Lynley Middlemiss wants all mums to know that they are not alone. Having experienced the relentlessness and exhaustion of having a newborn (alongside pure love and amazement), she knows how important it was for her have yoga for support, a sense of inclusion and a break from the mental overload of running her household. It made the early mornings and sleepless nights manageable and, ultimately, made her a better person and a better mum. With her passion for women’s health and her desire to empower women on their journey to motherhood, she wants to pass on the benefits of yoga and make it accessible to mums everywhere. At Topknot Yoga, she offers both in-person and online classes to help ease the mental load. Her classes help women to keep fit, strong and toned as well as teaching self-love and acceptance. Here, Lynley talks about the inspiration behind her business, the challenges she has faced along the way, and her hopes and dreams for the future.
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
I am passionate about women’s health and empowering women on their journey to motherhood. There are so many changes that happen to a woman’s body throughout pregnancy and postnatally. I want all women to understand how to move safely and in a way that supports and strengthens their bodies. I also strongly believe that exercise and feeling physically strong helps women feel mentally and emotionally strong, which helps with the mental load we all carry.
So many women are time poor and I wanted them to be able to access safe and affordable options for exercise and fitness.
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
I started by teaching local Mums and Bubs Yoga classes, but found that once babies started crawling, mums couldn’t come anymore, but still wanted to keep up their exercise routine. So I went online to assist with that too. Since then, I’ve found that I reach women in rural areas that don’t have access to as many baby classes as they would in the city.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
As I do additional training on pre- and postnatal bodies, including diastasis recti (abdominal separation) and pelvic floor dysfunction, I realised how essential it is that women are guided into correct movements. It was obvious to me that these exercises to support the body needed to be throughout all of my sequences, so that these areas would improve organically.
Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?
This is something I am forever working on. I am not amazing at balance. However, I have certain days when I am 100% mum and so I don’t work, try to put my phone down and focus on my girls. My youngest is at kindy 3 days a week so that is when I get the bulk of my work done.