We began toying with the idea of doing yoga while we were on the road primarily because we wanted a quick workout that we could do from anywhere while traveling. We’ve heard of its amazing benefits and wanted to see them first hand. Before we left for our trip, Tom badly hurt his knee during a basketball game. Tom has had issues with a torn ACL but had done intense rehab for it a couple of years back. It had been fine the entire time he was traveling, until that basketball game. Long story short, he needed to build back his knee strength and well I, I was just happy that he agreed to do yoga classes with me!
The Eco Guesthouse
Given that Bali is a large hub for yoga classes, we decided to go with Serentity Eco Guesthouse in Canggu. Serenity is a large hostel, health and healing center situated right in the middle of Canggu, our home to be for a month. While we buckled down and worked our asses off, we had two other things that we wanted to do, yoga and surf. What started out as a humble family home is now a large guesthouse that welcomes visitors from around the world. They have both private rooms and backpacker’s dorm rooms, all while rounding it up with their healthy restaurant, Alkaline. The guesthouse has many eco friendly projects in order to do their part in taking care of the environment. They have a recycling center, compost pit, an organic garden, and many other sustainable practices which I salute them for. I really could go on and on about their place as I think it’s such an awesome project, but let’s get down to business.
Related: Things to do in Indonesia
We signed up for a 20 day pass which we both shared. Having a little bit of background but still a beginner, we decided to try a wide variety of their classes in order to find a practice and teacher style that we both enjoyed. Their yoga shala is located right above their pool area and is a gorgeous structure built entirely out of bamboo. The result? A calm and soothing atmosphere that is perfect for any kind of yoga practice. Serenity offers 5 classes everyday, varying in different types from morning until noon.
We started off by attending a class for beginners where we were introduced to some of the core poses in yoga. Downward facing dogs, cobras, and namastes. You know, the basics! Tom at this point has only done yoga once or twice with me, could barely touch his toes and had no inch of flexibility in his body. From there, we began attending classes varying from beginner classes to yoga for surfing (my personal favorite), Yin Yoga, and Vinyasa Krama.
Each class taught us more about our bodies, more about our personal capacities, and challenged us in so many different ways. Each yoga class varied in style, practice, and method of teaching as we had teachers from different backgrounds and nationalities. Some teachers pushed us to challenge our bodies, some explained poses so we understood the logic behind our crazy backbends and positions. For me, experimenting with the different yoga styles and teachers was an interesting decision as we were able to find a balance between a practice and teaching style that we liked. Tom and I had different preferences when it came to yoga style but we both enjoyed every class that we went to.
The Classes and Cost
The schedule of the classes vary per month so best to check on their website before hand. Drop in rates are:
1 class- 100,000k
5 classes- 450,000k
20 classes 1,500,000k
We highly recommend getting the 20 class pass as it can be split by friends is gives you the most value for money.
Yoga for Beginners
When we first began, we started attending some beginner classes which helped us thoroughly by introducing us to proper breathing techniques, basic poses, and just basically getting to know our bodies and what we can do with it. The teacher that we had was very patient and provided Tom will alternative poses to support his injured knee. Because I had a little bit more knowledge on the different poses, she would also give alternatives on how to extend and go deeper into the poses.
Yoga for Surfing
This was a dynamic practice which had us moving constantly. Out of all the classes, I liked this the most due to the constant movement that we did throughout the class. We did a lot of varieties of sun salutations to strengthen both our arms and core. The constant pushing up movement that is simulated in surfing was repeated constantly throughout the practice.
Vinyasa Krama is the art form of doing yoga. It consists of a sequence of poses which are to be executed gracefully as you progress through the different postures. Tom really enjoyed these classes due to the teacher who would take the time to explain the logic behind doing those specific postures. We learned how to synchronize our breathing to our movements and how to work within our limits.
Our Yoga Journey in Canggu
Although we never got into a consistent routine as we were playing around with the different classes and based our days on work and surf tides, we both feel that we have made a lot of progress. Tom’s knee is gaining strength daily and has made amazing progress over the last month. During one of our last sessions, I pointed out to Tom regarding how long he has come in regards to his flexibility! No more dangling past the knee for him as he could now actually touch his toes (wooohooo!). Apart from improving our bodily awareness, we also see the benefits of how yoga has helped our surf practice and general posture. Sure, we have a long way to go and are far from becoming yogis, but hopefully, we learned a thing or two that we can take with us on the road. Namaste, Serenity Yoga!
Please note that despite receiving complimentary services from Serenity Eco Guesthouse, all opinions are ours and remain completely unbiased.