The format and timing of these group presentations can be tailored to the needs of your group or organisation.
Body Celebration: Love, Feed, Move, Embrace Your Body – 90 minutes
Our weight loss culture is so entrenched we rarely question it or think about it’s consequences. – Linda Bacon
For many of us our self esteem and body esteem are very closely linked. In this seminar we will discuss our ‘body culture’ and how body image impacts our health-enhancing choices. By bringing the focus back to self-care, wellbeing and trusting our bodies to tell us what they need we’ll explore important pillars of body image including:
- ways to challenge the weight loss culture
- strategies for building body esteem,
- bringing more freedom to food, eating and enjoyable physical activity
- understanding and trusting the sensations and feelings in your body – even the uncomfortable ones!
This session can be expanded out into more detailed individual sessions that can be held over a whole day, 2 days or as a 4-part series.
Love Your Body
Not surprisingly, positive body image, accepting and a desire to look after our own unique, glorious bodies leads to healthier self care practices.(1) Connection with self is key to our health and wellbeing…. But how do we do this? Where do we start? In this session we’ll discuss our weight loss focused culture, the tricks of advertising and explore ways to develop a critical eye, protecting ourselves from and challenging these messages. We’ll explore the benefits of positive body image, understand our inner body critic, self-talk and ways to develop and live in body image friendly environments. We’ll also look at ways to connect with, trust and celebrate our body’s story as a pathway to valuing and taking care of ourselves.
Feed Your Body
Our dominant weight loss culture promotes dieting. Dieting is the most common pathway to disordered eating, eating disorders and weight gain.(1) In this session, we’ll discuss the impact of the dieting cycle on weight, a new empowering language around food and eating and ways to listen to and trust our appetite. We’ll also explore many intuitive eating strategies that will empower you and leave you free to fully enjoy food motivated by love and compassion rather than fear and guilt.
Move Your Body
There are so many fun and fantastic health benefits that come with moving our bodies. Sadly, these are often overshadowed and ignored by the fitness industry and wider culture that makes significant profits by selling weight loss and body dissatisfaction. In this session we bring the focus back to health, self care and celebrate our magnificent bodies for what they can do rather than how they look. We’ll discuss ways of measuring fitness that do not involve scales or tape measures and explore ways of listening to and trusting our bodies’ wisdom about how they want to move with ease and joy.
Embrace Your Body
“I feel fat” is a commonly described way of feeling in today’s society. There’s one small problem, ‘fat’ is not a feeling, so what am I feeling in my body when I feel ‘fat’?
We have a range of emotions expressing themselves as energy and sensations in our bodies all the time. We are rarely taught about these emotions, how they feel in our bodies and how to express them in healthy ways. Because these sensations are often not understood and can, at times be extremely uncomfortable, we commonly suppress them and develop ways of distracting ourselves from them including; alcohol and other drugs, screen time, non-hungry eating(2) and others. In this session, we’ll come home to our bodies by exploring ways to identify and trust these sensations, the associated feelings and healthy ways to express them.
These sessions can also be tailored to suit the needs of your organisation, parent groups, school communities, community groups or in fitness settings.
Body Respect: A conversation with parents and carers.
Poor body image impacts both girls and boys at alarming rates. Research shows that fifty percent of 6-12 year old girls report preferring to be thinner, increasing to seventy percent during adolescence.(3) In another study, over half teenage girls and one third of teenage boys use unhealthy weight control behaviours.(4) Sadly, for many, once established poor body image is carried through to adulthood.(5) The good news is that it doesn’t have to be this way.
In this seminar parents and carers will explore how body image develops and why positive body image is important for health and wellbeing. We’ll discuss ‘fat talk’ and how to support our children if they express concerns about their weight and shape, leaving you with practical ways to promote body esteem in your home and community.
- Tylka TL. 2011. Positive Psychological Perspectives on Body Image, in Cash TF & Smolak L (Eds) Body Image. A Handbook of Science, Practice, and Prevention. The Guilford Press, New York.
- Kausman R. 2004. If not dieting, then what? Allen & Unwin, Australia.
- Wertheim E & Paxton S, 2011. Body Image Development in Adolescent Girls, in Cash TF & Smolak L (Eds) Body Image. A Handbook of Science, Practice, and Prevention. The Guilford Press, New York.
- Neumark-Sztainer D. I’m Like, So Fat. Guilford Press, New York.
- The National Eating Disorders Collaboration (2010). Eating Disorders Prevention, Treatment and Management. An Evidence Review. Retrieved from http://www.nedc.com.au/nedc-publications Taken from Eating Disorders Victoria website.