Sarah Meyer practicing yoga on the old floating boardwalk at Swan Lake. (Photo courtesy Sarah Meyer)

Swan Lake welcomes downward-facing dogs and dragon posers

Swan Lake is hosting two yoga sessions on the floating boardwalk on July 16 and 18

  • Jul. 11, 2019 12:00 a.m.

The Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary is hosting two lunch-hour yoga sessions by the lake for yogis of all experience levels. On July 16 and 18, yoga aficionados and amateurs alike are invited to practise from noon to 1 p.m. on the floating boardwalk at Swan Lake.

Attendees will need their own mats and admission to the sessions will be by donation, says Kathleen Burton, executive director of Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary Society — the non-profit that stewards the Nature House near the lake. The funds will go towards supporting the Way Finding and Interpretive Signage Campaign being run by the sanctuary. The project will see the installation of new signage around the sanctuary. From welcome signs to directional signs to event boards, the new system will aim to engage all age groups and employ interactive elements.

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People practise yoga for many reasons, says Burton, a self-proclaimed yoga enthusiast. For her, it comes down to being centered, making time to care for herself and getting closer to nature.

“Having the chance to combine this with my love of nature allows me to not only be present with myself but with Saanich, with the community and with Swan Lake,” says Burton. “It is a reminder to not only be kind to myself, but to steward the land, the lake and be kind to nature.”

The yoga sessions will be taught by Sarah Meyer, a local yoga instructor. Meyer has hosted sessions on Swan Lake in the past, Burton says. Donations from those sessions helped fund the new, 1,000-foot boardwalk construction.

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“In a way it brings the practice full circle,” says Burton.

She hopes the yoga sessions will aid in reducing stress while raising funds for the project associated with the 45th anniversary of the Swan Lake Nature Sanctuary which is coming up in June 2020. The new signage project is the first part of the two-part upgrade plan for the anniversary, says Burton. The exhibits in the Nature House will be upgraded and some new “hands-on and vibrant,” exhibits will be created as well, she explains.

Yoga by the Lake has no capacity limit and will take place even if it’s raining. Attendees are asked to take all garbage with them when they’re finished and to leave their pets at home.

“The only time dogs are allowed at the sanctuary is when we downward dog,” Burton says with a laugh.


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