Breathworks Founder Vidyamala Burch and bodywork teacher Padmadarshini Cole will be bringing back their popular retreat theme this year of balancing the nervous system. 

In-person Retreat: Balancing the Nervous System

Across 7 days you will learn how to regulate, balance and allow the nervous systems to thrive in the tranquil Adhisthana Retreat Centre in the Herefordshire countryside.

In Breathworks’ only residential retreat of the year, you will have the opportunity to delve into mindfulness and embodied movement under the experienced guidance of long-time teachers in a serene and natural environment.

Those who have taken this retreat in previous years are very welcome. The retreat will be a great opportunity to delve into greater depth, experience and knowledge of the theme along with new content from the teachers. 

Why the Nervous System? 

It is through our nervous system that we experience ourselves. A vast network of interconnections throughout our entire body, it organises and regulates everything we experience both internally and externally.  The nervous system plays a fundamental role in our functions including sleep, breathing, digestion, heart rate, healing, memory and movement.

Vidyamala and Padmadarshini share an on-going passion for understanding how we can all find ways to access greater ease through practices that support balance and regulation of the body’s system. They continually deepen their knowledge and practise and love sharing this with others.

What will I learn? 

Across 7 days, you will practise calming and restorative meditation and movement exercises, complemented by theory to help you come to a closer understanding of your body and how it functions.

  • Learn how to become more in tune with your body’s systems 
  • Learn strategies for self-regulating to create balance in the nervous system
  • Learn how to strengthen and activate your parasympathetic nervous system  (the body’s ‘rest-and-digest’ system)
  • Deepen your meditation practice
  • Explore embodied movement practices and their benefits 
  • Immerse yourself in a calming retreat environment surrounded by nature
  • Meet and connect with other like-minded people in a supportive setting

In-person Retreat: Balancing the Nervous System

What Can I Expect?

The well-paced retreat schedule includes guided meditative practices to help you develop awareness and sensitivity as you begin to track and regulate the nervous system. 

Through body scans and  somatic movement exercises  you will begin to explore the mind-body connection and how our inner and outer environments can work together. Exercises are suitable for all bodies and abilities, with adjustments and adaptations given for those with limited movement.

The residential retreat will include periods of silence each day to help you go deeper into your experience. 

There will be periods of free time where you will be able to rest, relax and roam the scenic setting of Adhisthana’s gardens, grounds and surrounding countryside.

Watch our video of last year’s retreat for a taste of retreat life.

We are holding this retreat in a hybrid format, with an online ticket option for those who want to join for the comfort of their own home. See the Online Retreat page for more. 

Online Retreat

Adhisthana is a Buddhist retreat centre under the Malvern Hills of Herefordshire, named an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) for conservation. The retreat centre’s 26 acres of  land is home to sprawling woodland, a wildflower meadow, multiple ponds, a large sunken garden and a natural wastewater treatment system.

The house itself provides a warm and comfortable setting for communal retreat-style living. 

“Beautiful retreat centre in the countryside. Stunning gardens that are wonderful to be in even in winter. Quiet and serene, Adhistana is an amazing place to come and reflect, study and practice meditation.” - Retreatant 2022


Rooms at Adhisthana are simply furnished with beds, bedside tables, chairs and lamps. Room options available include:

  • Single with private accessible bathrooms (for those with accessibility or health needs)
  • Single rooms with shared bathrooms
  • Twin rooms
  • Dorm shared rooms (of 3 - 6 people)

If you wish to request a twin or a dorm room, please do so in your registration form (after the payment process). 

Who is This Event For?

People with meditation experience of 6 months or more.

Movement practices will be suitable for all abilities with adaptations and options given for exercises.


Start Time: Friday, 6th September 2024, 17:00 (UK time - BST - see this Time Zone Converter for your time zone)

Please note, bookings for this event will close on Thursday 22 August at 2.30pm. 

Where: Adhisthana, Coddington Court, Coddington, Ledbury, Herefordshire, HR8 1JL


Retreat Schedule

The retreat will start on Friday 6th September with supper at 18:00.



7-12 Sept

session 1 7.30 - 8.30 Movement and meditation Movement and meditation
8.45 Breakfast Breakfast
session 2 10.30 - 13.00 Morning session with teaching & practice. Includes a break

9.30 - Clear-up

11:00 - Depart

13.00 Lunch
session 3 15.30 - 17.30

Afternoon session with teaching, practice and small groups

(with a break)

18.00 Supper
session 4 19.30 - 21.00 Introduction and meditation Evening session with meditation and body scan

Meet the Retreat Leaders

Padmadarshini Cole

Padmadarshini is an experienced yoga and movement teacher with a diploma in Integrative Bodywork and Movement Therapy. She has dedicated many years to exploring movement and ways that we can live with greater ease through inhabiting our bodies - physically, energetically and emotionally. 

Her years of yoga training led her to explore bodywork and movement therapy where she trained under Linda Hartley, and she has been exploring approaches to movement and stillness that invite us to listen deeply to how our bodies need and want to move.

Her style of teaching is guided by embodied practices to tune into our innermost environments and impulses. A felt sense of tenderness, connection and belonging underlies all of her work.

Padmadarshini regularly leads retreats teaching meditation, yoga, bodywork and Authentic Move

Vidyamala Burch

Vidyamala is a mindfulness and compassion teacher, award-winning author and coach. She began teaching her mindfulness approach for managing pain and illness following her own personal experience living with health challenges. At age 23, she sustained spinal injuries that required multiple surgeries and left her with partial paraplegia and chronic pain. She began to explore mindfulness and meditation as a way to manage her pain and found the results to be life changing.

In 2004, she developed the world’s first Mindfulness-based Pain Management (MBPM) programme which has now been recognised by the NHS and global health boards and has reached over 100,000 people coping with pain, illness and stress.

Vidyamala’s list of accolades includes an OBE for services to Wellbeing and Pain Management and an honorary membership from The British Pain Society for her outstanding work for the alleviation of pain. She has been recognised as one of the most influential disabled people in the UK for four years running by the Shaw Trust Power List.

Vidyamala offers wise and kind guidance and through her work hopes to pass on the tools that have helped her reclaim a full, happy and meaningful life.


We offer a sliding scale of pricing options to those wishing to join us, and asking participants to pay the highest sustainable amount that they can.

Until 21 June, you can spread the cost with interest-free, monthly payments. Click here to learn more.

Individual Rate

Full priced rate.

Shared room: £900 

Single room: £1095

Concessionary Rate

For those in financial hardship who cannot afford our full priced rate (see below for more).

Shared room: £750

Single room: £945

Accessible single room with en-suite (for those with health or accessibility needs)*: £750 

Here you can find our Cancellation & Refund Policy

A Guide to Our Rates

Breathworks is a charitable organisation with a mission to make the benefits of mindfulness accessible to everyone.

Concessionary Rate: applies to individuals with an income of less than £22,000 a year (or less than £25,000 if you live in London).

We operate our booking system on the basis of self-assessment and trust. Please contact us if you have any further questions about eligibility.

*Ground floor single rooms with private en-suites are reserved for those with accessibility or health needs. To book this room, please  enquire with our Admin team.


What time should I plan to arrive and leave the retreat?

Please plan to arrive between 16:00 and 18:00 on Friday 6 September as we will start with a supper at 18:00.

The retreat will finish after the clear-up in the morning, so if travelling on public transport, please book a train after 11:00 hours. If for any reason you can't participate in the clear-up, that's ok!

How do I get to Adhisthana?

The closest train station is Ledbury, from there you will need to take a taxi to Coddington Court (the taxi driver may know it as Coddington Court School). All taxis must be pre-booked in advance, you can find a list of taxi numbers on Adhisthana’s website here.

For those driving, please find directions here.

What accessibility access is there?

Adhisthana is disability friendly, with several accessible bedrooms, disabled access to rooms and, several disabled access toilets and a wheelchair lift. Please let us know if you have any questions or requirements we should know about.

What should I plan to wear and  bring on retreat?

We recommended packing warm comfortable clothes suitable for practising movement in, toiletries, an extra towel, indoor shoes (you may also want to bring walking boots), a watch or clock, a raincoat, a reusable water bottle and a pen and paper.

Linen will be provided, hairdryers is available at the reception.

What if I need to leave the retreat early?

For those staying at Adhisthana, we ask that you stay for the whole programme. We are creating community for the week and will have an important and positive effect on one another as the retreat unfolds.  Should you need to leave early (e.g for an emergency or health issue) this will be understood. 

What is the food like?

Adhisthana serves healthy and nutritious vegan food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you have any specific dietary restrictions, please give details in your  . For highly complex diets we may ask you to bring some of your own foods.

What if I need to cancel my place on the retreat?

We can offer a refund (minus £35 admin fee), up to eight weeks before the event start date. For more on our cancellation and refund policy, see here.

Book a place

Ticket Quantity Price Enquiry

Individual rate - In-person NS - Shared room-Sept 2024

Decrease Increase £900.00

Individual rate - In-person NS - Single- Sept 2024

Decrease Increase £1,095.00

Concession rate -In-person NS - Shared - Sept 2024

Decrease Increase £750.00

Concession rate - in-person - Single - Sept 2024

Decrease Increase £945.00

Concession rate - in-person - Accessible room-Sept 2024