Taking Flight: Experiencing Rafters Mind Body Air Pilates Studio and Exhale Espresso

Taking Flight: Experiencing Rafters Mind Body Air Pilates Studio and Exhale Espresso


Walking into Rafters Mind Body Air studio on Lord Street is like stepping into an urban sanctuary — you’ll find pretty much everything you need in one place to help you reset, de-stress and gain a new perspective on your busy life.

Coffee and Treats

From your first step inside the door, you’re greeted by the friendly faces and delicious aromas of Exhale Espresso — tucked away, the little cafe boasts a selection of food to cater to yogis looking for replenishment after being suspended mid-air for 55 minutes as well as busy people from local businesses, who are delighted to have a new neighbourhood gem.

The atmosphere is as relaxed as you’d expect from a cafe that backs onto a pilates studio - it’s friendly, but without any pressure to chat, if you don’t want to!

Bend and Fly

Working up an appetite to indulge in one of their delicious gluten free and vegan bites or paninis and salads isn’t too difficult either. Under the same roof as Exhale Espresso you’ll find two studios offering Aerial Yoga and Aerial Pilates, Mat Pilates, Barre and Pilates Reformer classes.

The thought of doing a downward dog while your feet are suspended in a silk might be daunting, but the beautiful teachers at Rafters make you feel like it’s the most natural thing in the world. The class I attended began in a cocoon, where we floated mindfully with our entire bodies supported by our silks. We moved on to use the silks as props for downward dogs (both feet suspended), triangle/warrior II (one foot suspended) and even cat-cow.

By the end of the 55-minute class when I thought I had seen and done all that could be done, we manoeuvred ourselves into an inversion, supported by silks behind our hips.

The experience wasn’t like anything I had ever done before — floating in a cocoon was one of the most amazing ways to both begin and seal in our exhilarating practice.

I can see how you might get hooked on practicing aerial pilates and yoga — just like trying to lift yourself into a headstand, successfully suspending and supporting yourself mid-air takes practice, but the reward is in feeling and seeing your body adapt to its new capabilities.

If taking flight isn’t for you, however, Rafters’ other classes cater for everyone — mat pilates to keep you grounded or reformer pilates if you need to take your practice to the next level.

With a one week trial for $30, obtaining a new perspective won’t break the bank, and you might discover a passion for flying!

Blog lovingly provided by Gabrielle Campion


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