Where Parents Go to Get Fit

Images by Emily Cordonier, Jules Hillier and Sarah Thompson

It’s the start of a new year and people everywhere are making (and probably already breaking) resolutions. New year’s resolutions often revolve around getting more exercise, particularly if you’re a new mom (or dad) trying to work more fitness into your routine. But making time for exercise isn’t always easy when you have young kids. So, we’re helping you out by putting together a list of some of the top places parents can go to work out in Ottawa.

Fitness with Jules
Jules Hilliker of ‘Fitness with Jules’ is one of the best known postnatal fitness instructors in Ottawa. Jules is a passionate and inspiring instructor who was named CanFitPro Trainer of the year in 2012. She offers ‘mom and baby gym’ classes in Orleans and the Glebe. In the spring and summer, she runs a free parent and baby stroller class. Through the winter months she offers a free indoor stroller class at St. Laurent shopping centre. Jules will also help design a personal home work out program for parents who are returning to work.

For more information on ‘Fitness with Jules’ check out http://www.fitnesswithjules.com

Mom and Baby Bootcamp
Kate Laird is a personal trainer and yoga instructor who offers a ‘Mom and Baby Bootcamp’ on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. The sessions are currently run out of Crossfit 1855 on Laperriere, and they combine weights and strength work with cardio. It’s a tough but fun class that is guaranteed to make you sweat. Parents are welcome to bring babies and kids of all ages to class.

For more information on Kate Laird and her class check out

Dovercourt Mom and Baby Programs
Dovercourt Recreation Centre in Westboro offers a number of options for postnatal fitness. There is aqua fitness with your baby, TRX and core conditioning with your baby, spin and core conditioning with your baby and Anna’s Extra Special Mom and Baby Variety class. Dovercourt prides itself on offering flexible options including ‘kindercorner’ drop in daycare and make up classes. Dovercourt also offers a deal where if you register for two classes, you get the second one half off.

For more info on the multitude of parent friendly classes at Dovercourt visit https://www.dovercourt.org/enterprise/healthwellness_prepostnatal

Fitmom Ottawa
Fitmom is a popular and established exercise franchise with operations across Canada. The Ottawa chapter is run by Susan McDonald. Susan offers both prenatal and postnatal indoor fitness classes, as well as an outdoor stroller fitness class in the summer. The mom and baby classes are a full body work out aimed at improving core strength, burning fat and building muscle. Classes are offered in New Edinburgh, Old Ottawa South and Ottawa West.

For more information on Fitmom Ottawa visit http://www.fitmomottawa.com/#home

Barre Fitness
If you’re looking for something a little different, you may want to try barre fitness with baby. Inside Out barre studio on Wellington offers a baby wearing class two mornings a week. The class works to incorporate as much of a regular studio barre class as possible in 60 minutes while you wear your infant in a carrier.

To learn more about Inside Out visit http://insideoutstudios.ca

If you like the idea of a barre class, but your child is too old for baby wearing then you may want to check out The Dailey Method Barre and Cycle. The fitness studio is on Fifth avenue, and they offer child minding while parents take part in class that combines Pilates, yoga and ballet barre training.

For more on The Dailey Method go to http://www.thedaileymethod.com/studios/ottawa/class-schedule/

If you haven't invested in a good stroller yet or if you are looking for a new one, check out baby strollers at My Babies Planet.