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The Power of Tapas by Maili

The Power of Tapas, or Taking the Next Step ~ Mind, Body and Soul column by Maili

I am a total yoga nerd. I take workshops, read related books, take classes, have a dedicated home practice and talk about my geek-love to anyone who will listen. And yoga nerds travel for good yoga. I just returned to Ibiza from London and am all fired up from a workshop I took with an internationally renowned teacher.

As a nerd I would like to recommend drop-kicking yourself into the deep end by taking a weekend workshop or retreat to jump-start or rejuvenate your love of yoga. In Sanskrit, the word Tapas is used to describe the fire of transformation. Tapas is self-discipline that defines a life-changing, life long practice and there is no better way to tap into that power than by taking the next step and immersing yourself in a retreat.

In Ibiza we are blessed with numerous opportunities to deepen our practice in this way. On this website there are links to retreats and workshops all over Ibiza and Formentera. We are fortunate that the community here has found ways attract international teachers.


In workshops, as opposed to classes, the teacher will have a specific goal pose or class of poses in mind and will have thought very carefully about how to implement that goal. In 1 or 1 ½ hr classes the teacher generally also has a goal pose in mind but much less time to really explore the variants of how to open the body and get into the pose. In a class there is a direct route up the hill. In a workshop we can meander, explore options for all levels and soak in the experience. The beauty of taking a workshop is that although you may have done a pose a hundred, maybe even a thousand times before, in the lab of a workshop you will always receive variations or refinements that move your pose into totally new territory.


In retreats a teacher will have time to expound on philosophy. In yoga the philosophy always can be related into the body so you are bound to have an experiential relationship to what is usually only a mental experience. As well, you have time to write down the ideas, sequences or adjustments that really excite you.


Yoga and meditation are deeply personal experiences but the dichotomy is that this intimate, solitary experience is always most transformative when experienced in a strong, like-minded community. I kid you not, but your deepest backbends, your longest held Warrior II, your first handstand drop-over and your most un-twitchy meditations will always be in a workshop or a retreat. We are and we become the company we keep so make that company, for at least one week, a group of fellow bright beings committed to strengthening and opening their bodies, minds and hearts.

If you are new to yoga a workshop will expand your understanding and deepen your physical practice. You will go from a layperson to a pro in a weekend. If you are a serious student but not quite ready to commit to a teacher training or you want to see some dramatic shifts a retreat is a good way to feel immersed in your passion. If you are a teacher it may be time to take a workshop if your practice is feeling stagnant or you need to tap into fresh inspiration.

The beauty of taking a workshop in Ibiza is that the warmth, fresh air, nature and great teachers encourage the body, mind and spirit to open in equal measure.

Ibiza has retreats that suit all budgets, styles of yoga and level of practitioner. All the retreats will have beautiful scenery, delicious, usually vegetarian food and competent teachers, so do your research and you will find one that resonates with you.

Please explore our Mind, Body and Soul section for inspiration.

Maili Dinim is a Yoga Instructor and Natural Food Chef. She can be contacted via

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