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Ladies—who runs the world? No, it’s not just Beyonce, it’s all of us. It’s March (AKA Women’s History Month) and we’re celebrating all month long to shine a light upon all the badass women right here in our wellness community and their accomplishments. Did you know that before women had the whole month, the US recognized Women’s History Week—and before that, International Women’s Day.
Dedicated to appreciating and uplifting women in whatever way possible, International Women’s Day has been celebrated for over a century, and its missions, opportunities, supporters, and themes have continued to grow each year. This year’s theme? Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to Be Silenced.
And at Mindbody, we want to use this time to highlight some inspiring ladies in the wellness industry. These women come from a variety of walks of life and represent inclusivity in the wellness space with their accomplishments. Their collective level of badassery is both indisputable and worth celebrating. But it's important to remember that this article recognizes just a fraction of the many women who have influenced our industry in significant ways. Seriously—if there’s anybody else you’d like us to include in this list, please let us know by filling out this form.
“Wellness to me is feeling good in my body,” says Heather C. White, founder of Boston’s TRILLFIT. “It's feeling connected to those around me. It's feeling seen and feeling supported.” It was a lack of that kind of support that led to her starting TRILLFIT in 2005. At the time, she was struck by the lack of diversity in the studios and gyms she’d been trying. She didn’t feel like she belonged and stopped going entirely.
For many people, that would be the end of the story. But Heather had a feeling other women of color were experiencing something similar. “That's how TRILLFIT was born.”
From growing a single studio into a women-powered franchise to inspiring other female entrepreneurs and developing a full-on fitness movement, here's everything you need to know about this awesome woman!
With her love for health, wellness, and sports, Rachael has made "vibration fitness” mainstream. So how did Rachael make science trendy and super sweat-worthy? We sat down with her to find out what powers her “vibe vision” on (and off) the Power Plate.
Alexis Pritchard knows what takes to be an innovator. As a member of the inaugural field of women boxers at the 2012 Olympics, she relied on a deep well of mental and physical toughness to unlock her potential. Now she and her husband, Cam, are teaching others those same skills from the Wreck Room, their boxing and group fitness gym in Auckland, New Zealand. Here’s what she had to say about her journey.
Y7 Studio is a community on a mission to make yoga more accessible and inclusive to all. “One family formed by sweat,” they welcome anyone and everyone willing to give it their all. We love this idea of embracing yoga, sweat, and each other with open arms, so we reached out to Sarah Larson Levey, founder of Y7, to share her story.
“In order to be successful in whatever you do, you must intentionally decide how you're going to show up in the world each day.” Now that’s some good advice. Here are some tips for going after your dreams.
“I had a platform to inspire, but I wanted more. I wanted a real supportive platform to create.” Here’s how an ex-Broadway dancer made her way to the studio.
A New Yorker with passion for partying, Erin struggled to find her thing when it came to her wellbeing. Not loving her lifestyle (or herself), Erin felt stuck, depressed, and in need of a change. Two years, one Mindbody app, and over 250 fitness classes later, it’s safe to say Erin has found something she loves—and changed her life for the better.
Great hair/makeup is more than the sum of its parts. “All of the key milestones of a woman’s life start with hair, makeup, and champagne,” says Leigh Dole, founder of BLOW BAR CO in Australia. “I wanted to create a space that recognized and celebrated these special moments.”
But the secret to BLOW BAR’s success is layering on that luxurious feel—think bubbly wine and cheese plates—while building a wellness brand where every woman feels welcome. Here’s what Leigh has to say about it.
That's all, female friends. Let’s keep celebrating all month long because we deserve it. As I mentioned earlier, we want this list to continue to grow—so don’t forget to tell us about the women who inspire you in the wellness space. And while you’re at it, why not take a fitness class at a woman-owned studio? There are tons of them available to you on the Mindbody app.
Picture this... we’re about a year into a global pandemic, it’s dark by 5 p.m. before you even get off work, and it’s a crisp 40-50 degrees outside at night (a bit chilly for an outdoor spin ride). Not only have you watched every show and movie on Netflix, Hulu, and possibly even Disney Plus—you’ve scrolled through every virtual workout class in your general range of fitness. Put simply, you’re bored and craving something that makes you feel alive—that pre-COVID connection and sweat. Something out-of-the-box that feels like the summer of 2016 when you wore real clothes, and the world was your oyster.
Okay, now that I’ve set the scene—this was exactly where I was at, mentally, when I downloaded Mindbody Flex. A part of me wanted to download it as motivation to exercise more, but I also wanted to experience working out virtually with real people and instructors, from all over the US.
So, I’m scrolling through my class options for the day, and I think to myself, “let’s see what’s going on in Miami.” I mean, why not? Miami is the healthiest and happiest city in the US, I was curious. I was immediately blown away by my options. I was expecting yoga, barre, meditation, and sculpt classes, but Tai Chi, sound meditation, self-defense, life coaching, kickboxing—all in one place? All for the same price of one pre-paid pass? I had never seen so many diverse and unique classes in one place. I wanted to take a week's vacation just to try as many as I could. The world, and my choices, felt big for the first time in months.
After a few moments passed and I was able to process all that was in front of me—I had this epiphany moment. I was going to make it my goal to try the most out-of-the-box, fun, and interesting classes. After almost a year of being in my comfort zone, I desperately craved the feeling of switching it up and learning something new. I made this my mission and got to work signing up for classes.
Since the app lets you see workout classes and their times weeks in advance, I was able to plan my classes out for two weeks. I decided on a Barre class with the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, a twerk-aholics class, beginner’s Tai Chi, a sound meditation, and kickboxing to name a few. Even though I wasn’t leaving my house for these workouts, I felt like I was going places. It made me so happy to get that same excited and partially nervous feeling of trying something new, with other people who would also be doing the same thing.
Like a cliché rom-com, the hero of this story fell back in love with her past-love turned enemy. Just like you’d expect. But it reminded me why I loved going to group classes so much in the first place. With livestream real-time workouts I instantly had that feeling of being coached when you go to a new class and step on your mat, bike, or on that machine, you’ve never been on before—whatever that feeling looks like to you. I looked around and saw real people just like me that were about to take that same journey. While I didn’t get to see those people face-to-face, they were there with me. We took those classes together.
I also loved getting to try such a wide variety of classes without signing up for five different memberships or studios. It was a great way to see what clicks for me. I mean, the chances of me getting to fly to Dallas for a single workout with the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders? Ambitious, but unlikely. I could start my day and pick a workout that fit my mood. Raining and gloomy? Let’s do a cleansing sound meditation. A case of the Mondays? Time to release some steam with a kickboxing class. The possibilities are endless and personalized to me.
Ab-so-lute-ly, yes. Even if you’re not silently resenting your current virtual workouts and colder weather outdoor classes, I would suggest you try this out. I say this because I believe we could all benefit from that feeling of traveling, getting out of the house, trying something new, and connecting with other people who have the same interests as us. It’s comforting to be reminded that we’re all in this together and the world is still much bigger than the places we’re hunkering down. Workouts can still be riveting, and we can still try new things that get us a bit more out of our comfort zones with each new virtual experience!
I know I’m not the only one who feels like they have fallen into a virtual fitness rut as of late. This is precisely why it’s the perfect time for you to expand your horizons when it comes to your at-home workout routine.