Take time for self-care

Posted on November 08, 2019

Are you out of shape, feeling tired and lacking energy, stressed and overwhelmed, not to worry, we have a solution for you!

Make 2020 the best year of your life by joining the free 45 minutes group exercise classes designed for people of all shapes, sizes and fitness levels @ 12:30 and 16:15 twice a week at our Hatfield and Onderstepoort campuses.

Bridget, Pumeza, Alida and Ami (Instructor) at a dynamic resistance class.

Employee Wellbeing Program at UP (EWP@UP) recognises that a higher education institution environment can be one of the most stressful workplaces and aims to support the University of Pretoria’s employees in attaining and maintaining healthy lifestyles. Employees should regard their health and wellness as priority and are encouraged to join and participate in various health and wellness activities.

See what you have missed in 2019!

Current group fitness offerings include:

  • Pilates
  • Yoga
  • Dynamic resistance


Pilates is a series of multiple movements and postures inspired by calisthenics, a form of exercise consisting of a variety of movements which exercises large muscle groups. It lengthens and stretches all the major muscle groups in the body in a balanced fashion.

Benefits of Pilates

  • Increased muscle tone
  • Improved flexibility
  • Improved stabilisation of the spine
  • Better muscle control


Yoga is an ancient discipline birthed in India, designed to bring balance and health to the physical, emotional and mental elements of an individual. Yoga is a mind and body practice that is used as a tool to alleviate stress and feel better emotionally, physically and mentally. Yoga consists of gentle stretching, breath control and meditation.

Benefits of Yoga

  • Increased posture
  • Improved sense of balance
  • Better body awareness and concentration
  • Be more calm and relaxed

Dynamic resistance

Classes combine the very best of yoga, old-school calisthenics, sports rehabilitation therapy and dynamic resistance to create one of the most effective fitness plans in existence today.

Benefits of Dynamic resistance

  • Body fat loss
  • Strengthen muscles and ligaments
  • Increased flexibility
  • Improved cardiovascular performance

These are some of the comments from regular attendees:

I had a baby in January 2019 and initially I felt uncertain and afraid. After the very first class, I was hooked. I found the exercises had a huge impact on my body. I felt light and relaxed in the mornings. The instructors had a kind approach and did their very best to give personal attention to those who needed it – Thembi Dodo

It definitely improved my overall health, my strength improved weekly and my fitness level is much better. It has lowered my stress levels immensely. Although the classes were challenging, it made you relax and focus on your own health and made you forget a little bit of the stress at work. Nothing better than waking up in the morning a little bit stiff from exercising and looking forward to the next session – Sandra Wilkinson

Vicky, Aretha, Amanda and Thembisa taking a yoga class.

I am a mom of three toddlers and I work full-time at the University. As much as I love Pilates, I am unable to afford gym at this stage. The group classes have given me an avenue to work on getting fit and stronger, and cope with the general stress of life. They have also created a sense of community with my fellow classmates as we encourage and tease each other on this fitness journey. This has been a huge perk of working at the University, especially as I am able to attend the class during my lunchtime and still be productive in the afternoon – Dezlin Jacobs

Really awesome initiative from UP! Much appreciated! Thank you! – Rita Dave

I feel stronger. I had breast cancer in 2015. Being a working mum, I could not find time to exercise and make the changes I needed to do. Pilates at UP helps me to manage my stress levels and stay healthy – Hettie Mans

Overall, my strength and fitness levels have improved. I am also sleeping better at night and have far more energy – Zimkitha Tsotso

Excellent trainers, conveniently on campus, great stress reliever, great benefit for staff – Martie Meyer

All participants agreed that the benefits they got from the exercises include:

  • Better sleep
  • Stronger core
  • Lower stress levels
  • Flexibility and muscle strength
  • Leaner muscles
  • Mental stimulation and relaxation
  • Weight loss
  • Better posture
  • Energy levels are high
  • Interaction with others

All of us are looking forward to the 2020 fitness offerings. Please join us as we burn away the calories we gained over the festive season!

For next year’s bookings, please be on the lookout for the Wellness communication to book yourself a class to a healthier you!

For enquiries: [email protected] or (012) 420-2870/4193

- Author Dr Rina Buys

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