10-Day Beginner Training Course in the Art of Thai Yoga Massage and Integrative Bodywork

28 June –  7 July, 2024
@An Sanctoir, West Cork, Irelan

Residential retreat in the wilds of West Cork.
where the wisdom of nature can teach us,
gathering and connection can touch us
and where we can learn about healing through the body’s own intelligence.

About the beginner course

This 10-day course is offered as an immersive, residential retreat in the south-west of Ireland, with daily classes to support your learning as a bodyworker, lots of hands-on practice, and personal support in your journey working with healing modalities.

The foundational structure of this course is a beginner training in the art of Thai yoga massage, with a certificate of completion provided at the end of the course. This is our structure that allows us to have a solid foundation of techniques and principles from which we can then explore listening to the body, its internal rhythms and using our intuition to guide us. We will texturize this with rich sharings and movement classes from the intersections of other modalities that include working with the fascial layers, our internal dynamic and fluid rhythms, playfulness and dance, psychological and somatic bodywork and energy work through the koshas (five yogic bodies).

Meditations and similar exercises will also support our ability to be aware of our own energy, drop into stillness and into the silent place from where we can truly listen. Through mindful bodywork practice, we use the tool of the physical body to also touch the essence or spiritual nature that resides within each of us. 

Through both silence and movement, we can ground into stillness, building full body presence as the bedrock for moving into this practice of bodywork. We hold our ground with the earth, while recognizing the fluidity of our Waters. While we have the groundedness of the techniques of the Thai massage tradition, we can access the freedom and flow that comes from listening to the whole being, touching not just with our hands but also with our hearts.

Keep in mind that as a beginner course this retreat is open for those with no previous experience in bodywork, yet its rich offering of our shared experience makes it worthwhile for beginners and advanced practitioners alike. We will also support participants to build their own personal practice to support their alignment and capacity to treat others, understanding the temple that is our body space, and managing our own energy when we give.This course is a great foundation to begin the practice and art of giving deeply healing bodywork. It’s in the practice where the real learning happens. Within a safe space, you will receive guided attention and instructions to ensure you leave the training with confidence and understanding. This course is also a deep, personal journey, where the process of learning how to touch, feel and listen relate just as much to extending that practice to ourselves as to others. With the support of the bodywork as our foundation, we will explore the internal spiritual journey of the healing arts.

This is a special collaboration between two female bodywork practitioners. Through their journeys of practicing bodywork, they experienced how we can touch, access, unravel and reveal so much that is at the core of our being. Through mindful bodywork practice, we use the tool of the physical body to also touch the essence or spiritual nature that resides within each of us. 

After this training, you will have received:

  • An overview of the foundations and principles of Thai massage, including proper posture and alignment, how to use gravity and your own body weight to give deep pressure.
  • The history, philosophy, and medical theory behind Thai massage.
  • A variety of techniques to create and give individualized sequences of relaxing and effective massage treatments for healthy friends and family.
  • Understanding of how to manage your own body and energy to be able to give to others without compromising yourself.
  • A print manual to support your continued practice at home.
  • Rich understandings of how we can move, free and explore the body and our own energy after a week of playful movement and dance.
  • Meditations and practical exercises to explore presence, self-awareness, qualities of touch, and developing compassion and intuition.
  • Rejuvenated sense of self and connection through gathering together, playful fun and laughter in a supportive and peaceful natural environment.

When and where

Arrivals from 2pm on Sunday June 28th, first gathering at 6pm in the evening. A light meal will be available for an early dinner.
Departures after lunch on Sunday July 7th, and closing session in the morning.

The course will take place at An Sanctoir, in Ballydehob, West Cork, Ireland.

An Sanctoir is a multicultural community sanctuary hosting holistic activities which encourage self-awareness, and nourish the human spirit, the land and the environment. Situated in 30 acres of beautiful nature reserve, it is the ideal place to be surrounded and supported by Mother Nature as we dive into our own physical and psychological nature on our journey as bodyworkers. There is access to many walks along the land, places for contemplation when you need, and open spaces to gather and play. Located just outside the center of Ballydehob, there is also access by car to some local shops and cafés

Daily schedule

7:00 – 8:30: Embodied movement class/meditation
8:30 – 9:30: Breakfast
9:30 – 1:00: Thai Yoga Bodywork morning class
1:00 – 4:00: Lunch and break
4:00 – 7:00: Thai Yoga Bodywork afternoon class
7:00 – 8:00: Dinner
8:00 – 9:30: Optional nightly gatherings / rituals

The Facilitators

Erica Bhavani

Erica has been practicing yoga, spirituality and healing modalities for over 12 years. Having explored other forms of bodywork already, she found a real connection and faith upon discovering Thai Yoga Massage and hasn’t looked back since. She received her practitioner certificate through the Sunshine Network in 2015 and runs her private practice in Lisbon, Portugal since 2017. She continues to study regularly with a variety of teachers, and assisting her regular teachers in their own trainings.

Her studies have branched out into osteopathy and shamanism, including how nature, the elements and energy all play a part in who we are. Erica believes in our ability to heal ourselves, and shares these modalities as a complement and support to help her clients and students along their own personal journeys.

Susan Keogh

Susan is a licensed physiotherapist, myo-fascial therapist, movement educator, Pilates and yoga instructor and life-long student of meditation and the eastern healing arts. She received her professional training in UCD school of physiotherapy, graduating with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy degree and currently delving deep into the study of visceral osteopathy.

Susan offers bespoke workshops to introduce people to working with the body in a fluid and dynamic way, inspired by the depth of what she has experienced receiving bodywork herself and her own direct experience and clients responses in over 30 years working in the therapeutic field.

Follow Susan through her website at fluidbody.ie

Value Exchange

The price of the course varies on whether you choose to stay in a private room, dorm room or on the grounds in your own tent. Bedding is provided only if you choose to stay in the house. For dorm and private rooms, space is limited so please do register early if you need this option. If you bring your own tent, please note you must also bring your own bedding, as needed.

Your own tent on the grounds: €1150

Shared 6-bed dorm room: €1350

Private room: €1400

Early bird discount, if registered by February 1st – 200€ off
Register with a friend – 100€ off, EACH
Offers cannot be combined.

Food and accommodation includes: 

  • Two main vegetarian/vegan meals per day, plus breakfast.
  • 9 nights in a serene and natural landscape.
  • Community-oriented, comfortable and down-to-earth accommodation.
  • Option for private room or single dorm bed in a cozy and spacious shared house.
  • For those staying in the house, sheets, pillow and towels are provided.
  • Serene, natural landscape and grounds to support your own internal processes through the journey of this week.

Course includes:

  • Morning and afternoon sessions of Thai massage classes (3-4 hours each).
  • Personal and guided support in your learning process, suited to where you are and what you need.
  • Certificate of completion in the Beginner Foundation Training in the Art of Thai Yoga Massage, inspired by from the Asokananda and Sunshine Network lineage of Thailand.
  • Print manual to take home with you to continue to support your classes.
  • Daily movement and/or dance classes that also support our understanding of the fluid movement of the body, somatics and anatomy.
  • Meditation, breathwork and/or similar exercises to work with our own energy and facilitate the practice.
  • Organic gatherings in the evenings, possibly including rituals and ceremonies.

Registration and Payment Terms

To reserve your space, we require the registration form to be completed (follow the button below) and payment of a 300€ deposit made by SEPA transfer to the account below, or other form agreed upon.

Please write 10DAY-YOUR-NAME in the transfer details, for our reference.

The remainder of the payment is due in cash on the first day of the course. If you would like to schedule a payment plan, to help you manage the cost of the course, please let us know in the comments in the registration form and we can set that up with you.

*In the case of event cancellation or date change by the organizers, the full deposit will be refunded.

SEPA Transfer Details:
Account Name: Erica Goodman
IBAN: BE39 9673 1815 5619
Bank: Wise
Avenue Louise 54, Room S52 Brussels 1050 Belgium