Studio Kooks is our resident yoga and pilates studio, open 7 days a week. We caught up with the founders to find out more.
Tell us a little about your back story
Studio Kooks came into being through the friendship of Jean Hall, Alison Henning and Kathy King. We share a deep appreciation and enjoyment of body-mind practices, as well as many years experience of yoga and Pilates teaching. Having taught extensively in numerous environments in London and abroad, we have first-hand understanding of what makes for a wonderful space… and Studio Kooks is just that!
What does a typical Studio Kooks day look like?
Yoga and Pilates classes run everyday taught by the best of the local teachers. At weekends we also hold workshops and half day retreats.
From pregnancy yoga, to Seniors’ Pilates, via baby massage, kids yoga and family Capoeira; from strong, dynamic practices to gentle and restorative forms of yoga, we hope we can provide a class that suits everyone.
Why did you choose the Mansion?
The Mansion offers the ideal environment for body-mind practices that is completely supportive to nurturing health and well being. As well as the spacious and stunning character of the Georgian building itself, the surrounding park and woodlands encourages people to step out of urban ‘busy-ness’ and into the nurturing space of nature.
Being a part of the lively creative community within the Mansion is also very special.
How does the Mansion’s setting affect your work?
We take every day inspiration from the beautiful setting of Beckenham Place Park, and one of our teachers, Gillian Evans, offers a silent walk through the park and woodlands in a circular hike. Weather permitting, this also includes pausing in a beautiful spot for a guided fifteen-minute meditation. Afterwards everyone can enjoy a good chat, along with a fresh brew of tea and a spot of cake in the Mansion’s cafe!
What inspires you?
Seeing people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds come together in this lovely, unique space. Seeing these people enjoy movement practices that positively impacts their health and enhances their lives.
We also have the rewarding experience of hosting workshops and day-long retreats, which allows extra time for students to go deeper into these life-affirming practices. It offers the opportunity for profound learning and growth for all who attend.
Tell us a bit more about the creative hub within the Mansion.
We’ve welcomed many of the Mansion’s other residents to our classes and have struck up great personal and professional relationships. Daniela Fleckenstein worked with us on a photoshoot to produce some beautiful images of our studio in use and Alex Crawford, a most talented chef working in the Cafe, has produced wonderful vegan feasts for our retreat days.
What are your hopes for the Mansion’s future?
We love being part of the vibrant Mansion community and hope it continues to grow; attracting not just the local residents, but also those further afield who can enjoy this unique venue and all the amazing, diverse and fun activities and events on offer.
For Studio Kooks, we intend to continue to build and and expand our timetable of events, classes and workshops for everyone.