As promised, here is the first in a series of ‘city vs. country swaps’. Countryfille.com was born after I was inspired to find a balance between my love of country life but also city-style living. These ‘swaps’ will be all about finding ways to get my city-living fixes (and vices) in my new country surroundings… first up: Pilates.
So, I’ve written a couple of posts on my love of Pilates, specifically reformer bed classes at Ten and Bootcamp in Notting Hill. My thrice weekly habit kept my weight steady, my back pain free and my limbs strong and lean. God I miss those classes.
Until spring I had been attending mat-based classes, locally in Devon. However, what with my new job in Bristol and the stress of the last few months I admit, they’ve fallen by the wayside.
In the past I have also extolled the virtues of the Yoga app by Viaden Mobile. You can punch in either the amount of time you have, or a specific practice you want to do (sun salutation, meditation, Ashtanga etc), then up pops a ready-made asana (set of poses). I love that it’s there, portable, in my pocket. I’ve used it in hotel rooms all over the place, as well as in the garden at home.
My new fitness fix however, is Pilates Anytime. It’s a subscription site (although they do offer a generous 15 day free trial) and for £12/month you get access to a HUGE library of Pilates videos. Genius huh? I guess it is used as a resource for instructors too as there are lots of reformer classes which obviously, unless you happen to have a £3k reformer bed in your spare bedroom, aren’t going to be relevant. Saying that, it’s not only mat-based Pilates on offer, there are Barre classes, yoga and meditation too. Ranging from a quick 10-mins to a full hour.
Here’s a screen grab – I simply searched for popular mat-based classes at level 1. All the videos are filmed in HD so are nice and clear. I’ve done a couple (they all do seem to be US instructors) and love the fact that you can pick a different method, teacher or style at each session. Yes, I’ve bought fitness DVDs in the past but always ditched them after a couple of months as I’ve got bored of the routine or irritated by the instructor after the 100th rerun!
Cost-wise, it’s a no brainer. Reformer classes are anywhere from £20-£30 an hour and at £12 a month that’s one, maybe two mat-based classes.
For some yes, the motivation to actually log-on and do the classes will be the issue, hence the preference for classes or a personal trainer to kick their butt into action, but for me as a busy working mum, the fact I have a whole library of classes I can ‘attend’ at home, whenever suits me or whenever I have a spare half hour, is brilliant.
Yes, I still miss my ‘power hour’ reformer classes, but until they reach the sleepy Shires, this is the next best thing.