A former tennis coach from Childwall has transformed himself into the ‘Scouse Guru’ – and now teaches meditation and yoga to thousands of people across the city.
Martin Bone has spent long periods of time in both Mexico and Thailand, training in meditation, yoga and mindfulness, and runs Planet Yoga on Smithdown Road.
Earlier this year, the dad-of-one, 36, launched his new app called ‘Scouse Guru’, a “library of self-development” for people in Liverpool to embrace the art, to run alongside his firm Martin Bone Meditation.
Martin, who was a tennis coach at David Lloyd Leisure for 12 years, said: “I came to a place in my life where I had hit that many tennis balls, that I was searching for something – the meaning of life. Asking the big questions: ‘who am I? and where am I going, what’s my purpose?’
“From a very young age, I was searching for the meaning of life, asking is there a God, and who is God.
“Spirituality is a matter of aligning yourself to your own truth and being present – seeing the moment as it is. The practice of meditation has allowed me to feed into a deeper connection to something which is godly within me.”
Leaving tennis, he took a “brave step away” to go travelling, and ended up in Thailand for four months.
“I had this incredible call just to sit still. Life was incredibly fast for many years. I took a trip to this wonderful meditation centre. where I spent 10 days with monks.
“It was the first time I had ever really tasted a direct experience of peacefulness and stillness and contentment and it was a wonderful experience.”
Soon after arriving back in Liverpool in 2013, he opened Planet Yoga studio on Smithdown Road.
He said: “What came of it was a completely different life, different people, connections and community different conversations and hell of a lot of yoga.
“In that process I really started to feel into my own journey. I started to take a look in the mirror. The human experience was always fascinating me. I wanted to know why people behaved in a certain way.”
Martin then began running 10-day silent retreats at a meditation centre in Hereford – “diving into spirituality, doing seminars and workshops – it was an incredible experience”.
He wanted to take his experience further, and in 2016 travelled to Mexico to spend four months at a meditation school on the Pacific Coast.
He added: “It was a very intensive experience, and I came back from Mexico a man. There had a been a rite of passage, an initiation into mature masculinity.”
That led Martin to want to teach meditation to people in Liverpool, and he said already having a platform with Yoga Planet was hugely beneficial.
Martin told the ECHO: “I’m ahead of the curve. Meditation and mindfulness has been a buzz word for a number of years. It’s now becoming trendy to develop oneself and to feed into self care. Very quickly, the numbers increased for my sessions.”
Tom is Business Editor for…