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Singapore #Fitspo of the Week Jasmine Lee: '"Do not be afraid to be seen trying" became a transformative perspective for me'

Be inspired by the success stories of fitness influencers, celebrities, models, trainers and everyday movers in Singapore

Singapore #Fitspo of the Week: Jasmine Lee (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)
Singapore #Fitspo of the Week: Jasmine Lee (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)

Life goes beyond the digits on the scale and your body is capable of so much more! Yahoo’s #Fitspo of the Week series is dedicated to inspirational men and women in Singapore leading healthy and active lifestyles. Have someone to recommend? Hit Cheryl up on Instagram or Facebook!

Name: Jasmine Lee (@quirkywildchild)

Age: 32

Height: 1.63m

Weight: 50kg

Occupation: Pilates instructor and co-founder of The Beacon Movement

Status: Married

Food: I embrace a flexible and intuitive approach to my dietary choices, tuning in to the subtle cues my body provides. When my training demands are higher, I prioritise increased protein intake to support muscle recovery and overall energy levels. On occasions when I feel the need for an emotional boost, I may incorporate a slightly higher sugar intake to uplift my mood. This adaptable strategy enables me to harmonise with my body's changing needs.

Exercise: I participate in beach volleyball training twice a week, and to safeguard against the potential aggravation of my scoliosis, I've incorporated Pilates into my routine to stabilise my spine. I integrate gymnastics and plyometrics into my training regimen too. This holistic approach not only contributes to improving my overall sports performance but also plays a crucial role in injury prevention. I strive to foster a well-rounded and resilient foundation for both my athletic pursuits and spinal health.

Jasmine overcame her anaemia through strength and conditioning drills in gymnastics.
Jasmine overcame her anaemia through strength and conditioning drills in gymnastics. (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)

Q: When you were younger, were you active in sports?

A: I was in the athletics team in secondary school and competed in cross-country. However, because of my anaemia, engaging in outdoor sports proved to be a formidable challenge and from a young age, I struggled to keep up with my friends.

Then at 19, I began my gymnastics journey under the guidance of my husband Jay, with the intention to support his budding career as a gymnastics coach. Surprisingly, the strength and conditioning drills inherent in gymnastics led to an unforeseen and remarkable outcome. I did have fainting spells (linked to my anaemia), but over time, the gymnastic drills built my physical strength and had the unexpected effect of alleviating my anaemia.

Two years of unwavering determination and hard work brought about a significant transformation. My persistence paid off and my fainting spells gradually faded, marking a pivotal moment in my physical fitness journey. I could even handle activities under hot sun better.

How did you get into Pilates?

Pilates captivated me with its distinct focus on breath, body alignment and heightened body awareness — a dimension I hadn't explored in other activities. Through my Pilates journey, I gained a deep understanding of the habits contributing to my aches and pains. It became evident that my strength and flexibility needed a more comprehensive, internalised approach.

Pilates became a pivotal tool for me to unlearn and relearn, guiding me to build better habits and laying the groundwork for a more balanced and resilient physical foundation.

Jasmine got into Pilates to help her build more balanced and resilient physical foundation.
Jasmine got into Pilates to help her build more balanced and resilient physical foundation. (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)

What made you decide to start teaching Pilates?

Pilates has earned my admiration as a universal foundation with profound benefits. Applying Pilates principles to my athletic pursuits, not only did it expedite my skill development in sports but also served as a critical safeguard, preventing injuries and promoting longevity in my athletic journey.

Equally remarkable is the impact of Pilates on individuals seeking rehabilitation. Witnessing their journey to build better habits and a solid foundation is truly uplifting. As they progress, not only do they experience diminished pain, but they also regain the freedom of movement, often participating in activities they once deemed unattainable. This underscores the rehabilitative potency of Pilates, offering a pathway to both physical recovery and the restoration of a fulfilling and active lifestyle.

What led you to start The Beacon Movement with your husband?

We strive to be a guiding light for individuals navigating the uncertainty of reaching their goals, especially adults dealing with pre-existing injuries. Recognising the powerful synergy between Pilates and gymnastics, we have developed a holistic training approach to guide our students towards success.

Take, for instance, a student grappling with chronic lower back pain during every run. I leverage Pilates to establish a robust foundational strength while incorporating gymnastics to impart techniques on absorbing impact during runs. This comprehensive strategy aims to address specific challenges and empower our students with a well-rounded skill set for their fitness journey.

Jasmine started The Beacon Movement with her husband to help others deal with pre-existing injuries.
Jasmine started The Beacon Movement with her husband to help others deal with pre-existing injuries. (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)

When did you feel the least confident about yourself?

As a Pilates teacher, I often find myself under the pressure to excel in sports and quickly acquire new skills. Comments such as "Aren't you a Pilates teacher? Why is your balance poor? Don't you know how to use your core?" added to the stress. This fear of making mistakes and being judged not only affected my sports performance but also led to anxiety and impatience with my own growth. I was concerned that others would judge my teaching skills based on my athletic abilities.

The mantra "Do not be afraid to be seen trying" became a transformative perspective for me. It reminded me that improvement takes time and the fear of judgment could only hinder my progress. Understanding that growth is a gradual process and not being overly concerned about external opinions allowed me to embrace my journey with patience and a newfound sense of freedom.

Did you ever struggle with your body?

I used to receive comments about my thick thighs and wide hips after my body matured in secondary school. During a phase when I felt insecure about my thighs, a friend offered a perspective shift that altered my mindset and I shifted focus towards building strength in my legs. By concentrating on making my legs strong rather than conforming to a particular aesthetic, I underwent a transformation.

Now, I feel confident enough to wear bikinis — a choice I once thought was beyond my reach. This journey not only reshaped my perception of beauty but also empowered me to embrace and celebrate the strength and uniqueness of my body.

Singapore #Fitspo of the Week: Jasmine Lee.
Singapore #Fitspo of the Week: Jasmine Lee. (PHOTO: Cheryl Tay)