YOGA STARS is a weekly feature at Vibrant Yogini where an amazing yoga teacher or enthusiast will be interviewed about their beautiful journey and views as a yogi! It has been created to try and remove the gap between our confident and expert yogi’s, and those who have just started to practice yoga or who are curious to learn more about it. We never want you to feel intimidated or discouraged. Therefore, it is important to remember that each and every yogi started fresh from the beginning as a newbie once upon a time! Our aim is to motivate you to continue your journey no matter where you are on it.
Designed to inspire your yoga practice and encourage you to follow your dreams.
“There is not one yoga style that suits everyone, but everyone can do yoga.” – Robert
Yoga Star: Robert Busch aka Yoga Dude
Where are you currently based?
Nosara, Costa Rica.
Where are you originally from?
When did you start practicing yoga and why?
“When I started my own yoga practice at the age of 25 I wasn‘t sure at all if yoga was something I could enjoy. Actually I felt pretty much, that it‘s not for me.
At that time I was suffering from chronic back pain after a snowboard injury I had at the age of 20. That chronic pain led me into non functional lifestyle choices such as junk food, loads of alcohol, not much sleep and almost no physical activity, besides playing in a punk band. Of course it was not all bad and I also had a lot of fun. But at one point the price for that fun was just to high and I my back pain got worse and worse. A psychiatrist I was seeing at that time suggested me to take pills against my depression or start “something like yoga”.
I didn‘t want to do yoga at that time, as I thought it was something thats only for hyperflexible vegan women in their late 30s. I was wrong. I just knew that I even more disliked the thought of taking pills to control my mind, so I called a friend of mine that happens to be a great yoga teacher.
I remember before my first class, I was reading the wikipedia article about yoga and didn‘t really understand what this was all about and how it would help me.
And then during my first class I realised that I was barely able to touch my knees in a forward bend. As you can imagine it was not the most pleasurable experience to find out that my body was a total mess at the age of 25.
But I kept going to that class and after a few weeks I noticed some improvement in my flexibility. Even more important I started enjoying the relaxation part at the end of every class. To be honest I was looking forward to that Savasana at the end of class the whole time. It was the only thing I really enjoyed about Yoga, when I started.
Those moments at the end of class helped me reconnecting with myself. I started enjoying to notice what‘s going on in my body. Becoming the witness of whats happening when I come to stillness. At that time I was deciding for myself to dive deeper into that whole Yoga experience.” – Robert
I went to my first yoga class in November 2009.
At that time I was struggling with depression and my therapists suggested to try Yoga.
First I had a strong resistance towards the world of yoga, but over time I started feeling better and found a new connection with myself.
What got you hooked?
The simple fact that there is more to our being than just muscles and bones.
I felt how my emotions influence my physical abilities and the other way around.
The whole aspect of using my breath consciously was new to me at that time.
What is your favourite asana and why?
Savasana – Because I feel it is the hardest pose of all.
When we challenge our physical body we numb our mind for a moment, Savasana is exactly that the other way around.
Once we master stillness, we are able to move.
Where did you do your training/s and what courses have you completed?
I completed my 200 hours in 2011 and my 500 hours in 2012.
All trainings were taken at the “Nosara Yoga Institute“ under the guidance of Don & Amba Stapleton.
I am thankful for their Self Inquiry-Based approach to Yoga that changed my life.
How has yoga impacted your life?
First of all, I became a yoga teacher as a full-time job, which is kind of a big impact.
It changed the way I take care of myself and helps me face challenges in my life.
There are many situations over the last years I can think of where my reaction would have been very different without this practice in my life.
The type of Yoga that has impacted my practice the most is ‘Self Awakening Yoga’ taught by Don Stapleton.
Besides, I prefer just calling it Yoga, as I like to teach the type of yoga that meets the needs of my students.
Over the years I have collected many different tools from different styles of yoga.
My classes are always a fusion of everything I have learned and experienced along my path.
Which type of yoga do you teach/ specialize in?
My teaching is heavily influenced by Self Awakening Yoga taught by Don Stapleton.
Besides that, I always try to apply the right tools to the right group of people which I consider the most challenging part of being a teacher.
What do you enjoy about this particular style of yoga?
Often Yoga makes us feel that we are not good enough to do certain things.
What if we could be more patient towards ourselves and accept that our nervous system plays a bigger role to our movements than anything else.
What’s your mission as a yoga instructor?
Making Yoga accessible to all people that are interested.
I don‘t want anyone to be scared to go to Yoga because they see crazy postures in magazines.
I don‘t want anyone to shy away from yoga because they have a feeling of not being good enough.
When I ask people at the beginning of class what their yoga practice is, then their first answer is something like: I am not that good at Yoga…and so on…
You can‘t be good or bad at Yoga! It‘s about BEING itself.
I guess that‘s what I try to bring across day by day.
If you could give only one piece of advice to others who are looking to start yoga what would it be?
Trust your own feeling. Don‘t let anyone tell you what you are supposed to experience.
Choose your teachers wisely and look at them off the mat.
What do they have to share with you?
There is not one teacher that is the best for everyone.
Try to find a person that you get inspired by.
If you could give one piece of advice to someone who is just starting out as a teacher what would it be?
Be patient and keep another source of income going for the first years.
Don‘t expect too much, this is a long process. There is many that want to become teachers after their 200-hour training, wait for another 5-10 years and see what happens.
Practice! This is the only way to make your teaching different than others.
Don‘t try to copy anyone, trust your experience and share it with others.
What is one of your favorite mantras or affirmations that you don’t mind sharing?
What is one of your favorite yoga quotes?
“Yoga means addition – addition of every, strength and beauty to body, mind and soul” ~ Amit Ray
If you could have a secret power, what would it be?
Connect with Robert online:
“My idea of yoga is about functionality. What works for you and improves your overall experience with yourself is right for you.
There are as many different yoga styles as there are people. Everyone starts at a different point when they come to a class.
There is plenty of reasons to come to yoga, there is so many different benefits you can take out of your practice. My job is to help you to find YOUR yoga” – Robert
To find out more about Robert and to check out his classes in Costa Rica, please visit:
- Website: www.thedudeexperience.com
Don’t forget to follow Roberts brilliant and energising feed;
- Instagram: @Yoga_Dude
Additional Yogi Extras!
Browse available yoga and wellness retreats around the world;
Why not spend your next vacation experiencing a yoga retreat?
There are so many to choose from!
Whether you prefer mixing it with a bit of surfing in Costa Rica, or your would like to visit the worlds heart of yoga in Rishikish, India.
Perhaps you are in need of a refreshing detox retreat, or simply a relaxing and luxurious stay in paradise which offers you spa treatments, sightseeing tours and daily yoga classes.
You are sure to find one that suits your needs perfectly!
OR book a hotel already within your dream wellness destination.
Don’t worry, I get it!
Some of you just don’t like the idea of being restricted to a yoga retreat, or you may be with friends or loved ones who don’t fancy being restricted to a retreat programme.
Perhaps then, you are more in favour of staying at an independent hotel but within a yoga destination?
Have the best of both worlds!
Hotel comforts AND attend daily yoga classes in your dream wellness destination.
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Almost there, but first let’s find you the correct gear to take with you…
When packing to go on a wellness holiday, it is useful to take your own personal travel mat and gear.
Finding the correct equipment that fully suits your needs is important to prevent injuries and help you reap the benefits of yoga and exercise.
When I first started yoga, I personally had to have a slightly thicker yoga mat than average otherwise the lower part of my back doesn’t feel cushioned enough making me feel so sore after only one or two sessions!
Barefoot yoga supplied a wide variety of sustainable and comfortable yoga props and gear.
Are you getting enough vitamins during your travels? or even, at home?
Sometimes when we go travelling, we can be limited to what food is available at the destinations we travel to.
This often makes us feel sluggish and tired.
You can overcome the common negative effects of travelling with yoga stretches. Read the guide here.
Plus, you can supplement stretches with nutritional vitamins.
Us health-conscious yogi’s usually travel with organic supplements to help keep us healthy while on the road -the last thing we ever want while on vacation is to become sick!
Well that’s all for now! Make sure you keep an eye out for the Yoga Star featuring at Vibrant Yogini next Friday!
Connect with Vibrant Yogini
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Wishing you a life full of opportunities in abundance,
P.S. Leave your feedback for the wonderful Robert in the comments below!