What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? My awareness of my lack of flexibility as I entered my late 50s and desire to give my body the opportunity for achieving optimal health now and in the future.
My commitment to using these programs to reduce my own stress levels given I work long hours, knowing too that exercise creates new neural pathways, even as we age.
Yoga and exercise have been shown to provide trauma symptom relief and to reduce the need for prescription medication and this has been my experience…. I work as a therapist with many clients who suffer from complex PTSD so I decided I needed to practice what I preach and teach both my clients and my uni students.
What are your favourite classes? Hatha with Phillipa on Friday mornings (not the 6 am start!) Dynamic Hatha with Lauren on Wednesday evenings and Pilates with Kathryn on Sunday morning.
What benefits have you seen? !!!!
Challenge that you are working on? Regaining some flexibility after nearly 3 months away due to a severe hand fracture involving surgery….. but I can now do a downward dog again, so all is well!!
Advice for people thinking of starting? Having a yoga buddy has really helped (thanks Kate Levett!) as this has meant when I haven’t felt like going, knowing I can look forward to a coffee after with a after with another yogi has been an added incentive.
Persevere…. If you don’t feel like going, just try to go to something that seems easier, such as Yin…. This will still keep you focused on stress relief and maximize health and an overall sense of well-being through the practice.
Stay focused on your own practice…. Even though other participants may have younger, slimmer, more flexible bodies (especially compared to an old grandma like me), the satisfaction of holding a pose a little longer and feeling the prana flow through you is worth gold!
Namaste from Linda
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? To be honest, Yoga and Pilates was not on my radar as a health program as I had always gone to the gym or done quite physical sport (Rowing, Rugby and Running) however my mum had a serious brain injury occur out of the blue in Jan 2018. During this time, I ceased any physical training and in Jan 2019 I decided that it was time to get back into things. The problem was that mum needed to work on her coordination and strength and knowing that she had done Yoga in the past, I decided to bite the bullet and start on my yoga/Pilates journey with her.
What are your favourite classes? Candle Lit Yin, Vinyasa and Cardio Bounce Reformer.
What benefits have you seen? First time I’ve had a glimmer of a 6-Pack in years. Flexibility is off the charts and my overall strength feels more solid, natural and healthier.
Challenge that you are working on? When I started the challenge was just to get my mum back out of the house and training again, which was only possible because of the care of the Soulful fitness staff.
Now that I’ve been consistently training I’ve challenged myself to be able to do the splits by the end of the year and to feel better about my physical health.
Advice for people thinking of starting? Do it and get obsessed with the practice, it’ll be the best thing you’ve ever done for your health.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? My wife was the catalyst for joining. But I had been needing a physical outlet for awhile.
What are your favourite classes? I love the Yoga stream. I always have to do a couple of Vinyasa per week then I'm open to anything. I'm not going to call out a favourite teacher!!!
What benefits have you seen? I"m not as grumpy. I'm hungrier. I sleep better. And if I sleep really well and do the early class then I feel like a super hero all day - kind of.
Challenge that you are working on? I'd like to do wheel. And also a hand stand. That would be cool. My daughter could look up to that. She'd look down at my face though.
Advice for people thinking of starting? Don't take yourself too seriously. You can start at any point in your journey. Sticking with it is the thing. And don't expect it to get easier.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I wanted to get fitter, stronger and more flexible also working on relaxation for mind and body
What are your favourite classes? My favourite classes are Hatha and Yin Yoga and Pilates mat. I also enjoyed attending the yoga retreat so much I went back for the second one just a few months later.
What benefits have you seen? I have seen great benefits I am stronger and more flexible and Yoga helps to relax me.
Challenge that you are working on? I have just completed a 4 day walking tour in Tasmania (Bay of Fires) and was totally amazed by my fitness to complete the walk and enjoyed it very much. I have done the same walk in Melbourne (great Ocean Road) 3 years ago and certainly was not able to walk it all and felt very unfit.
Advice for people thinking of starting? My advice would be to take up a Yoga and Pilates and keep going at least 2-3 times a week and you will certainly see the benefits mentally and physically.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I was involved in a motor accident many years ago that resulted in several surgeries over a 4 month hospital stay, including a total hip replacement. I think one just appreciates one’s health so much more when you are faced with the very real possibility of never walking again, so I have always tried to keep my weight in check and keep up muscle tone to support my damaged skeletal structure. Obviously anything involving impact is out of the question for me, so I always struggled to find something that I could do that would not put me at more risk. My Osteopath recommended I try Yoga, which was the start of my journey with Soulful, but I have subsequently found that the combination of Pilates, Yoga and Barre is just perfect to cover all the different aspects of my physical health and fitness, and the practice of yoga forces me to check in regularly to make sure I am mentally well-adjusted too.
What are your favourite classes? Impossible to choose – we all go through phases, and I find that different classes energise me at different times. And there are always plenty of variations to choose from!
What benefits have you seen? I'm fitter, stronger and more flexible than I have ever been! In addition to the physical benefits, attending classes relieves tension and stress, and boosts mental energy.
Challenge that you are working on? Trying to keep up with the fabulous instructors!! Not stopping the particular exercise before the countdown ends, and getting the technique right
Advice for people thinking of starting? Just do it! Sorry for the free kick for Nike, but it really comes down to not over-thinking the decision and making the commitment. I guarantee you wont regret it!
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I took up yoga after spending some time in Ubud, Bali where I did yoga daily for two weeks. This got me hooked on the benefits of the practice both physical and spiritual.
What are your favourite classes? My favourite classes are Hatha and Yin Yoga.
What benefits have you seen? I have now been doing yoga regularly for a year and a half and have become stronger, more flexible and relaxed.
Challenge that you are working on? The challenge of yoga is to perfect the poses and in doing so your focus is on your breath and body.
Advice for people thinking of starting? If you are thinking of starting yoga you have nothing to lose except perhaps weight, stress and worry.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I joined Soulful fitness about 3 years ago because I wanted to make a positive change in my life after a really stressful life event. I was doing a weekly yoga class and I enjoyed it because I could feel what a fantastic stress release it was, but it wasn’t enough. Soulful offered a membership that allowed me to go as many classes through the week as I wanted and make the most of the yoga and Pilates training. I have been going regularly since then, averaging about 3-4 classes a week, which I find really work in with my schedule.
What are your favourite classes? I have three favourite classes for different reasons. I love Sunday 8.30am Pilates with Kathryn – it’s the perfect weekend class with time for a coffee with friends after. Monday 6am yoga with Julio to get focused and ready for the work week, and Friday 6am yoga with Phillipa at the end of the week for stress release and unwinding.
What benefits have you seen? The main benefit has been for dealing with stress, but I’ve also noticed toning of my body, increased strength and flexibility and better technique. The teachers are excellent and are great in providing feedback and giving quick tips or a bit of advice on how I can improve my practice.
One of the other big benefits has been in meeting local people and making friends in the area. It’s always such a friendly and welcoming place.
Challenge that you are working on? I am working on my technique, particularly on strengthening my core and glutes through both Pilates and yoga. I want to be more conscious of my posture so I’m building my core strength to improve it.
Advice for people thinking of starting? Just jump in and give it a go. If you commit to starting, you’ll feel the benefits really quickly. It’s often hard work, but it’s worth it. Everyone starts at different levels, and everyone is catered to in the classes. There is never any judgement or criticism and we work at our own pace. Give it a go.