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“We believe in the mindful burn,” says Ali Handley, founder of Bodylove Pilates, one of Sydney’s brightest and most beautiful pilates studios. “Workouts are specifically designed to challenge not just physical stamina and endurance, but also your mind-body connection.”
“Since temporarily closing our studio, we’ve moved to a digital platform and are now streaming at least three live workouts a day. During these challenging times, it’s so important to continue to find joy in movement and to feel energized by exercise!”
Below, Ali shares some “simple stretches and mindful movements” to help you stay balanced and pain-free while you’re working hard (and working out) at home.
“Learn to harness the power of your breath. It’s an incredible way to reset the nervous system and destress. Just by slowing down and being aware of your breath, and by working on the quality of your inhales and exhales, you can shift from the sympathetic nervous system to the calming and conscience parasympathetic nervous system. When you exercise your breath, you might also find it easier to activate your muscles.”
“Nothing feels better than a gorgeous deep spine twist, though your range of movement will depend on your spine health and if you’re pregnant. Spinal twists can lengthen, release, relax and realign the spine. Deep twists that occur through the abdominal region can have wonderful detoxification and digestive benefits as well as giving the abdominal organs a lovely massage.”
“We all spend waaaayyyyy too much time hunched over computer screens, iPhones and slumped on the couch. It wreaks havoc on the spine and our posture. Working the back muscles in extension is the perfect way to strengthen the entire back chain and improve posture, therefore reducing aches and pains.”
Thread the Needle
“This is a gorgeous stretch that provides a lovely twist for the body with the added benefit of shoulder stretching. Combining full thoracic rotation with shoulder mobilization, Thread the Needle can provide relief for low back and neck pain. And, when done in the all-fours position, it’s quite a passive stretch that you can hold for a few minutes.”