Michelle BSc (Hons); Dip FTST.
I have always had a keen interest in Health, Fitness and Wellbeing, being a child with an abundance of energy, climbing trees and spending most of my childhood upside down doing cartwheels or hanging from a climbing frame.
In my teens exercise gave me more than just physical activity it helped me control my mood and aided mental health, it was my release and escape whether it be getting on my bike and cycling till my legs burnt or Judo training, it was a great de-stressor.
Having been rejected from entering the Police Force (my dream job) due to my eyesight ☹ I followed my passion for Health, fitness and wellbeing qualifying as a Personal Trainer and Group Fitness instructor in 1999.
Whilst expecting my first child the natural progression for me was to qualify in Pregnancy and Post Natal exercise where I started training ladies through this period of time delivering safe and effective exercise.
Following the birth of my 3rd daughter I suffered a cycling accident resulting in disc issues, a Diastasis, weak Pelvic Floor and 2 years of chronic pain. I wasn’t able to stand up straight, pick my young child up from the floor, carry my older 2 children, or function very well in everyday life. Being 29 with 3 small children, one with additional needs, I was told that I could have injections in my spine every 3 months for the rest of my life if needed. I needed to find a way to fix myself. I read a lot, attended Pilates based classes, started stretching, was more mindful about daily activities, slowly working on strength and mobility. This is where my whole mindset to exercise changed; exercise is about health and fitness, but also about life, being strong and mobile enough to do the things we love. Playing with our children, enjoying life, balancing and carrying out daily tasks and function pain free.
I didn’t fully appreciate the role of your core muscles until this time and now every movement comes from your centre. All classes, personal training, massage sessions and courses are started by building a strong foundation on which to build.
Since then I’ve completed courses with Burrell Education, a Degree in Sports and Exercise Science and Sports Massage in order to help clients in the best way I can. I fully understand how crazy life can be with small or even older children and if you’re anything like me I come below the dog in terms of pecking order in our house ensuring everyone else’s needs are met first. Sometimes we lose track of ourselves a little and need to prioritise some ME time. As well as classes, massage, exercise, personal training we plan days/nights out too as everyone needs a good old social sometimes.
Sarah – Buggy Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer
Having spent a number of years working in a corporate environment until the birth of my youngest daughter in 2010 I was fortunate enough to have some time with my family. I have always been interested in health and fitness and having been friends with Michelle since we were teenagers her passion for women’s health has always been infectious. Whilst working part-time I decided to retrain and qualify as a Personal Trainer and Ante and Post Natal Instructor. Still very much on my own learning journey I am currently studying Advanced Post Natal Exercise.
I feel my experiences of labour and birth help me to empathise with clients and have open and honest conversations putting people at ease. I had a difficult labour with my eldest daughter and my experiences with incontinence following her birth stayed with me for a long time. Having used exercise as a way to cope with stress, following her birth I found that I was limited as to the type of exercise I was able to do due to a weakened pelvic floor and I found guidance around this area limited. It seemed very natural for me to pursue a career in this area and help other women return to exercise safely.
Teaching Buggy Fitness Classes is fabulous – I get to meet lots of new mums provide them with a safe and fun environment to exercise and make friends. However classes are often not just about the exercise, they are an opportunity for mums to share experiences, good and bad. Stories are shared and often mums realise they are not alone and this can do wonders for mental well-being.
I am passionate about serving all women to the best of my ability.