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Keeping active during lockdown provides a sense of normality and routine, but outdoor exercise can be tricky as people continue to socially distance and keep six feet apart. But many fitness fans around the globe have been enjoying a good core workout — while they sip of a glass of prosecco.
Fitness instructor Kelly Ravenscroft, 41, from Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands in Birmingham, England, has been teaching the quirky skill to women all over the world.
The unusual combo helps to improve flexibility, muscle strength and balance. She says it is particularly effective to help tone abdominal muscles, the lower back, hips and buttocks.
“Many women are doing regular Fitness Pilates workouts with me online each week, women still want to stay physically fit and mentally fit while in lockdown,” Ravenscroft said. “It’s also the perfect stress buster to help with anxieties surrounding the coronavirus outbreak.”
“Fitness Pilates is wonderful for this as they are getting a workout but the relaxation aspect of the class is great for mental health. I love the strength it gives your body, I love the feeling of calm that you get and the difference that it makes to your overall well being.”
Prosecco Pilates can be done in the house or garden and Ravenscroft says all you need is a mat, a glass of prosecco and a quiet space to lose yourself in your exercise. Ravenscroft caters to all levels, ages and abilities, from complete beginners to those who have done Pilates before.
“I added a glass of prosecco to our last class of the week as a way to relax and unwind,” the instructor explained. “We were all in our pajamas as well, so it was meant to be a way of connecting virtually with each other — as if we were having a drink at the end of class.”
“I’m trying to bring a bit of normality to a very unreal situation.”
It may be hard to get up and go when you know you’ve got an exercise class looming but there is no better time to use your body as your gym.
Ravenscroft aims to target more than just your core from the living room floor. She has been teaching the “superman” technique where you extend one arm forward and the opposite leg back while balancing the glass in one hand.
Ravenscroft has also been teaching the “side plank technique,” where you lie on one side with your elbow under your shoulder, straightening the legs and finding a line down the body as you lift your hips and extend your arm up, hold for 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
You could also try the “single leg extension” routine, where you lie on your back engaging your core muscles as you extend one leg fully hovering just above the floor, slowly returning as you then extend the other – all holding a glass of bubbly without spilling it.
Or perhaps give the “thread the needle” position a go – taking a four-point kneeling position and extending the right arm up to the ceiling and then threading underneath the left arm, repeating eight times and then repeating on the other side with a glass of fizz.
“My business has always been face to face, when lockdown hit I was forced to close all my classes down,” said Ravenscroft, who has been an instructor for 10 years. “I’m teaching a group of 200 women prosecco Pilates, they can join the live sessions or do them whenever they have time.”
Pilate’s enthusiast Charlotte Ellis, 23, said that she and her mother enjoyed the class, “mainly because it was an excuse to have a glass of prosecco.”
“It was lovely to know that everyone else who did the class was also doing the same,” Ellis said.
Another client Sue Williams, 50, said she loved it and “felt very relaxed with my glass of prosecco.”
Avid follower Mandy Gardner, 51, agreed, happy that she “could relax with a glass of prosecco after a long day.”
“My clients are telling me they are doing more classes than ever as they can fit them around their lives better and that they are getting fitter in lockdown,” Ravenscroft claimed.
This story was originally published by SWNS.