It can be hard to know where to start with your health and wellbeing journey, with so many different options and opinions available. But imagine how much easier it would be if you had a set of proven principles to guide you on your way to becoming a better, healthier you. At Ayurda, they have taken ancient Ayurvedic principles and reimagined them for the present day – so you can find a balance in a busy, modern life. They offer Ayurvedic spa treatments, wellness consultations, skincare products and supplements. Here, Dr Ajit and his wife Rippan talk to The Natural Parent Magazine about bringing the holistic science of Ayurveda from India to New Zealand, the challenges they have overcome along the way, and their hopes and dreams for the future.
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
After years of study and service within Ayurveda in India, I came to New Zealand with my wife Rippan. We were fascinated by this beautiful country and its people and after noticing that Ayurveda was not well known. I felt my purpose was to share my passion and knowledge of this ancient science with this part of the world. This began to be my core focus and as Ayurvedic medicine grew in popularity around the world, I was excited to see how New Zealand and Australia received this holistic science for their own wellbeing.
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
It was very difficult in the beginning as many people had no idea about Ayurveda, although to my advantage, people were becoming familiar with yoga, the sister science of Ayurveda. Interested in how this sister science was being welcomed, I visited some yoga studios and joined in a few workshops. I also began to give small introductory talks to various groups throughout Auckland: women’s groups, asthma groups as well as community centres and libraries.
With my passion ignited, I went to meet with an Auckland-based natural medicine school which helped set up my base – the foundation of what we now call Ayurda was born. My dedication didn’t stop there, I began teaching Ayurveda alongside my practice and since 1999, I have continued teaching Ayurveda across Australia and New Zealand. Through my efforts and clinical research, I began to be recognised for my expertise, establishing Ayurveda medicine in New Zealand, and was then given much responsibility that I took pleasure in.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
I saw my clients making great progress and witnessed some amazing results. It was a real breakthrough to see my clients embrace Ayurveda and understand how this science empowers each of them to take control of their wellbeing by making beneficial changes to their life. This was a game changer for me as my clients noticed that Ayurveda doesn’t focus on products and simply fixing or covering symptoms. They realised very soon that an Ayurvedic approach is there to enhance awareness of their body, mind and soul, and shows them how to maintain balance by following a program unique to them.
Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?
For this, all credit goes to my wife Rippan, the backbone of our family. When we came to NZ in 1996, she was seven months pregnant and we were blessed with our first son soon after arriving safely. Rippan says that becoming a mother is a very special time, filled with mixed emotions. It’s a huge change that requires adapting your life around the little person that is born – and is also very rewarding. She also says that she felt very blessed to have access to the Ayurvedic wisdom that I was able to provide for both herself and our baby son. She focused on taking care of our family first and foremost while supporting me in focusing on setting the first practice in place.
I initially started working from home and later set up my first proper practice in Henderson. Till this day, Rippan makes sure everything goes smoothly and that we spend time together as a family as often as we can. Our children are now grown and off to study and she has since moved more of her care into the business. My attention is now given largely to teaching and supporting my clients. I have committed most of my life to the service of Ayurveda, travelling quite often to teach, though I have also been dedicated to showing my loved ones its benefits at the same time.