The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga

Lanita Varshell & Diane Ambrosini
September 11 - 17, 2021
Feathered Pipe Ranch




Program Tuition & Basic Accommodations: $1675

*A $335 non-refundable deposit due upon registration.


Experience a unique yoga style that allows you to experience a pathway towards health and wholeness without feeling like you need to work-out or keep-up with others. Learn how to apply this philosophy in your group yoga classes, and in your everyday life. Lanita Varshell and Diane Ambrosini introduce you to The Gentle Way. It’s philosophy and breath based practices counter the negative effects of today’s often hard-edged society. These teachers guide students into trusting your innate peaceful nature by offering a variety of simple, highly effective ways to bring joy back into movement, health into the body, and peace into the mind.

The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga - Lanita Varshell & Diane AmbrosiniThis retreat is perfect for those who might feel they have never fit-into traditional yoga or group exercise classes, as well as those who love yoga and movement but due to health challenges, body size, or aging need to slow down and find a safer practice.

Lanita and Diane are specialists working with students struggling with deep stress, chronic disease, illness recovery and back pain. Everybody type, age, and physical ability with discover a new way to enjoy their body and make friends with their chaotic mind at this retreat.

Both morning (easy semi-active) and afternoon or evening (healing, slow-floor based) classes will be offered at this retreat, in addition to fun group activities, delicious healthy food, a good dose of laughter, and lots of deep stress relief. All offerings are optional.

For those brand new to yoga, dedicated students, and yoga teachers who want to explore a new style of teaching with lots of modification training.


The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga - Restorative Retreat~ Softer

We offer a unique method of turning asana practices inside out, by first exploring mindfulness traditions, savanana (corpse pose), relaxation and other breathing techniques as a guide into the relaxation response – then we move into more classical yoga poses. Long-time yoga practitioners notice a marked difference when asana is practiced with breath focus from this deep meditative state. This is MIMSY – Meditation in Movement Soft Yoga ® – This yoga is designed to release tension and bring relief specifically for the spine, hips, and mind.

~ Safer

Deeply tapping into the breath and inner guides first, before movement, permits one to experience the benefits slowing down classical yoga asana offers. This is ahimsa in action, as it allows time to truly notice how best to fit a pose to one’s own body. We deconstruct each asana (offering multiple options/levels), so that students of all abilities feel supported, included, and empowered. By playing with different props and, sometimes, uncommon ways to move through poses, each person’s uniqueness is acknowledged and they are able to move in the manner best suited to their unique body at any given time. This is Aalamba Yoga ® – Yoga With Support.

The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga - Healing Retreat~ Smarter

Because the pace of our classes are slowed down we invite more mindfulness into the movements and breath. Our method is taught in a manner that honors the individual abilities of each person who shows up on any given day: not merely pre-planned yoga routines that presume all students are the same. Our multi-level options are meant to benefit all, leaving all students able to experience the benefits of any asana offered in both group classes, and one-on-one settings. Practical yoga philosophy and simple, essential breath practices are offered to allow every class practice to become a truly holistic mind, body, breath experience.

RETREAT TIP! Extend your time in peace and beauty while savoring Western hospitality by spending some time exploring the great West’s National Park treasures either before or after your week with Lanita and Diane at the Ranch. Glacier National Park is a glorious and scenic 3.5-hour drive north and west of Feathered Pipe, while Yellowstone is just a 4.5 hour drive south and east of the Ranch through some of the prettiest Western territory you’ll ever see.



Lanita Varshell - The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga

Lanita Varshell, YA ERYT500+, IAYT-Yoga Therapist, has been teaching Gentle-Classical Yoga full-time since 1996. She was featured in the 2000-Yoga Journal Magazine article: Why Yoga Works When Diets Fail, and was the first plus-size yoga instructor to teach at a Yoga Journal Conference (2002).  She has owned and operated A Gentle Way Yoga in San Diego, CA for over 20 years. Her students fondly know Lanita as the “Queen of relaxation and modifications.” She has helped thousands of “couch potatoes,” students with body issues, and chronic illness find a joyful, effective path to overall wellbeing, inner healing, and loving self-respect.


Learn more about Lanita:


Diane Ambrosini - The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga

Diane Ambrosini, YA ERYT500+, IAYT-Yoga Therapist, is the author of highly acclaimed book, Instructing Hatha Yoga: A Guide for Teachers and Students. She holds a Masters Degree in Exercise Science,  with an emphasis on Kinesiology. Diane is a runner, hiker, anatomy geek, and an amazing yoga therapist who has helped students self heal from severe spinal and other orthopedic injuries. What her students love best about her is how she presents her knowledge with a sense of humor, inquiry, and humbleness.


Learn more about Diane:



The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga - Lanita Varshell & Diane AmbrosiniProgram Tuition & Basic Accommodations: $1675

Payment plan:
#1 – $335 – Non-refundable deposit due upon registration.
#2 – $335 – Due Oct. 11, 2020
#3 – $335 – Due Jan. 11, 2021
#4 – $335 – Due Apr. 11, 2021
#5 – $335 + Plus any accommodation upgrade – Due Jul. 11, 2021



Tuition fee includes: Basic shared occupancy in Main Lodge, Yurt, Sai Condo OR single occupancy Tipi/Regular Tent, plus meals and use of all amenities – our bathhouse, sauna, hot tub, as well as all the Feathered Pipe Ranch facilities and grounds.

Additional lodging upgrade pricing: Click here

Full description of accommodations options: Click here

The retreat will include:

Indoor or outdoor accommodations (your choice)
Two daily extended yoga classes suitable for all levels
Delicious and lovingly prepared international cuisine
 Shuttle service from/to Helena Regional Airport on arrival/departure day
Full access to the extensive Feathered Pipe grounds (including the hot tub and sauna)

The Gentle Way: Softer, Safer, Smarter Yoga - Lanita Varshell & Diane AmbrosiniNot included:

 Bodywork & Massage
 Staff gratuities

For more information and/or questions about the program, please contact Lanita directly at:

Shuttle service: Shuttle service from/to Helena Regional Airport on arrival/departure day is complimentary (free) for all registered guests! Please note that if you are needing pick-up or drop-off on any other day, that there will be a $35 one-way charge.

Arrival and departure: Please plan to arrive at the Ranch no later than 5pm on the arrival day (Saturday, 11 September) of your retreat so you can join us for a tour of the grounds before dinner at 6:30pm and our group evening orientation following dinner. Please arrange to leave the Ranch in the morning or early afternoon of departure day (Friday, 17 September). Checkout is at 11am, and guests are welcome to stay at The Ranch until their flight leaves that day.

For more information about the Feathered Pipe Ranch, visit our FAQ page, contact us at

Thanks and look forward to seeing you!