Since we started the Push It Real Good walks I’ve often crossed path with the Buggy Fit squad in Pittville Park. It always felt a touch awkward – there was us meandering around the lake and there they were powering on through with resistance bands hanging off their buggies and a look of determination in their eyes. I’m inherently a very lazy person so I always felt relieved to be on the slower team.
So it was with some caution that I accepted Joan’s (Physiotherapist, qualified personal trainer and owner of the Buggy Fit operation in Cheltenham) invitation to review a Buggy Fit , class but when the day arrived, the skies were bright blue and the park was a stunning place to be, so I arrived with the little one wrapped up and securely fastened into my all terrain buggy ready for action. I was absolutely certain that she would be a howling nightmare all the way through, begging to be let out and ‘walk mummy walk’ and that I wouldn’t make it to the end of the hour long class, but that was one or many assumptions I had about Buggy Fit that were dispelled during this fun session that I was able to enjoy alongside my toddler.
Here’s a few other myths about Buggy Fit…..
1. You have to be super fit. WRONG! Joan’s class is amazingly well tailored to all abilities. Mums can come once they’ve had their GP check or 12 weeks post caesarean section so they are healed inside and out. Joan checks all mums for a diastasis (tummy muscle separation) on their first visit and your level of fitness doesn’t matter. It had been a while since I’d done anything too energetic and each exercise could be tailored to each level. As we started a new activity at varying points around Pittville Park we were always presented with a couple of options to meet our fitness level – so run a lap of the area we were in or run half a lap or a quarter. There are also enough mums at each class that if you are the one that hasn’t been for a run in three years you won’t be alone. We had to pair up in a lot of the exercises and everyone was extremely welcoming.
2. You can only bring teeny babies. WRONG! Buggy Fit welcomes children of all ages. It takes place on a Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning at 10.30 at Pittville Park (meeting at the Pump Rooms) and there were mums with pre schoolers on bikes and scooters, mums like me determined to keep their toddlers strapped into buggies with the help of snacks and mums with tiny ones snoozing away or watching intently at this group of squatting and lunging Mamans. I would have bet a not insignificant about of money that the Bébé would have been whinging after twenty minutes but she clearly found the class more entertaining than a twenty minute episode of Dora The Explorer and sat fascinated and enjoying a more determined buggy push that she was used to.
3. You need a super dooper Chelsea Tractor style buggy. WRONG! Even though I brought mine you really don’t go off road and most of the exercises are done with the buggies parked up. If your buggy is capable of being pushed around the lake at Pittville Park on the paved path then it will be fine for Buggy Fit. No expensive equipment required.
4. You have to commit to paying for a stretch of classes (which is tricky when you’re a mum – life has so many variables doesn’t it?) WRONG! If you fancy giving it a try; your first class is free if you choose (at the end of it) to sign up for an eight week block. You can either pay on a drop in basis (£6.50 per class), pay for a block of 8 classes (£44 with NO expiry date) or pay £72 for a two month unlimited card where you could (should you choose to) come to three classes a week over two months (meaning you classes would be £3 each and your mum tum will be well on the road to recovery!)
5. The classes are fair weather only. WRONG! Joan is out in the park supporting Mums to feel a little bit more like their former selves, three days a week regardless of the weather. If you wake up on a Monday morning and have a long day ahead with an energetic toddler it might seem easier to stay at home and have a duvet day – guarantee you’ll be regretting that by 11am. Get wrapped up warm and hit the park for some fresh air, great company and exercise that truly is appropriate for all abilities. I promise you won’t regret it.
We loved our class and will be back for more. You could see from the number of mums who turned up that I’m not the only one who think this combination of spending time with your child, whilst doing something for you, is a total winner.
You can find out more about Buggy Fit here. Tell Joan we sent you!
This is an endorsed blog post. All views are my own.