GUEST STORIES: Reflections of a Mind-Body Healing Practitioner
Stuart Robertson runs a yoga-physiotherapy teaching-studio-cum-therapy practice in Hampshire called 1-2-1 Yogatherapy where he integrates physiotherapy and yoga in his work with children and adults. His special passion is teaching yoga to and working with children with disabilities. Given the toll that modern living takes on the body and mind, his Healthy Spine clinic ought also to be of special interest to lots of people.
Stuart’s story of his own professional and personal journey is fascinating. Starting off as a qualified PE teacher and working both in England and overseas, he went on to become a chartered physiotherapist and do an M.S. in physiotherapy. As he puts it, ” my physiotherapy path has been one of challenge and discovery. The more I knew the more I knew I didn’t know!” He went on to traverse the entire gamut – from being a sports physiotherapist for international rugby and cricket teams, to being the clinical specialist for a chronic pain department within the NHS, and a senior paediatric physiotherapist. In between these various posts, he ran a private practice for 10 years in Somerset, and also toured the world teaching about his speciality , myofascial release. He then went on to add the armoury of yoga to his understanding of anatomy and physiology, becoming a fully qualified yoga teacher in addition to all his previous roles. The combining of the science of yoga with the science of physiotherapy, was the culmination of his longstanding interest in eastern philosophy and in integrating ‘mind and body’ type work into a more holistic approach to his physiotherapy practice. He spells out his credo thus:
“If you want to be whole, you must first be partial. If you want to be straight, you must first be crooked. If you want to be full, first become empty. If you don’t try to be something, people will see themselves in you. If you don’t have a goal you will always succeed.”
After a day or two of soaking in the atmosphere at Savista, Stuart had this to say about the place:
“What are your expectations of coming to Savista?
Have you come for the peace and tranquility?
Have you come for tasty food?
Have you come to explore the real india free from the hustle and bustle of the city life?
Why not dig a bit deeper and explore yourself?
Savista provides the space, time and energy for just that.
The real voyage of discovery does not involve seeking new lands but in seeing with new eyes. Having run retreats in the UK some 10 years ago, I can not think of a better venue than the Savista Retreat.
What would you need to consider?
What you are aware of, you are in control of, what you are not aware of is in control of you!
Awareness holds the key to any personal insight or transformation.
But awareness of what?
Your physical body, your thoughts, your emotions, your diet, your lifestyle?
All are intertwined and interdependent.
So addressing just one of the above is unlikely to bring about lasting change that you may be hoping for.
Acceptance of this concept of how mind and body are inextricably interlinked does not sit comfortably in a society that looks for the simple quick fix. A solution to all our ills can be found in the global market place somewhere( or so we are led to believe ), rarely do we look internally for a solution to our problems, whether they be physical mental or emotional.
The idea of acceptance of the present moment and circumstance is resisted and rejected by many in the face of such perceived global resources. But transformation and change is driven from within. We have the resources, it is a question of looking with new eyes, and directing and guiding the focus of attention of these new eyes in a mindful manner.
Acceptance, letting go, development of inner strength and self control can be nurtured and understood at the deepest of levels through a mindful practice, whether that be through physical exercise in the form of yoga, or practice of stillness and insight through meditation.
I cannot think of a more inspiring place to take the first step in bringing about purposeful and meaningful change in your life than in the natural tranquil setting and surroundings of Savista! Retreat, reflect and reply!
Human being, at least in my time at Savista!”
Stuart may be contacted at:
1 Curzon Place, Lymington, Hampshire, SO41 8DS;
Phone: 07739 548276,
The Robertson family – Stuart and Joanne and their children Cameron (12) and Francesca (11) – have been among our most recent guests. Like the majority of people who choose Savista, they are not tourists, but cultural explorers. In India for three weeks, at the end of two years of planning and dreaming, they are here to savour the country… slowly… in bite-sized doses… to simply observe…to ask questions…to listen…. Rather than rushing around to see every monument and buying every ethnic artefact, they are consciously seeking out cultural learnings, and remaining open to serendipitous interactions with people. Obviously, it is the parents who are setting the agenda; but it is lovely to see how the children are equal enthusiastic partners in this approach to travel and to life.
Joanne is a former ballet dancer who now works with a publishing house that publishes specialist consumer magazines, including Whisky Magazine, Scotland Magazine, and The Drinks Report.com. Cameron and Francesca are avid cricketeers, both representing their English County of Hampshire on the under-13 and under-12 teams, respectively. Although Cameron does yoga (like his father) and Francesca learns ballet (taking after her mother), it is cricket that is the shared family passion. They participated enthusiastically in cricket matches held at Savista on nearly every day of their stay, playing with village youth, Savista staff, and random visitors from Jaipur. They watched the Bollywood film Lagaan and cheered for the Indian village cricket team throughout. And by the time they left, they had quite won the hearts of all at Savista. We wish them well for their onward journey through western Rajasthan and a safe flight home.