TAMA People: Amber Charnaud, owner of The Shift Shack
We spoke with Amber, owner of the The Shift Shack, a new fitness studio redefining the perception of movement in the South West.
Tell us about yourself, The Shift Shack and what inspired you to start?
Hi! I’m Amber, owner of The Shift Shack. I think my love for coaching and training goes way back to primary school. I remember being so passionate about getting everyone together for sports, running, swimming and just creating fun group activities. I also remember helping kids who didn’t like to exercise. I would stay behind after school and run with them around the oval, just to get some movement into their day, so it was inevitable that something like The Shift Shack would emerge at some point for me.
I just love seeing other people excited about becoming the best version of themselves. Being able to see that every day at The Shift Shack gives me so much joy. It’s a dream come true.
The Shift Shack also has a deeper meaning behind it. The ‘shift’ is all about how important it is to shift your mindset when we think about movement, gyms, exercise etc. Shifting your mindset to see movement as a tool for your mental health, for physical strength and for a fun way to connect with others instead of training for aesthetics is what it’s all about.
I don’t know when or where but the fitness industry really f**cked up somewhere along the way. I can’t believe the things I come across sometimes. There are studios out there that give cash prizes for the most weight lost over a ridiculously short period of time and that really doesn’t sit well with me. It can be very dangerous and detrimental to long term health so it was really important for me to create a space where there’s no mirrors, no egos, no competition, no challenges. Just a place to hang out with like minded people, lift some weights (with perfect technique of course) sweat, have a laugh and move your body, all in a fun and nurturing environment (with the best playlists…always).
There is huge pressure today to look a certain way and I’m trying to break down some barriers, and stress that you do not have to fit into any mould. At the end of the day, it’s you and your body for the rest of your life, so you have to learn to love it! This is the first and most important practice of any health and fitness journey.
You have a few different classes on the timetable, which one is your favourite and why?
Hmmmmm tricky question as I adore them all and they’re all so good for many different reasons !! But I have to say my ‘sweat’ class is my favourite. Everyone works at the same time, and you don’t have to leave your mat! I can sometimes get lazy with my training so the idea that you don’t have to move around the room is so appealing to me haha! I am actually altering my timetable soon so my sweat class gets more of a feature throughout the week (she deserves it).
Describe your morning/evening routine.
Every morning is a little different which is how I like to live, as I feel a bit like I’m in the Truman show if I have too strict a routine haha! I get up super early so I have time for me - to run, do some yoga, and stretch before my classes as they take up most of my mornings. I loveeee seeing so many people at the beginning of each day. I love what I do - it doesn’t feel like work to me as I get so much back from helping people achieve their goals. A cleansing swim in the ocean after classes is a must (if I don’t get too distracted, doing the most random tasks) and that’s my morning wrapped up!
My evenings are also so different each night. I always get a walk and a quick training session in before my evening class at the Shift Shack. All of our friends are big foodies so we get together regularly to cook in the evenings. I have the most bizarre conversations with my weird and wonderful friends that I love so much. I believe that’s the key to a happy life - happy, fun friends that never take anything too seriously. I always end my evening with a meditation shower (this is where I wash the day away and meditate-highly recommend!!), read, and gua sha my face in bed with tea. I love an early night-people that know me would agree that I act like an 80 year old when it comes to bedtime. Ya, girl needs her beauty sleep.
What prompted you to seek Infrared Sauna therapy? How has this helped your well-being/recovery?
I’ve always loved infrared saunas from when I was living in Europe and I still try to do weekly saunas. My mum loves them and actually has one in her apartment which she uses every other day. She has the most incredible skin from being consistent with it and also enjoys the many other health benefits, especially joint pain relief. She’s a big sauna inspo for me.
Beyond soothing my sore muscles, these sessions provide a precious 45 minutes of complete relaxation. In a world of constant hustle, it is easy to be so go, go, go. The sauna becomes a relaxation haven for me with some music and LED lights, it allows me to completely switch off. Mentally, infrared saunas have helped me more than anything else. My skin also skin looks bloody brilliant after so that’s a huge plus!
What are you listening to at the moment?
Music is SO important in my life. I loveeee making playlists. I do love a wide variety of artists however my favourite at the moment would have to be Erykah Badu. I’ve just rediscovered her and I am obsessed. Fair to say though my playlists are quite diverse. I constantly seek new music whilst also enjoying the classics.
Where is your local go-to place to eat?
Oh my god - there are so many goodies but I’d have to say Lady Lola. I just love the vibe, the energy, the incredible wine and cocktail list, the food (it’s all insane), such an experience. Everyone is just so warm and welcoming as soon as you walk in - like your part of the family!
@theshiftshack ~ www.theshiftshack.com.au