Soul Sisters workout

Leading PTs and fitness influencers, Alex and Maddy Weaver, break down their workout, which is exclusive to Balance Festival – the UK’s largest celebration of wellness.

During this 30-minute full-body class, the Serotonin-Boosting Workout will flex, flow, and flood your body with feel-good endorphins. Exclusive to Balance Festival, it’s designed to trigger the release of your body’s natural, happy hormones so you finish feeling phenomenal.

London PTs, Alex and Maddy Weaver, aka the Soul Sisters, have curated a step-by-step guide to their Serotonin-Boosting Workout that explains how to do the moves at home and why they leave you feeling (and looking) so happy.

“It’s widely known that serotonin helps regulate your mood, but it is also equally as important for appetite, digestion, sleep, memory, and even sexual desire and function. When serotonin levels drop, it can leave you feeling anxious and depressed (something experienced by huge numbers of adults in the UK) and, in turn, that can lead to a dependency on serotonin-boosting antidepressants with some not-so-pleasant side effects. Our goal when designing this workout was how to harness the power of serotonin naturally to offer a completely natural high caused by a surge of ‘happy hormones’. The following six moves will show you how you can do just that for yourself!”, enthuses Maddy Weaver.

Move 1: Tree pose

  • Start standing straight with your feet together and arms down by your side
  • Once comfortable, begin to shift your weight to your left foot, then bend your right knee, reaching down to clasp your inner right ankle and using your hand to draw your right foot alongside your inner left thigh, ensuring to rest the foot above or below the knee
  • Once you feel stable and your hips are aligned and facing forwards, press your palms together in prayer position at your chest

 

If you can, hold the pose for up to one minute. To release, step back into the standing pose. Repeat for the same amount of time on the opposite side.

 

“This pose is great for stretching the thighs, torso and shoulders while building strength in the ankles, calves and toning our abdominal muscles. The balancing posture is designed to help calm and focus the mind.”

 

Move 2: Warrior 2

This standing pose enhances strength, stability and concentration:

  • Stand in a wide-leg stance with your front leg slightly bent and facing forwards
  • With your arms out straight to the side at shoulder height and parallel to the floor, bend your front knee as you exhale and sink your hips so your front leg is bent parallel to the floor
  • As with Warrior 1, be sure to keep your back leg straight by pressing through your back foot
  • Turn your head to look across the tip of your middle finger in front of you, drop your shoulders and lift your chest, and breathe deeply and calmly for up to one minute

 

“This is not only a great pose to strengthen and open your hips and chest, but allows us to focus and concentrate on our inner warrior.”

Move 3: Boxing drills  

These high-energy box fit drills have been designed to increase your heart rate and get your body moving. Incorporating boxing into any workout is a great way to not only mix-up your routine, but to also release any built-up stress from your day!

 

“We have used a variety of box fit drills to get the heart rate up and punch out any negativity we may be feeling. This is a great way to workout happy!”

 

Move 4: Burpees

  • Begin in a standing position with your feet shoulder-width apart
  • Drop into a squat position with your hands firmly flat on the ground, placed just in front of your feet
  • Once in this position, kick your feet back behind you, keeping your arms straight and back parallel to the floor so you are in a raised plank position
  • From this, jump your feet towards your hands, leaping into the air with your arms above your head

 

Be ready to do the process all over again! You’ll be sure to feel the burn from this simple, but effective, high-intensity move.

 

“No workout is complete without this full-body exercise. While no one loves burpees, that feeling after you have done them is always guaranteed to leave you sweating and smiling.”

 

Move 5: Crunch and Punch

 

This move is great for team work, but if you are on you own, don’t worry as this can easily be done individually. The Crunch and Punch is an evolution of your ordinary crunch and is a great way to build core strength:

  • Start by lying down on a mat with your legs bent and feet flat on the floor – use your partner to keep your feet on the ground
  • As you exhale, lift your head slightly off the mat while keeping your hands in a fist position on your chest
  • Once at the top, throw a right punch towards your partner’s right hand, then inhale and lower yourself down
  • Repeat again, but this time throw a left punch towards your partner’s left hand and return to the start position for one full rep of the exercise

 

“Time to get together and workout with your partner. Make a friend while working those abs. Crunch, punch and laugh it out!”

 

Move 6: Breath work

The final relaxation posture is a great way to end a workout as it allows time to come back to your breath after the high-energy exercises:

  • For this posture, it is essential your body is in a neutral position, so lie down on your back with your legs separate and your feet free to fall open either side
  • Bring your arms alongside your body and turn your palms so they are facing upwards
  • Tuck your shoulder blades into your back for support
  • Once settled, let your body become heavy and relaxed, and your breathing rhythm to occur naturally
  • Stay for a minimum of five minutes, but do give enough time to let your body and breathing settle
  • As you come up from the floor, begin with a deep breath and wiggle your toes and fingers to slowly reawaken your body, then stretch your arms over your head for a full-body stretch, and bring your knees to your chest and roll onto your side
  • Slowly, using your hands for support, bring yourself back to a standing position

 

“This is the most important part of the workout as it allows cortisol levels to reduce, and leaves you feeling rejuvenated, restored and happy.”

Try the SBW for yourself on the main stage at Balance Festival this year. Standard admission is priced from £24.50 for day tickets, and from £50 for VIP day tickets. Weekend entry is currently priced at £90. Tickets are available from:

https://www.balance-festival.com/London/Tickets/Sessions

Balance Festival schedule:

Saturday 11  May 2019                                  

09:15       Girls vs Boys of Yoga

10:25       PWR session with Kelsey Wells

11:35       Gymbox presents: Holistic Retreat

12:30       Be a Badass with Zanna vs Jamie

13:10       Stay Sassy with Healthy Chef Steph

14:05       Core Challenge with Carly Rowena

14:45       The SBW with Soul Sisters

15:30       Strong30

16:15       EQUINOX presents: Firestarter

 

Sunday 12 May 2019                                     

09:15       Girls vs Boys of Yoga

10:25       PWR session with Kelsey Wells

11:35       Another Space presents: HIIT 2 Yoga

12:30       Strength and Conditioning with Alice Liveing

13:05       Zanna vs Steph: Come train with us

14:20       HIIT the Beat with Healthy Chef Steph

14:55       Gymbox presents: Holistic Retreat

15:00       Strong30

15:50       Strength and Conditioning with Alice Liveing

16:25       EQUINOX presents: Firestarter


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