Wanderlust Festival, producer of the largest multi-day lifestyle festival events focusing on yoga, music and wellness debuted Wanderlust O‘ahu February 28 – March 3, 2013 to a warm welcome by event host Turtle Bay Resort situated at the incomparable North Shore in Hawaii. This inaugural event combined renowned yogis, local Hawaiian legends (Gerry Lopez, Rochelle Ballard), music headliners (Michael Franti, ALO), wellness exhibitors, healthy eating, a beach cleanup (Sustainable Coastlines) and more.
The beauty of Wanderlust is that it is far more than just yoga; it’s a built-in community that fosters personal growth and exploration. The event featured several unique activities that offered a balanced and all-encompassing experience different than its predecessors in other locations. Read on for activity highlights.
Slackline yoga (Slackasana) involves balancing on a 1” piece of webbing lightly tensioned between two points and performing yoga poses on it. This practice develops laser focus, core integration, dynamic balance and controlled breath. Those who practice regularly can flow through yoga postures (standing, sitting, arm balances, kneeling and inversions) without falling from the slackline.
Performing yoga on a SUP (Stand-up paddleboard) creates a next-level yoga experience when done on water. When it’s done on the North Shore in the sheltered splendor of Kawela Bay? It’s like heaven. Practicing yoga on the ever-changing surface below forces the core to stay hard at work and intense focus is required to stay centered. The interesting thing is that some poses that are difficult to perform on solid ground become easier when done on the board and vice versa.
One of the many lucky attributes of Hawaii is the endless opportunity to catch a wave. For beginners, this is a godsend. In partnership with the Hans Hedemann Surf School, this marked the first festival where surfing was an available activity. Group surf instructions were held at Kawela Bay by an expert group of instructors. Surfing involves a significant amount of paddling, resulting in an incredible upper body workout. Once you get up on the board, surfing becomes a full body affair. It’s no wonder why surfers have such great physiques.
Hike to receive the energy of mana
Unlike chi, mana is regarded to be more earth-based, but the idea of harnessing energy is the same. Lead by Shiva Rea, the hike begins by touching the earth in gratitude. The hike included exploring the majestic coastline, navigating lava formations and visiting the beautiful banyan trees for meditation before heading back.
Yoga Trance Dance
This was one of the most magical moments during the festival that can’t be fully captured in words or photos. Shiva Rea led the “grassana” (yoga on the grass) to get participants outside of the confines of the mat. It was nice to be so connected to nature from all angles. Live music by Michael Franti accompanied the practice that transformed into a full-on dance party in the middle of the day on Kuilima Point (the northern most tip of Oahu).
Hooping combines technical moves and tricks with art and dancing, and is typically accompanied by music. The hoops used are heavier and larger in diameter than traditional hoops from your childhood. Imagine a supercharged version of hooping that involves frequently rotating the hoop around parts of the body other than the waist, including the hips, chest, neck, shoulders, thighs, knees, arms, hands, thumbs, feet and toes. Participants are also free to explore the space in and outside of the hoop, providing boundless movement and enjoyment.
These are just a few of the many exciting activities you can expect, with more sure to come. Check out the website for updates on advanced ticket sales that normally begin a few months prior to the event date. "A hui hou kākou."