|Discipline||Reformer/mat Pilates, yoga, fitness|
|Price||$$ (scroll down for price details)|
Hidden in one of Mid-Levels leafy flies of stairs, away from the hustle and bustle of streets nearby, Anhao Wellness is the cutest pilates studio I’ve had the occasion to visit in Hong Kong. Its light, openness and small size make it very special and a very pleasant place to exercise in.
Who is behind and at Anhao Wellness?
Estelle Neve, the founder, is a former French National Gymnast, certified personal trainer, and Pilates instructor. She created Anhao Wellness in 2012. There was one floor first (the 4th floor) and 2 years later, came an extension at ground floor, allowing to add reformer Pilates to the studio’s offer: mat Pilates and yoga classes, and PT sessions (focused on functional fitness).
Her interest for Pilates was not a case of “love at first sight”. It came progressively as she realized it would be another way – sometimes a better way – to help her clients, as some of them needed to work differently and/or deeply on their core muscles stability, strength and mobility. Athletes, pre and post-natal women, people recovering from injury, Pilates fanatics and Yoga lovers form Anhao’s crowd.
A class of reformer Pilates
The studio is small – 4 reformers only – but bright and nestled amongst the trees. Joining the lunchtime class, I even had the occasion to exercise with daylight only, windows open, birdsong as a background, with no A/C needed (which is actually significant when it comes to wellness in my opinion!).
One of the big advantages of reformer Pilates is that you can totally adapt your challenge to your level, thanks to the springs, putting on as many as you like. Estelle is checking regularly with us if the resistance is adapted to do so.
The first part of the class was very focused on legs, using the springs to reproduce different variations of squats or doing hamstring strain exercises thanks to straps. Then came a phase of abs work: lower abs, higher ones, obliques, we went through all of them, before moving to an upper-body phase working on arms, shoulders, and back.
We finished the class with a few exercises, to give us a proper deep stretch, using the reformer.
Is it for you?
It’s a very slow-paced class, guided in details by Estelle (with the cutest French accent!), allowing to work “in depth” – which is one of the reasons why Pilates are amazing for any kind of rehab. So you have to like that kind of work and its very “personal” aspect, pushing your own limits.
But don’t be fooled, it may have been quite slow, but muscles were still seriously shaking and laughing was quite painful the day after all those abs exercises. So it may not be your usual fitness class, jumping around, high fiving your partners to the sound of loud music, but the workout is definitely challenging, on the whole body, and efficient.
Beginners are totally welcome! Like I said, you’re guided in details and as it’s a small class, you have all the attention you need.
First trial: HK$250
Single session: HK$350
10 sessions pack: HK$3,200
20 sessions pack: HK$5,800
Access to all floors, all classes, valid 6 months