I’ve already talked about some of the fabulous activities made available to us by Tourism and Events Queensland (TEQ) during a recent famil* on the Gold Coast (namely, stand up paddleboarding; and a raw food cooking demonstration).
Well… as it happens, the fun did not end there. In fact, it actually started elsewhere because our merry little band of bloggers actually began the day with yoga on the esplanade at Broadbeach.
I’m sure you will recall (being such devoted readers ‘n’ all!) I’ve been attending Saturday morning beachside yoga in my hometown of Hervey Bay so was already privy to the zenness of a yoga class with waves crashing in the background.
Laura from the Gold Coast’s Essence of Living (yoga and pilates studio) put us through our paces. She obviously knew what she was doing and constantly provided a range of options for the less *ahem* able (like moi!).
We didn’t visit the Essence of Living studio – located at Mermaid Beach – but before our lesson I sussed out their website and Facebook page and was very impressed with what I saw on offer. Indeed, since returning to Hervey Bay I’ve pointed my local studio (The Holistic Hub) in its direction – as I’d read that the Gold Coast studio is hosting a yoga and whale watching tour here in coming weeks.
I enjoyed the session and it was a bit more challenging than my usual Yoga Chi Gung class, but most memorable for me was an incident which took place during the lesson. We’d only just started when we were approached by a woman. “Is this a private class, or can anyone join in?” she asked.
She happily left after Laura explained it was a private lesson but I was tickled pink at the idea that this older lady (whether she be a local or a tourist) thought free classes might be on offer.
I was even more impressed when I was reliably informed by Shelley (from TEQ) and Laura that the Gold Coast City Council does, in fact, offer free yoga classes as well as a range of other activities. Indeed, Essence of Living actually teaches a number of free and subsidised classes.
What. A. Fabulous. Initiative.
I LOVE the fact that some of our local Councils here in Queensland are putting their money where their mouths are when it comes to promoting fit and healthy communities. Not to mention the fact that they’re making use of existing and highly qualified schools and instructors, so there can be no question about the quality of activities on offer!
When I worked in Brisbane I had the opportunity to go to a Brisbane City Council gym (available FREE to Council employees, or for a low-cost to other organisations on site!) and was impressed that Council provided such a service.
And, here on the Fraser Coast, the Council recently held 8 weeks of exercise classes – catering to a range of interests and levels of fitness.
On top of that, in my hometown there is a fabulous path stretching from one end of Hervey Bay to the other that just cries out for locals and visitors to walk or ride along it. Council has also installed a number of exercise machines so the more-enthusiastic can stop enroute AND (given the popularity of cycling the path) and has scattered basic bicycle repair stations along the Esplanade.
I must confess I’m one of the first to criticise my local Council for various slights against my hip pocket or (always-correct) point of view, and I don’t offer up enough kudos for the good work they do. So, I’m taking the opportunity to apologise.
I love that Councils here in Queensland are taking their community’s health seriously and hope to see more of it.
Does your local government (or equivalent) offer similar experiences and activities?
For more information about the Gold Coast’s Active and Healthy program, click here.
*Familiarisation event/activity, for those not in the know! 😉