Waterfall Yoga

I am a waterfall junkie – totally addicted.  And Costa Rica is waterfall heaven.

Waterfalls are good for you!

There are many reasons to love them – besides being beautiful, research indicates that negative ions found in abundance near waterfalls are actually good for you.  According to a 2013 article in Research in Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, There’s Something in the Air: Empirical Evidence for the Effects of Negative Air Ions (NAI) on Psychophysiological State and Performance;

“When we analyzed the data from all available studies, particularly in randomized, controlled trials a significant reduction in symptoms severity was demonstrated together with an increasing performance in healthy participants.”

Yesterday my friend Jessica Wright, yoga teacher at The Retreat in Atenas,  invited a group of Costa Rican and expat women to a waterfall yoga class.

We drove across Atenas,  through Barrio Los Angeles, pas fields mixed with tomatoes and papayas and down a steep driveway.  We arrived at the gorgeous farm owned by the family of one of group members, Jen.

When Jen was a little girl, she would spend weekends at the with her family and friends.  She remembers her father teaching her the names of the different plants. She told me she has since identified over 50 species of trees on the property.

There’s a rustic outdoor kitchen with a fogon (woodstove) and a pila (sink) and next to it is a storybook wood cabin with an open living room on the bottom and bedrooms up top.

The two-story cabin near the waterfall.



The living room with rough-hewn furniture made from exotic hardwoods.

After checking out the house and kitchen we began to follow the river upstream in search of the waterfall.

Heading to the falls.


We scrambled over slippery boulders, getting flip-flops stuck in squishy mud and ducked under fallen trees full of moss and ferns.


Boulder crossing


After hiking for 15 minutes, we heard the roar and saw the the mist of the  waterfall gushing over a gorgeous craggy red rock face.


The tree in front of the falls is called a Salta Caballo (Horse Jump).  


Jessica led us through a few  balance poses and then we returned along the river and back to the meadow to finish our practice under the shade of a huge Salta Caballo tree.

Waterfall Yoga!

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