Highlight : Beatrice Giampaoli & Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano

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When did you discover an interest in yoga? 

YOSS: I started my path of inner growth with martial arts in 1989, then two years later, I discovered yoga. I carried on both disciplines for more than 25 years. From martial arts, I found confidence in myself or self-esteem. From Yoga, I received awareness and inner peace. Through the practice of both disciplines for many years, I have reached the conviction that happiness and the realisation of happiness only depends on our attitude and our self  awareness in everyday life.

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BEATRICE:  At the age of three I was already doing gymnastics, and I had always felt that movement is something precious. When I was sixteen years old, I went to India for the first time and there I discovered yoga as a way to unite the world of the body and the philosophy of the heart.

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What made you decide to become a yoga teacher?

YOSS: Teaching is sharing. I didn’t decide but it was something that I deeply felt in my heart: the opportunity to share the great joy and beauty of yoga with other people and grow together with them.

BEATRICE: I really do not feel myself to be like a teacher, but instead like a worker who, as a little ant does, wants to build a better world.

Would you say that yoga is a method for healing and is that why you teach “Yoga & Medicine”?

YOSS: Yoga is actually much more. Yoga is an ancient science of physical, mental and spiritual growth. Regarding our mind / body system, yoga provides great techniques for better health. However, a good teacher must know perfectly these techniques and in particular how yoga techniques work on the body of the practitioner, especially if he were to have physical problems. In our Yoga & Medicine Teacher Training we study both yoga techniques and the anatomy and physiology applied to Yoga techniques.

BEATRICE: I obtained a degree in medicine and I have done yoga for many years, so I am just following my personal passion for life ; that is sharing what I feel good for myself with others by studying in depth the movement and reaction of the body, and the floating of the mind.

What are the benefits of yoga?

YOSS: How long do I have to answer this? Countless ways. If we pause to reflect on our very existence, we can safely say we are designed to live in health, serenity, joyfully aware and in constant transformation. Yoga helps us achieve this.

BEATRICE: The benefits of yoga are both physical and mental. I believe that by being aware of your movement and your breathing, you can learn to understand more about your inside world. Which is full of light and shadow at the same time. This awareness can help you to be able to surf the waves of life better.

Why specifically do you do this work?

YOSS: What work? For me it is a great opportunity to be able to live by practicing what I love and to share it with those who want to follow me.

BEATRICE: Firstly, I live life as a unity with nature and animals, which corresponds to our inner instinct. By teaching yoga I would like to communicate this union to others.

How did you develop your abilities and methods?

YOSS: With a deep attention to everything I hear around me, both in the world of yoga and in everyday life. Of course I studied a lot with Italian and international masters. But in recent years my greatest growth occurs through reflection and meditation.

BEATRICE: Through practicing, studying and learning just how little we are, I have evolved. By knowing nothing, but capable of breathing and feeling our breath we can find a new way to face ourselves and the world.

How do you prepare for teaching your courses?

YOSS: I do not really prepare myself that much. Of course I have a rough idea of what I want to do in a classroom or in a seminar, but then I follow what I feel in the class and the responses of my students. Often, at the end of the lessons I receive thanks. I always reply by pointing out that I have not done the class alone but together with them and thanks to their energy too.

BEATRICE: I prepare for teaching by practicing yoga every day. Doing research and trying to live in the present as much as I can.

What is it like to teach together with another and how do you make that work?

YOSS: It is a great experience, support and mutual enrichment. It means to be open and fluid.

BEATRICE:  It is a wonderful experience to teach yoga together with another teacher, but it is not always easy to find someone who is on the real wave of sharing.

What transformations have you experienced through doing this work?

YOSS: I love teaching together, it help me lose my reference points, my certainties, giving me fluidity, lightness, flowing together with my partner. In life our greatest certainties can become our biggest influences.

BEATRICE: I have experienced that life is not yesterday nor tomorrow, but it is now.

What transformations have you witnessed in others?

YOSS: Students like to receive a lesson from more than one teacher simultaneously.

BEATRICE: Through yoga I have seen others achieve physical wellness, improvement of flexibility and better alignment of the body. I have also witnessed more ability of people to let themselves dance in the river of life.

What has your greatest realisation or learning been?

YOSS: Lots! Lately, I have felt deeply that I will no longer waste time and energy to change what cannot change, but I do not want to lose a little chance to learn about and change what I can change: myself.

BEATRICE: I have learned that life is a circle with death and that they are not distinguishable. This is the same for all of the opposite forces inside of us.

What is the most powerful type of healing you have personally experienced?

YOSS: Yoga

BEATRICE: Yoga practice has been the most powerful for me.

What is your favourite music/artists to listen to? 

YOSS: Eddie Vedder, and all the artists who express themselves and deep feelings with music.

BEATRICE:  “Spirit Bird” by Xavier Rudd is a song that means so much in my life path, and also”What if God was one of us ?” by Joan Osborne.

Do you have one tip to share for happiness and wellbeing in everyday life?

YOSS: Stop. Breathe. Open your eyes and see if anything has changed in the way of seeing the same old things. It works!

I think we labor to find pleasure, always trying to do new things, we should actually try to find pleasure in doing ever anew the usual things.

BEATRICE: My tip for happiness is to live in the present.

What are your plans for the future evolution of what you do?

YOSS: I’d like to communicate more and more my message and open more than the two yoga studios I already have. The challenge will be to best manage my centres, without losing time for personal practice and teaching. 

Together with Beatrice, we will continue to hold Teacher Training for “Yoga and Medicine”,  where the teaching of yoga is enriched by the medical scientific component, to ensure future teachers a broad and thorough preparation.

BEATRICE: I do not like to plan, I prefer to grasp the moment in life.

Beatrice Giampaoli
BEATRICE GIAMPAOLI
 

Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano Yoss Yoga Suite

© Lightening Magazine 2016

Top 10 Yoga & Wellness Retreats

This week we are opening up our Editor’s “little green book” of top secret awesome yoga and wellbeing retreats.

We receive so many inquiries from people needing to take some time out to recharge, reflect and rejuvenate and wondering where in the world to go and do that.

Below is a list of personally experienced and recommend retreats where space is created and held for healing and transformation. Please feel free to respond or write to us if you have personally experienced a wellness retreat that was amazing. We are also interested in hearing from you if you are creating or hosting retreats.

Sunflower Retreats

A beautiful Italian Medieval village called Casperia forms the backdrop for a peaceful week of daily yoga classes, delicious food, cycling and hilly rambling. Conveniently only 1 hour from Rome.

I practised yoga there with Advertising Exec turned Ayurvedic Doctor and Yoga teacher, Jo Heath who is teaching there again this summer as the yogi in residence.

Casperia

Ibiza Yoga

Stay in a Balinese pagoda, a teepee or a room in a shared luxurious villa. Yoga classes are 2 hours every morning with a roster of world-renowned teachers. There are many healing holistic treatments on offer throughout the day as well as a delicious organic vegetarian lunch included at this wellness centre located next to beautiful Benirras beach on the hippie “quieter” side of Ibiza.

I trained there with Edward Clarke, founder of an experimental dance company called Tripsichore Yoga.

Ibiza Yoga

Yogabeats Holidays

Worldwide yoga holidays throughout the year with David Sye in The Canary Islands, Greece, Cuba, Ibiza and Dahab Egypt. I attended his Dahab retreat and found the combination of sunshine, moonlit desert meditations and red sea scuba diving to be out of this world. This holiday literally changed my life and set me on the path to becoming a yoga teacher myself. I also ended up assisting as an apprentice and making a lot of videos with David after becoming qualified as a yoga teacher. He is a truly amazing teacher and person.

Yogabeats

Desa Seni

A slice of heaven on earth at this paradise escape in Bali. Desa Seni is a year round wellness and yoga centre where guests stay in interior designed antique wooden joglos and eat organic vegetarian food grown in the gardens which surround the studios. The good vibes from the yoga and meditation classes also help the fruit and vegetables to grow.

I attended a powerful Satori Breathwork training retreat here, run by Dawn Delgado & Beau Robb of  Transformation Vacations

Desa Seni

PachaMama

Located deep in the jungles of Costa Rica, PachaMama is an Eco community setup by an Israeli Guru turned wildlife photographer named Tyohar. All sorts of wellness and yoga retreats happen here year round, the most popular being the cleansing, fasting and vision quest experiences. Community ground rules include one that all residents must gather to sit in silence in the great hall for one hour each day. This place is a jungle utopia for the inner Peter Pan and Tinkerbell, built entirely by it’s residents who also have their own school for the community children and their own monetary currency.

Pacha-Mama

Blue Spirit

A luxurious place to restore and unwind. All sorts of interesting wellness retreats are run here year round on a quiet beach in the un-touristy Nosara area. There are some great surf spots nearby and the yoga studio has one of the best possible views I have ever seen whilst meditating. It is an extension of the Omega Institute in the U.S so many of it’s retreats are linked to the Omega teachers and teachings.

Blue Spirit

Sacred Circularities

Jaguar Mary is a world traveller who runs these empowering hula hoop retreats in Sedona and in Bali. These weeklong retreats are focused on intention setting and workshops to expand dance and hooping techniques. I attended as a hooping novice and left that week with new friends, a fit body, trim waistline and surprisingly strong hooping skills.

Photo by Cadencia Photography
Photo by Cadencia Photography

Jungle Yoga

This place is so incredible, I almost do not want to share it! It was the most beautiful and powerful place I have ever visited and a magical weeklong retreat with world famous Yogi, Shaman and Singer/Song-writer Danny Paradise. After a one hour boat journey deep into a National Park you find a cluster of floating bamboo glam shacks and one large floating yoga studio.

We spent a blissful week practising and learning from Danny’s years of experience for 4 hours everyday and the rest of the time was filled swimming the huge lake, canoeing and observing the abundant wildlife. Every evening we had a musical jam led by Danny, with other talented (and famous) musical guests joining in too. I returned from this retreat the strongest and fittest I have ever felt in my life and still dream about it, hoping to return there one day.

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Lotus Yoga

A beautiful collection of simple tree-houses open to the surrounding nature yet offering complete privacy whilst decorated with beautiful antique Indian furniture. It is set inland from the quiet clean beaches of Patnem, Goa. Yoga is offered every morning and some evenings as well as a daily range of Ayurvedic and other healing modalities and the organic vegetarian food is delicious.

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The Findhorn Foundation

Findhorn is a world famous eco village and model of sustainability. Retreats and courses run all year at their Cluny College Campus and almost every week there is an “Experience Week” where visitors can get stuck into community life working in the gardens, the kitchens and care for the eco homes and Castle-like Cluny campus. It is a life changing experience and a very healing place. Many people who go there end up deciding to stay for years because they feel so happy and at peace there.

I trained as a “Sacred Dance” teacher there for a few months and loved it. I have returned several times since then to unwind and recharge and also for the annual Festival of Sacred Dance.

Findhorn

Cluny College

 

And here’s a bonus 11th retreat that I am on right now….

Vitala Yoga & Yoga Suite

High up in the Italian Valtellina Alps is an ancient spa town where I am on a family friendly yoga and hiking retreat specifically tailored to Parents and kids. This is run by a Nautropathic Doctor, yoga teacher and studio owner Beatrice Giampaoli and the “perfect Yang to her Yin” studio owner and teacher trainer Yoss Giancarlo Miggiano.

In my research, I found few retreats that welcome and offer comforts and services to help make it a relaxing experience for “Mummy and Babies or Mummy/Parents and Kids”.

I am being so held by the power of these magnetic mountains and have great babysitters organised so I can grab some quality “me time” for restorative yoga, hiking and soaking in the “aqua curativa” ancient healing thermal waters. Naturally, I am in bliss!

Bormio

© Lightening Magazine 2016