The Taste of Autumn: 5 Must-Try Autumn Recipes

education food prep recipes Apr 27, 2021

As the leaves begin to turn their magnificent colours and the temperatures start to drop, signs of autumn are everywhere. Just what is it about autumn that brings about feelings of nostalgia? Memories of snow sports, warm fires and cozy sweaters come to mind — and the irresistible assortment of fall foods that accompany them.

Evolutionarily, we are designed to eat according to the seasons. Foods are at their nutritional peak, they provide properties that help keep our bodies comfortable during changing temperatures, and best of all, the flavour of in-season food is unparalleled. Autumn foods are designed to prepare our bodies for low food supply in the winter and to provide rich sources of vitamins and minerals to fill our nutrient reserves.

Looking for some new autumn staples? 

Apples

None

This fruit has enough varieties and flavours to appeal to everyone — sweet, tart and even sour make apples nature’s candy. Beyond the incredible taste, apples are an excellent...

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What Is Pilates Good For?

education pilates Apr 23, 2021

There are six key principles of Pilates: concentration, control, centering, breathing, flow and precision, all of which are developed as skills with regular practice. It was designed as a resistance exercise to promote strength without bulking up.

Pilates focuses on strength, toning, flexibility and great posture with an emphasis on core strength. It works your most powerful, deepest muscle groups: your core, spine, hips and lats, all of which support a strong, elongated body and long, lean, stable musculature.

In short, it’s great for building muscular endurance, core strength and flexibility.

Increasing Core Strength

Pilates often requires you to move one body part while keeping others still. Since movement is generated and stabilised by the core, the muscles of your abdomen, back, hips and pelvis gain strength with repeated practice.

Pilates strengthens supporting muscles to keep you upright. The idea is to develop muscles evenly and symmetrically so one group doesn’t...

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7 Reasons Prenatal Pilates Will Make Your Pregnancy Better

education pilates Mar 18, 2021

If you’re looking to stay fit—and feeling good—throughout those nine months, look no further than Align Pilates Reformer Classes. 

Pregnant? First of all, congratulations!! 

Once you have had the all clear from your GP Prenatal Pilates is one of the best forms of exercise you can do—and you should start as early in your pregnancy as possible. 

Not only is Pilates completely safe during pregnancy for most women, it’s an intelligent, whole-body approach to conditioning. Pilates is one of the only exercise methods out there that will give you the muscle strengthening, the stretching and the breath-work you need.

Need more reasons to do Prenatal Pilates? 

1 - Pilates is just the things for you body as it changes and your baby grows! 

As the body changes throughout pregnancy, there are certain things that become a little challenging, namely balance, endurance and coordination. In your Pilates practice, you’re working...
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Pregnancy Guidelines

education pilates workouts Jan 24, 2021

PREGNANCY GUIDELINES

During a normal and healthy pregnancy, Pilates is a safe form of exercise for the body, mind and spirit!

Pilates is best experiences with an instructor, but this is not always possible, so if group classes are the only option, it is important to find a class where the instructor can change, modify exercises accordingly depending on the stage of pregnancy. In general Pilates classes, many exercises are no longer appropriate (e.g lying prone/on belly, abdominal curls)

 

PREGNANCY AND EXERCISE

Precautions when exercising and signs to stop

Review the general precautions when exercising, if any of the following warning signs are observed – stop exercising immediately!

  • Dizziness
  • Feeling faint
  • Nausea
  • Racing heat beat
  • Overheating
  • Shortness of breath
  • Uterine contractions
  • Bleeding or leaking fluids
  • Headache
  • Muscle weakness
  • Pre-term labour
 Absolute contraindications to exercise when pregnant 
  • Pregnancy induced hypertension
    - Blood pressure >...
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New To A Pilates Class? Tips & FAQs

education pilates Dec 29, 2020

If you’ve decided to start taking ALIGN Pilates classes, well done! You’ve made a great decision to take your health and fitness to the next level. No matter your experience or current fitness level, ALIGN Pilates has classes to suit everyone. If you’re completely new to Pilates, we’ve put together some of our best tips to ensure you’re ready to go and making the most of your workout!

DO YOU NEED TO BRING ANYTHING WITH YOU?

Just a sweat towel! Feel free to bring a water bottle with you if you like, we have water for sale and a drinking fountain available just outside our studio – so all you really need to bring is your towel and smiley self!

Note: We do not allow glass bottles in the studio as if you kick them and they break it is a hazard for our bare feet! Feel free to leave them in your locker.  

ARRIVE 10 MINUTES EARLY

Don’t forget to arrive 10 minutes before your first class to meet your Pilates Instructor. We would...

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What are the health benefits of seeds? Including hemp seeds?!

Big nutritional benefits can come in small packages.

Seeds are one of the easiest, cheapest and most versatile ways to add nutrition to a meal. They can be a sneaky addition – scattered into stir-fries, added to smoothies, sprinkled into cereals, yoghurt or salads – or they can be the centre-stage stars of a biscuit, veggie pattie, raw ball or slice.

Seeds are sources of:

  • soluble fibre (for bowel health, try equal quantities of ground linseeds, pepitas and sunflower seeds on your breakfast)

  • protein (when complemented with legumes, except hemp seeds which are a complete protein – more on them shortly)

  • vitaminE

  • healthy oils

  • satiety(that‘full’,satisfied feeling after a meal).

Seeds are little power houses of healthy fats, soluble fibre and various minerals and vitamins, including vitamin E. They vary in the phytochemicals, minerals and vitamins they provide, so mix them up for a range of benefits.

So what do different seeds have to offer?

...
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Why Should I Exercise?

education workouts Aug 22, 2020

We have all heard it many times before - regular exercise is good for you, and it can help you lose weight. But if you are like many people, you are busy, you have a sedentary job, and you haven't yet changed your exercise habits. The good news is that it's never too late to start. You can start slowly, and find ways to fit more physical activity into your life. If you can do it, the payoff is that you will feel better, help prevent or control many diseases, and likely even live longer.

What are the health benefits of exercise?

Regular exercise and physical activity may..

  • Help you control your weight 
    Along with diet, exercise plays an important role in controlling your weight and preventing obesity. To maintain your weight, the calories you eat and drink must equal the energy you burn. To lose weight, you must use more calories than you eat and drink.

  • Reduce your risk of heart diseases.
    Exercise strengthens your heart and improves your circulation. The increased blood flow...
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Mood Boosting Chocolate Slice - (great for PMS)

education food prep recipes Aug 19, 2020

This slice can satisfy a chocolate craving while giving you a good dose of nutrients that may support mood – in particular, magnesium and vitamin B6.

Ingredients 

Method

  1. Process Brazil nuts in a food processor until they become a coarse meal. Remove from bowl, set aside.
  2. Process dates in food processor for 1-2 minutes, until they form large clumps. Add Brazil nut meal and raw cocoa to dates, process to combine.
  3. Transfer mixture to large mixing bowl, add oats, seeds and pepitas, and use your hands to combine the mixture well.
  4. In a small saucepan, warm the ABC spread and maple syrup over low heat until melted, combined and pourable. Do not let it boil.
  5. Add to...
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Mental and Emotional Health

education Aug 19, 2020

Depression

Depression affects one in five. Depression is more than feeling sad or blue, it’s a condition that can stop you doing everyday activities and change the way you think, feel and behave. If you experience some of the following symptoms over a period of two weeks you may be depressed and it’s important to seek help.

  • Physical: sleep disturbance, changes in eating, headaches, loss of energy
  • Feelings: depressed mood most of the time, sense of hopelessness, anxiety, feelings of heaviness

  • Thoughts: unhelpful thoughts such as ‘I’m a failure’; ‘I’m hopeless’; ‘It’s all my fault’

  • Behaviours: withdrawal from social situations, less pleasure or interest in activities you once loved, loss of interest in your appearance 

Anxiety

One in four women will experience anxiety at some time in their life. Anxiety involves extreme feelings of fear and worry. There are many different types of anxiety...

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Bone Health

education Aug 18, 2020

How is bone made?

Normal bone is made up of a mixture of calcium, magnesium and other minerals.
It also contains collagen, a protein that forms the physical framework of bone. Throughout life, bone is constantly being broken down and renewed.

By 17 years of age, 90% of bone growth is complete. This means that childhood and the teenage years are the most important time for bone to be made. From our 30s onwards, more bone is broken down than made, resulting in a gradual decrease in bone strength as we age.

Hormones such as oestrogen play a role in maintaining bone strength. When women go through menopause, there is a significant fall in oestrogen, resulting in rapid bone loss in the years immediately after menopause. This rate of loss slows 4-8 years after menopause.

What is osteoporosis?

When bones lose minerals such as calcium more quickly than the body can replace them, this leads to a loss of bone thickness (also called bone mass or density). With osteoporosis, bones become...

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