Pop Pilates and stress

By Chandni Soren, BA (Hons) Interior Design, 2nd Year.


On Monday I attended Pop Pilates at the Hubs as part of Women in Leadership Day. The class was run by First Year Psychology Student Aimee Browes, a contagious bubble of energy, as part of her Happiness Bootcamp which aims to spread positivity through fitness and her blogs on mental health. The room was full of smiles even during the excruciating work out!

So what actually is Pop Pilates? Joseph Pilates journey started from gymnastics, body-building and Jiu Jitsu (how crazy is that? He did Jitsu like me!) Then eventual yoga and dance. Born of those was Pilates, focusing on core strength and flexibility, rehabilitating wounded soldiers who couldn’t use weights.

Recently Pop Pilates emerged from Youtuber Cassey Ho (@blogilates). This is a high intensity fitness class developing the same skills as Pilates with added burn and cardio. There are classes from beginner to advance and even pregnant women can participate. Around 20 women attended this class and everyone got stuck in, giving it 100% with encouragement and motivation from Aimee. In all honesty it was a really good laugh and a hard work out! We did poses from ‘mermaid’ to ‘cradling the baby’ and ‘ballerina’ as well as the usual ‘downward dog’ and ‘child’s pose’. You would definitely get fit doing that every week!

At the end of the class Aimee gave a really powerful speech about anxiety. She explained how there are many types of anxiety and that we all experience it in our lives. She also addressed how we can change our thought process in order to cope with it. Other methods you can use to deal with anxiety are breathing exercises, breathing in for 7, hold for 4 and out for 8, slowing your heart rate and calming you. And description healing, describing the things round you to distract you. Repeating mantras like “I am safe, I am calm, I am brave, I am fine” can help.  Assessing your lifestyle can have a huge impact on your mental health, exercise regularly, get those endorphin released. Cut out negative people from your life. Also a really nice one was to take 10 minutes from your day to do a bit of self- care, “If you can afford to scroll through dog videos on Facebook for 10 minutes you can spare 10 minutes for self-care” whether it’s painting your nails or watching Friends, do something for you.

If you want to try Pop Pilates, Aimee is launching her Weekly Pop Pilates at Union St, Sheffield on Monday 12 February. Check The Happiness Bootcamp facebook page for more info.