fitness program

What a Tibetan Monk taught me about Wellness

I’m no expert on Buddhism, but something about the inherent philosophies of the Eastern religion resonates with my holistic view on health and wellness. I’ve been to a handful of Dharma chats by Buddhist monks in Asia, and am always captivated by their jovial spirits and useful lessons.

Recently I attended a talk by The Fifth Amnyi Trulchung Rinpoche, a visiting Buddhist monk from Tibet, passionate to help make people live happier lives. While I believe wellness has its roots in a range of philosophies and schools including medicine, naturopathy, meditation, neurology and sports science, I’m confident this clever man’s lessons can apply to everyone in their business and personal lives.


1. Spend most of your time on goals that are important to you

The visiting monk told us a story from Buddhist text about a man who was trying to rub down a steel pipe to make a needle. He was so obsessed with it, he wouldn’t stop and realise how frivolous it was - he would never get it down to the size of a needle in his lifetime. This man's main life goal was to improve his meditation, but he spent almost all his time trying to make this needle. I was told this applies to everyone: If you have a goal - something you want to improve - spend all your time on that. Don’t let trivial, meaningless things get in the way of your goal because it’s so easy to get distracted. And I'll bet the man in the story didn't have the distraction of social media like we do now!

This applies to wellness: If you want to lose weight and be fitter, devote your time to working out, even if it's just a walk around the block. Instead of checking your social media and spending two hours a day watching reality TV, you can devote this time to your goal so you achieve it faster. It's hard but worth it!

2. Don’t just focus on results, engage in the journey

It's like the old "it's about the journey not the destination" saying. Amnyi Trulchung Rinpoche told us too many people focus on the results of something, instead of the practice itself. He said if they immediately transfer their energy from the outcome to the practice, the practice immediately gets better. In the end then too, the outcome is better! While he was talking about getting better at meditation, this philosophy works for any skill and any business. 

This applies to wellness: If you want to eat better, instead of spending ten minutes lamenting your weight on the scales and berating yourself over the brownie you ate at lunch - redirect that energy to sourcing local produce and healthy recipes. Take time and pride in creating healthy, nutritious-filled dishes and you’ll find you’ll eat better overall. Plus! It’s much better to spend your energy on something positive rather than negative - your self esteem will thank you for it.

wellness program

3. Wake up with happy thoughts

Everyday, Amnyi Trulchung Rinpoche wakes up and says to himself he hopes every sentient being lives happily and healthily and without suffering. He told us he knows this doesn’t mean every living thing in the world will have the best day ever! But he said waking up with a positive mindset and wishing others and yourself well is a really useful way to start the day - and it lingers throughout the day.

This applies to wellness: If you’ve ever been to yoga, you know some instructors will finish the lesson with a similar statement, before the requisite “Namaste.”Rather than waiting until yoga, try and think a positive thought first thing every morning. It can help you start the day in a positive mindset, and better prepares you to combat stress throughout that day.

4. Don't disregard people because they live differently to you

During the session, this charming monk told us about a monk who was famous in Tibet in the 1950's. He was dismissed by Tibetan society and officials for being a disloyal monk because he drank and smoked occasionally, and even had girlfriends. Unfortunately though, he was also incredibly clever, and was one of the few prominent men in the country who spoke English. At a time when a seat at the UN could have determined Tibet's future, the one man who spoke English and would have been the ideal choice was shunned by his country. The monk told us the seat at the UN remained empty, and we all know what happened next. 

This applies to wellness: Different therapies, techniques and philosophies appeal to different people, and just because you may not agree that Bikram yoga is worthwhile, someone else will think it's great! And plenty do. Wellness is about promoting mind and body wellbeing, so rather than dismiss other schools of thought, see what you can learn from them.

As a Physio I have a medical background and used to be cynical about some alternative therapies, but I can't tell you how many patients have seen incredible results from them that no other therapy or pill could provide. One woman was cured of chronic anxiety after a number of sessions of Bowen therapy. You never know what you could learn, so keep your heart open to hearing about different people's wellness goals.


I’m no expert, but I know wellness is multi-faceted. If we can all integrate mindfulness to make clearer, better decisions about how we spend our time, who we spend it with, and what our goals are - we’re one step closer to living well! 

What have you learned from someone that has helped you come closer to your wellness goals?

Aerobic Fitness Programs - Vital for Holistic Wellness

The modern wellness guest wants tranquility and the mental & physical benefits from cardio workouts- so why are curated aerobic fitness programs still missing from many wellness retreats and luxury hotels?



Aerobic Exercise - Ultimate Wellness for Mind & Body

Exercise that gets your heart pumping has benefits for both the mind and body. Thanks to countless studies, aerobic exercise has been proven to be a reliable aspect of the treatment of stress, anxiety, and depression. Clearly, it's an instant mood elevator, but it has far more physical benefits than exercise that doesn't get your heart racing. While yoga and stand up paddle boarding might leave you feeling great, the long-term physical effects aren't as extensive. Don't get me wrong, yoga and Pilates have their very vital place in a wellness retreat, but their inclusion shouldn't mean the exclusion of aerobic exercise.

Strangely though, few wellness retreats offer carefully curated aerobic programs.

Wellness Consulting

Current retreat & hotel fitness offerings: Too generic

Many luxury wellness retreats and hotels offer you the options of hiking, stand up paddle boarding and yoga, but a personalised touch is the newest trademark of luxury travel. As a Physical Therapist and Wellness Consultant, I know no two people are alike even though they may have the same gender, background, and age.

These days many people feel pressure to be able to do a Bow Pose in yoga, hike to the mountain peak or do a plank in Pilates. When they can't live up to this pressure, they're left feeling isolated and incompetent - the opposite goal of a luxury retreat or hotel.

Whether they can't participate because of anxiety, injury, pain or fitness, wellness retreats need to offer personalised programs to motivate and challenge people in an inclusive way.
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A Modern Approach to Health Wellness Fitness

Your guests just want to relax and escape the stress in their lives - so why not offer a modern fitness program to leave them motivated, inspired and rejuvenated?

 Rather than a 'one size fits all approach' created by a general wellness curator, luxury guests demand professional yet evidence-based programs to challenge them, and teach them strategies they can take home.

Why not offer an 3 in-room workout videos to cater to different levels of fitness, or a simple 5-pose Pilates program? 

As a Physical Therapist, Personal Trainer and Pilates instructor, I can incorporate my medical background with holistic wellness strategies to create tailor-made programs for different luxury clients. These modern yet simple programs can really help motivate and inspire people during their stay and long after. Programs that can be created for your wellness resort:

Beach-side Retreats

  • Better cardio fitness in 10 days: an intensive program
  • Beach workout: abs, legs and glutes
  • Water fitness: Intensive workouts for pool and beach
  • Joint-friendly workout: Water & low impact fitness
  • Say goodbye to back pain

Remote Retreats

  • Balance and concentration workout for 50+
  • In-room workouts for low back pain
  • High intensity walking programs
  • Yoga for sore knees
  • Fitness program for anxiety, depression and stress

Mountain top/Winter Retreats

  • Après Ski Cool Down
  • Ski Fitness program
  • Optimal hiking fitness (Different programs for different age groups)

*All of these programs utilise elements of aerobic exercise to optimise mind and body wellness. They're not personalised per client, but they're unique enough to cater to your particular clientele.

Your guests deserve to achieve their wellness goals, and rather than offering stock standard programs that may leave your guests injured or anxious, by consulting with professionals with backgrounds in sports science and biomechanics like Aprivé Wellness, you create an inclusive, safe and personalised wellness service.

luxury Wellness consultant

Fitness is an inconspicuous luxury recently published an article that said "wellness has become an important part of the luxury lifestyle," and the article's focus was fitness clubs like Soul Cycle and Barry's Bootcamp.  The article goes on to say that not only does fitness help you look and feel good, it's also a way for high earners to make more inconspicuous luxury purchases. 

"If five years ago it was a Céline bag, today’s ultimate status symbol might just be a SoulCycle hoodie and a green juice."

Now, more than ever, luxury guests are demanding the worlds of indulgent luxury merge with functional fitness. 

Do you need help creating inspiring, safe fitness programs for your retreat or hotel?