Healthy meets… Body By Simone
There’s something small making big waves over on US shores – and it comes in the form of Australian dancer, Simone De La Rue. This petite powerhouse spent 15 years waltzing her way across stages in the West End and on Broadway but, since retiring, has created the beginnings of a fitness and wellbeing empire in the form of Body By Simone. With sell-out classes at studios in NYC and LA led by herself and fellow dancer trainers, this is a movement everyone wants to be part of – A-listers such as Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Sandra Bullock, Reese Witherspoon and Taylor Swift (to name but a few) all regularly pass through her doors. Yet, despite attracting some of celebrity’s biggest names, the great thing is that BBS is far from elitist.
Simone’s workouts fall into three categories: dance cardio, body toning and mini trampoline-based routines, all of which provide one heck of a workout, but in the most fun way possible. Believe me – the idea of running for half an hour on a treadmill fills me with dread, but I actually get excited at the thought of doing Simone’s dance cardio for nearly an hour, even though I am pretty uncoordinated at the best of times and know I’ll look like a sweaty mess at the end of it.
Chances are, you’re not able to head Stateside for one of her studio-based classes – but, thanks to Simone’s desire to make BBS as inclusive as possible, all you need is a laptop or DVD player to get involved. The DVD features two 55-minute classes: dance cardio, comprising four routines and a core strengthening section, and all-over toning, which hits every part of your body from top to toe. Both are tough and you definitely know you’re being worked, but I always have a smile on my face during and after them. Or, you can subscribe to BBS TV on her website, which is updated each month with a host of 20-minute long videos so you can create your own tailored workout or target specific areas.
Get with the beat
I’ve been working out with Simone for over a year now and am totally hooked – and I know it won’t be long before thousands more like me are, too. Healthy caught up with her to find out exactly what makes BBS so special, and the big plans for the future.
You used to be a professional dancer – when and why did you decide to make the transition from performing to teaching and training dance cardio?
About five years ago, I had an ‘aha!’ moment, when I decided that I was ready to hang up my dance shoes and turn my focus into helping others transform their bodies. I worked with an actress who needed to look like a dancer for a film, and in three months her body had completely changed into that of the desired dancer’s physique: long, lean muscle. I knew at that point this was what I wanted to do.
What do you love most about your job and teaching?
Empowering women. I love to see the physical, emotional and spiritual change that comes from working out; the inner and outer strength that is gained. To me, that is the greatest gift.
Your cardio routines are based around dance moves – what would you say to people who feel they aren’t very coordinated so think that BBS might not be for them?
I always say we are just trying to get our heart rates up and burn calories. It’s not about learning the dance moves perfectly, it’s about using your whole body to move and really just having fun.
What do you think makes BBS different to other dance-based workouts available?
I ask all our clients to leave their ego at the door. Their is no judgement, just positive energy and a loving environment.
Where do you get inspiration for your routines?
From all my years of dancing on stage and the incredible teachers and choreographers I’ve worked with.
You also have a series of full body routines based around toning and conditioning. Would you say it’s just as important to make time for these in your exercise regime as it is calorie-burning cardio?
Absolutely. As women, we need a mix of cardio and toning – we need to take care of our heart health, but also work on strengthening all areas of the body.
How would you like to see BBS develop over the next couple of years?
Another studio in NYC, a studio in London and Australia, and more online content. I would love BBS to become a lifestyle – not only how you exercise and what you eat, but wear, read, watch and do.
Finally, describe BBS in three words.
Joyous, invigorating, inspiring.
Visit bodybysimone.com to find out more and start watching BBS TV classes. Tweet us @healthymag and let us know how you get on!