Wanna be a spiritual gangster? Okay, maybe not. But when you come to a Pura Vida Adventures surf and yoga retreat, it might be nice to be inspired by one.
Lucky for you (and lucky for us, too), we have two such women on the frontline. Our camp hostess, Sara, is a small-town girl from Kansas who will introduce you to the mindful moments inspired by her Costa Rican abode. And Cristina Kalyani, our head yoga instructor, will blow doors on your current expectation of “Western” yoga (the only flexibility required is one of mind).
We are so lucky these beautiful souls are a part of our camp family. Let us show you why …
Fun is an essential part of our surf camp hostess’s M.O. In fact, as our party starter, Sara will probably celebrate her ninetieth birthday at a salsa club (that’s just the way she rolls). She grew up in one of the farthest possible places from the ocean—a small town in Kansas—and tried surfing in Costa Rica at the age of twenty-six. She was hooked! So in 2010, she ditched a promising publishing career in Chicago, put her belongings in storage at her parents’ house, and bought a one-way ticket to paradise. Here, she began a new life as an English teacher, spiritual gangster, surf grommet, and beach bum.
Joining the Pura Vida Adventures team helped Sara shape her passion for Costa Rica—with days full of exhilarating surf sessions and inspiring conversations with amazing women. She thanks her humble Midwestern upbringing for her warm personality, can-do attitude, and love of daisy dukes, all of which she puts to enthusiastic use as your camp hostess. But she has Costa Rica to thank for continually transforming her life in a positive way, one she could never have imagined.
Living in this special place has molded Sara into the spiritual gangster that she fully is, by teaching her how to be present in the subtle beauty of every moment. You will often see Sara with a smile on her face, because there’s no other place she would rather be. So laugh with Sara—you may even cry, too—and guaranteed you’ll salsa through the night. She’ll always be there to hold your hand as the happiest Kansas girl on the beach.
Kalyani has been practicing yoga long before yoga pants became a fad. When she first started practicing in her native Brazil, she had to seek out her training as a dedicated spiritual gangster. Yoga studios weren’t just around every corner. The yoga scene may have changed, but Kalyani’s commitment to living a pure, yogic life sure hasn’t.
Kalyani has studied many forms of yoga, all around the world, and has been teaching her entire adult life. She leads workshops and retreats worldwide, but calls Santa Teresa, Costa Rica home. Her classes are infused with teachings on love, surrender, and transformation, proving she doesn’t drink the Western version of the “yoga Kool-Aid.” Celebrities like Gisele Bundchen and Jill Hennessy come knocking on her door, but Kalyani insists her celebrity clients are really just like everyone else.
Kalyani rocks her yoga Shakti in a humble way, as she inspires people to breathe more fully, love more passionately, and live more joyfully.