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.
Cheryl has been a member for over 3 years and has attended over 400 classes! She has shown amazing dedication to her health and wellness being super consistent over the past few years even while running family and a successful Australian business.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I love the balance of the two it helps me both physically and mentally
What are your favourite classes? Vinyasa Yoga, Barre and Pilates Reformer
What benefits have you seen? Increased strength and maintenance as well as being able to cope and juggle family life as well as run a business
Challenge that you are working on? Holding postures and balances especially bird of paradise
Advice for people thinking of starting? Try all the classes they are all great and find the time that suits your body and your lifestyle to work out. Try to keep your schedule consistent so it becomes part of your life, commit and you will reap the benefits and feel great as a bonus
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I’d been practicing yoga for several years but struggled to find a quality studio in my local area. Soulful Fitness provides a wide range of classes and being open 7 days a week provides me with the flexibility I need. Also, the studio is a ten minute walk from my home so it is super convenient.
What are your favourite classes? I started with yoga but in the last year or so have added Pilates reformer classes. I try to go 4 times per week. The reformer practice has significantly improved my strength which has also improved my endurance in yoga.
I regularly practice with Lauren, Imelda and Amy. Each has their own style and the mix of classes and styles provides a good balance to my week. I’ve also enjoyed practicing with Hayley and Julio and try to squeeze in their classes when I can. I occasionally pop into other classes and find all the teachers and studio staff engaging, enthusiastic and dedicated.
What benefits have you seen? An overall improvement in my strength, flexibility and fitness. I always feel better after a class and that keeps me coming back.
Challenge that you are working on? I am working on mastering some of the more challenging (trickier) moves in Imelda’s reformer class and finding the time in 2019 to attend one of Julio’s retreats. I will try to make that a priority.
Advice for people thinking of starting? Give it a go and stick with it. Every class and teacher is different and the more classes you try the more likely it will be that you’ll find a program that works for you.
There is plenty of variety and the studio offers a number of other wellness programs and services to compliment the exercise component.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program?
I joined Soulful Fitness because I was over going to a normal gym. I wanted to lose weight but I just could not stick to going to a normal gym, I lost interest. Pilates and Yoga appealed to me so when I popped in one day just to make an inquiry, after talking to the lovely staff member I joined straight away. That was a few years ago now, the longest I have stuck to anything, except my husband!
What are your favorite classes?
I attended the last yoga retreat and it was amazing. Lots of yoga, life lessons, nature and the best of all, the lovely people that attended. I will definitely be going again next year. My favorite classes, I would have to say begins with Sunday night Sunset Yin Yoga and Mediation with Julio. I then follow that up with Julio's 6am Hatha Monday morning class. Could not start the work week any better. I have also started Thursday morning Vinyasa Class. I was scared to come as I thought I was not strong enough. Turning into one of my favorite classes. Also up there is Imelda's Tuesday morning Pilates Mat class. So hard but also good at the same time. Each week I get just a little bit stronger.
What benefits have you seen?
When I first started at Soulful Fitness my goal was just to lose weight. Well that has gone up and down over the years I have been going but I have found my mental health is much improved. I am calmer, more patient, less anxious and can now take on any challenges thrown my way.
Challenge that you are working on?
Now its time to really get in shape. I am combining my Yoga/Pilates with learning how to run. Half marathon in May next year is on the cards.
Advice for people thinking of starting?
Don't wait. Sign up, you'll love it. You don't have to be flexible to do yoga, it is so much more than that.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? It was a moment of insanity over two years ago now. I had reluctantly come to the realization that the days of contact sport were (well) behind me. Running and cycling were never really my cup of tea i.e. I was rubbish at both. I suspected it might be a good idea to be able to walk, pick things up off the floor, move, after I turned 50. It was pretty simple really. I signed up. Went to my first Pilates class, and absolutely hated it. I felt out of place; I had no idea what I was doing; it hurt; I was the only male in the class. Then I realized, while I had only come for physical exercise, what I really needed to do was get my head straight. I needed to feel awkward. I needed to be in the minority. I needed to be a fish out of water. I was imperfect, well actually, I was hopeless, but, I needed to be. I was lucky because Sarah at the time (no doubt with Amanda behind her), pushed me on. I have repaid them by continuing to be entirely hopeless at yoga and Pilates; hiding their little green yoga figures; drinking the rock water; and, yes, I am not allowed to touch the candles.
What are your favourite classes? I think the guy who narrates the bike riding classes is hilarious. There is a room with machines that people slide on but I have never been in there - it looks dangerous. I am too dainty for Barre. I should do more Pilates. I have really fallen into, and over in, yoga. I mostly do Yin - it is pretty cool.
What benefits have you seen? Most notable is that my legs no longer feel like concrete. Perhaps it is just the enjoyment of a couple of hours a week of doing something that is different and I am not very good at.
Challenge that you are working on? I don't really have any goals. I would like to say that I am just in the moment but that would indicate that I practice yoga when all that is really happening is my mind is already blank - I mean still.
Advice for people thinking of starting? I can guarantee you will not be the worst in the class - that job is taken
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? While skiing in February 2017 I managed to break my right leg just below the knee. Surgery back in Australia was followed by many weeks on crutches interspersed with physio and hydro-therapy sessions. But how to best work on wasted leg & calf muscles, virtually no core strength and a very saggy butt?Thankfully my friend Victoria mentioned her sister was enjoying Pilates at Soulful Fitness. We joined in May and that was the best decision ever! Both my physio and orthopaedic surgeon also endorsed Pilates as a great next step on the road to recovery.
What are your favourite classes? My goal is to attend classes four days each week including both Reformer and Power Pilates which I love as well as Mat Fundamentals with Amanda to reinforce the basics and Mat Props with Elize for equipment challenges. I’m also learning to love the stretches and release from Yin Yoga. Over the years I had tried Ashtanga & Hatha yoga but it never really “clicked” partly because I already had flexibility issues in one knee after an ACL reconstruction, so the class sometimes moved on while I was still trying to eg arrange myself into a balanced warrior pose!
The recent July Challenge was a great incentive that forced me outside my comfort zone to try spin and barre classes. Not sure you will find me on the spin bike too often, but I have since attended barre several times and enjoy the cardio aspects. My knees on the other hand… (lol!)
What benefits have you seen? My core and upper body strength has increased enormously. When I first started I could barely lift more than my head off the mat and needed the barre rail to pull myself up off the floor. Improved strength also meant I was able to return to competitive yacht racing much sooner than expected and have since participated in numerous local and overseas regattas as well as regular Wednesday afternoon races.
Challenge that you are working on? Current challenge is to improve balance and alignment, particularly on the right leg where osteo arthritis has caused a knock-knee stance – the answer is all in the glutes I’m told!!! I feel physical and mental benefits after deep stretching in Yin class so I’m also working to steadily improve my practice each week.
Advice for people thinking of starting? Have courage and Just Do It – you won’t regret it! The team at Soulful Fitness are terrific, instructors are very supportive and provide guidance for both easier and stronger options. And what really makes each class are the people. A diverse community of different abilities and ages, male and female but all there to do their best and enjoy “me time” in a relaxed environment.
What made you take on a Pilates and Yoga program? I moved to Lane Cove last year and was looking for a place where I could drop into the space of yoga whenever I needed time out from the busy world. I had started a teaching role in Learning Support and was feeling overloaded. I really needed to find my way back to balance. I had also experienced losing my Mum the year before so it was an intensive time to be starting a new job in an intensive environment, and to be processing grief. I had also found new love which was amazing, so I was trying to find balance from the run down aspect I was feeling with a demanding new job role. Joining Soulful Fitness helped me immensely to come back into balance. I felt less stressed once I started coming regularly.
What are your favourite classes? Restorative, Yin, Kundalinia, Hatha and Vinyasa Yoga. I am able to clear my mind and process my thoughts on the yoga mat, it balances me. I love the workshops too!
What benefits have you seen? I am much calmer if I practice yoga 3 times a week. If I do not, my mind tends to become too over-analytical.
Challenge that you are working on? Trying to make it to 1-2 Pilates classes a week. I need to work on my core. I also have an ongoing knee issue so I do a lot of modifications.
Advice for people thinking of starting? I highly recommend giving Soulful Fitness a go. It is a space in which to relax, unwind, be with yourself and process your life experiences. It is like a little mini retreat in your day, in your week. The staff are very friendly, it is a relaxed environment in which to come and unwind, exercise, and feel apart of a community. I especially love the workshops. I have just attended a Crystal Bowl Sound Healing evening. It was very relaxing, and I can see that deep transformation could come from regularly doing this type of healing. I also loved the Kundalini workshop a couple of weeks ago. Again, very relaxing and a deep practice. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to everyone at Soulful Fitness!