The festive season is nearing, and while this denotes merriment and celebrations for most, the stresses of the New Year and the dreaded ‘resolutions’ still loom. With wellness increasingly a hot topic, people are taking more and more time to refine their life balance. Having said that, we still find it hard to take time out. Whether it’s struggling to switch off from a work project, or tearing ourselves away from our smartphones, we’re overloading our minds with harmful emotions.
The latest in Cookson’s pioneering travel experiences, ‘Breathe’ offers guests a range of holistic, exploration-led programmes that will help them to engage with their body and mind fully. Covering physical and mental wellbeing, individuals will be challenged to push their limits and unlock hidden potential.
Most importantly, there isn’t a package retreat in sight. Based on the understanding that wellness is deeply personal and different for everyone, Cookson’s tailored adventures cater to each guest on an individual basis to create unique experiences. A team of dieticians, chefs, personal trainers, yogis, mindfulness coaches and a wide array of experts can be on hand to challenge guests to achieve something remarkable. Among its initial concepts, Breathe Zen is a regenerative regime based upon the disciplines of the ancient Samurai.
On the rarely visited island of Yakushima, south of Japan, a mountainous interior is covered by cedar forests. It is home to millennia-old trees and winding rivers. Spirituality is of great importance in this ancient place, and the restorative power of the woods is recognised – and scientifically proven – in the practice of shinrin-yoku (forest bathing).
Based at a specially built dojo, lit by komorebi (sunshine filtered through leaves) and soothed by the sound of running water, you will meet your Renshinkan Karate Master, who will take you on a journey of discovery using principles and techniques hundreds of years old.
Here, visitors can learn the eight principles of the bushido (the samurai code of honour – righteousness, courage, compassion, respect, honesty, honour, duty and self-control), as well as Renshinkan’s deep respect for human life and wellbeing, while practising the concept of hara. This ancient breathing technique honed by martial arts masters and zen monks focuses on harnessing ki, the body’s vital energy. Quality of breathing is linked to a better understanding of body mechanics, from controlling your movement to maximising awareness.
Elsewhere, Yakushima boasts diverse flora and fauna, which can be discovered through trails in forests, to waterfalls and peaks almost 2000 metres high, with a local guide introducing you to endemic deer, wandering troops of macaques and 6000-year-old Jomon Sugi trees. Here, you can take to the woodland rivers by kayak or visit fishing villages, beaches and hot springs on the island’s rugged coastline. Retire to your luxurious island camp for a taiko drumming lesson with a master and a meal meticulously prepared by a shojin ryori (a Buddhist cuisine) chef.
Adam Sebba, CEO of Cookson Adventures, said: “To learn how to become truly mindful, it’s necessary to escape and disconnect from the modern world. That’s why Cookson Adventures has developed experiences in the most exquisite destinations on Earth, a thousand miles away from the typical spa resort or group wellness retreat.
Our offering is designed to work with guests to aid their physical and mental wellbeing on an individual basis, leaving them feeling physically healthier, more mindful and more connected to the natural world. Breathe has the power to be truly transformational.”
Cookson Adventures Breathe – Where and How?
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