Into the heart in the city: LONDON

Yoga

Yoga, massage, connection and community for gay, bi and queer men with Andy Butterfield and Tom Cowan

Saturday 2-5pm
12th October 2019

The Bridge
73-81 Southwark Bridge Road
London
SE1 0NQ

Together we’ll explore the therapeutic nature of Vajrasati yoga, healing Shiatsu touch, sharing and being listened to from the heart and how we can show up and be seen by our community.

In this afternoon workshop we’ll begin by checking in with each other, welcoming ourselves and the other men into the space.  Creating our circle of belonging and safety so that we can immerse ourselves into the practices that follow.

Tom will offer a Yoga Nidra, a relaxing meditation, exploring the space between waking and dreaming.  This is done lying down, in a comfortable position and it is more than enough to receive the practice and let your awareness integrate the experience.  

So often we think there is something we have to do to ‘relax’.  In this Nidra state we undo that tendency and trust ourselves to let go into the present moment.  Each person’s Yoga Nidra is unique to them and it is an opportunity to become more aware of deeper states of consciousness.

When we surface from this deep rest there is time to ground with sweet dates, dark chocolate and water before we move into a practice of Vajrasati Yoga.  Vajrasati is a yoga community based in Brighton that teaches authentic, traditional yoga practices as well as modern postural yoga (the kind of postures you might experience in a regular yoga class).

We start slowly, with long deep stretches, balances and restorative asanas so that our bodies begin to speak the language of spontaneity and intuitive movement; breathing, softening, listening.

We play with partner postures that help us move deeply into the heart,  deeply into the body & more deeply into the present moment.  These are also an opportunity for us to explore other bodies, taking care of each other as we move, breathe and open together.

There will be a short relaxation to ground after the yoga, preparing us for the Shiatsu massage guided by Andy.

Simple, effective and easy to follow techniques will be demonstrated that enable you to give and receive much needed healing touch in pairs. Working the energy lines/meridians of the body, restoring the nervous system to a restful, calm and connected state.

Often in the the city we can be easily distracted, our attention scattered and we may find ourselves in a vigilant, alert state of stress and anxiety.

This workshop will support your body and mind to find balance again, bringing you into the centre of your experience where you are more focused, aware and connected,  to yourself and the other men around you.

If you have any queries please contact us on yogawithandyandtom@gmail.com

Bookings are open now priced at £25/£35.

Tickets available here: https://www.outsavvy.com/event/2843/into-the-heart-yoga-shitasu-workshop-for-gay-bi-queer-men-tickets

Andy and Tom regularly work with organisations including Loving Men, Tantra for Gay Men, Radical Faeries and Queer Spirit Festival to name but a few.

Feel Good Fridays

Yoga

Friday evening yoga classes for Gay, Bi and Queer men in London on second and last Friday of each month, beginning 11th October 2019.

6.30pm to 8pm
The Bridge
SE1 0NQ

​Get your yoga on as we stretch out, breathe deep and come home to the heart with yoga teachers Andy Butterfield and Tom Cowan. 

In this twice-monthly drop-in class we can inhale, stretch, explore and nourish our bodies, minds and spirits together.  Postures will be accessible, playful and adaptable for different bodies and abilities. Whether you’re new to yoga or have regularly attended other classes, this is the space for you!

This is a Yoga practice that is responsive to the needs of the men present. Movements may be restorative, meditative and dynamic.  Sound, breathing practices and partner postures may be used to take you more deeply into an integrated state of Yoga.

All equipment provided. Wear loose comfy clothes.
Andy teaches the first class of the month and Tom, the second.

£15 / £10 Low Wage & NUS

5th Floor, The Bridge, 73-81 Southwark Bridge Rd, London, SE1 0NQ.

For more details on Tom Cowan, check out www.tomcowan.info

The power of retreating

Gay Men’s Retreats, Retreat, Retreats, Shiatsu, Tantra, Urban Retreats, Workshops, Yoga, Yoga For Men

I feel honoured that so many people trust me to guide them in practices that help them to feel. Yoga, shiatsu, tantra, movement, touch enables people to enter into a deeper, more meaningful relationship with their bodies, their lifeforce, their poise, their power, their compassion, their resilience, their creativity, their wisdom. 

I’ve just finished leading my eleventh retreat and am always struck by how much I love doing them. When I bring together a group of people and co-create a space with them, something happens to my own lifeforce. It gets bigger and stronger and brighter. I’m usually many miles away from my normal life but I feel more at home in myself and more connected to my capabilities. I watch in delight at the wonders that flow through me and the group and I realise that I am in my element.

I’ve gone on retreat many times, journeying deeply into mindfulness, yoga and bodywork, receiving more of the light that these practices shine. To be able to open and hold the space for others to receive that light too is an opportunity to pay the privilege forward. 

Beautiful things happen for people on retreat: connection, inspiration, letting go, empowerment, healing. It’s such a gift to watch the magic unfold, time and time again. Each group constellation being what it needs to be but always shimmering with a kindness and a joy.

Even something as short as a weekend can be a powerful reset. And 5-7 days or longer can be truly life-changing.  Coming away from everyday life and connecting in warm-hearted community, having some space to unplug, to process, to breathe, getting out of your head and into your body, finding who you are again. We return stronger and more resilient than we were before. Sometimes with a fresh new perspective or free from some of our pain.

So what did we get up to on this last retreat adventure? We sang, danced and played games until we doubled over in laughter. We stretched and sweated and eased away tension. We hugged and we sat around the fire and had long, lazy, delicious meals. We remembered the joy of having a body. 

My next retreats are Portugal in June, Greece in July and East Sussex in October. Details here.

Blissful Joy

Yoga

Yoga, Dance and Relaxation for Men and Women

8th-13th July, Kithnos

A luxury holiday experience in stunning surroundings with soulful and nurturing movement practices, delicious and nourishing food, stargazing, dream-weaving, laughter and song. Be nourished and revitalised on all levels

Andy and Einat are experienced retreat leaders and find great joy and meaning in bringing people together in community where everyone can connect, relax, rest, laugh, stretch, dance, give and receive and find balance.  

Give yourself the gift of 5 gorgeous days of yoga, dance, shiatsu, reiki and meditation. Return to the light-hearted, care-free space within you. Reset and refocus your energies to make the most of the rest of 2019.

The Retreat Centre

You will stay in beautiful 3 bedroom villas, each with 2 bathrooms, a living room and a terrace overlooking the ocean. Yoga, movement and massage sessions will take place beneath the shade of a bamboo pergola in the gorgeous yoga shala. 

There will be so much time to chill out by the infinity pool, get a massage, watch the sun sink into the sea, or venture out and explore the beautiful villages, beaches and landscapes and the natural spas of the island. There’s a good chance we will even have a beach all to ourselves, just minutes away from the retreat centre!

£949 or €1115 for twin room
£1120 or €1315 for single room

Secure your place with a non-refundable deposit of £200 or €250. Contact Andy or Einat via the Contact form above to register.

Included

– 2 yoga sessions a day with opportunities to learn shiatsu and dance

– Two delicious and nutritious vegetarian meals a day, brunch and dinner, snack and unlimited herbal teas and water

– A transfer from the airport to the hotel, including the ferry is also included in our stay.

A typical day

8.30am Yoga
10am brunch
Free time
Optional workshops in shiatsu, dance on Tuesday and Thursday
5pm Yoga
7pm Dinner

*subject to slight changes

What have you heard about Yoga? 

That it helps with physical needs? 
It fulfils the wish for a healthier, more flexible and stronger body? 
Maybe that it helps the mental state? That it can help reduce stress, tension, and also symptoms of depression? 
Or that is about spiritual growth? That it encourages a thirst for knowledge about the Self, leading to a sense of fulfilment?

The truth and beauty of Yoga is that it combines all the above to create a holistic experience.

Working on the physical, mental and emotional level, we acquire tools to develop deep peace and awareness in our lives.

Andy and Einat’s yoga is mindful, physical, flowing, subtle and meditative. Sessions combine conscious, dynamic movement with breath work, ancient wisdom of yoga philosophy, relaxation and meditation. 

Shiatsu

Shiatsu uses stretches, joint mobilisation, acupressure and holding to bring the body into a state of deep relaxation and support and balance vital life-force energy. In this space the body is able to better balance and heal itself.

A workshop session will give you the opportunity to learn and practice simple techniques in this powerful bodywork. 

Einat Ran

Einat is a teacher both of yoga and sacred dance, ceremony facilitator and craftwoman. She shares her teachings to assist in the awakening of women to their divine nature. Her aim is to support harmonious living between women and men. Through her life’s work and devotion she has guided hundreds of women to get in touch with their heart’s desires and meaning in life by listening to the wisdom that arise from within.

Einat teaches internationally and enthusiastically, meeting women from all over the world to share her knowledge of a path of devotional sacred dance, yoga and meditation, forming a vocabulary of moving prayers to cultivate and embody blessings.
Reach her at www.einatfreedomyoga.com

Andy Butterfield

Andy has journeyed through various styles of yoga and folds elements of these, along with his shiatsu bodywork experience into a mindful flow practice.   

Breath is central in Andy’s offering. He teaches that it is the most powerful tool to nourish, enliven and restore. In class, we are repeatedly invited back to its flow and its fullness. And so we come to dwell in the present moment and begin to understand that in this space, we receive everything we need, effortlessly. As we move and open and stretch our bodies, breath and energy (prana) expand to fill the new spaces opening up. 

Sometimes his classes focus on the creation of space, and other times, we work hard with strengthening and empowering practices to burn off what isn’t serving us and feel the joy in offering more than we thought we could. 

Learn to inhabit your body more fully, relaxing into it with deeper compassion, appreciation and contentment.

Into The Heart In The City: BRIGHTON

Yoga

Yoga, massage, connection and community for gay, bi and queer men with Andy Butterfield and Tom Cowan

Saturday 2.15-5.15pm
9th November 2019

About Balance
Gloucester Road
Brighton

Together we’ll explore the therapeutic nature of Vajrasati yoga, healing Shiatsu touch, sharing and being listened to from the heart and how we can show up and be seen by our community.

We’ll be moving deeply and gently as a group with opportunities for self practice as well as explorations of working with each other in a supportive, kind and caring environment.

You may be asking yourself if this is the right space for you….fear not if you’re new to this kind of event, you’ll soon feel at home and warmly welcomed by a lovely group of like minded men.

Bookings are open now priced at £35/25 Karma Card Holders.

Tickets available here: https://www.outsavvy.com/event/2350/into-the-heart-workshop-brighton

Andy and Tom regularly work with organisations including Loving Men, Tantra for Gay Men, Radical Faeries and Queer Spirit Festival to name but a few.



The Chic Greek Gay Getaway

Gay Men’s Retreats, Greece, Retreat, Retreats, Shiatsu, Tantra, Yoga, Yoga For Men

Yoga, Massage and Movement Retreat for Gay, Bi and Queer Men. 

22nd-27th July, Kythnos, Greece

Find more joy and freedom in your body through yoga, breathwork, massage and movement. 

Cradled by sapphire waters, the magical Greek island of Kithnos is a perfect place to rest back into yourself. As the summer sun ripens, filling the sky, you’ll bathe in its golden glow.  Thoughtful yoga practices combined with massage will allow you to release stress and tension and also equip you with powerful tools for regulating, relaxing and nourishing yourself.

Unwind and open to the beautiful, warm sun; to wonderful food, hospitality and friendship; and to your deeper, more present and connected self.

Experienced teacher Andy Butterfield pulls together a rich program of yoga, shiatsu, movement, meditation, dance and massage to ground and uplift you. He has led 12 retreats, 11 for gay, bi and trans men and is passionate about creating safe, cohesive and meaningful spaces for men to come together to laugh, share, connect and heal.

GET INVOLVED IF:

  • You want to hang out with like-minded, warm-hearted gay, bi and trans men and experience the joy, connection and healing that arises in community 
  • You want to explore, enjoy and celebrate your body through movement
  • You are interested in energy work as a way to help and heal yourself and others
  • You haven’t been on a retreat before but love the idea of a nurturing, restorative, relaxing and fun break 
  • You have been on retreat and know just how much good can come from taking some time out for yourself.

A typical day:

8am yoga
10am brunch
5pm yoga or massage class on Tuesday and Friday
7pm dinner

The schedule may be subject to change.

THE RETREAT CENTRE

You will stay in beautiful 3 bedroom villas, each with 2 bathrooms, a living room and a terrace overlooking the ocean. Yoga, movement and massage sessions will take place beneath the shade of a bamboo pergola in the gorgeous yoga shala. 

There will be so much time to chill out by the infinity pool, get a massage, watch the sun sink into the sea, or venture out and explore the beautiful villages, beaches and landscapes and the natural spas of the island. There’s a good chance we will even have a beach all to ourselves, just minutes away from the retreat centre! 

Included

  • 8-10 hours of yoga classes
  • Two delicious and nutritious vegetarian meals a day, brunch and dinner, snack and unlimited herbal teas and water
  • A transfer from the airport to the hotel, including the ferry is also included in our stay

INVESTMENT

Twin/Double £750 or €840

Secure your place with a non-refundable £225 or €255 deposit. Contact Andy via the form above or on 
07968 846610.
 

Deeper. Closer. Higher.

Retreats, Tantra, Yoga

Tantric Yoga and Massage Retreat for Gay and Bi Men

9th-14th June, Portugal

Tantra is a rich map of teachings and practices that guide us home to the truth of who we are; beings of love and light. Tantra allows us to recognise, remember and rise to meet our full potential. It teaches us how to open our hearts, to welcome and honour all that we are and how to move into freedom from self-judgement, self-criticism and a lack of self-love. As the light of self-love and self-acceptance shines within us, so can we see it shine in another. And on and on this light grows, illuminating all that come into contact with it. 

Join experienced teachers Andy and Joao as they guide you gently and skilfully into the remarkable world of Tantra against the stunning backdrop of the lush, green countryside of Portugal. Beneath the warm sun of early summer, feel your body and soul open joyfully to mindful movement, yoga*, breathwork, chanting, meditation, partner and group work and massage. Be nourished and rejuvenated on all levels and find deep connection with yourself and within a welcoming community of fellow bliss and truth seekers.

This retreat is for you if:

  • You are looking to integrate your sexuality and spirituality and open up to a deepening awareness of who you are
  • You love the idea of getting back to nature, feeling the sun on your naked skin, wild swimming, roaming through woodland, stargazing and sharing around the fire pit  
  • You want to hang out with like-minded, warm-hearted gay and bi men and experience the joy, connection and healing that arises in community 
  • You want to enjoy and celebrate your body through movement, touch and massage 
  • You are looking to expand your awareness of what your body, mind and spirit are capable of
  • You are ready for an adventure, to take risks, grow beyond your comfort zone and discover new ways of delighting in who you are

A typical day:

8am yoga* and meditation
9.30am breakfast
11.00am tantric touch workshop
1.30pm lunch
FREE TIME
6.30pm dinner
8pm tantric touch workshop
This schedule may change

*The yoga will be for active beginners and improvers so you will need to be relatively fit, healthy and active. Andy draws on his experience with hatha vinyasa yoga to instruct in a mindful, flowing practice that is both subtle and physical. 

Accommodation

Boutique furnished bedrooms (1 triple and the others are twins). All bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms, with shower, washbasin and toilet. 

Each room is individually styled with different colour schemes and have features such as wood panelled ceilings, wooden shutters, chandeliers and wood floors on the 1st floor.

Single beds can be joined to create a king size bed for couples.

Cost

£620 per person (based on three sharing)
£650 per person (based on two people sharing a twin room)

Two twin beds can be pushed together to make a King for couples.

Deposit of £300 to reserve your place and payment of outstanding balance by 1st April

Discount of 5% if booked and deposit payed by the 20th February.

To register, use the Contact form or email andybutterfield@icloud.com

Healthy Vegetarian and Vegan Food

The ‘made from scratch’ vegetarian and vegan food is tasty and nutritious and based on fresh, seasonal fruit and vegetables. The vegetables, fruits and herbs are either grown in their own organic garden or supplied by local greengrocers.

The afternoon cake is of course freshly made each day, served with tea infusions, many of which they grew themselves.

We will be nurturing our bodies in a way to complement and assist the healing yoga practices during the group activities. Food for thought and growth.

Transport

The venue is 1 hr 45 minutes away from Lisbon airport and 3 hrs from Porto airport so we recommend flying to Lisbon.

We can arrange a minibus to take the group to and from Lisbon airport (about 30 euros each way).

About your hosts

Andy has practiced tantra yoga for 14 years and taught for nearly 6. He’s also an experienced bodyworker and folds shiatsu, reiki and meditation into his teaching to help his students tap into the great intelligence, power and creativity of the body. Together, we cultivate an attitude of loving kindness, gratitude and wonder as we flow through a soulful and meaningful movement practice.

Partner work is central in his teaching of tantra yoga for gay and bi men. It allows us to experience that with assistance, support and encouragement we can all move more easily towards the goal of self knowledge and self love. Tantra teaches us how to witness the light and beauty in another and so reveal it in ourselves.

Andy is passionate about creating community and holding a safe, relaxed and meaningful space for gay and bi men to meet and explore intimacy, connection and joy.

He has taught many retreats and workshops around the world and is based in London and Brighton, UK.

João’s journey in complementary therapy started 15 years ago and evolved along the years expanding to the realm of Tantra.

His background in teaching along with his training in different styles of massages, tantra, energy work, meditation and movement practice allows him to blend different techniques tailoring them to his clients’ needs.

Tantra has been a big passion in his life since Tantra practices are very diverse and allow the connection between sacred sexuality and spirituality in a path of expansion towards freedom, truth and unconditional love towards oneself and others around.

João is based in London where he offers workshops and private appointments. Moreover, he has taught workshops in festivals.

http://www.tantricjourney4men.co.uk

To register, use the Contact form above or email andybutterfield@icloud.com 

Yoga Chill

Retreat, Spain, Yoga

Naked Yoga Retreat for Gay, Bi and Trans Men. 

12-17th May, Andalusia, Spain

Finca la Maroma is an award-winning gay guest house nestled in the stunning mountain landscape north of Velez-Malaga. Join us for one or both yoga breaks: 

The focus of this week is more restorative as you’ll be guided through a slower, more mindful flow. We will take a little more time to release deep held tension and connect to subtle flows of lifeforce energy. There will also be a bit more of an emphasis on stillness and meditation in this week.

Surrounded by peaceful and beautiful mountain scenery, you will spend five glorious days stretching and strengthening your body, calming your mind and lifting the spirit. Playful partner work, touch and massage, meditation and soulful asana (posture) will lead you into deeper connection with the life that flows and expresses through you and all of us.

There’ll be plenty of delicious home-cooked food and the chance to relax and enjoy our heated pool, jacuzzi, gym and sauna.

Price €675 based on two guests sharing a double studio (plus optional chill-out weekend at 20% discount).

Space is limited, so contact Finca La Maroma (www.fincalamaroma.com) now to reserve your place and quote Yoganu as a reference

https://fincalamaroma.com/#book

Yoga Glow

Retreats, Spain, Yoga

Naked Yoga Retreat for Gay, Bi and Trans Men

5-10th May – Andalusia, Spain

Finca la Maroma is an award-winning gay guest house nestled in the stunning mountain landscape north of Velez-Malaga. Join us for one or both yoga breaks: 

The focus of the first week will be dynamic vinyasa flow yoga. This is a relatively vigorous practice, which strengthens the core and upper body. You will be guided through sequences that generate heat to detoxify and energise and that quieten the mind by absorbing it in a lively physical practice. Beginners are welcome but you should be relatively fit and active.

There’ll be plenty of delicious home-cooked food and the chance to relax and enjoy our heated pool, jacuzzi, gym and sauna.

Price €675 based on two guests sharing a double studio (plus optional chill-out weekend at 20% discount).

Space is limited, so contact Finca La Maroma (www.fincalamaroma.com) now to reserve your place and quote Yoganu as a reference


Into The Heart

Gay Men’s Retreats, Retreats, Shiatsu, Tantra, Workshops, Yoga, Yoga For Men

Yoga Retreat for Gay, Bi and Trans Men. 
4th to 6th October, Sussex

This is the third retreat we have run from this venue, Gayles Retreat as we all love it so much and keep coming back!

It’s nestled deep in the Sussex countryside, a haven of peace, calm and a much needed breathing space.

Conveniently close to London/Brighton with excellent rail/bus links and plenty of parking should you wish to drive the 90 minutes from London to the Sea.

The weekend will be hosted by two experienced teachers, Andy Butterfield and Tom Cowan, who have been leading workshops and retreats offering Vajrasati & Hatha Flow Yoga, Shiatsu, Tantra, Meditation and Nature Connection Practices. They regularly support events for Yoganu, Loving Men, Tantra for Gay Men and the Radical Faeries.

We come together to explore embodied presence, movement, connection with ourselves and each other, Nature & community.
We recognise and appreciate yoga as a practice that cultivates integration through movement, breathwork, meditation and with the relaxation that comes from experiencing yoga Nidra.

These are an invaluable resource for creating balance, calmness and steadiness in the mind and body.

There will be relaxing, meditative, restorative and enlivening practices of yoga during this weekend.

Supporting us through periods of anxiety, depression, addiction and helping to mediate compulsive behaviours, a regular yoga practice (abyahasa) opens up a crack of light in the endless stream of thoughts and stories (vikalpa) that can be our preoccupation giving us breathing space so we can gain a fresh perspective (vairagyam).

It’s in the pauses between thinking, as we move, breathe, stretch and connect that we awaken from the trance of being lost to ourselves and begin to once again experience the sensations both in and outside of the body that constitute reality in this moment.

In this way we learn to take our practice off the mat and walk it into life, step by step, day by day.

We’re building resilience in the face of stress and tension by noticing when we get caught up, so we can find our centre and enjoy the beauty of being present to ourselves and the world around us.

There will be lots of space to simply ‘be’. Time to unwind, relax and connect with yourself. Switch off the phone. Leave the emails behind for a weekend. Listen to the sounds of nature, feel the air on your skin and enjoy good food, good company and a real retreat!

Please come and join us for this immersive weekend of relaxing and restorative Shiatsu massage, playful deep and accessible yoga, fun games and nature based practices, meditation walks through the beautiful gardens and delicious home cooked vegetarian food, all against the backdrop of the stunning Seven Sisters coastline and the gentle ambience of Gayles Retreat atop the cliffs.

Prices include all costs, including your room, three delicious vegetarian meals a day and all refreshments, fruit, hot drinks etc.

Our venue for the event is Gayles, a beautiful retreat centre situated in the outstanding countryside of the South Downs in East Sussex. Gayles is 15 miles from Brighton, a 90 minute drive from London and easily accessible by public transport. See http://www.retreattogayles.co.uk/ for more information.

Food at the event is vegetarian and with sufficient notice it’s possible to provide vegan, dairy-free and wheat-free diets.

More info on the teachers
Tom www.tomcowan.info
Andy www.andybutterfield.com

Andy and Tom

Price includes all costs; accommodation, three delicious meals a day and teaching with Andy and Tom. 

Bunk Dorm (11 beds, most bunks, 2 showers, two toilets) – from £265* 

Small Dorm (6 beds, no bunks, one toilet and one shower) – from £285* 

Double Room and en-suite (only one available – for two people who will share a double bed) – £599

Booking can be made directly here: https://events.eventzilla.net/e/into-the-heart—a-yoga-retreat-for-gay-bi–queer-men-2138750726

Contact Andy (07968 846610) or Tom (07858 224601) for more info or email yogawithandyandtom@gmail.com