one-day rural yoga retreat with Mark O’Brien

Saturday 29th Feb 2020

Due to flooding the last retreat has been rescheduled for February 29th

“SUSTAINABLE”:  causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue for a long time. (Cambridge English Dictionary)

Escape for a magic day to a peaceful rural venue in the heart of a new EcoVillage to explore what makes a smart yoga practice in a sustainable environment to create a sustainable life…spirit in action in simple ways both on and off the yoga mat.

Your day will guide you to explore truly sustainable yoga practices to suit YOU and the life direction you are taking now. It’s suitable for anyone regardless of yoga experience, injury or other “limits” often placed on practicing Yoga.

  • Expect a (moving) morning and (gentle) afternoon yoga practice to develop techniques and manifest the “Self-Care” we so often forget.
  • Expect to reframe why and how you “do” Yoga. 
  • Enjoy a scrummy vegetarian lunch 
  • Silent forest walk and meditation in the ancient State forest and arboretum next to the venue.
  • Time to reflect and connect inwards
  • Chance to tour the newly-emerging Narara EcoVillage for inspiration on how to live your daily life with purpose and embody the principles of SUSTAIN-ability back in Sydney.

It just might save your body and the world.

Open to all ages and abilites and experience…there’s no requirement for experience or skill. (The less you know maybe the less you’ll have to “unlearn”)

Narara Dam in the village


Your Venue: Narara EcoVillage
Visitors’ Centre, 
Narara Eco Village
25 Research Road, Narara NSW

Their vision is simple but inspiring:
“To research, design and build a stylish, intergenerational, friendly demonstration Ecovillage at Narara, blending the principles of ecological and social sustainability, good health, business, caring and other options that can evolve for our well-being.”

Narara is about 4 mins drive from Gosford on the Central Coast. There is ample free parking on site.
Or take the train to Gosford or Narara station and we can organize transfer from there by arrangement.

What to Bring on the day:

  • Yoga Mat and blanket if possible
  • Closed shoes for short forest walk
  • Water bottle, hat, sunscreen
  • Notebook
  • Your curiosity


Cancellation up to 48 hours prior to event date is possible subject to a $25 cancellation fee. Less than 48 hours’ notice of cancellation is only possible if we can fill your place from a wait-list.


Meet Mark O’Brien
“27 years’ experience of yoga practice has taught me that my Yoga should sustain me, my body, my relationships and my mind. But the practice was not meant to hurt me, impress my guru or get me more likes on Insta! Over-stretching or “advanced poses” should never be confused with “spiritual opening”. They are just misplaced ambition.

If I’m honest I refused to recognize this for a long time for which I often paid a physical price…This was the opposite of “sustainable”.
But thanks to patient and wise teachers my yoga now serves me effortlessly and seems to sustain me pretty well!”

Mark is the founder of Qi Health & Yoga and has practiced Yoga for 27 years with well over 11,000 teaching hours under his belt. He is renowned for inventive, deceptively simple but inspiring classes that offer hidden depths to students of all levels.

He and his wife Nicky are members of Narara EcoVillage and are restoring the “Heritage House” there to be more environmentally sustainable and livable.

He holds Senior/Level 3 membership of YogaAustralia and continues to advocate for lifting teaching skills and standards for the benefit of all teachers and students.
He has trained in depth with Donna Farhi over 20 years, and many other legendary teachers and inspirations including TKV Desikachar, Mark Whitwell, Mark Breadner, Shiva Rea, Annie Carpenter, Karen Schaeffer and J.Brown.

Saturday 29th Feb 2020
9:30 am - 4:30 pm


Visitors' Centre.
Narara Eco Village
25 Research Road, Narara NSW

Allow about 90 minutes drive from Manly. Or train to Gosford or Narara station and we can organize transfer from there.


$129 includes lunch, forest meditation walk, 2 yoga practices, teaching sessions and ecovillage tour.

$20 off for NEV members
$10 off for NELN members:
Discounts not available online; please call 9976 6880 to book

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I came away from this yoga retreat replenished and feeling centred. I loved Mark’s approach to yoga without efforting. Effort-Less Yoga.

And the food was gorgeous healthy and plentiful. And the brownies were out of this world.
Many thanks for a great day.

Margie Braunstein

If you want to recalibrate or deepen your practice there’s no better way. Mark is so generous with his knowledge and gentle in his practice. we’ve learned a lot about ourselves and yoga and our practice – and still had a holiday!
This lapsed yogi goes home inspired and rested and eager!


You’ve provided a treasure chest of tips & inspiration. Your humour & practical approach to yoga is refreshing and insightful. 
Thanks for your words of wisdom, finesse with structure and the small nuances that make all the difference.

Joan & Rohan