Mind, body and soul: holistic wellness with Nathalie Schyllert / Culture , Experiences
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Mind, body and soul: holistic wellness with Nathalie Schyllert

The co-owner and CEO of Bodyism talks fitness, nutrition and post-workout treats

The co-owner and CEO of Bodyism talks fitness, nutrition and post-workout treats

Bodyism is on a mission; to put mind over muscle. Stop by their flagship club in Notting Hill and you’ll quickly find that for this boutique fitness group, getting in shape is about being kind to yourself. That means taking a whole-body approach that balances mindset, nutrition, movement and sleep – a philosophy that Domus Stay guests can experience, no membership needed.

We speak to co-owner Nathalie Schyllert about her studio’s 360° approach to fitness and why carbs and takeaways are not necessarily off the menu.

Bodyism is an instantly recognisable name. Can you tell us about its rise to cult status?

We started with a small personal training studio in 2007 that was mainly for one-to-one sessions. It was a low-key location and we didn’t have signs outside, but because we started to build relationships with our members and the press, we started getting the brand out there. Our flagship club in Notting Hill has been open for just over five years now. We have everything in here, from our healthy café stocked with our own supplements, to our PT and class studios. Since then, we’ve opened branches in six different locations including Holland Park Villas, Burlington Gate, Hampshire and Saadiyat island in Abu Dhabi.

Wellness and fitness have grown more popular. What makes Bodyism different?

Bodyism is all about the full 360° lifestyle – it’s not about just going to the gym or taking your supplements. It’s a lifestyle approach, which is easier because we have everything under one roof. Bodyism is part of everyone's community. Even if you're not a member, you can come into the café and just feel like you're a part of a community; everyone knows your name and your coffee order. It’s a very welcoming space.

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Can you delve a little further into Bodyism’s full-body philosophy?

We tailor training individually, helping you with everything from nutrition to sleep. If you’ve had a stressful week at work, instead of doing a hardcore workout you might want to change your session to yoga to improve your cortisol level. Rather than training hard, we train smart. Our PTs work as teams, so as a member you’ll normally have around three trainers to rotate your workouts and achieve your fitness goals.

A healthy and nutritious lifestyle is important to our philosophy too. In our café you can have banana bread as a treat but you know that it's refined sugar-free. We don't believe in starving yourself or having steamed chicken and broccoli every day. You need to enjoy your food for it to be manageable long term, so we've come up with recipes like our protein pancakes that are guilt-free and delicious.

Our guests can enjoy a complimentary group class and access to your personal trainers, without a membership. What experience can they expect?

We have everything from yoga to boxing here. The variety of the classes is unique; no other studio offers everything under one roof, especially in this area. They can expect the best instructors in London (if not the world) as well as the friendliest team and members – it’s a great place to meet new friends. Our like-minded members are all very caring and genuine and the local community is very sweet.

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How has Bodyism evolved and does this reflect changes in the wellness industry?

Yes, 100 per cent! I think when we started, it was very rare to have a high-quality gym or trainer in an office or even in a hotel. That was the last thing people thought about. Hotels certainly prioritised having an inviting spa but the gym was an after-thought. Gradually, the demand for nicer gyms grew and often, people chose places to stay based on the quality of the wellness facilities. I don’t think many people go on holiday just to drink because they don’t feel good by the end of it. Now, there’s an option to balance a few glasses of wine and daily training.

It’s the same with corporate wellness: companies have started to realise the benefits of happy and healthy employees, and the fact that this fosters loyalty to the company. We work with Universal Music and host a lot of talks around mental health and nutrition for the team, so it’s a 360° approach. There’s also that part of building a sense of community within work; you’re catching up with your team over a group class, not just in meetings.

What’s your favourite class? 

My favourite class is probably our Bodyism signature class. It’s a great way of working your whole body; you don’t use weights but you’re toning, lifting and shaping your body while getting the heart rate up. It’s best for creating that feminine, long, athletic body that Bodyism is famous for. To gain more body muscle or for people who want to use weights, you can easily add that in, but just the circuits themselves are an effective workout.

What’s your go-to healthy recipe or post-workout treat?

Well, I usually have the body brilliance shake post-workout because it has some green tea extract to give me a bit of extra energy as well as protein – it’s like drinking a salad that tastes like chocolate. It has all the greens that you need. It’s very important that you get protein in the body straight after training so you’re not burning muscles. I always try to make healthy breakfasts with the kids – either healthy scones with oats or buckwheat pancakes. There used to be a debate around having carbs a few years ago but it’s more about what carbs you’re having and the quality of them.

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What are your tips for people with busy schedules to stay fit?

We offer virtual classes and PT sessions, so if you’re too busy to leave the house, fitting in 30-45 minutes of exercise can make a big difference. If you can get into a routine and do it every day, even better. Don't feel down about not getting the full hour in and maybe try to walk in between meeting. You can get fresh air and walking in London is great for your fitness.

If you don't have time to cook a nutritious dish, there are plenty of healthy takeaway options, especially if you're staying in Notting Hill. Restaurants like Jusu brothers have great soup, and Granger and Co deliver now – we’re also on Deliveroo, so a takeaway isn’t always unhealthy.

Where do you like to go on your days off?

It might sound strange but now and again, if I have time to spare, one of my favourite things to do is come into Bodyism for a class and a massage in one of our two treatment rooms. It’s such a treat for me. If I have a day off with my children, we usually go for walks in Richmond Park and follow it up with a nice meal.  

@bodyism

bodyism.com

@nathalieschyllert

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