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Sweaty Betty X Equinox preview: Meet barre instructor Nicola Cher Geismar

posted on Monday, 17th November 2014 | find under Tamara, Fitness
If you haven’t entered for a chance to win a place in Sweaty Betty’s studio takeover at Equinox in South Kensington, you have until Friday 21 November to do so. And it’s worth acting fast. At the exclusive London event on Saturday 29 November, Sweaty Betty will invite 20 lucky winners to enjoy a free Inside Out Barre class, post-workout treats and goody bags.

Sign up here, then read on to learn what Equinox’ own guest instructor Nicola Cher Geismar has to say about staying fit and inspired. 

What is your fitness background, and how did you become an instructor?

I started to dance as a kid for personal therapy and self-expression, then came to Pilates later on as a young adult when I needed to smooth out some muscular imbalances caused by dancing. The fitness world was always very inviting to me, as I was drawn to the varied cross section of people that health and wellbeing centres attract. 

You also run a beautiful photo blog on cityismyplayground.tumblr.com. How does health and fitness tie into this? 

Health and wellbeing play an important aspect in my life, so much so that it has completely informed and inspired all of my projects, including City is my Playground. The photos on the blog are a visual reflection of a lifestyle I live, breathe and use for self-expression. It demonstrates how empowered I am by the benefits of making healthy, active choices on a daily basis. 

Have you posted any particular photos with extra special significance?  

The photo above was taken in Paris, not long after I was bedbound for some weeks as a result of tearing a ligament in my knee. I had to change the way I trained, stop dancing and learn to express myself in an alternative way that would still be authentic to my physicality and creative expression. The result is what you see in the photo, flexing in the city.

What’s unique about Inside Out Barre? Please give our Guest Instructor Event winners an idea of what to expect! 

It’s such a fun, dynamic workout that combines postural elements from Pilates, yoga-inspired stretches and functional movements to remind you that the body is designed to MOVE! We then go a step forward by cranking up your metabolism with LOTS of reps. The class will fully awaken the most important muscle groups, without placing excess impact on the joints.  

What are your favourite ways to stay fit? 

I am a big advocate of cross training so I try to fit it all in. I do love my yoga and gyrokinesis classes, and more recently I’ve become a fan of House of VOGA as I really like to get down to some 80s sounds while practicing traditional yoga postures.

However, my favourite way of staying in tiptop form is playing outdoors and doing what I call ‘flexing in the city’. This is an invigorating way to work on my strength, flexibility, balance and cardio skills all at once. 

If we were to peek inside your gym bag, what would we find? 

In my gym bag you will find a Bobble water bottle – always full. Self-massage balls, loads of sports tops and a few pairs of leggings. I always like to have choices in activewear! 

How are you most likely to treat yourself after a tough workout? 

After a tough workout, I often treat myself with something sweet like a Ben’s Cookie. The peanut butter ones just melt in your mouth! 

Finally, in which bar or club do you most like to practice your dance skills (outside of class)?  

I often have a good ol' boogie anywhere, anytime and everywhere. If a good tune comes on that I can jam to, I am up and away! 

Feeling inspired? Enter for your chance to train with Nicola on 29 November. We’ll meet you at the barre! 
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