As if 38 year old Issy wasn’t busy enough as mother of two young sons, she also juggles this with her very demanding career as a mounted police officer. To just keep up with such an active lifestyle, Issy needs to maintain a good level of fitness to give her the energy, strength and stamina she needs every day.
For many years Issy had been a keen runner, regularly taking part in 10K runs and half marathons. She combined this with weight training at the gym. However in 2015, the repetitive strain placed on her through her fitness regime started to take its toll. She developed cartilage damage in her knees and back pain. Not only did this put an end to her running, it was a real concern due the physical demands of her career. “Any kind of back pain can be a complete disaster for a horse rider, I was really worried.”
Issy was in a position where her normal training regime was now off limits, but she needed to maintain her fitness levels and recuperate from her injuries as quickly as possible. Seeing a promotion for Sweat Studios, Issy tentatively put aside her concerns about yoga and decided to give Sweat’s hot yoga a go. “I’d tried a few yoga and Pilates sessions many years ago and wasn’t that impressed. I’d found the classes really slow and not active enough for my liking. I was worried that the yoga classes at Sweat Studios would be the same. On the other hand, I knew I needed to do something to manage my back and knee pain and stay in shape. So I thought, what have I got to lose? Let’s give it a go!”
Issy’s first class immediately put all her concerns to rest. “I came out of that session completely buzzing. The heat combined with the yoga poses really challenges your muscles in ways you’d never imagine and was just what I needed.”
As she continued taking yoga classes with us, Issy was impressed with the rapid improvements in flexibility and body awareness that yoga offered. “It was really enlightening,” she explains, ”You become aware of muscles you didn’t even know you had.”
Thanks to the regular yoga classes, Issy’s back and knee pain disappeared. Even so, as Issy’s initial class promotion started to draw to a close, she still had lingering doubts as to whether yoga could really replace the running and gym sessions she was used to. “I decided to give myself a challenge,” she explains, “I set myself the goal of not doing any other physical activity or exercise throughout December, apart from yoga classes at Sweat Studios. I figured that if I felt my fitness levels were dropping by cutting out the gym, I could always start going there again in the new year.”
And did yoga pass the fitness test? “Absolutely!” she enthuses, “At the end of December I realised I didn’t miss going to the gym at all. Yoga’s great for developing all-over body strength, flexibility, muscle tone and cardiovascular fitness. I find the classes addictive; you get a real rush of endorphins and I never have to worry about straining anything or getting injured. It’s the only workout I need.”