It’s a bit tricky to find time to do exercise with a young baby in tow, and though I did manage to try out Mum’s Fitness Bootcamp back in November it was perhaps a bit too heavy going for me.
One of the school mums suggested I look into something called ‘sling swing’as a friend of hers had told her it was really great fun. I found my nearest class not too far away in Prestwich. The only problem was that the class was already fully booked for the next few weeks and I couldn’t get a place until January. I put myself on the waiting list and put it to the back of my mind.
January soon rolled around though! On the day of my first class I took myself and Squidge down to the venue, sling in hand, and went to find out what the fuss was about.
What is Sling Swing?
Basically, it is babywearing mums (or dads!) dancing to upbeat, energetic music from across the decades. It’s not too strenuous, the moves are fairly easy and lots of fun, and you leave feeling energised but not exhausted. Perfect for me, really.
It turns out that sling swing is actually a great deal of fun. Nikki, the instructor, is possibly the most cheerful person I’ve ever met in my life. She’s a bundle of enthusiasm with just a sprinkling of ‘bonkers’ and she makes the hour fly by.
I felt completely welcomed at my first class, even before we went in. When I arrived, I wasn’t sure where I was going and another mum spotted me and took me under her wing. The entire group was really relaxed, laid back and friendly though.
I did two classes but then missed a week because Squidge was teething. Unfortunately, flu for me meant that was followed by another two weeks off! So as much as I’d enjoyed the first two sessions, I did feel like I would be out of the loop when I went back. Perhaps the girls I’d talked to on the first day would be in their own friend groups now. Maybe the dances had changed, or Nikki wouldn’t remember me and I’d have lost my place…
Actually none of those things happened. The dances change from week to week anyway so I wasn’t in any different position to anyone else. The group was just as welcoming as the first week I was there, and actually we went for coffee after class. It was lovely!
Tip: Despite being called Sling Swing, a carrier is what you actually need! Squidge was okay in a stretchy wrap but much better in a borrowed carrier. Comfortable-supportive-carrier Swing doesn’t have the same ring to it though, does it!
If you’re looking for a class to do with your baby I would highly recommend Nikki’s Sling Swing Manchester classes. There are franchises across the UK though so if you’re in a different area, see if you can find something similar.
To find out more about Sling Swing for yourself, have a read of Nikki’s story (totally identifiable!) or visit her Sling Swing Manchester page. If you’re elsewhere in the country, find a class near you.