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“Yoga Health Retreats: more program features, less people”

Yoga is for people who are adventurers, daydreamers, epicureans, nature lovers; who have teenagers, ageing parents, demanding jobs, and for those who wish they had more confidence, ate less chocolate and could be more relaxed!

When Sue Hawkins founded Yoga Health Retreats over 13 years ago, she was one of the early pioneers of yoga retreats. Whilst the way yoga has been embraced by the world in that time has mushroomed, Sue’s approach has only changed in its depth. And with 27 years of yoga practice under her belt, she should know.

A yoga teacher (and yoga teacher trainer) who’s highly qualified (she’s registered with Yoga Alliance at the highest-level E-RYT500), Sue has studied Iyengar, Astanga, Vinyasa, Yoga Therapy, Restorative Yoga, Partner Yoga and Yoga Nidra, Pranayama and Meditation.

“The teacher appears when the student is ready”.


Yoga Health Retreats is distinguished because it offers more modalities in its program and takes fewer participants. The retreats are especially designed for small groups only so individual needs can be well looked after. The YHR program has an inspiring combination of Yoga, Meditation, Yoga Nidra, Yoga Philosophy, Astrology, Pilates, Kinesiology and more. All modalities are integrated with yoga. Just imagine the fun that happens when astrology is combined with yoga!

Retreat participants know that they are in experienced hands. What stands out for them is Sue’s caring, insightful and genuine approach and facilitation. She knows that a Yoga Health Retreat is a deeply personal journey for participants, where they come out feeling revitalised, more relaxed and connected.

As a single mum in her fifties, Sue knows about the lives that people really live, not what people think they should be living. So she loves to work with ‘the real person’ in her retreats – the person that is busy juggling life’s opportunities with life’s challenges.

Yoga Health Retreats are only held in stunning locations around the globe – Bali, Byron Bay and France with more destinations to be announced in 2015.


Individual needs are a top priority for Yoga Health Retreats. So we do our research prior to a retreat and ask about your health, lifestyle and yoga background to ensure that our approach is holistic and appropriate to yours and the group’s needs.

We combine yoga with a range of Ayurveda and spa treatments, nutrition, detox and cleansing, Pilates, astrology, kinesiology, massage therapy, Kinesiology healing, cooking classes, traditional cultural activities specific to the destination, guided nature walks and a lot more for a complete body, mind and soul experience. All levels of experience are fully considered in the program and the style of yoga accommodates beginner to general levels of experience.

Morning yoga classes are a Vinyasa flow where we move through each posture using breath awareness to open and cleanse the body. We hold some of the postures so they bring strength, flexibility and alignment. Props are integrated throughout the class to open up the body and give support when needed. Warm up poses are done to set up a safe foundation for each student to explore the deeper asanas as we move through the practice.

The yoga sessions are taught with awareness of individual and group levels of experience so that each student can practice according to their ability, in a safe and inspirational environment. Yoga adjustments, modifications and personal attention is given in each class by our highly skilled and dedicated Yoga Health Retreat facilitators.

With regular practice of yoga and meditation you can improve concentration and still the mind, increase stamina and balance, strengthen the body and improve flexibility. A Yoga Health Retreat is a deeply immersive and supportive opportunity to completely replenish your body, mind and soul.

Add yoga to fantastic food and lovely places and you really hit the whole-person happy spot! At Yoga Health Retreats all of you is nurtured and re-energised.

*Sue is available to teach private sessions for guests while on the retreat and outside of the retreats. Also private group sessions can be arranged by appointment.


We are some enthusiastic people. We are so excited to see you here. Let us introduce ourselves.

The Yoga Health Retreat Teachers and facilitators are highly qualified offering a high standard of expertise and dedication. Personal attention and care is given to guests during all yoga classes particularly for those with previous injuries or special needs. Be expertly guided and instructed to practice correct alignment in a manageable way that suits all levels of practitioners. From total retreat beginners to more advanced students.
  • Sue Hawkins
    Sue HawkinsFounder & Director

    Sue Hawkins is the founder and director of Yoga Health Retreats and is a Senior Qualified Yoga Instructor who has been practicing for over 26 years and teaching for 16 years. Sue is registered with Yoga Alliance at the highest level, E-RYT500. Sue has studied Iyengar Yoga, Ashtanga Yoga, Restorative Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Yoga Therapy and Partner Yoga. She furthered her studies travelling to India, studying Iyengar and Ashtanga Yoga to deepen her knowledge of yoga asanas, pranayama, Ayurveda and yoga philosophy.

    Sue has instructed on teacher trainings and has been hosting yoga retreats in Byron Bay and internationally for over 13 years and continues to develop her knowledge and understanding of Yoga and Meditation. Sue is also a Pilates Mat teacher and integrates core strength, precision, control and flow of movement. Yoga and Pilates compliment each other by enhancing alignment and core strength in a safe and nurturing environment.

    Sue gives clear and concise instruction but is also engaging and intuitive. Her ability to work with all levels of experience is obvious in the classes and this only comes with years’ of experience and dedication to the practice.

  • Parijat
    ParijatKinesiologist / Facilitator



    • Judy Leane
      Judy LeaneSenior Qualified Pilates Instructor

      Judy Leane is a Senior Qualified Pilates Instructor, Sports Scientist and lecturer of Anatomy. She brings a wealth of experience to our retreats, offering Pilates and Core strengthening classes, physiotherapy and more. The fusion of Yoga and Pilates is very beneficial in the improvement of posture, alignment and added strength to abdominal and lower back areas. Judy has 20 year’s experience in the Australian and USA (California) health and fitness industries with both scientific and alternative medical qualifications – BSp.Sc (Bachelor of Sports science) – Exercise Physiology; Diplomas in Myofacial (SLM), sports, remedial and relaxation massage.

      Judy is the director of ‘East Coast Pilates Studio’, treating sports-specific conditioning and is a postural analysis specialist managing muscular skeletal pain and injury rehabilitation. She has had previous experience working with elite Olympic athletes and other special populations, including the National Triathlon Team, and Australian Sports Aerobic Team (1990- 95) and the Anatomy Tutor for the Yoga Pilates Training Academy, Australia.

    • Christine Campeau
      Christine CampeauYoga Teacher

      Since 1997, after completing an intensive 2-year Iyengar study in Bondi and Sivandana teacher training in the Bahamas, Christine has dedicated herself to yoga teaching and massage. Health and holistic therapies have been a constant theme throughout her career, being a Certified Fitness Instructor and training in LA to become the first “Spinning” instructor in Australia in 1994. Christine is a Massage and Reiki (Level 1, 2) therapist and has worked in the corporate world offering stress management. She offers a very nurturing and intuitive remedial massage.


      • Varij

        Conscious Astrology Reading – Wayne Stuart (Varij) Master Astrologer – Varij is a master astrologer, tarot reader, teacher and writer with more than 25 year’s experience – practising professionally since 1982.  He has been based in the Byron Bay area since 1991.

        Greater awareness of your unique gifts and talents, help in finding your true purpose or vocation in life, for those considering a change of career, Varij can reveal what work you are best suited to, and the best time to make the change.  He can also tell you the best times to seek a pay rise or promotion, start or expand your own business, or sign an important contract and so on.

        Detailed mapping of the best places on the planet to find love and success in your work, using the astrological technique of astro-cartography.  This could be of special interest to travellers, or those considering moving interstate or overseas.

        Varij gives invaluable and constructive insight into the underlying causes of health problems, how long they might last, and positive strategies to optimize health and well-being.

        • Natalie Purcell
          Natalie PurcellNaturopath

          Natalie Purcell, is one of Australia’s leading detox specialists. She has a Bachelor of Naturopathy, specialising in Detox, Nutrition, Phytotherapy, Homoeopathy, Reiki and Massage. She is an Internationally Certified Colonic Hydrotherapist with 18 year’s of personal experience in Colonic Hydrotherapy, Cleansing and Detoxification.

          • Swami Pujan (Stephan Kalhert)
            Swami Pujan (Stephan Kalhert)Yoga Teacher

            Swami Pujan (Stephan Kalhert) has been a teacher of meditation and yogic philosophy for many, many years.

            In the last 7 years, he facilitated in Yoga Teacher Trainings and retreats in Byron Bay and Bali. He is a therapist and counsellor and has students from all over the world. His style in explaining sometimes difficult subjects is light-hearted and joyful and he has dedicated his life to help and support yogis to live a more happier and fulfilled life.

            • Todd Cameron
              Todd CameronChef

              Chef Todd Cameron has vast culinary experience, spanning 18 years in various cuisine styles.  These skills, coupled with his philosophy of energetic awareness, come together to provide high quality, contemporary health enhancing food styles. Todd has played a role in the development of Australian spa cuisine as Head Chef from inception of the award-winning ‘Gaia Retreat & Spa’, one of Australia’s leading spa retreats. Todd was also head of the kitchen of ‘Yoga Plus’, Europe’s leading yoga retreat centre in Crete, Greece.

              He has worked as Head Chef for multi award-winning ‘Hannaford’s Special Events’ and sister company ‘Flames Of The Forest’, a highly food-oriented special event company offering themed dinners in Port Douglas, North Queensland and Australia-wide. He has worked at ‘Nautilus Fine Dining Restaurant’, Port Douglas coupled with pastry cook training and other culinary sojourns around the globe.

              • Brian McKenzie
                Brian McKenziePersonal Trainer

                Brian is an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and remedial massage therapist.

                He owns and operates ‘Progressive Fitness Solutions’, a business that specialises in musculoskeletal rehabilitation, exercise prescription for chronic disease and the delivery of fun and dynamic group and personal training sessions.

                With over 10 year’s experience in the health and fitness industry, Brian is well qualified to help you set and achieve your fitness goals.