Before you even ask, yes I walk barefoot in the park ;)
ESSENTRICS: What is it?
Never have I been asked this question so much about something I do. Luckily, it has become one of my favourite things (and one of the easiest) to talk about. Developed in Montreal, this fitness program isn't as well known in the West. Nevertheless, everyone I teach it to LOVES it and craves more.
Why? Each workout within the Essentrics program is designed to work the entire body and all its muscle chains using natural movements that mimic every day life, leaving your body in a balanced, harmonic state. And harmony feels gooooood. Students typically feel light and energized physically and mentally when they complete a session, and are left with a positive outlook on their physical health.
The program was designed with certain objectives in mind, including:
to increase flexibility and range of motion
to improve posture and body alignment
to dynamically lengthen and strengthen all 650 muscles of the body
to increase energy while decreasing pain and stiffness
to strengthen the circulatory, muscular and lymphatic systems, helping to cleanse and support the body through movement and regenerative growth
anti-aging and age-reversing effects on the body and mind
Like most fitness programs, results come over time; but, some feel relief from pain and stiffness after just one class! I still remember the first class I went to with my mom. It was full of people at least twice my age and I thought it was going to be a breeze. Well, was I wrong! Though the movements were slower and more gentle, the pace and full-body nature of the workout was not something I was used to. I was used to lifting weights, doing cardio and working individual groups of muscles individually - not the whole body at once. But boy, did I feel awesome afterward!
About a year after my first class, I started taking regular classes in Toronto. They were offered at my workplace over lunch. It was perfect for me, since I was sitting in a chair all day long and really needed to correct my posture and open up my tight joints that were sitting idle most of the day. I was also quite fatigued and needed to get my strength back. I was shocked by how much I gained from doing one hour of Essentrics once a week!
I've been practicing for about four years now and have noticed major changes in my posture, flexibility, strength and overall health. In addition to the benefits listed above, I've noticed many more have become apparent in my life. To name a few:
a more positive attitude and decreased levels of stress and anxiety
a craving to move my body every day
a deeper understanding of the body and its anatomy and physiology (I'm my own subject)
a stronger intuition about how I feel physically, allowing me to do as much or as little activity as I need on any given day and to know what type of movement is appropriate for me
a love and appreciation for my body and the way it moves
most importantly, freedom from fear I would be immobile by the time I was 40 years old (which was roughly a decade away when I started practicing)
Essentrics is a stand-alone workout, but I find it pairs nicely with other activities, especially because of its injury prevention benefits. Essentrics opens your body up and makes you more mobile and strong in the most supportive places of your body, which prepares you to do other more intense activities safely. I used to do it at the same time as yoga and cycling, for instance, but it also pairs well with competitive sports and running.
Just like a wholesome diet filled with real, organic foods supports the body, so does Essentrics. It's fantastic for not only setting the foundation for long-lasting wellness, but also for getting you back to health and keeping you young. Essentrics changed my life in ways I never thought possible and I know it can and will do the same for you.
If you're interested in learning more, you can check out the official Essentrics website or read more here. Like and follow my page on Facebook to stay connected and up-to-date with my class schedule and special promotions. I'm currently running a Spring 2018 promotion with introductory rates for private and semi-private classes either in-person (in Vancouver) or online (across Canada).
I'll see you in class!