Monday, September 19, 2011

Wendy's Experience at Wanderlust Tahoe

The Wonderful World of Wanderlust....

Wanderlust is a Yoga/Music festival that is becoming a movement. The main festivals are happening in Lake Tahoe, Las Vegas, and Vermont. Wanderlust is like a trip to a health candy store for conscious yoga and fun lovers of all ages from around the globe. At Wanderlust there are endless classes to choose from, taught by you from your favorite yoga teachers or teachers you’ve always wanted to study with. Your class may just be outside with fresh air and amazing views of the majestic snow peaked mountains as your Dristi. (Yogic Focal point for non yogi readers) You can share this class with 600 other great energy yogis with musicians like Michael Franti, Mc Yogi or Dj Drez playing or spinning live to you. This experience is like nothing else out there in the yoga world. Its fresh, its fun, and feels like a new wave coming up in the yoga world.

I got Wanderlust in my blood last year when I attended. The yoga roster is stellar, with an equally impressive music line up.
I am now a Wanderlust junkie. I know where ever it is, I will be. One thing I will never forget about my first experience with Wanderlust was the people who were there. They looked like they were glowing. It’s so refreshing to be in a group of people who look vibrantly alive, joyful and happy. Here people have found a place to be totally themselves, get re-energized and revitalized while having an absolute blast.

As a 25 year yoga studio owner, I find in wanderlust a refuge. A place I can go and study with some of the best yoga teachers of our time. Not only great teachers, but fresh fun and out of the box instructors. Which is so refreshing.

This is the exact outcome desired for Wanderluster’s. In an interview with Wanderlust co-founder Schuyler Grant; Grant states “I think of Wanderlust as a filling station, I want people to leave juiced up and inspired, both physically, intellectually and with pleasure.” (I found Wanderlust absolutely fulfilled on all of those accounts.) Grant emphasizes the importance of taking care of yourself and keeping yourself feeling good. She says “you can’t do good if you don’t feel good.” Schuyler further emphasizes “we can get so ‘tapped and sucked dry‘ it’s so important to do what you need to do to fill up and keep you psyched as a mom, a partner, a yoga teacher, or whatever you do.” She wants Wanderlust to do that for people.

Schuler, also the founder Kula Yoga Project is dedicated to ensuring that Wanderlust offers the highest caliber of teachers. Her husband and co-founder Jeff Krasno is in charge of the awesome music at Wanderlust. Jeff worked for RCA Records before co-founding Velour Music Group, (a record label and artist management company). Wanderlust is in partnership with C3 Presents who are the creators of Lollapalooza. This partnership of “yogis meet - big time music world” was a great blend making this event immensely fun and extremely well run.

Another inspiration I am left with came from my time spent at Wanderlust with renowned Yogi Jonny Kest. In our interview Kest’s humanness and passion for vegetarianism and family shines thru. Kest is a true real family man and is frequently seen after during and after class carrying his daughter on his shoulders. During the interview he politely stepped away to change a diaper. (Being the mom of a four year old, I absolutely loved that). Kest says that his wife and family are what lights him up, and inspires him, you could really see this.

The Kest family are devout vegan’s passionate about animals and their treatment. During a class I attended taught by Kest he asked “now you all have worked up a big appetite you are hungry. If you had a dead chicken in one hand, and fresh fruit and vegetables in your other hand which would your rather bite into? Just use common sense, what would nourish you more?” A powerful question for all of us. His wife Milla and children choose not to eat animals and dairy as a matter of kindness. Milla says it is a shame how cruel humans can be to the animals. They follow the “World Peace Diet.”

You can see that Kest is a truly grounded person which he credits his daily practice of Vippasana meditation. Kest recently sold his yoga studios to Lifetime fitness a publicly traded company. They have over 100 locations. Getting authentically trained yoga teachers into over 100 locations is a pretty good move to increasing the quality of yoga delivered. This will surely set a higher standard for “gym yoga”.

Kest’s conscious and mindful way’s of living in the world was a consistent theme at the festival. Wanderlust organizers took great lengths (and costs) to reduce the impact of the 16,000 attendees gathering. Composting, sourcing food from local producers and farms, providing free filling stations were just some of ways Wanderlust showed its environmentally conscious side. They joined forces with zero hero

The “Perfect” day at Wanderlust

If yoga just isn’t your thing... there are plenty of other things to keep you busy happy and “juiced” at Wanderlust. You can play with acro yoga, hooping, and slack lining (or just hanging at the pool watching the slack-liners). If you feel so inclined, you can even try your luck at “circus camp”, where you can play in the free form zone. There are expert practitioners who are more then happy to teach you a trick or two. They even teach you various forms of circus arts including juggling, ariel dance. I saw some of the most incredible naturally athletic and talented bodies doing remarkable things!!!

Having tried Areal fabric and finding it incredibly beautiful but slightly out of my reach. I was excited to find “Fly Inspiration” created by Karen Andes it is a soft stretchy hanging apparatus for designed for yoga, fitness, rehab, and circus training.” With this apparatus I was able to get inverted with no stress on my body it feels amazing and is so much fun.

Wanderlust is a great opportunity to unplug from the world for a few days to become one with nature, be surrounded by immense beauty and inspiration. You can pick your speed, from practicing your butt off, to doing nothing but hanging out in the sun, eating good healthy food and listening to great music. Either way wanderlust will leave a “juiced” and happier person better equipped to take on and “do good” in your little slice of the world.

Written By:
Wendy Gross-Pinto
Founder and Creatrix
Peace and Blessings

Photos By:
Dana PhotoZen Nollsch

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