The Premium Performance Journey
To be an Olympian, you not only have to have a crazy amount of skill and dedication, but it requires strength and courage which keeps you going even after it's all over. For Steph Prem, founder of Studio PP, her journey as an Olympic snowboarder was cut short after a horrific accident shortly following the 2010 Vancouver Olympic Games. She landed a jump badly in the World Cup competition in Italy which broke her back and ribs, fractured vertebrae and did serious damage to her pelvis and hips. Even to this day, she is continuing rehab to get her body back to normal however will unfortunately never be able to compete professionally again.
In defiance to this tragedy, Steph started Premium Performance a small outdoor fitness company and wellness blog which quickly grew and grew. After trialling a Premium Performance branded studio in a pop up space in Windsor in 2014, she realised that this was something big! "It quickly outgrew itself and after 8 glorious months it was decided PP deserved a longterm roof over it’s head and would not be dictated by Melbourne’s bipolar weather," said Steph.
This led to a new and improved space, Studio PP, which launched mid 2015 and now offers a complete fitness and wellness experience including reformer pilates, yoga, barre, bootcamp, personal training, massage and nutritional advice. "These are all of my favourite elements which I believe make up a perfect balanced health and fitness experience," said Steph.
Studio PP is located in South Yarra, right near the Olsen Hotel, which was originally just a neglected space that required a lot of love and hard work. "At times it was tough to stay inspired throughout the project and we had a lot of setbacks but I am lucky that a lot of my athlete friends have retired and gone into a trade and were all willing to be part of this project to help create something different," said Steph. "I had to constantly remind myself I was building a new home for all my existing clients so that’s what kept me on the straight and narrow and they were my biggest supporters."
As an athlete Steph obviously spent a lot of hours training per week, 30 hours in fact, to ensure she was at her peak performance. But now as a businesses owner, TV presenter and columnist for various health magazines, Steph says she's lucky to fit in 3-4 sessions a week. "My workouts consist of reformer pilates, corrective exercise and rehab for my injuries, a PT weights session and a barre class," said Steph.
She now is an advocate of wellness and a healthy lifestyle and her number one priority is being kind to herself. It was after her injury she felt like she had a very rude awakening of how important it was to appreciate your body and give it what it needs to be healthy and happy. "We only have one body to live in throughout our life so we should care for it more than we do our jobs, social lives and material items," she said.
When she was competing professionally, how her body looked was never something of importance, the focus was how it worked to achieve your goals. "I struggle with a lot of the “fitspo” movement that exists at the moment and is dominating social media and definitely affecting societies perception of health, fitness and wellness," she said. "Science has linked the infamous “selfie” to narcissism, addiction and low self-esteem so I want to encourage people to take a step away from mirror and the camera, and focus on how they feel inside, and the outside will follow."
This incredible woman is so inspiring not just because she has recovered, both physically and mentally, from a life changing injury. But because she has used her fame to create a platform that allows her to give back to others, encourage self love and promote holistic health that many in the spotlight are missing. It's these attitudes and changes that help to make a healthy and happy lifestyle normal and a priority in more people's lives.
As part of The Ultimate Wellness Giveaway, Studio PP have generously provided a 5 class pass to try any of their fitness, yoga and pilates classes. Click her to enter.