It may be chillier outside but that’s no reason to place your health and fitness goals on ice. Crank up the heat on indoor fitness instead! Your destination for winter wellness is The Levee Maitland, where you can enrich your day with yoga or Pilates, give a new kid-friendly fitness studio a go, and afterwards, nourish your body with restorative nosh!
Improving fitness, changing up your exercise regime, or going for an entirely new health goal? Perhaps you’re seeking to shape up, slim down, or simply build stamina in the teeth-chattering months. When it comes to keeping your body moving, a visit to one of The Levee’s health and wellness destinations is sure to inspire. Why not try one of these winter wellness businesses for size?
TAKE A MIND AND BODY ‘MINI BREAK’
If an antidote to too much sitting is what you’re after, attending a Reformer Pilates class at Muse Pilates could be a great fit, says owner Allana Frisken. “It can help you feel muscles you never knew you had. It’s equally beneficial for a simple stretch and release.”
“Think of the Reformer class as a mini break for your body and mind,” says Allana. “It offers a great way to increase flexibility, restore balance and improve your fitness.”
TAKing it slow is the go, at That Yoga place
Winter is an ideal time to slow the pace, focusing on gentler, more calming activities, suggests Lauren Hanlon from That Yoga Place. “It’s a time to retreat… to identify a hobby to enjoy indoors, such as knitting, reading, completing puzzles or painting by numbers. So too is breathwork, she adds.
“Mindful breathing – inhaling for four seconds, holding for two and exhaling for six – promotes a sense of relaxation, relieves stress, and helps balance the heart.”
A SCOOP OF SUPER SOUP
Where’s the place to full up with flavourful dishes galore – and a va-voom of vitamin A? “A piping hot bowl of pumpkim soup from Lavenders Cafe is good for your vision, fills your belly and give you an energy boost too,” says Emma Pilgrim.
PILATES: GENTLE, SAFE, BE IN A BETTER PLACE
Sometime, winter sees people being stuck indoors, feeling the effect of past injury flare-ups. Alena Stejcova from Alestre Pilates suggests Pilates can help.
“When it’s cold, nothing bests warming up muscles and joints with Pilates and getting the blood flow going. Pilates is especially helpful to those who – with weather changes – might start feeling old injuries, getting sore joints, or experiencing autoimmune flare-ups,” Alena says.
BE UNSTOPPABLE ALL WINTER AT FITSTOP
People commonly struggle with their strength and cardio training over Winter, but there are ways to conquer it, says Jemah and Ricky, owners of group fitness studio Fitstop Maitland. The solution, according to Jemah is, “Getting your fitness gear ready the night before training, booking your sessions a week in advance, and finding a workout buddy.”
Popular at Fitsop is a six-week Unstoppable program, giving locals access to mindset, nutrition and goals support as well as accountability tips and tools.
A big tick for fun and fitness with the kids
Busy parents who find making time for exercise challenging are flocking to Fitstop’s spacious secure ‘kidstop’ space. “We’ve designed it so children and their parents have easy visibility to each other… kids can utilise all the fun things in the space while parents can spend time working on their health and fitness,” Jemah explains.
A wellbeing boost at maitland yoga studio
A powerful way to enhance your energy and your sense of wellbeing in Winter is by attending Japanese yoga, Yin yoga or Vinyasa flow classes at Maitland Yoga Studio, says Harry Ford. “Japanese yoga – which follows the principles of traditional Chinese medicine and the seasons – can open up the body’s 12 energy pathways (meridians), to improve organ function and enhance your energy, health and mental wellbeing.”
Wintertime is when Maitland Yoga Studio tends to see more back, ankle, depression and sleep issues “which can be kidney related. Kidneys in Chinese medicine house our ‘chi’ or ‘life force’ and Winter tends to draw more chi due to the cold, poor diet and the lack of sun and movement.” In winter, the studio adapts its yoga classes to support and improve the function of the kidneys, bladder, lungs and large intestine, to maintain good health and a positive mindset.
NOURISH, RECHARGE, REINVIGORATE
After a firm focus on fitness, there’s nothing as satisfying as a nourishing dish, or a nutritious smoothie at one of The Levee’s numerous quality food destinations.
Synonymous for smoothies and moreish bowls is The Whistler. It’s an ideal place to visit, after a workout. Pop by the window on High St from 7.30am to 2.30pm for the dairy free, gluten free Berrylicious, packed with blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, banana and apple juice. Get a dose of greens in the Lean Green Smoothie (green apple, spinach, celery and cucumber). Prefer a bowl? Nourish Bowl is packed with quinoa, fresh spinach, halloumi, blistered cherry tomatoes, avocado and sesame, hummus, turmeric and chilli oil plus a fried egg.
Foods that feed and support the kidneys in Winter include root vegetables and foods with hard outer shells with calcium and minerals, says Harry Ford from Maitland Yoga Studio. “Foods like Wakame seaweed, Adzuki beans, bone broth soup, pepitas, ginger, miso, oat groats, sea salt, root vegetables and sesame seeds are Winter superfoods. One more winter wellness tip> Reducing sugar and alcohol, Happy adds, as “they greatly affect the kidneys.”