another heart opening, Grace welcoming, uplifting Anusara sequence culminating the focus for the grand finale.
Meanwhile, at the poolside in the luscious Desa Seni gardens, Donna’s energy building pranayama class prepared the way for , who led a deep and meditative chi gong session. This was followed by Daphna Dor who kept that energy rising with an invigorating hour of Kundalini. Ecstatic dance took the floor next as Cathy Anderson guided us on a journey through smooth grooves to chaos and back down to a sacred heart space. The proximity of the venue to the pool helped to keep the dancers moving with spontaneous jumps into the water to cool down, refresh and dance right back out again to LeAnn Eriksson’s hour of guided meditation. Shivani then led goddesses through an hour of Venus yoga before handing over to Carlos and Jenny who brought in some community inspired partner play combining acrobatics, yoga and massage. Daphne Tse and Ellen Watson blessed our ears and opened our voices with a combination of Spirit Song and Soul Dance which led to Tina Nance who kept spirits high with her uplifting Alchemystic Yoga Dance. The grand finale brought together all the participants as Kevin James led a heart-felt Kirtan before Daphne Tse, LeAnn Eriksson, Rob Koster, DJ Beau Robb (who had kept the beats flowing throughout the day in the Tri Murti studio) joined forces for a vibrant and joyful jam. Dawn Delgado closed the Yogathon under the light of gleaming full moon with a breathing circle.
The Yogathon was a pre-Bali Spirit Festival (BSF) event aimed to raise $10,000. The amount needed by the local outreach program AYO! Kita Bicara HIV/AIDS (Let’s talk about HIV/AIDS), to fund HIV awareness and education programs in 25 schools throughout Gianyar, Denpasar,and Badung. Ultimately this figure was surpassed as the day and night of yoga, dance and music raised an astounding $14,000.
A huge congratulations to all who participated: To the teachers and musicians who inspired and carried us through and of course to Desa Seni for providing such a wonderful opportunity for us to gather, create and ultimately to work together as one for a kinder and more compassionate world.
The stage has been set for a wonderful week to come of world music, international yoga and dance teachers. Just as HIV/AIDS knows no geographical boundaries it seemed apt that through events such as the Yogathon and BSF here in Bali, the energies of life-loving participants from across the globe will be devoted towards raising funds to take concrete action against the fastest growing epidemic in Indonesia.
Join us from Wednedsay 23rd to Sunday 27th March at the Purnati Centre for the Arts. The BaliSpirit Festival is a leader among a new generation of festivals for the rapidly growing holistic travel marketplace. Combining over 100 yoga, dance and music workshops with nightly world music concerts, this annual event provides a platform of inspiration and the opportunity to affect positive change at the personal and community level. Be a part of something that will change your world! BaliSpirit Festival 2011 is proud to be partnered with Citibank, Teh Kotak, Desa Seni, Fiesta Condoms, The Yoga Barn, 3HO Kundalini Yoga, and BaliSpirit.com. For more information please visit www.balispiritfestival.com
Written by : BaliSpirit Media Team