Achim Fassbender

Achim is Texas’ first Baron Baptiste certified instructor, and has since studied with many more. However Achim’s affiliation with Yoga started many years ago. But it wasn’t called Yoga back then some 34 odd years ago, it was and still is called gymnastics. Yes, 34 years of international, competitive gymnastics back Achim’s experience with the body and movement in very artistic fashion. Several years of collaboration/ association with the most decorated Olympic gymnastics Coach Bela Karolyi - Nadia Comaneci, Mary Lou Retton, Kim Zemaskel - brought Achim to Houston. This was 19 years ago.

Achim is convinced that Yoga and Gymnastics are relatives, Yoga being the grandparent, and Gymnastics being one of the grand-children. In Achim’s case, after more than 34 years of coaching Gymnastics, the grandparent had the power to pull the grand child back to its roots. "All this: do more, higher, faster, better, more differently got to me. Hardly a moment of satisfaction”. Once achieved, on to the next impossible trick. It’s easy to get equally caught up in Yoga, learning one ‘trick’ (asana) after another, not realizing that the same competitive drive is at work that you so gladly would like to get rid of, albeit not admitting this openly. Instead of on to the next posture, Achim likes to stay with one asana and allows time to examine it thoroughly. No hyper, technical analysis in words, but a patient awaiting for some- thing to happen, for something to feel, to change, because THIS is for sure going to happen. If you only wait long enough, and if you are willing to breathe with full awareness! The one thing we all can be sure of is CHANGE!

The Buddha’s teachings on impermanence have a significant impact on Achim’s view and his ways of teaching Yoga or anything life related for that matter. Yes, many people will agree that there is constant change. Big deal! BUT in their way of living they do not exemplify this truth. They rather try dearly to stay and look young forever, defying the natural laws of physical change. Attachment or clinging to the past, to youth, to beauty, to habits, to material things and more. Attachment to pleasant matters/ things is one of the major causes for our suffering. Defiance of unpleasant ones equally contribute to our suffering. Our mind/ matter (body) relationship MATTERS! When this relationship is at odds with each other, or worse, doesn’t really exist, then we are inviting discontentment, agony, anger and dis-ease into our life. It will show up in our practice and elsewhere. Because many people are not conscious of this relationship, they will develop as people haphazardly and out of touch with the present moment. Achim’s intent is to help people find methods/ techniques to create a healthy mind/ matter relationship and to distance themselves away from the various attachments, to help them learn how to observe and obey the body, learn how to breathe, and how to channel some healthy energy through the system we call body.