Bod Squad training at Lennox Head, with personal trainer Rikki-Lee Petrie.
Bod Squad training at Lennox Head, with personal trainer Rikki-Lee Petrie.

The personal trainer keeping Australia moving

ONE Northern Rivers personal trainer has started an initiative to help keep Australians, who are self-isolating, connected, fit and positive despite the current climate around coronavirus (COVID-19)

Bod Squad owner Rikki-lee Petrie knew there was something profound about the crisis before cases had started to multiply in Australia.

She watched her class fall by half in Byron Bay, Brunswick Heads, Lennox Head, Alstonville and Ballina last week as news of the virus in Australia became widespread.

"And across the board we had women who were too scared to go outside, too scared to share gym equipment, and too anxious to go social boxing class.

"I saw all this panic across the people who I really care for and really love."

So in response she started an online platform on Facebook for people to be able to get the great exercise burn and endorphin rush without having to put themselves in a situation they didn't feel comfortable.

She had a 1000 people join in 24 hours.

"Basically, what I did straight away as soon as virus hit, even before it was in Australia, was talk to members in terms of social isolation," Ms Petrie said.

Initially members would send her a text and she would send out the workout to members.

"As soon I started that I had 10- 20 texts messages every morning before 5am," she said.

She evolved it into the free Facebook Group 'Bod Squad Keeps Australia Moving' which is free to join and hosts a variety of videos that use body weight exercises and are done in high intensity and low intensity version so anybody can do it including men, women, and children.

Videos are filmed in different locations each time including a farm with horses, or the beach.

"When we started it, I thought of making it just for Bod Squad people, but then I thought why would we do it just for us," she said.

"If I could make anyone feel better, why not open it to our community?

"And then I thought why not open it up to Australia?"

She said she hoped that members would share it further than the Northern Rivers and hoped it could set an example in keeping Australia healthy in social isolation.