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REVIEW: 3 Week Yoga Retreat



Not going to lie to you folks, I’m totally delinquent when it comes to fitting yoga into my schedule.  The primary reason is that when I get time to get busy, I feel like I need to make that count by getting the heart-rate up or lifting heavy things.

This of course, means that lately my flexibility could be significantly better than it currently is.  In particular my lower back which tends to feel like a bag of smashed glass on any given day.  So the timing might be good to slow things down and take a retreat.  Like maybe a 3 Week Yoga Retreat.  See what I did there?

My last foray into a dedicated Yoga program was Ultimate Yogi as hosted by the human fortune-cookie wisdom dispenser, Travis Eliot.  While his method was sound, he had especially good skills at getting on my freaking nerves.  Lets see if Beachbody can do one better.

What You Get.  What You Need.

The program is available both in DVD format or via Beachbody on Demand Might I make a suggestion?  At a butt-puckering price-tag of over $100 for the base package, maybe give BOD a shot for a year.  I’m no coach, but that does seem a better use of money.  That way if it sucks, you can try other smash hits like P90X, Insanity, or the critically acclaimed YouV2.

It’s a foregone conclusion that a yoga mat is a must unless you’ve been stealing seconds ( possibly even thirds ) of Aunt Cohen’s duck-fat latkes and have a layer of mushy regret to rest your bones on.  I’d also recommend a yoga block or run to the garage and build something equivalent out of scrap lumber.

Gimme ten minutes...

The calendar is broken down into 3 weeks with each week progressing to the next level of difficulty:  Foundation, Expansion and Progression.  Each day has a unique workout so the package includes 21 distinct routines.


Time: 30 minutes

There are three levels for each section and you move to the next level every week.  You will kick off CORE with trainer Vytas then progressing to Elise for week 2, then Ted ( of P90X2 fame ) for week 3, and finally Faith who will handle the weekends.

I think we're missing the yellow Power Ranger.

Vytas will get the ball rolling by easing your inflexible steel joists into what will hopefully become malleable muscles in the weeks to come.  I like Vytas right away because he’s an articulate individual who doesn’t resort to painfully cliche yoga stereotypes.  Seems like the kind of guy who will help you with your vinyasas and then go on a weekend hunting trip to bag that elusive buck.

Co-incidentally it's also hunting season up here and I'm a little preoccupied.

During WEEK TWO Elise takes the con to crank it up a notch.  It is much the same formula; some upward dogs, planks and basic yoga postures.  WEEK THREE is Ted’s to once again increase skill level.  The differences in each are actually quite minor and progression over a 3 week period should not be difficult.  While the name “core” might imply abdominals, there’s more balance work than anything else.

The production values are…good I guess.  I mean, there’s not a Hell of a lot to comment on.  The entire backdrop has more pure white than an iPhone commercial so at least you won’t be distracted by Shakeology ads.

Doesn't get any more minimalist than that.


This one lives up to its namesake quite well.  The focus is stretching the whole body from the neck downward and it is here that the vast majority of the flexibility-deprived will appreciate what is offered.  The first two weeks are relatively straightforward stretch postures.  I did find week two to have a little bit too long of a shavasana ( laying down flat and motionless ) at almost 5 minutes.  If I wanted to be out flat that long I’d just go back to bed.

Out of all three I liked Ted’s the best here for two reasons:  the level of complexity felt just right…and he wears normal shorts and a polo shirt like a man instead of tight yoga pants which should be forbidden on anyone with a Y-chromosome.  Way to represent there bro.

Throw in some Clubman aftershave and you've got a real man's yoga right there.


Lots of time spent on one leg as you can imagine, although you don’t really get to the balance stuff until about a third of the way in.  Vytas and Elise’s weeks spend more time with balance postures while Ted glosses over them rather quick to get back to what is considered a typical yoga workout.  Good workouts to be sure, but more focus on balance would be beneficial.

Balance might be the area where the most practice is required.


The concept of Flow is to link together all the workouts of the week.  Ideally if you only have one yoga routine to squeeze into your schedule, this one might be the one to go to first.

At that moment, the Dysfunctional Parrot deeply regretted that bran muffin he ate earlier...

FLOW on the GO

Essentially this is the almost the same as Flow, only instead of around 30 minutes it is compressed to ~20.  Ideal if you hit the snooze button one too many times and still want to get a Flow workout in.


This series is all led by Faith as your trainer through all 3 weeks and consists of low effort yet high relaxation postures.  There is also a higher focus in the mental aspects of yoga by helping clear ones mind…which can be a mixed bag for some.  Gotta be honest, not a big fan of these ones and it might be due to the trainers style.  If there is an energy field out there, you can be sure Faith is doing her honest best to tap into it while explaining it to me like I’m a six year old.

That means of course mileage will vary for those who like her method and those who do not.  Women tend to have better capacity to relax in this manner while men tend to relax while doing something such as changing a car’s oil, building a table or tracking down that elusive white-tail that I swear I’m going to double-tap out of pure spite for making me near freeze to death in the Canadian wilderness.

I'll relax when this smug ungulate is in my freezer.


There are three Take Ten workouts: Abs, AM and PM.  Faith is back to walk us through all of them.

From my experience, Take 10 Abs will probably be the easiest abdominal workout you have done if you have any experience with home fitness videos.  It goes quick and I would absolutely classify it in the beginner category.  If you’ve done Ab Ripper, this will be a simplicity personified.

The AM and PM workouts are designed to be the weekend quick yoga workouts to keep the flow going.  AM to wake you up, and PM to knock you out.  Again, you are kind of at the mercy of your level of tolerance for Faith’s style.


It’s tricky business having 4 instructors as it is inevitable the weaknesses of one will stand out among the many.  Vytas has a generic maleness that will appeal to most,  Elsie has a nice soccer mom vibe and Ted seems like he has a few good jokes that are rolling around in his head.  On the flip-side I felt Faith was trying to clumsily hypnotize me into thinking I was a turnip while taping into Mother Earth or some other New Age bullshit.  But again, that’s a subjective opinion as many will find their observations to be the opposite.

Music and production values are excellent, albeit simple as one can possibly get while still allowing the cast to wear clothes.  I give props for the lack of product pushing as Beachbody can get a little heavy handed with that sometimes.

I have to give 3 Week Yoga Retreat a score of 4 Feathers out of 5 considering it is more tolerable than Ultimate Yoga which I gave a 3.8.  As much as I give Faith criticism, she’s nowhere near the irritant Travis Eliot was so let’s give credit where it is due.  To close, 3WYR will undoubtedly be the ticket for anyone, whether beginner or advanced to increase or maintain their core flexibility for years to come.


Production - 7
Music - 8
Value - 8


A solid beginner to intermediate yoga program that is almost guaranteed to boost your flexibility game.

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John Paul Parrot ( aka. The Dysfunctional Parrot ) is a disgruntled Systems Analyst who wanders the Canadian wastelands saving small villages with the power of Kung Fu.  His chair is also a little too close to the twenty year old microwave.  As you can well imagine, this has had certain side effects.



  1. May

    December 29, 2017 at

    Okay, sometimes your subtle sexism and fragile masculinity grates on me, but I have to admit that I generally end up agreeing with your reviews. Yes, I grudgingly admit, I feel this way about Faith as well. And even though I had to try a Brazil Butt Lift workout in defiance of the claustrophobic gender norms in that review, I could barely get through that workout because you were right again.

    So, it sounds like you’re a BOD subscriber now, does that mean we can expect an 80 day obsession review in the future? Or has your butt had enough from Leandro already?

    • Dysfunctional Parrot

      December 29, 2017 at

      80- day obsession is indeed in the roster, but I’m hoping to get Double Take done first. No idea what you mean by fragile masculinity as I’m objectively a hairy badass who can operate a table saw like a boss. As for my sexism, I was hoping it was a bit more than simply subtle so I’m going to have to pick it up a notch. Mrs. Parrot just landed me a high five for that comment. Dang, what a woman!

  2. patricia poirrier

    December 11, 2017 at

    what happens after the 3weeks are up??

    • Dysfunctional Parrot

      December 11, 2017 at

      Madness. Then death.

      • Johannes Paulsen

        February 21, 2020 at

        These are pets, of course. Not quite domesticated….

  3. RC

    November 14, 2017 at

    Hey Parrot! I appreciate the nod to deer hunting……and the funny thing is I read this review on my IPhone while sitting in the woods waiting for a deer to arrive! Good news is I have some lean protein in my freezer for winter! How was your hunt?

    • Dysfunctional Parrot

      December 11, 2017 at

      Came soooo close to bagging a nice white-tail buck but the season ended before we could go back. Big plans for next year. Glad to see your hunt went good!

  4. Karoline Bendix Bräuner

    November 11, 2017 at

    Hey Parrot – I love your reviews and wanted to suggest you doing a top-10 or top-15 of the programs you have tried. Like the hybrid post, but just with single programs? Would be awesome, to have go to suggestions from the”anti-coach” ;)

  5. Raj

    November 7, 2017 at

    First! The great thing about BOD as well is the ability to cut out the parts you don’t like without feeling like you’re wasting part of your investment. I feel like this work out (especially the first couple of weeks) would be great as a hybrid with P90 for beginners. Much more workouts to work from in that case! Add a couple of yoga workouts to each weak.

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