What role does exercise have in your life?
Developed by Opal Co-Founder and athlete Kara Bazzi, LMFT, CEDS, Opal’s Exercise + Sport Program has been specifically designed to help clients explore their relationship to exercise, sport and movement and to support athletes with eating disorders. The overall goal of the Exercise + Sport Program is to increase clients’ psychological freedom and flexibility in relationship to themselves and movement by increasing awareness and shifting away from toxic cultural messages around sport and movement that have been internalized. Clients will have the opportunity and support in inhabiting their bodies and minds in new ways, based on each client’s own body wisdom and unique appetite for movement. Regardless of sport/ exercise background, we hope for clients to leave Opal with the tools necessary to nourish and care for their bodies using movement, exercise and sport as a part of their healing journey.
Exercise + Sport Groups at Opal
Re-Thinking Exercise + Sport Didactic Material
This teaching material is infused in our groups and covers the topics of sports nutrition, compulsive exercise research, and role of weight in sport. Group facilitators bring in current research for clients to explore and enhance critical thinking skills.
Individual Nutrition Sessions
We offer individual nutrition sessions from a provider with expertise in sports nutrition.
We offer many different “modes” of movement and sport for clients to explore their relationship to exercise, movement and sport. This group allows clients to practice new skills, increase flexibility, learn preferences and appetites for movement outside of culture’s “ideals”, and connect to their bodies
Yoga Therapy allows clients to practice body awareness, and build knowledge and practice of
mindfulness- based skills. Classes are taught by certified yoga teachers
Movement Sessions are 1:1 sessions where clients can take a deeper dive in their learning around relationship to sport, exercise and movement. Movement sessions are uniquely designed to both explore and interrupt compulsive movement patterns, address avoidance of exercise, and offer embodied, new experiences for clients to build trust in their bodies and minds as they approach movement.
Rethinking Sport + Exercise Process Group
This group is designed to understand and unpack client’s relationship and beliefs around exercise and sport through various group prompts and activities. Concepts of identity, needs, perfectionism, motivation, performance, relationships, and familial/cultural influences are explored in this group. Research shows that the qualitative aspects of exercise are more significantly related with eating disorders than the quantitative aspects of exercise (Meyer and Taranis et. al 2011). We explore how systems of oppression impact ideals and pressures around exercise and sport, where we internalize the drive to be thin, perfectionism and rigidity that can fuel compulsive exercise behaviors.
Want to do more thinking on this? Check out these Opal-recommended articles for critical thinking around exercise + sport and on athletes with eating disorders:
Wisdom from Opal Staff
Find articles, podcasts, and interviews contributed to by Opal staff on the topics of sport + exercise.
Recommended reading on all things sport, exercise, and movement. Includes information on inclusive movement.