Wanderlust 108, the world’s first Mindfulness Triathlon, heads for Battersea Park this September. But what’s it all about?
Words: Hannah Lawrence
Battersea Park, one of London’s most popular green spaces, is to host a world first this September – Wanderlust 108, the world’s first Mindfulness Triathlon.
If you’re wondering what exactly a Mindfulness Triathlon involves, it’s a 5K run followed by a 90-minute DJ-powered yoga session and a 30-minute guided meditation, taking place on 15 September. As Wanderlust Managing Director Alan Steel explains, the idea is to help give people variety and introduce them to different forms of exercise: ‘If you’re a runner you maybe don’t naturally do yoga,’ Steel explains, ‘and if you’re a yogi you maybe aren’t a runner’.
‘The 5k is a short distance, and it’s not a competition, it’s about coming together, so it’s almost like experiencing something that’s new and different. It’s basically about creating a sense of achievement.’
Wanderlust Festivals are international yoga and music festivals held everywhere from California to Russia. This year will be the first year the Wanderlust franchise touches down in Battersea Park with its international Mindfulness Triathlon Wanderlust 108.
‘Last year we had 2,000 people sitting in quietness being guided by meditation. It’s not deep meditation, it’s very entry level. It was remarkable to see the power of silence in a park and to see that transferred to Battersea Park this year is going to be really wonderful, so I’m very excited about that.’
Last year we had 2,000 people sitting in quietness being guided by meditation. It was remarkable to see the power of silence in a park
Alongside this Wanderlust 108 will include food, music and a lecture series. Central to the festival is the yoga stage, which will be run by south west London native Julie Montague, recently named one of the top 10 most holistic health icons in the world. She’ll lead the 90-minute Mindfulness Triathlon’s yoga session alongside some special guests.
Another big part of the festival will be The Uncommon, a venue playing host to a number of free activities from aerial-yoga and acro-yoga to meditation and hula-hooping.
Although many associate Wanderlust with a bunch of ‘yogis’ perfecting their true north, as Steel puts it, this year the franchise is looking to expand its appeal.
‘Last year we had more yoga, but this year we’ve got lots more surprises coming,’ Steel explains.
From the Kula Marketplace, full of food vendors serving hungry yogis, to a tea garden and cooking demonstrations there’s certainly a lot on the menu. The Tea Garden is a picturesque flower garden offering a bit of sanctuary as well as playing host to open-air talks from speakers.
The team had been trying to get the festival to Battersea Park for some time because, as Steel says, ‘it’s the perfect location and it looks glorious right now, next to the fountains and the pagoda’.
It’s a beautiful park indeed, but with festivals getting themselves a bad rep for being environmentally destructive, will it stay that way?
‘We want to ensure the way that we receive the park is the way the community get it back. We’re here to be sensitive and also be mindful of the community that’s it’s their park,’ he explains. ‘We have a zero tolerance on plastic. Tthere’s no plastic on the site.’
In this way, Wanderlust aims to be as mindful about its own impact as it hopes its visitors will be during the Mindfulness Triathlon. Could London’s burgeoning wellness festival scene be set to rival the likes of Wireless, Field Day and Lovebox?
Steel is not so sure we’re at that stage yet – ‘yoga mats take up a lot of space,’ he jokes – but we think wellness might just be the new hedonism… Funky leggins at the ready!
Tickets from £40. To book see wanderlust.com