Ojai, California

Congratulations on taking this step into authentic Yoga practice, as it has come through from the Great Tradition.

Yoga is your participation in that which is great: the power of this cosmos unfolding as radiance, the power that brought you here in the first place and currently sustains you.

The heart of Yoga is intimacy with body, breath, and relationship, and in this matter nothing can replace sincere enquiry and dialogue between two actual people in friendship and respect.

As you prepare to attend the training, please take the time to study the required reading and, if you don't have one already, begin a simple personal daily practice, as can be found on the iPromise and Yoga Promise apps.

Questions will inevitably arise in your engagement with the texts and practice: bring this active enquiry with you to our time together to get the most out of the occasion.

I look forward to seeing you in person.

Much love,
Mark and the Heart of Yoga Team


After your registration has been accepted, we will send you an invoice with the final payment amount. Please contact programs@heartofyoga.com if you have any questions.


  1. Heart of Yoga Training Manual – Please print, read and bring this with you. You will complete the assignments in the manual during the course, plus a printed copy can be useful for reference and note taking.

  2. "The Heart of Yoga, Developing A Personal Practice" – T.K.V. Desikachar - CLICK HERE TO ORDER

  3. "Yoga of Heart, The Healing Power of Intimate Connection" – Mark Whitwell - CLICK HERE TO ORDER

  4. “God and Sex: Now We Get Both” — Mark Whitwell, Rosalind Atkinson and Andy Raba. Available on Amazon.



Monday 16th September:
Arrive, check in, dinner, evening gathering (perhaps a short gentle practice)

Tuesday 17th - Saturday 21st:
Time for personal practice
8am: Breakfast
9am–12.30: Talk and practice
12.30-3.30: Lunch, free time (for local walks, exploring J Krishnamurti’s library, etc)
3-6.30: Talk and practice
7pm (approx): Dinner

Sunday 22nd September:
Time for personal practice
8am: Breakfast
9am–12.30pm: Final talk and practice
Lunch & Departure

If you are staying at the Pepper Tree, we include 6 nights of accommodation. So the first night of Monday 16th September is included in your stay.

During free time, you will have the opportunity to explore the Pepper Tree Retreat grounds. 



The evenings in Ojai can become chilly as the temperature drops can into the 50’s. 

During the day, however, you can expect a variety of weather from warm sunshine with highs in the high 70’s to 90’s.  Layers of clothes are always recommended.


Classes will be held in the Pepper Tree Event Pavilion. It is a beautiful, hexagonal wooden building with floor-to-ceiling glass windows. It can be chilly in the mornings up there, but we endeavor to keep it warm with space heaters and blankets. We also have yoga mats, bolsters and chairs if required.


Pepper Tree Retreat: 
1130 McAndrew Rd, Ojai, California, 93023
(877) 355-5986

Contact: kristy@kfa.org – Please contact them if you are arriving after 6pm on the first night.

Directions: You will travel through the town and out, until you reach Reeves Road.  There is a pizza parlour on the corner with red umbrellas named “Boccalis.”  Turn left there and follow signs to McAndrew Road by turning left again. Follow the road past the Pepper Tree Retreat and a long line of trashcans.  Turn right onto the lane just past the trashcans and follow the road to the left.  Spirit House is the second driveway surrounded by a horizontal redwood fence. Text Julia when you arrive, and try to come no later than 3 pm unless you contact her beforehand. 


We recommend people make a small excursion to the Ojai Hot Springs. This ancient sacred site of the local Chumash Indians was known for its incredible healing waters. It was recently closed to the public and has now been completely restored: http://ojaihotsprings.com/


We recommend bringing the following items with you:

  • Printed copies of the Heart of Yoga Training Manual

  • Your yoga mat

  • Warm clothes

  • Insect repellent

  • Sunscreen

  • Flashlight

  • Swimwear for the hot springs

  • If you enjoy nuts, trail mix, granola bars, particular teas or any other non-perishable foods, you can bring them with you


If you travel from outside the U.S., your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the United States (unless exempt by country-specific agreements).

Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishes to enter the United States must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for a temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Visitor visas are nonimmigrant visas for persons who want to enter the United States temporarily for business (visa category B-1), for tourism (visa category B-2), or for a combination of both purposes (B-1/B-2).

Here are some examples of activities permitted with a visitor visa:



As for travel, you can fly into SANTA BARBARA (closest airport), BURBANK or LAX.

You can also rent a car, take one of the below shuttles or take the Amtrak. 

To get from SANTA BARBARA to Ojai:
Take one of the below shuttles directly from the SB airport to Ojai/PepperTree.
It will take about one hour.

To get from BURBANK to Ojai:

  1. Take the Amtrak to Ventura. The Amtrak is a five minute walk from the airport terminal.

  2. Take a *shuttle from Ventura to Ojai/Pepper Tree.

To get from LAX to Ojai:

  1. Take a bus from LAX to Amtrak’s Union Station in LA.

  2. Take the Amtrak to Ventura.

  3. Take a *shuttle from Ventura to Ojai/Pepper Tree.

* Shuttles:
Topa Topa Taxi (805-312-2288) & RoadRunner (805-389-8196) - that will take you to/from Ventura and/or direct from SANTA BARBARA or LAX to the Pepper Tree. Ventura is about 30 minutes from Ojai on the coast.


You can click here for more information about what you are/are not allowed to bring into the US: https://www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/kbyg/customs-duty-info


The local currency is U.S. dollars.