Contact ME

I would love to hear from you. Use the form on the right to contact me anytime.

74 Victoria Street
Christchurch Central, Canterbury, 8013
New Zealand

+64 21 2442842

THE SWEAT LIFE with Kate is a new yoga and fitness studio expressing the powerful connection between body and mind. Kate believes the way we move and nourish ourselves is the mirror for how we live. 
Everyone, at some point, is called upon to start a new journey, and after eight phenomenal years of owning and running Bikram Yoga Christchurch, Kate has now opened The Sweat Life, a small boutique space where she can continue to teach breath centered movement, precise alignment and mind-body connection. 
Continually studying, and refining, she keeps her students motivated while sharpening their kinesthetic awareness both in and outside of the classroom.

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FROM DOING TO BEING

Kate Burford

Have you ever herd the phrase, “Where your attention goes, energy flows” ? Your attention is currency, and as it turns out, being creative person has meant I’ve become a little of a ‘multi-hyphenate’… (I just love there is a word for it!)… describing the many things I am passionate about and have pursued in life. 

I’m an artist, a stylist, a graphic designer, a business owner, a yoga teacher and now a graduated integrative nutritionist. I guess you could say my career could be described as ‘a lot of communication with a lot of moving parts’, and it all began with my Bachelor in Visual Communications, which seems kinda fitting!

There’s a quote I came across which I love by writer Chuck Pelahniuk: “Your handwriting. The way you walk. Which china pattern you choose. It’s all giving you away. Everything you do shows your hand. Everything is a self portrait. Everything is your diary”. 

I do believe in the law of attraction, and that life has a way of navigating us in the direction we want to go. I am passionate about communication design, I love yoga, and my life has given me a “PHD” in integrative nutrition, made official now with my graduating Diploma, all of which seem to seamlessly thread together because they all evoke meaning, change and transformation. 

That said, navigating my career hasn’t always been easy, as an artist, I have always been a visually creative person, and wellness along with fitness has certainly always been a regular part of my life, but it wasn’t until my early twenties after being diagnosed with several digestive issues, leaving me confused, helpless and frustrated, that my own path to health lead me to discover and passionately investigate how everything we eat, how we live and how our thoughts and beliefs become us on a cellular level, shapes our experience, not only that but it takes patience and time and a whole lot of self-care and self-love to help heal the body; and although everybody is different, one thing is the same… everyone wants to feel their best.

As I said at the beginning, I have become a little of a multi-hyphenate, there are so many things I have incorporated into my life that I love to do… design, yoga and now being a source of integrative therapy; which might sound a little cheesy, but helping others figure out the keys to their health has become one of the secrets to a lot of my own happiness, and believe me, I walk my talk, taking on challenges inside and outside of myself always as opportunities to learn and grow, therefore my lifestyle is who I am and the reality I create, propelling my direction, and is my drive for affecting positive change through design, movement, health and wellbeing in all facets of my life, something I am inspired to be doing, it’s all work that I love, and to be able to share it while still growing and learning myself each and every day helps me smile and look forward to starting it all again tomorrow. 

- Kate Lillian Burford - 

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LIONHEARTED

Kate Burford

For the days you don’t think you can show up, but you do… I believe these are the days that count the most. It is okay to not be okay...

The truth is; my world has changed in the most unthinkable way, it is hard to comprehend, to understand, to take in, and this tragedy will change my life forever... living without my dad will be like living without a lung, everyday, for the rest of my life, how quickly and permanently our lives can change. 

I have been doing my best to show up daily, in life and on my mat to move through what weighs heavily on my heart and mind, using my practice as a gateway to breathe, and to allow myself to catch moments and memories out of the corner of my eye, to feel, at times smile at a memory, or be overwhelmed and knocked down by it... my yoga practice has always moved me, changed me, and still continues to affect my everyday… it is a part of my process, my moving meditation, when I try to pull myself together, to surrender, let go - to try and trust the process and take a 'deep breath’...

Genuinely, thank you all once again, I climb a little mountain each day, and I have been so moved by all your messages over these past few weeks, even if I can't always reply to all of you individually, they mean a lot, and your support is truly helping me. I feel so lucky to have such a wonderful community, who support me and my work, but most of all connect with it and understand.

Thank you for showing up for me, for joining me on the mat and most importantly for reminding me I have something special to show up for ♡


I wanted to share this piece of music someone close to me on the week of Dads passing sent me… I have truly listened to it everyday since, it's pretty special that music and songs can capture our emotions and mirror our own feelings so perfectly. "When words fail music speaks" .... I hope you enjoy it.

BILLIE MARTEN - LIONHEARTED | https://youtu.be/_oD9hGnZqgw

Again, thank you so much everyone for all your beautiful messages... I am honestly so touched by everyone's support and kindness, it means a great deal to me. 

Aroha nui. 
xox Kate

In Loving Memory of my wonderful Dad, a true Lionheart. James Ryder Burford. August 8, 1944 - July 10, 2017 xxx.

In Loving Memory of my wonderful Dad, a true Lionheart. James Ryder Burford. August 8, 1944 - July 10, 2017 xxx.

 

 

STRESS HAS A PULSE

Kate Burford

It’s been a while since I last wrote a blog… life has been very busy!  But through my own healing work and introspection this topic is in essence the core to getting closer to achieving my healthy balance… reducing stress!

Like many people, I am forever on a path towards balance, and one thing I have learned over the years is that there are two types of stress. External stress, the things that happen outside of you, beyond your control, and then the stresses that you create for yourself by worrying, for example and having high expectations for yourself. The last couple of years have bought many challenging moments for me, both personally and professionally. For some of those moments, I could help shift and change the outside, but many were my responsibility to change on the inside. 

Stress is stress and can sometimes be necessary in our lives for the times we need to act in the moment, but internal stresses can develop into chronic stress, and once this happens our health and wellness can begin to break-down from that ongoing pressure to perform and while being focused on what we want our lives to look like and what our goals are is great, it is also important to recognise that nothing is ever perfect and to trust the process, so things can flow a little more freely. 

I love history, and I've read that more than two thousand years ago, the Greeks understood intuitively that emotions and health are one. Asclepions was named the Greek god of healing, and symbolised all that was essential in this balance was a healthy diet, pure water, exercise, and support of family and friends. Essential too were the emotions and soothing activities that calmed them. He carried a staff with a serpent curled around it symbolising both body and mind intertwined, an ancient symbol of body and soul, and today still one of the universally recognised symbols of medicine. 

Despite this ancient wisdom however modern medicine scientists and physicians lost the knowledge that so much a part of these ancient teachings are relevant in medicine and our wellbeing. It’s been a long road back to accepting the wholeness of our health today and that the same parts of the brain that control stress response and depression, for example, play an important role in susceptibility and resistance to inflammatory diseases and illness. 

Stress causes a chemical in the body called cortisol levels to rise, and there are ways to manage and react to external stress, and then there are tools to help manage the behavior that creates internal stress…. The problem is that many of us have forgotten what it is like to relax and let go. If you ask most people if they are stressed, they’ll say, “oh no, I’m fine.” And modern life can really be a trap for this, we are all so busy and doing it all. Lowering your stress levels, your cortisol levels is vital to your wellbeing and how you manage your weight, your sleep, and your whole well-being. And our body is always talking to us, giving us warning signals once we start to pay attention… but because we move so fast we don’t realise how stressful life has become, and we adapt to our level of engagement.

So, how do we reduce the impact of stress in our lives? Well, it requires discipline, like most things, making yourself aware of your stress triggers so that you can work to change it, developing strategies and tools which ground you to help manage and calm the storm brewing inside. For behavioral shifts to happen, you do have to pay attention, and intercept yourself everyday, and like most things some days you’ll master the art of inner-calm and other days you won’t. We are all wired in a certain way, and the journey isn’t easy, it’s a constant balancing act. It’s easy to close yourself off and feel separate from the whole, in todays society we are masters at soldiering on, and we become so used to operating at a certain level that we don’t even realise the stress that we feel, but what we will notice over time is the effect it has on our mind and body.

Letting go of ‘worry’ I know for me would be the best way for me to relieve much of my internal stress, it’s that BIG pink elephant I’ve got to loose. When I manage to do that, through the many tools I cycle through for myself, I know my health, wellbeing and happiness will change and will become a whole lot sweeter… it is a work-in-progress, and likely always be so, but finding ways to sneak in the things you enjoy or that keep you grounded whenever you can in the day, holding a space for yourself to just ‘be’ can help move you out of the fight n flight response and reinstate balance and regain your energy. 

- Kate Lillian Burford


Here are some of my ways to de-stress:

  • Being active is my moving mediation most of the time, whether doing a Bikram Yoga class, going for a run and taking a beautiful walk with my dog Gypsie… the body is such a powerful tool to creating energy and changing your state.
  • I have recently discovered Cloud 9 Float Club which involves lying effortlessly for an hour or more in a solution of Epsom Salts. Not only so good for the body, but with sensory deprivation you truly float into a state of meditation, whether productively inspiring, or just simply switching off. 
  • Omvana - Is an app you can download for free and brings you 500+ tracks of world’s top transformational audios to enhance every area of your life. This has been my favourite meditative and inspirational tool. You can always find something that suits what you’re in the mood for. 
  • Also I highly recommend having a listen to Stanford Universities : Why Zebras Don’t get Ulcers by Robert Sapolsky. An iTUNESU audio sharing a wealth of information on stress and how it effects our lives. 

 

 

SUMMERTIME | Staying active + social over the summer holidays

Kate Burford

It is that time of year where often our work schedule becomes overloaded, social engagements are multiplying and we are getting ready for the holiday rush... which tends to put exercise on the backburner...
Time is scarce this time of year, but there are so many good reasons to make yourself and your health a priority, in-fact it's the best gift you could give yourself. Getting out there and moving your body, not only helps you feel good, but it can help alleviate holiday stress. Instead of looking at your fitness regime as a time-sucker, look at it as necessary relief.

Move to reset, to get inspired and to feel good, and make it fun by choosing activities you enjoy, especially with the warmer weather, there are so many options available to you, even if you need to adjust things a little, just 30 minutes is better than forgoing your routine altogether!

SO... here is my encouragement to you...  try to schedule 'YOU' time in this summer to do some sort of exercise every day. Push 'pause' on the cyclone of busy.. whether it is joining me on the mat at The Sweat Life, heading to the park, or simply creating a personal mini retreat for yourself at home to move your body. It will help ground you, calm you, and make you feel good, especially if you can slip in a little Yoga, which truly is a different form of fitness and movement because it can help you find space, to reflect, centre and breath. For me, this process is essential, as my moving meditation. 

Most importantly be kind to yourself. None of us are perfect and some days you'll nail it and other days your health and fitness regime might take a back seat because life and the festive season gets in the way. And that's ok, it's a constant balancing act and you just get back on board the next day. Most of us are still trying to find the right balance and sometimes it's a struggle but the mere fact that you are consciously setting out on a health journey at all is amazing.

- Kate Lillian Burford - 

S P R I N G | a time to BLOOM

Kate Burford

- the season full of transformations; symbolizing the revival of life -

They call this life a “journey” for a reason – none of us are perfect, some days you’ll feel on track and other days your health might take a back seat because life gets in the way…. Life moves fast, and we all move fast to keep up, and so finding the right balance is sometimes challenging. We can all be a little too hard on ourselves when we haven’t stuck with our goals, or routines, which can discourage us from getting back on track. Self-compassion and treating yourself as you would a friend will help you get to your goal if it’s somewhere you honestly want to arrive.

Spring can be a blossoming opportunity for a fresh start, to find balance when it comes to food, social engagement, physical activity and work, becoming happy with yourself and content with your daily routine, sneaking in the things you enjoy and putting in the extra 'sweat' to make things feel good, because they can be…

Try scheduling time for yourself to do what you love, actually put it in your diary to help you establish a routine. Make yourself a priority. It is very empowering to feel in control of the things you choose to do for yourself.

Over the past few months I have really loved teaching at The Sweat Life, to be able to help and observe students reaching new platforms within their yoga practice, and seeing them enjoy it so much is why I love to teach. It’s an incredibly fulfilling feeling. It sounds cheesy, but helping other people feel good both in mind and body is the secret to a lot of my own happiness. Being able to share something everyday to make someone else’s life feel better, whether it is teaching a yoga class, or encouraging individuals to harness their own abilities to make changes in their wellness habits is a really special thing to be able to do.

Achieving wellness and balance is truly a lifelong quest. Your attention is your currency, practice how you spend it, save it, give it... Be playful, move your body daily, eat well, relax, and 'under-think' it all…. something I’m working on!

Enjoy the new, fresh feeling of Spring and let it inspire you.

 

- Kate Lillian Burford - 

M N D F L

Kate Burford

'Mindfulness is the psychological process of bringing one's attention to the internal and external experiences occurring in the present moment'

The past ten months has contained many transformational changes for me, setting me off on a new path of healing, rejuvenation and restoration. 

Along with the gift of The Sweat Life, allowing me to continue to teach the Bikram Method, and interact in a more personal way, not only within the physical practice and development of those of you joining me on the mat, but, it is also allowing me to become so much more familiar with the stories and attention each of you bring to your practice to initiate the healing you require, which has been really special for me as a teacher.
I have also made the decision to go back to school… three weeks ago today to add another string to my bow in exploring the meaningful quest in health and wellness. So… this is me much of the time lately as I study the next 12 months to get a new Diploma, which is really exciting!

I believe in the law of attraction, and that we can regenerate into who we want to be. It is the art of attention, and if we put our vision out there, along with the work in making mindful decisions geared towards achieving inspiration… life has a way of navigating us in the direction we want to go. You can’t go back in time, but you can make choices for the future, and although I still go through times of uncertainty, and fear, I am now enjoying a little more this process of change, rather than being scared of it and feel so fortunate to still be doing the things that I love, and being able to share that everyday.

- Kate Lillian Burford - 

 

 

INTEGRATING YOGA INTO YOUR FITNESS REGIME

Kate Burford

With a background in both yoga and fitness, I see similarities between yoga postures and fitness exercises. Although yoga hasn’t always been my go-too method of physical practice, I used to live at the gym, and I love running— always wanting my workout to feel, well, like a “workout.” For years, my fitness routine was based around exercises I had done during training for various sports I played. At the time, yoga just looked like stretching — a practice meant for people who were laid back and who didn’t want to sweat, something I wasn’t too interested in during my other fitness pursuits… in fact I would usually sneak out of an aerobics class during the cool down stretching phase!

Then I was introduced to Bikram’s Method in Melbourne, and it was during this time that I finally developed a love for the practice. It not only challenged my body but: inspired me from the inside out. I left my first Bikram Yoga class intrigued by the incredible connection I felt within myself, recognizing the layers in my body where I was holding onto stress, tension and emotions. This being so, I started to religiously show up to class, and no longer for just the workout (although it was physically challenging), but the practice also seemed to center me, and give me a sense of inner strength and focus. Since then I have never looked back. My journey took me to Teacher Training, and then to owning my own studio.

Today, and especially here in Christchurch, there are more choices than ever for ways to get fit and stretch your body.

For me, integrating the Bikram Method into my health and fitness routine has been tremendously healing on many levels, helping to keep me physically fit as well as grounded. I feel stronger and realize better body awareness and balance. I always walk away knowing I have targeted every part of my physical body. 

For those of you who are athletes or fitness enthusiasts, a Bikram practice can help develop better performance and focus, the ability to breathe through and conquer a tougher posture, developing willpower and self-control, is a valuable lesson to learn on your mat, which is why so many fitness and sporting teams around the world integrate Bikram’s Method into their training programs today.

Having taught now for nearly a decade, my belief in the benefits of Bikram’s Method of Yoga has grown. No matter who you are, or what your lifestyle goals may be, incorporating this age-old practice into your fitness and health regime provides an opportunity to build a powerful connection between body, mind and breath, with focus on bringing careful awareness to how you are working out… to sweat mindfully in a challenging and transformative way, which helps you to really feel the benefits from any work you’re putting in… to heal, release and find strength. The point is to make you leave feeling like you have done something amazing for yourself. The same voice that says 'give up' can also be trained to say 'keep going'… encouraging us to train our minds as well as our bodies – because balance is not something you find... but, it is something we can work to create. 

- Kate Lillian Burford - 

Come join me for a class at Victoria Street Health Club... spots are limited so tell your girlfriends, boyfriend, your mum + whoever else you think could benefit and book a class!
https://clients.mindbodyonline.com/classic/ws…

 

Transformation

Kate Burford

noun | trans - for - ma- tion

A complete or major change in someone's or something's appearance, form or other.

We have all heard a thousand times that, “one door closes and another will open”… and I had no idea where life would take me, after closing Bikram Yoga Christchurch. I knew I still wanted to teach, to share my passion for this yoga and living a life that is conscious and built upon wellbeing, I just wasn't sure how that would come together in a way that I could also do the same for myself.
I have therefore spent so much time reflecting on what didn't work in the past and planning those adjustments that I believed were necessary to attain the balance I seeked… because those adjustments were going to help me build a better tomorrow, not only for myself but for the lives of those I hoped to help in some way.

Having taught for years, my belief in the benefits of Bikram’s Method of Yoga has only grown. The practice provides an opportunity to build a powerful connection between body, mind and breath. We use the body, to go in, peel back the layers of our own wellbeing, in a challenging and transformative way… we heal, we release and we find strength.

So... after over eight phenomenal years of owning and running Bikram Yoga Christchurch, I have been offered an amazing opportunity from Terry Davies at Victoria Street Health Club to begin a new journey and create…. THE SWEAT LIFE with K8, a small boutique space where I can personally continue to do what I love; to teach The Bikram Method, breath centered movement, athletic prowess and encourage the quest we all seek for wellness and health.

THE SWEAT LIFE is a intimate sunlit boutique space, classes holding only 8 students comfortably therefore bookings will be essential, and the room will be ‘ambient & warm’ no more than 30 degrees.
I will be teaching a class everyday of the week, at varying times to try and meet everyones yoga-time.

I feel so fortunate to be given this opportunity to begin a new path, designing a beautiful new space, and although it will be different to the studio you are all used too, I hope to see you all pop in from time to time and join me on the mat, where I can continue to share with you the lessons and healing beauty that being fit, present and healthy can bring to each of our lives.

The Sweat Life with K8 | OPENING MID-JUNE

 @ Victoria Street Health Club | Level 2, 74 Victoria Street
(entrance via Salisbury Street)

THANK YOU again for your presence, practice and kindness over the years. I look forward to our practicing together again, bending, stretching and twisting on our mats as a tool to see our minds more clearly, open our hearts more deeply, transforming our relationship with ourselves.
Aroha nui
Kate Lillian Burford

BEING THE AUTHOR OF YOUR LIFE

Kate Burford

“the time we take… is the only time we have”

We are all so often afraid of ‘the known’ coming to an end, or transforming into something new… and often times for many of us, life can surprise us with the unexpected bringing weight to the importance of tuning into ourselves, and asking the tough questions, resulting in our willingness and courage to change our situation, in order to take care of ourselves better.

If you’re like me, sharing your story can be a daunting, and it is certainly stepping out of my comfort zone, however recently I feel surrounded by friends who are facing scary changes in their lives, or otherwise sacrificing their health for their work and their struggle for balance, which right now for me is very close to home.

For many years now, I’ve been living a life which has lost its balance. I traded my personal reality for a role that required all of my energy both physically and mentally to run my business, and like any business, it required my full attention and love, which in some ways was easy, because I loved what I did, and believed wholeheartedly in it. On the other side of that however, I was sacrificing my happiness and health to maintain it because the responsibilities of running my own yoga studio extended for me, far beyond the business itself, and somehow along the way, I lost myself between not only the pressures and expectations I placed upon myself, which have always been high, but additionally living up to what I perceived my studios teachers and community expected from me in being the owner of the business.

Like so many of us, these pressures resulted in me operating in survival mode, which is supposed to be a phase to save your life, it’s not meant to be how we live. Over the years I nursed many signs that I was living a life which had lost balance challenging my health, but it wasn’t until my most recent health scare that I was forced to wake up and realise that it was time to accept that sometimes despite how much we hold on really hard, there’s no choice but to let it go. That moment we are all afraid of, ‘the known’ coming to an end. This decision for me, although a long time coming, was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, and it wasn’t until circumstances demanded me to, that I found myself closing my beautiful studio, and with a heavy heart letting down the teachers and community I genuinely cared so much for.

For me, it’s taken a lot of courage to have the strength to start over, to change direction, and make life more simple, which hasn’t meant to stop having ambition or working really hard, its just meant lightening the load I carried outside of myself, so that I could move and flex, finding my health and happiness again, and figuring out ways of putting the pieces back together, in a life that can maintain a better balance.  

So often we all get caught up fighting to hold on then, we fight to let go… the process of letting life happen and unfold without any guarantee or assurances is scary for most of us. But, life is a work in progress, some chapters must end for new chapters to begin, and often if you are prepared to put in the work you come to realise that a new chapter is an amazing opportunity redesign and figure out a new recipe for what makes you happy. We have all heard a thousand times that, “one door closes and another will open”… and this is true, I have been gracefully surprised by this, and if you remain open to the possibilities of your life, and be willing to step out and create it and work for it. To believe, create and then achieve is one of the healthiest things you can do for yourself.

People are facing life changes every day, it is a part of life, so check in with yourself regularly, ask yourself the important questions, what makes you feel happy, positive and good, and is life creating a balance of all these emotions for you… if not, change it.... the most important moment of life is NOW and achieving a healthy balance of all it’s components is a vital part of enjoying it.

I always come back to yoga, but yoga truly is a remarkable teacher, it has taught me so much over the years, it allows the opportunity to accept where we are now, and we can direct our thoughts to consciously remind ourselves to tune in, touch down, and feel grounded, as best we can. When we are faced with big life changes, it helps to embrace each day as a new one. Through asana practice, we discover the importance of embracing change, yoga doesn't care about what you have been; yoga cares about the person you're becoming, and meaningful change is a process, it can be uncomfortable, however afraid we are of change, the question we must ultimately answer is; are we taking care of ourselves first so that we can fully show up for the rest of the world.  

- Kate Lillian Burford -

 

THANK YOU ♡

Kate Burford

As we wind up our practice at BYCHCH, to close our doors - March 31st, we have nothing but gratitude for you - our students. 

The founder of Bikram's Yoga said; "You only have to travel six inches in your life. That is the distance from your mind to your heart." Another great philosopher Mark Nepo said, "The longest journey you will make in your life is from your Head to your Heart." 
Truth is, I think we all feel often times caught between the two, sometimes our worst battle is between what we know and recognising what is in our hearts and having the courage to follow these feelings, especially when challenged to make a change, which is a lesson I feel I am embracing right now in my life. Change is the process of life Itself.
THANK YOU again for your presence, practice and kindness over the years. As I take time to recharge and recover, I hope I can continue to connect and share what inspires me, in hopes that it will inspire you, and when the time comes, I look forward to our practicing together again, bending, stretching and twisting on our mats as a tool to see our minds more clearly, open our hearts more deeply, transforming our relationship with ourselves. 

Aroha nui. Kate Lillian Burford