In February 2021 campaigners from 'This Girl Can' warned that women had fewer opportuities to exercies during lockdown and a recent survey found women were taking longer than men to return to their pre-pandemic exercise habits.
Sports England research found 13 million women who said they would like to exercise, of those 6 million of them are not. What was the reason for this? Fear and guilt.
It starts at school, a bad feeling about sport, there's an attitude of you're either a natural or your not and this seems to stick for life. Sport and exercise continues to be mainly targeted at those women who already feel comfortable in sport, either with high competition or slick images of slim, superfit, super bendy women. This leads to more alienation, feeling self conscious, self judgement and many women feel that taking time to exercise and look after themselves is self indulgent and feel guilty. Many women said they weren't fit enough to start and felt nervous of arriving at a new place, especially on their own, not knowing what to expect, and many said a gym can feel intimidating. The fear of not being good enough, of not looking right, or failing or feeling silly stops women.
Thats a lot of hurdles to overcome and we are overcoming them! Go Girls!
In 2015 Sports England launched This Girl Can Campaign, funded by the National Lottery, to support, encourage, educate and celebrate all the ways that women can move for health and feel good about it! In five years it helped more than 500,000 women and girls to become more physically active.
Tim Hollingsworth, Sport England’s chief executive, said: “Despite the enormous progress we have made with supporting more women to get active in recent years, the gender gap for activity stubbornly persists. It’s never been more important. Getting active boosts mental and physical health, helps manage anxiety and stress and creates social ties, but millions of women are missing out on these benefits.”
'I am delighted to be part of that positive and proactive move to change that across the UK, ' said Heather from The ENERGYBODi Sensation, 'and that we have been recognised and approved by This Girl Can Campaign.'
' We are finally moving away from stereotypes and addressing the alienation and the judgement women feel in exercise and we need to continue with our efforts. Sports England is doing a fantastic job of educating fitness professionals in understanding of what is needed to encourage and support women into a healthier lifestyle. I've seen so much change in the 30 years I have been working in the fitness industry, I'm proud to be a part of that.'
The ENERGYBODi Sensation Studios was opened in 2012 and began in 2002
'I really wanted to create something different' said Heather 'I wanted to move away from a gym style feel, to utilize my creative expression as well as my experience and training in colour therapy and Nia where I got to explore my feminine side. I have done the whole gym thing, lifting heavy weights and tri-athalons and they are fantastic, working as a Personal Trainer and fitness Instructor, but I wanted something else after the birth of my son and post natal depression.
Pilates sorted out my back problem and helped my pelvic floor and The Nia Technique taught me a whole new way to move and appreciate myself, to feel the joy of moving again. I wanted to create a place that I could share that.
I followed my dreams, teaching for ten years and in 2012, moved into my own premises.
This year we are celebrating 10 years in the Studio!'
During lockdown Heather quickly utilized her skills and took to the outdoors as soon as she could, leading walks and Nordic Walking Instructing, 'I surprised myself, many of us had really retreated in lockdown, even normalizing it. Getting out and chatting with people while exercising really helped bring me out of that period of time, it was fantastic to be out chatting with people.' Heather explained,
'We walked in all weathers, snow, rain and sunshine but with a group we had such a laugh and there's nothing like a hot drink after being outside. The fresh air makes you glow!'
If the thought of going to the gym, or being in a class feels scary, or makes you feel nervous, or simply turns you right off, we want to change the way you think about and experience fitness. We provide a very friendly, supportive place, you can be yourself, find your tribe, have fun.
'The minute I walked in the door, I felt like I had come home! The photos don't come near to expressing what a beautiful place this is, it's so unexpected and everyone was so friendly and welcoming. I've been coming here for 6 years now, it's changed my life!'
We want you to develop self confidence and feel strong in who you are! To challenge yourself, to grow, to learn when to slow down and when to do more.
A place to come when you need a friend to lean on. We want you to develop a fascination, a curiosity about how amazing you are. Wellbeing is the whole picture. Wellbeing includes your emotional and mental health, there is no separation from your physical health. True fitness is a result of wellbeing.
''Best experience of exercise I've ever had! It's life changing. It moved me, it nourished me, it mended me, it accepted me.
Give it a go...
I promise it will give you something too'' Liz Woodings.
There isn't a right way of doing it. We are all unique. Find what is right for you. You don't need any prior experience, and you can have two left feet, 'Sometimes I'm sure I have three feet' laughs Heather ' I was the one at a fitness conference at Loughborough University, in a sports hall of aerobics teachers; the whole hall of 200 plus teachers went right and I went left, and you know what, it doesn't matter!'
You don't have to wear tight leggings or get the style right, you can dress up or come in your scruffs, whatever your age or your size, we don't use mirrors in our studio, we focus on how you feel. 'It's true, when you feel good, really really good, you look amazing. ' said Heather.
'It's something that fascinates me, finding the spark, the movement that makes people feel alive, what it is that moves each person, internally as well as externally.' explains Heather, ' And when that comes together, that is beauty. The old saying, the camera never lies is a lie, and its the same for a mirror'
At ENERGYBODi we help you develop the skill of tuning in, listening to your own body's needs. Learn in your own natural time, to follow the pleasure principle of movement.
So why are you called the ENERGYBODi Sensation?
'Sensation is a way to guide our body. Sensation is the quickest way to come into the present. It's a skill, that's really worth developing. Imagine fine tuning your sensory feedback like an artist or a musician fine tunes their ears or eyes, it can transform your life!' explains Heather ' Opening sensory gateways makes you feel more alive, because you literally become more alive! It opens up the appreciation for yourself and your world. It's about how you find the magnificence in the mundane!' exclaims Heather
How to regulate your energy levels, to lift yourself up; calm yourself down; to let off steam or soften into self nurturing, with no judgement is what ENERGYBODi is all about. Fitness and health isn't all about pushing yourself constantly. For instance, well known research shows that those under stress store fat and have higher health risks. Learning how and when to sooth your nervous system and relax is equally as important as getting enough physical exercise. This is understanding and harnessing the power of up-regulating and down-regulating.
We change week to week, day by day, every minute and each second, we change.
However you show up, you are welcome.
BE YOU. The GIRL WHO CAN!
'At one time, I thought I couldn’t, so I didn’t. I was put off sport because of past failures or because I felt I couldn’t do ‘it’ as well as other people. At ENERGYBODi, I tentatively started attending the classes and very quickly found I loved it. It didn’t matter if I didn’t get it right immediately because the atmosphere is supportive, fun and feels like a community. Now I feel like there is a smile, inside me, which grows larger and larger, until I am one big smile. I love it. No longer am I the ‘girl’ who thought she couldn’t do ‘it’, but the ‘girl’ who knows she can.' Helen Walton
Creating Space and time is another challenge many women expressed as a barrier to their wellbeing. Creating space is essential to our emotional and mental health and yet can be tied into so much guilt. We push other priorities, our family, our friends, our work, just about everything is more important that ourselves!
Mothers often experience guilt when taking the time for their own health and then again in later life as a care giver and lets face it.. does the worry of a care giver ever go away; & then there's the hit of the Menopause. This is now becoming more recognised and acknowledged for the impacts it has on Women's bodies, our mental and emotional wellbeing.
Surrounding yourself with other women and connecting through your experiences, in a environment that not only supports your process but allows you space to rekindle a relationship with yourself. Strengthening your body, grow in confidence, improving your health and rediscovering who you are.
Wondering where to start? We have designed Taster Tuesdays, A six week course where you get to dip your toe in a number of different practices. Lets find what suits you. Experiencing a different practice each week, the course develops from session to session, building on the previous week. This allows you time to discover, unwind, relax, recharge and energize and leave with the course with a sense of exploration and achievement!
THIS GIRL CAN!
Fast Passes are available if you have done Taster Tuesdays or not, they allow to to quickly and simply buy online, reserve your class place or change your mind and rebook a different session. We have an amazing community, a huge family! If you have any questions or need advice or unsure please get in touch, either directly with Heather or post on our Facebook group. We also have an app which which we are currently growing so that people who are not on facebook can be part of the online conversations.
The ENERGYBODi Sensation Studio is the place where you can find your home, the one in your mind, heart and body, the one unique to you; the one your soul is asking for you to walk into and get familiar and comfortable with. It is not on the top of some holy mountain, it is not in a new age retreat by the sea, nor in a super modern high flying glass box in the city. It is here, in a gloriously old mill, converted and furnished with colour, life and love. It is a vibrant and profound community of wonderful ENERGYBODi's. A sacred space for your sacred joy and you are invited, welcomed, honoured and cherished here.
This Girl Can-in six weeks
Meet some great people
Make new friends
Learn an effective way to de-stress after work or taking care of the family.
Find a new place and healthy way to spend time with friends
Ease your aches and pains
Regulate yourself in times of stress
Get Stronger, physically, mentally and emotionally
Open up new possibilities in life
Discover new ways of moving
Be fitter, healthier and happier
Create a posture with intention not habit
Have fun, laugh lots and feel go !
We would love to meet you and support you on your journey through life. The ups and downs, to celebrate the successes and be here for the challenges.
The first step is the biggest step.
Come and play!
Love from all us,