Replenish your energy and vitality   ...    Still your mind...


Evidence-based research shows that mindfulness, regularly practised, reduces stress and anxiety, and increases self-awareness, focus and relaxation. Combined with qi gong at 3-day retreats, people often experience:

  • More vitality (chi) in the body

  • Increased self-compassion

  • Better sleep and improved wellbeing

  • A more focused and still mind

  • Greater awareness of the ways we block our inherent happiness

There will be tuition and practise in the following:

  • The art of being present, in stillness and movement

  • Qi gong warm ups and stretches

  • Sitting and walking meditations

  • The six Taoist "healing sounds" for greater wellbeing

  • Self-compassion meditation ("the inner smile")

  • Simple qi gong practices that you can take home and use as practicaltools for wellbeing and stress reductions

We will also discuss how to keep a mindfulness and/or qi gong practice alive at home.

qi gong and meditation at the aio wira centre



mindfulness meditation retreat with rachel tobin

This is a hugely valuable opportunity to create more intimacy with yourself. There will be time for you to reflect, to write, to consider.... to eat lovely vegetarian food.... to enjoy the sauna and spa.... to walk in the native bush... to be still.... and to benefit from the input of an experienced guide.

Mindfulness, the art of accessing the power of the 'now', is a wonderful way of calming your body, stilling your mind, and cultivating joy and wellbeing. If you have the tendency to lose yourself in over-thinking, or would simply relish time for balance and restoration, join me at the lovely Aio Wira Centre for a blend of mindfulness meditation and qi gong practices centred around the theme of self-compassion.  Qi gong is an ancient Taoist system designed to improve the flow of energy in the body, create vitality and concentrate the mind.  The qi gong practices we will learn include qi gong warm ups, qi gong self-massage, the six Taoist healing sounds, a compassion practice, and some medicine qi gong sequences. These will be all practices you can take away and use at home to relax and vitalise your body and mind.

You are welcome to join as much or as little of the scheduled programme as you wish; this is a retreat in which none of the usual social expectations are placed on you.  It offers you a very rare chance for you to come home to the OK-ness of yourself, just as you are.  We will begin each morning with qi gong warm- ups and stretches before breakfast, and finish each evening with a qi gong "sounds" practice to relax the organs of the body and to prepare for sleep. There will be time out for reflection and walks in the beautiful native bush as well as delicious vegetarian meals and access to a sauna and spa.  The retreat will be mostly in silence, although you are welcome to come and talk with me if you need to.

You may arrive any time from 4pm on Friday 27th September. We will begin formally with a meal (not silent!) that day at 6pm, and finish after lunch on Monday 30 September.

There is no religion, dogma or belief systems proposed in this retreat.  Emphasis is given not to theory, but to your own experience.  The retreat is suitable for beginners, and for those with experience in mindfulness meditation and qi gong.

COST: $550 (inclusive of accommodation, tuition, sauna, spa and lovely vegetarian meals).
NOTE: Single and double rooms are available for a surcharge of $10 per night for a twin room, $25 per night for a single room, and $25 per room for a double room.   

people say

"The combination of meditation and movement/body work with (mostly) silence was perfect for this 50-year old man. I left the retreat feeling lighter, moving slower and with an unfamiliar quietness in my head."
- Rob Cherry, Wellington

“The five-day silent mindfulness and qi gong retreat I did with Rachel was life-changing. It was incredible to experience such a sense of stillness and calm and at the same time to feel so energised and alive."
- K. W., Auckland

"Aio Wira provided the perfect setting for my introduction to mindfulness. Rachel generously shared her wisdom and knowledge while gently guiding me on my personal journey. A great foundation for me to continue to develop mindfulness and self-acceptance."
- Lesia Walliss, Auckland

"Rachel is a woman who has and is willing to take herself on a profound journey through life's unknown. She has been willing to make herself vulnerable and become open to her inherent life of wisdom. She will be a wonderful guide and mentor for anyone who chooses to engage with her."
- Arohananda Ma, Eyes Open Retreats, Peria Valley.

"I had a beautiful time at this retreat. I loved the pace, activities, learning and growing naturally without pressure. As a person who likes to know things and get things done quickly, i appreciated the time and space to be with myself and realise that everything is OK and that I am OK, even when i do stuff all! How awesome is that?"
- Monique Neal, Auckland


"A nourishing experience from every possible perspective - the teaching, the body movement, the meditations, the food, the setting and the people. Rachel is a wonderful teacher who has a gentle manner yet doesn't pretend to know all the answers - so refreshing."

- Janine L-M, Palmerston North

My wife thought it was a miracle that I would book myself into this course. It was a deeply fulfilling experience and one i hope to keep with me, if not return."
- Luc Hansen, Auckland

"Rachel has amazing facilitation and teaching skills, and I never fail to learn new things from her retreats.
I’ve followed Rachel for some years now because of her groundedness and her ability to teach. Rachel’s focus on holistic wellness has taught me much about integrating meditation and body work into my life. She’s enabled me to connect mind, body and spirit in the most delightful, fun and useful ways. I come away from her retreats renewed, refreshed and reinvigorated."
- Jane McCann, Wellington

"I've learnt some great techniques on how to slow down in a world that is going a million miles an hour."
- Sharyn Pask, Auckland

"I felt like coming to this retreat was a real plunge into the unknown and i had many anxietues about what it was going to be like and inhibitions about being with people I didn't know. Everyone came with such a feeling of acceptance and kindness and that made it easy to be accepting and kind to myself, and to everyone else. Rachel's compassion and sense of fun shone one us too."
- Jo, Auckland

cancellation policy:

  • Full refunds are provided up to 2 weeks before any course or retreat starts.

  • 50% refunds are provided if you cancel within 2 weeks of a course or retreat starting.

  • You may transfer your booking to a later retreat, but if this is within 2 weeks of the event, there will be a 10% admin fee (10% of the cost of the cancelled course) incurred

  • If a deposit has been paid to secure a place, $25 of that deposit is forfeited per person in the case of any cancellation prior to 2 weeks before the retreat.

about Rachel


Rachel Tobin is a trained teacher & facilitator who has been practising qi gong and meditation for over 25 years. She leads classes and retreats in mindfulness and movement, and works with clients for mentoring, coaching and the cultivation of wellbeing.  Her own spiritual journey - of rediscovering the natural and inherent joy that comes from simply Being, and all that eclipses that happiness - is increasingly informing her work with others.

Please contact Rachel on 04 905 4179 or 021 473 012 or e-mail: