Inspirational speaking is my passion, and that passion grows every time an audience member comes up to me after a talk and shares with me how they're determined to be more active in their lives.
While almost all of my talks to date have touched on my life before breaking my back and the accident, from that point in my story there are many different paths I can speak to. What also sets apart my talks are all of the stunning images, inspiring videos, and funny experiences along the way that I include. Depending on the audience and the goals of the organizers, we can work together to determine the best approach for your group, business or class.
To view a DEMO/SAMPLE of my latest TED style talk, Click Here
If you'd like to see the full talk, please email me: Robert at RockTheChair.com.
To view my BIO and Media Pics: Click Here
A sample of testimonials are below.
The Key to Success: Motivation, Goals, Resolve
Robert had accomplished a great deal by the age of 37: a graduate education, strong career, active hobbies and loving family. The biggest test of his life was put before him that fateful morning when he broke his back. Paraplegic, but determined to live life to the fullest, Robert has figured out the key to moving forward despite one of the biggest obstacles anyone can face. The principles around motivation, goals and resolve can be applied to anyone, and Robert will share the inspiring stories which best demonstrate how he does it.
My Ironman Experience: Achieving what many think is impossible
Four weeks after breaking his back in a mountain biking accident, Robert was doing laps around the hospital in a handcycle. He’s addicted to breaking boundaries and pushing his limits. With every bike ride and run in the racing wheelchair the distances got longer, but could he do what no other Canadian paraplegic had done before – the Full 226km IRONMAN Triathlon? Robert shares his 5 year journey from broken back to becoming an IRONMAN, and describes what goes on behind the scenes prior to completing the almost impossible IRONMAN World Championships in Hawaii in October 2016.
Attitude is Everything
During every moment of our lives we make a conscious choice on what to focus on. Is the glass half full or half empty? When presented with a problem, this decision is even more important. Do we resign to something being done to us, or find a way to overcome the barrier? Breaking his back has taught Robert to focus on finding ways to make the best of each day. The approach is simple; the challenge is in the execution. Robert will share his colourful story of how he became the first Canadian paraplegic to complete the 226km IRONMAN Triathlon and lessons learned along the way, so that you can redefine what's possible and find your motivation accomplish your dreams.
Accessibility: Breaking down barriers and doing the impossible
The biggest barriers to accessibility are often in our minds. Assuming that someone with a disability can’t, or won’t want to do something means that we don’t have to find a way to make it possible (it’s easy). Robert’s recovery from a broken back has been defined by doing what others think should not be possible. This started early on in the hospital and has extended all the way to the forest and the race track. Robert shares the best (and often funniest) stories of breaking down barriers and inspiring everyone to think outside the box of their current assumptions.
Caregivers that don’t care: the good, bad and the ugly of my experience with Canadian Healthcare.
There’s no doubt that if you’re going to have a catastrophic injury somewhere in the world, being in Canada is a good place to be. But breaking one’s back is a messy proposition. In this talk, Robert shares his experiences of being ‘the patient’ and what it was like going through the health care system. It’s a brutal but honest reflection of the good, the bad and the ugly, and what Robert hopes to improve through identification and discussion of his treatment.
Interested in learning more and having Robert come and speak at your event? Please complete the form below.
“Robert’s inspirational and moving story was the perfect way to kick-off our YPO Event on Longevity, keynoted by the world-renowned Peter Diamandis. Robert’s ability to overcome a catastrophic injury to achieve something truly exceptional is a story that needs to be heard by more people around the world.” Amir Haque, YPO – Santa Monica Bay, CEO of Supermoon.
“Rob first presented to my class over 4 years ago, and from that first presentation I have specifically asked for him to come back every year. Rob’s ability to connect with the students is incredible. Year after year the students feedback is extremely positive on Rob’s presentations, they often don’t remember the content I teach them, but they certainly remember Rob and his compelling story telling. Sometimes the best lessons are learned from real life, and Rob brings real life to the classroom for my students.” Meghann Lloyd, PhD, Assistant Professor, University of Ontario Institute of Technology.
"I am writing to provide the highest possible recommendation for Rob Buren as a public speaker on the experience of having a life-altering accident which ended him up having to live in a wheelchair." "I know that Rob could reach many, many people in so many ways, with his considerable talent and courage in sharing. I hope that he will be given more opportunities to share his story, providing inspiration to all." Lesley D. Harman, Ph.D., King's University College at the University of Western Ontario. link
"For the past 6 years Rob has been a part of the Canadian Paralympic Committee’s Changing Minds, Changing Lives program. With his passion for sport, successes as an athlete and insightful life experiences, Rob has educated and inspired a wide variety of audiences about the value of parasport participation and opportunities that exist for involvement. Whether it is to healthcare organizations, educators, parent & family groups, university/college courses, disability advocacy groups, municipal accessibility committees, recreation leaders, corporate audiences or other organizations that play a role in the lives of persons with a disability, Rob’s messages always resonate. He is a dynamic speaker who effectively engages audiences and communicates in a way that entertains, motivates and informs." Chris Bourne, Canadian Paralympic Committee, Changing Minds, Changing Lives, Provincial Coordinator (Ontario)
"Rob’s heart warming talk was clear and very well delivered. He flowed from one thought or event to the next seamlessly and I often found myself listening with excited anticipation to find out what happened next. I would highly recommend Robert Buren as a motivational speaker. He has so much to offer thru sharing his story and it should be heard by many." Margaret Dorio,
TCoB President - link