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The Miracle of Flow Barre – by Natasha Meinertzhagen


Age is just a number so they say – but any woman over the age of 30 can attest to the fact that our bodies don’t necessarily agree with this statement. The older we get the harder we need to work, to achieve the healthiest version of ourselves, in both diet and exercise. And no, I am not claiming to be a paragon of virtue (Shannon will dispel any such rumours) – but I do try and maintain some sense of balance and discipline.

I have been coming to Flow Athletic for over a year now – and I joined because I tore my left psoas muscle (in truth I didn’t actually know what it was until I damaged it). Various chiropractors told me that I would not be able to exercise properly for 6 months, so I took that on as a challenge. Through re-learning yoga at Flow (after a 13-year hiatus), getting regular acupuncture, massages and adjustments – I was stronger than ever after 3 months.

That is not to say that I don’t still feel twinges in my hip reflexes, but I listen to my body with much more respect these days….Even if that does mean taking it easy sometimes.

Some members might have heard Shannon’s nickname for me: “crazy boxing chick”  – and be curious as to why I am writing a blog on Flow Barre. The reason being is that it has become my new addiction.

Martial Arts (kick-boxing both Western & Thai-style and karate) has been my stalwart release for the last 13 years and I genuinely pride myself on the emotional and physical balance it has given me through dedicated regular training.

For me, Flow Barre combines the physical challenge of martial arts with the inwardly mental focus of yoga. I can’t remember doing ballet since I was about 7 years old, nor gymnastics, nor dance. I say this to emphasize that by no means should I have found Flow Barre a natural fit for my abilities, especially at my age.

So don’t be deterred if you find yourself gripping onto the barre, with sweaty palms and a grimace, trying to plié or lift your legs to the various angles and heights required wondering what on earth you are doing. I still do with a wry smile on my lips; I am just grateful not to have face-planted onto the barre yet!

Aside from welcoming a new physical challenge, I have also noticed that I have benefitted in several ways that have been brought to my attention by friends who are external to the Flow family.  My posture has apparently improved, so I appear to be taller, whilst my limbs appear longer and more defined.  Yes a miracle!  To my amusement and slight bafflement, much younger members of the opposite sex are even noticing my new legs.

I certainly didn’t take up Flow Barre to get a better physique, but surprisingly I have gained one. I can guarantee that if you put in the effort the results will surely follow.  Master Barre teacher Bec did hint at this, but my natural skepticism balked at the idea ..until I suddenly discovered that I had a new body that even my 20 year-old self would have been proud of.


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