From March 2020 the way we exercised changed overnight. From being a part of a large yoga community in a sticky hot studio we were suddenly thrust into our living rooms attempting head stands whilst avoiding falling through the glass coffee table we were wedged next to. Or perhaps it was an opportunity to get back in to running, something that had been put off since circa 2016. I was just hoping the floor wasn’t going to give way with my squat jumps. I always enjoyed watching my housemate do her online Wednesday lunch time work out whilst I dialled into my one millionth zoom call.
There were of course the times this all went out the window and I was drinking wine from lunch time…. But what Covid provided was the flexibility to have our favourite work outs at home when we’d only had them in the studio before now. Whether this was on demand to suit your timetable for the day (between daily exercise and shopping for essentials) or whether you, like me preferred a live work out as you imagined all of you together sweating, or going through the same pain, or better still setting a group intention and feeling the energy of being united on the worldwide web. And not only could you access your favourite local work out, but you had access to work outs from around the globe, generally at a fraction of the price of what you paying for in-person experience. Phenomenal. Over a year later and the shift to online continues, no longer are these adhoc classes studio's are throwing together. These are incredible platforms that they've had time to perfect.
What I'd like to share with you is some of the incredible online Aussie platforms that are available now not just for the locals, but across the globe. The standard of teaching in Australia is, without exception some of the best you will find in the world. You can think of me as your Aussie wellness concierge introducing you to a little slice of Australia direct to your work out space, wherever you happen to be.
Body Mind Life
The studio I practiced yoga in was Body Mind Life in Bondi, a yoga institution in Bondi. They have a number of yoga, pilates and wellness studios across Sydney and a new studio in Byron Bay. My housemate Sarah was one of the Teacher’s so I was well aware of the calibre of the studio and the vast experience of the Teachers. Body Mind Life were quick to adapt to the initial lockdown with filming taking place as lockdown commenced.
Body Mind Life have been pretty busy developing the platform since their initial launch, and the 2.0 version is pretty mind-blowing. You can select your program by duration, teacher across yoga, pilates, fitness and mindfulness. Whether you are looking for Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, or Yin they have you covered. Pilates, again with vast options from slow and strong, to a good dose of cardio pilates to get the heart rate up, or pre or post-natal pilates they have you covered. Fitness - they have a whole range of HIIT and strength classes, and a great deal of juicy recovery programs. But perhaps my favourite part of the platform is the Mindfulness area - a beautiful collection of mindfulness, meditations, breath work, yoga nidra, and even sessions on emotional eating.
New classes added every week, so you will never get bored. Oh and some of the classes are actually filmed by the ocean, so it’s almost like you’re there practising one on one with your instructor as the waves crash in the background. Dreamy.
7 day free trial, and £7.00 per week from there on in will get you access to absolutely all of this.
Image courtesy of Body Mind Life.
This recently launched practice is led by Leah Simmons, pilates instructor, kundalini yoga teacher, PT and now founder of KAAIAA. Leah spent 4 years in Bali and embarked on a 4 year journey of self-discovery to uncover what it takes to be truly happy and healthy. Drawing on this new found knowledge and her 14 years’ experience of transforming people’s physiques KAAIAA was born.
The practice trains the four proven modalities of health; mental, physical, emotional and spiritual. Incorporating breathwork, functional strength sequences, guided meditation and integration technique. The practice supports you to build a strong, resilient body, to bring clarify and focus to your mind, connect you with your emotions, and unlock a potential in you which will support you to make profound changes to your entire life.
I took part this morning, and it really blew my mind. (Something I would never say lightly.) It is a strong practice, physically, emotionally and spiritually. It was an incredible emotional release for me. It is interesting to see how a powerful practice like this translates from studio to online, but the energy that comes from Leah and the practice radiates through. I don't want to give away too much. It is just unlike any other work out, and I simply urge you to experience it for yourselves to truly understand and to harness the power within.
During the current Aussie lockdown Leah has been offering free Zoom classes, and she has just included a Europe time friendly one every Tuesday at 7AM in the UK and 8AM for those in Europe. For those of you in the States and Canada the daily 8AM AEST one should work you- it will be the evening /afternoon prior. You can find the link here to register for the Zooms. Thank you Leah, so grateful for you sharing your extraordinary gift with everyone during this time.
Access to the online platform is from AUD14.99 (£8.00) per month (50% off) with 7 seven days free when you sign up.
You can sign up to the platform here
Alice created an online platform pre-pandemic, a platform that houses ‘movement, wisdom, meditation and heart.’
A place for women to land that breeds community through the sharing of experiences, movement for strength and joy, not punishment and meditations that do not play by the rules, all for women and from women.
Alice is a former dance instructor with 500 hours TT under belt, has an infectious personality, a very dry (and virtually British) sense of humour and a great deal of sass. She’s encouraging, supporting and sensitive.
The platform is super user-friendly with a large range of options, whether you’re looking for meditation or yoga, a quick 15 minute yin or a one hour power flow, a chakra journey, an anxiety elixir, a guide to inversions to name but a few, Alice has you covered. Bonus – some sessions feature her gorgeous dog Frankie, also a keen yogi!
The most recent introduction to the platform is a variety of Pilates practices that explore slow burns, static holds and all of the strength and stability we have come to expect from Pilates.
Alice is also a writer, in her own words “I craft memories, feelings, shared memoirs. Walking the line between vulnerable and stoic with poetry that packs a heartfelt punch and prose that reminds the reader I am a woman who has felt the fears and cried the same tears as you.”
Alice’s program costs AUD14.50 (£7.75) per month
Alice offers a free 15 day trial, you can sign up here and kindly Alice has gifted us another 15 days, so you can have one month complimentary on the platform. Add promo code: 4W4U
You can follow Alice on Instagram here
Bodylove is a beautiful Sydney pilates studio that many of my friends frequent and rave about. In fact big up to my friend Kate who is just about to qualify after joining their training academy. She has absolutely loved it!
Bodylove is the brain child of Ali Handley, a certified pilates instructor, specialising in pre and post-natal care. Ali is also mother of three small children. Ali returned from a stint in New York, ready to open up this stunning Sydney studio.
Working with countless women at differing stages of motherhood Ali continued to see a fundamental lack of proper guidance, trusted information and dynamic workouts. Ali has passionately dedicated to make this online platform, Bodylove Mamas an extensive, holistic and progressive platform that supports women at every stage of motherhood. From a week by week first trimester work out, to Prepare to Push and Birth to Bodylove – 6 weeks of post-partum classes, Ali will support you every step of the way into motherhood.
In addition to this Ali’s vision has also been to create an inclusive and nurturing community of women on their motherhood journeys.
The cost is from USD20 (£16.70) per month.
You can sign up to the platform here, and there’s a 14 day free trial.
Fluid Form at Home
Fluid Form pilates recently launched Fluid Form at Home. Created by Founder and lead principal instructor Kirsten King, with over 20 years of experience in functional movmenet and pilates. You’ll be in the hands of Pip Edwards (PE Nation co-founder) and Lara Worthington’s pilates trainer. If it’s good enough for Sydney’s A-List, its good enough for you!
Fluid Form at Home offers over 200 customised programs designed to create physical and mental change that will make you love your body. They cover beginner to advanced, support athletes, pre and post-natal, rehabilitation, and reformer programs, offering targeted mini sequences, total body workouts , stretch series and boxing for a complete transformation of the body and mind.
It’s the added extra’s with Fluid Form that set it apart from some of the other programs – once you sign up you get a complimentary equipment pack which is shipped to anywhere in the world free of charge. They also have a buddy program where they match you up with someone so you can keep each other accountable and motivated. Additionally, there is guided body transformation over a 6 month duration, and meal plans to support your goals.
Memberships are from AUD30 (£16.15) per month.