After a bumpy but fun rickshaw ride from Trivandrum to the Sivananda Yoga Ashram near Neyyar Dam in Kerala, South India, I finally checked in for the month. I was here to do a yoga teacher training course, a little over ambitious for a 19 year old perhaps but I was so excited about learning everything I could about yoga. I wasn’t sure I wanted to even be a yoga teacher but I did want to learn all about it just in case and thought it would be an interesting experience either way.

It was a long month and we really were kept busy every single day from dawn until late so I’m just going to share snippets from my personal diary that I kept. Please don’t expect anything profound though this is… just me.

My one month at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram begins

Day 1

My first impressions are very positive, the smell of incense is everywhere, the Sivananda Yoga Ashram is beautiful and so are the people. We went for a meditation walk and a tour of the much larger than expected ashram. Did an advanced yoga class in the afternoon and now I’m tired and achy. Met some lovely people!

Sivananda Vedanta Ashram Kerala

Sivananda Vedanta Ashram Kerala

Day 2
Sivananda Ashram India

The food was FINE. It was very healthy and later on in the course I realized that the food served was doing me a lot of good!

Day 3

The alarm of the girl sleeping next to me in the dorm room woke me up at 5am with a jump. We didn’t do any asana’s today but had a very interesting lesson about how to teach a beginners yoga class. We get two breaks where we can have a sweet chai… such a good pick me up and so needed! I want to learn EVERYTHING! The uniform is huge on me, I’m drowned in it but this helps to lose the ego apparently. Good luck with that one.

Day 4
Sivananda Vedenta Yoga Ashram Day 4

Please ignore my comments about the food. I just was not used to eating pure healthy food at this time.

Day 5

Keep snacking on pineapple cream cookies… so undisciplined… the cookie hut down the road is my new best friend. Watched a Kerala Dance Group perform in the Shiva Hall.

Sivanada Ashram Neyyar Dam

Down the road all sorts of treats to wreck your detox with yay.

Day 6

Day off so a group of us went to Varkala and ate some yummy food in a cafe on the cliff overlooking the beach. So beautiful I love the sea air. Did some more shopping and bought some sarongs, bracelets and a t-shirt for yoga. Sunbathed and went in the sea. We didn’t get the bus back because it left at 3pm and we wanted more time here. Ate some fish and rice then shared a taxi back, we were late so we had to sneak into the meditation class. Naughty!

Day 7

Been so tired, really low energy, I think I’m detoxing although I did eat a packet of biscuits at lunch so how can I be? Oh dear. Talked to Pollyanna about traveling, very interesting. Got an email address from a guy who came down for the day, he’s doing Ashtanga in Kovalam and said to email him when I go to Mysore and he’ll sort out Ashtanga for me. Talent show tonight. Waiting for Satsung to begin at 8pm.

Day 8
Sivananda Yoga Ashram

Please excuse my hand writing.

Day 9

We had a purification ritual instead of Satsung. There was a big fire, lots of smoke and incense, really atmospheric and so beautiful. We all threw twigs into the fire and then bowed down (I’m not sure what to). Weather’s getting really hot now!

Day 10
Sivananda Vedenta Center Neyar Dam

Yeah. Erm…

Day 10

Yoga Retreat India

Day 11

Sivananda Yoga

Day 21

No idea.

Day 23, 25, 28…

It’s all a bit of a blur… who knows… maybe my spirit had left my body and was floating around somewhere at this point from lack of sugar.

Last Day

The End.

To sum up my 1 month yoga teacher training course at the Sivananda Yoga Ashram in Kerala I would say it was hard work and very tiring. I was adjusting to their strict diet requirements (yes I did cheat but what do you expect if there’s a cookie hut down the road) which meant I was really low energy for a lot of the time. It was also a lot of fun and it opened my mind to a whole new way of being. I really truly loved it and despite my crazy ramblings and terrible handwriting and moaning about the food… it was one of the best experiences of my life. Really a life changing experience.

Yoga Spiritual Retreat

You can get all of the information you need about this course from the Sivananda Yoga Ashram official website and I’m going to provide more useful information in my next post about what to expect, what I didn’t expect that you can now expect, what to bring and more.

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