March 26 - April 3rd, 2020

Mary Paffard

“Roots & Shoots!”




ROOTS AND SHOOTS - Soaking our Practice in Kindness and Possibility in Interesting Times!

March 26/27 – March 29 - Roots and Shoots – Teaching/Advanced Practice Intensive

3/27 1pm - 3/29 11am

What is the source, root and intention of our yoga these days? Which voices do we listen to, admire, are inspired by? This 3 day intensive for teachers and advanced practitioners will focus in the 1st Cakra and 5th Cakra - freeing the throat/neck area, finding ground within the groundless by exploring the themes of authenticity and listening to what truly guides and supports our unique unfolding as practitioner and teacher. We will explore foundational poses and movements to help re-connect to the earth and at the same time, look to the challenges of backbends , sarvangasasana and sirsasana to integrate our voice and expand our vision. (Options given for those not practicing inversions or deeper backbends) How can our inner self talk and our outer/teacher voice become integrated, supported and soaked in kindness?

Participants are encouraged to arrive a day earlier on Thursday March 26th to allow time to settle and adjust to time/life changes. Separate fee for this extra day and the final optional day at the end of the retreat.

March 29 – April 3 - Roots and Shoots - Presence in Yoga.

3/29 5pm Early Dinner Intros and Gentle Yoga to 4/3 10am

In the first part of this partially silent retreat, we will invite a letting go of the myths and stories that do not serve our overall yoga aspiration, cultivating inspiration through the natural world, and this exquisite setting to be present with the magic of now. As we move deeper into our 5 days together, once we have left the luggage of “shoulds”, “ought to-bes”, and old irrelevant stories behind, we will bring the imagination, creativity and collective wisdoms to the places that wish to bloom and need support and encouragement. In this retreat we also let go of the “teacher” voice, and allow ourselves to rest, re-discover with tenderness the freedoms and voices of our own sometimes neglected, always in need of rejuvenation - body, cultivating kindness for all beings. This retreat interweaves active and passive asana, pranayama, meditation, silence, mandala and plenty of time to rest in the hammocks and wander down to the waterfall, enjoy massage and either deep quiet or contemplative, supportive sangha.

April 3 – April 4 - Roots and Shoots Option

Optional Day to explore how we bring planetary consciousness to our yoga teaching and daily dialogue. After participants leave following closing circle and brunch on Friday am, we will have time to rest, walk, hot-tub and sauna and massage. We will then return from 3-5pm (with snacks!) for a discussion about climate and the necessity to embrace this conversation. How do we take a step forward in our own lives, our yoga lives, our yoga teacher training lives? What does it mean to see the body in a much, much bigger context, ie the body of the earth? How can community help create engagement, joy and movement forward with these critical issues of our time and our grand-children’s and the planet’s time? This will be a collective informal discussion/brainstorm for anyone from the retreat, locals and those that live on the Gray Bear land so we can inspire each other with the steps forward we can all take. Mary will coordinate the afternoon and post early dinner discussion and will offer a meditation prior to bed and an early am active vinyasa practice. Brunch/ Breakfast will be served at 9 – departures after that time. No fee for any of the discussion or yoga but there will be a separate fee for the accommodation and food.

Full 8 day retreat is $1,350 if paid in full by7/15/2019
MC and Visa accepted. Payment plans are available.


Earlybird Rate (if paid by 7/15/2019)

Discounted Rate (if paid by 2/25/2020)

Standard Rate (paid after 2/25/2020)

Thursday early arrival

March 26th

$100 (includes b’fast Fri)

$125 (includes b’fast Fri)

$125 (includes b’fast Fri)

Full 8 day Retreat

3/27 to 4/3




Weekend Only

3/27 to 3/29




Presence Only

3/29 to 4/3




Extended Roots/option

April 3-4

$115 (includes dinner, x-night, b’fast Sat)

$125 (includes dinner, night, b’fast Sat)

$125 (includes dinner, night, b’fast Sat)

Workshop Sign-up Form

Retreat begins Friday March 27th with arrival between 10-12. Lunch will be served. Our first gathering is from 1:30 to 5. Meeting, orientation, group work, class. Dinner at 6:00.

If you would like to arrive a day early (Thursday 26th) because of flights/travel schedule or just to settle in and relax, our space will be ready. Many guests will do this. Please plan 2:00-6:00pm arrival time. Dinner will be served at 6:00pm.

(*) If attending Presence only, (March 29-April 3) please plan to arrive between 2:00-5:30 pm on Sunday April 1st, 2018. Dinner is served at 6:00

Departing Schedule Friday 6th: Morning Practice 8-9:45, Brunch at 10:15 followed by checkout at 11:00. Good to remember for flights: We are a two hour drive from the airport plus at least one hour of checkin time at airport, so a three hour window is normally recommended.

April 3-4-Roots and Shoots Option: Details coming soon: If you wish to join us for this; please say so in your email.

Gray Bear Lodge P.O. Box 682 Hohenwald, TN 38462

Telephone: 615-782-0469

Confirmation letter and additional information (including directions to Gray Bear) will be sent. Listed price is for shared occupancy in the main lodge (upgrades to private cabins are available; please inquire).

Gray Bear is home to 400 acres of rolling hills, thick forest, natural springs, and even a waterfall. You can experience the wonders of nature while sitting in a hand-built wood fire sauna; hear the silence of nature's symphony lying on a hammock while curled under a blanket; and revel in clear air and water while using shower outdoors.

With all of this nature we have some suggestions to consider when packing:

  • Working flashlight gets dark with only the light of the stars to guide you!
  • A bathing suit ... good for the hot tub, sauna, and Watsu massage pool
  • Water bottle ...Gray Bear does not use disposable cups. Purified water is available in the Main House and the Yoga Room
  • A bath robe/sarong
  • House slippers or socks to wear indoors shoes inside please
  • Comfortable walking shoes/sandals for an inspired nature hike
  • Warm clothing ...mornings & evenings can be cool
  • Comfortable clothes for exercising/yoga

Please do not bring any drugs, alcohol, or pets. Gray Bear is a non-smoking, pet-free and alcohol-free facility.

Read more about Gray Bear.

Workshop Sign-up Form