Looking for a new approach towards fitness: one that nurtures you on all levels? In our new Autumn issue, we had an opportunity to learn about the principles of inclusiveness, respect and body positivity that guide Universal Space Studio. Founders Mark Logan and Jody Kennedy have a unique aim of uniting mind, body and spirit, in an approach that promotes wellness on all levels of our being. Enjoy our feature below.
The Mind, Body & Spirit Approach
The Unique Fitness Outlook of Universal Space
by Aisling Cronin
In current times, many of us are considering how we can best care for our overall health. This includes the pursuit of growth and development goals that are not just physical in nature, but mental, emotional and even spiritual.
Universal Space Studio recognises that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to health and fitness. We each need to find a way of exercising that perfectly aligns with our bodies’ needs. As co-founders Mark Logan and Jody Kennedy put it, this space was “born out of necessity and the need to cultivate mind, body and spirit in a topsy-turvy 2021.” They are passionate about spreading awareness that the body, mind and spirit need to work together.
During a recent conversation I had with Jody, he said, “Universal Studio came into being over a number of years, based on our own experiences with health and fitness. We came to understand that mind, body and spirit are inseparable. You can’t work on one aspect of yourself without also impacting the others. In the wellness and fitness industry now, it’s common to try and isolate or extract certain parts of ourselves that we’re not happy with: trying to ‘fix’ them. But we have a very holistic approach. Our tagline is connecting the spirit through mind and body.”
The studio’s holistic ethos is deeply embedded in their attitude to fitness and wellbeing. Jody emphasises that for them, a person’s mental and spiritual health is every bit as important as any traditional metric that might be used to measure their fitness. “It’s a real trend in the fitness industry to just use one thing to measure a client’s progress, like their body fat content or how many weights they can lift,” he comments. “When you connect your happiness to an external measurement, though, what happens when you can’t hit that measurement anymore? If you gain weight after having a child, say, or you go through an injury and lose muscle mass as a result.”
“The individual things we fixate on are not necessarily measures of our overall wellbeing. We believe in a truly holistic idea of approaching your health from multiple angles, rather than getting hung up on one, very limited way of measuring it.”
Universal Space is an inclusive studio for people to use their bodies and minds to help them connect with spirit. It works as an adaptable venue that visitors can use as they see fit: an ever-changing space that enables transformation and growth in all areas of life. They facilitate sound bathing, exhibitions, performances, aerial practice, retreats, gatherings, workshops, and video and photo shoots, to name a few.
When you connect your happiness to an external measurement, what happens when you can’t hit that measurement anymore?
As Jody explains, the cultivation of conscious community is a key aspect of Universal Space’s work. “Throughout our careers, we’ve noticed that the main thing that keeps people coming back to workout sessions isn’t necessarily the workout itself, but the people they meet through doing it. The tribes that begin to form. As we’re coming out of a phase where we’ve been extremely isolated, we think it’s very important that social interaction is facilitated again.”
In a world that craves a new approach towards wellness, it is an auspicious time for Universal Space’s body positive goals and ideals to gain traction.
To learn more, visit their website: universalspace.studio