Australia’s first purpose-built meditation and nap-studio opened this week, and the SPA + CLINIC team paid it a visit.
Nestled in the heart of the bustling Sydney CBD, MYND Studios is a peaceful oasis. You are greeted upon arrival with the cool aura of concrete floors, soothing sounds and a wave of patchouli.
Founders James Harris and Sam Thornton were two sleep-deprived city workers who quit the corporate life to launch the wellness venture after both experiencing the rewarding benefits of meditation. Studios like these are cropping up overseas in cities like New York and London, and James wanted to bring the concept to Australia. He says that apps like Calm and Headspace have helped the public’s receival of the space.
“Harry Styles and Matthew McConaughey are doing sleep stories on Calm. There is a Netflix series teaching people how to meditate. It’s not just for the hippies, it’s for everyone. And because of that and COVID as well, people realise that it’s just as important, if not more important, to look after their mental health as well as their physical health,” he said.
Clients pay a weekly membership to access unlimited mediation classes or drop in on a pay-as-you-go basis. MYND studio runs over 20 pre-recorded meditation classes per day rather than focusing on the three peak times. The duo worked with meditation teacher Janelle Pickles, accredited by the Meditation Association of Australia, to curate the program, comprising of seven varied practises designed to be energising, motivating or relaxing depending on the time of the day. A qualified facilitator also leads the classes.
You don’t need to shower or change to attend. The idea is that anyone can turn up as they are and switch off for 30 minutes, and James says because of this, MYND Studios is receiving a lot of interest from corporate businesses.
“It’s just hard to find space. You can do meditation at your desk, but can you actually? You shut your eyes and close your laptop, then someone comes over and talks to you straight away. Is that really an escape? The whole process is about getting away from technology, and what that does to us, so we wanted to create a space that was conducive to meditation,” James adds.
MYND Studios is also home to two state-of-the-art NapPods, which James says is a talking point. Studies show that only one in seven people sleep through the night uninterrupted, and a third of people are not getting more than seven hours sleep. Most people would reach for a coffee when they feel the heavy eyes hit at around 4 pm. This is a short term fix which usually disrupts your sleep later that evening, James says. Instead, the NapPods offer all the same benefits of a long black (if not more) without the caffeine hangover.
“I think particularly around Barangaroo, the lawyers, bankers and business people will love it,” James said.
But will spaces like MYND Studios be enough to fix this so-called wellness epidemic we are currently in the throes of? James says no, but he is optimistic that they will become a part of finding balance.
“We can’t take away the stress of an overbearing boss or stop your kids from waking up at 3 am every night. This is not going to solve it, it’s going to be a part of it.”
“My goal for MYND Studios is if you want to come and do it every day; fantastic. If you’re the person who can only make it once a week and that really helps you, that is brilliant too. Whether you want to change your personality by meditating or want to take a break from the world, we are here to help with whatever people need,” he finishes.
Take a look at the stunning pictures below.
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