What is mindful fitness and why is it important?

The founder of Sydney's Luxe Yoga helps explain.

By Team Triple White • 3 years ago • HEALTH & FITNESS

 

Mindfulness isn’t a new wellbeing technique and it’s a practice we’re encouraged to integrate into our daily lives. It’s important to be present in what you’re doing, and this also applies to your fitness routines – our workouts might sometimes feel like a chore, habit or something that’s second nature to us.

The idea of ‘mindful fitness’ is something I encourage at my studio, LUXE Yoga, and teach my classes to exercise with a heightened state of awareness to create the ultimate physical experience. Using conscious movement and breath to guide us, we ensure we get our members into a meditative state before we practice – whether it’s yoga, barre, spin, cardio or pilates.

But why practice ‘mindful fitness’?

When you have a few things on your mind, it becomes a struggle to do a task efficiently and well. By creating awareness and honing in on what we’re doing, we come more effective at using our body and really doing the exercise – and feeling this through our muscles. Humans function on an autopilot, and when it comes to exercise our bodies sometimes become lazy and can fall back into old habits. An example of this is if you have weak glutes, you’ll fall into mostly using the wrong muscle group during a run or a squat, whereas when you’re practicing mindfulness you become fully aware of switching on the glutes and really using those muscles. You can teach your body to expand its capability, ultimately becoming stronger.

Mind body practices such as yoga and pilates already encourage this approach. Scanning the body through each movement and noticing what is going on, rather than focusing on distractions around you – the emails you haven’t replied to, what you have to do after class, or what you have to cook for dinner. Applying mindfulness in all forms of exercise, including running, spin classes or group sessions is a more efficient method of exercise for both the body and the mind.

Here are some easy tips to ensure you’re nailing ‘mindful fitness’:

  • Really look around you and notice the surroundings – the sounds, the smells, the beauty
  • Observe your breath without any judgment
  • Focus your awareness inside and notice feelings of joy and gratitude – or whatever you’re feeling in that moment
  • Feel your feet grounding your whole body, draw awareness to the muscles in your legs and your buttocks, notice the air on your skin, observe any sensation or emotion that might come up without adding any attachment to it – instead let it go completely

Doing all these steps will ensure you’ll be present and mindful in your practice.


About Nadine Lafleur

Nadine Lafleur is the founder of Luxe Yoga, Sydney’s first yoga coffee lounge located in the business and shopping hub of the Northern Beaches. Passionate about personal growth, a balanced lifestyle and following your passion, Nadine thrives in the health and wellness industry and loves working with likeminded people. She has a strong desire to help others achieve a positive mind and a healthy life through movement and mindfulness.

www.luxeyoga.com.au@luxe_yoga


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