Let’s move! New Yoga and Fitness studio opens close to Victoria Park
A new and vibrant addition to the ever-expanding East London wellness scene is move, a Yoga and Fitness studio which recently opened on Roman Road, E3. Housed within the large Abbott’s building (with a separate entrance on Dane Place) it’s a hidden gem; a light, bright space filled with plants and boasting high-end equipment. The studio was created by east end residents Sam Abbott and Jessica Francis who are determined to realise their dream of bringing their community together through movement.
The studio is a friendly and intimate space, with no more than ten people admitted per class. The founders wanted to keep the class sizes capped so that their students can receive precise, attentive instruction and consistent support for their fitness journey, irrespective of their starting point. ‘The last thing we want to be is intimidating in any way’ they insist. ‘Our teachers are all specialists in their areas and our focus is on mindful and safe training, so we offer a lot of attention to form and breath awareness’.
With almost thirty classes per week, there’s something for everyone at move. The class categories are simple: Full Body fitness, Flow yoga and Slow yoga. The Full Body classes incorporate strength, cardio and resistance training, while the yoga classes are either Dynamic Flows or more restorative Slow practices; and the studio has a diverse team of ten instructors who each bring something unique to the table. You can find full class descriptions and all teacher profiles on their website.
The studio also has a keen focus on pre and postnatal wellbeing. They currently run three mother and baby sessions per week (two fitness and one yoga) and one specific pregnancy yoga class. Both Sam and Jessica are trained in prenatal instruction and also have knowledge of postnatal recovery; Sam gave birth to her first child in 2018, and was disappointed by the way she was treated in many classes. ‘The teachers were often afraid to let me do anything’ she says. ‘At move we really want to encourage expectant and new Mums to train with the reassurance that we will take proper care of them, but not treat them like babies themselves!’
The postnatal classes are all 90 minutes long to leave time for a tea and a talk among local Mums, which is precisely the kind of community feel that the founders want to cultivate. They are already involved with some local youth charity projects, and will be running an event on 23rd June to raise money for Ourmala, a Hackney based charity that provides help and support to refugees and asylum seekers through yoga and other means.
The founders are hopeful that move will become a valuable asset to the local area. ‘We have each found that the joy and the freedom of regular movement has been invaluable in our own lives’ they say, ‘and we hope that we can help to bring a little of that joy to our neighbours’. Over the last five years Jessica has worked with people suffering from many of our most common and debilitating afflictions; stress, anxiety, depression, grief and trauma. ‘What we all need more than anything is care and connection’ she says. ‘To feel supported and appreciated, and that’s exactly what we want to offer. That’s why we named it move – because it may mean to move your ass and hopefully have some fun in the process, but it also means to inspire and arouse strong emotion. We hope that people will come along and let us move them!’
Images courtesy of MoveStudio