A career in the fitness industry was not a thing until very recently. Only a handful of professionals were noticed in this field, and they were always too expensive. Now, a revolution in the fitness industry has meant a whole new way of life for the average, urban Indian. And a whole new career option for women, especially for those who like being fit. This is also a highly competitive profession, with new fitness trends cropping up every day. That’s why stories like that of Namrata Purohit really stand out.
In January 2011, Namrata Purohit started The Pilates and Altitude Training studio, the first fitness studio in the world to offer Pilates and a simulated altitude training room. Since its inception, the studio has become popular with people from several walks of life. including Bollywood celebrities and sports personalities. Founders Namrata Purohit and Samir Purohit are also the official Fitness Experts to the Femina Miss India International pageants and the official Pilates Coaches for the Mumbai City FC team.
Namrata was also a part of the recent Bumble Bizz campaign, led by Priyanka Chopra Jonas. Debuted in June 2019, Find Them On Bumble Bizz celebrated 25 remarkable Indian women with inspiring stories of personal and professional success, including Namrata Purohit.
We caught up with her for a quick chat on the fitness industry and female entrepreneurship in India.
All About Eve: A woman in business in India was a novel concept till very recently, and now we have Bumble Bizz, celebrating a community of such women. How do you think this will help to encourage more female entrepreneurship in India?
Namrata Purohit: The women of India are empowered women and are ready to be in the driver’s seat. I think Bumble Bizz is a great space for like-minded individuals to meet, share ideas and even work together. In my opinion, networking shouldn’t feel so hard or, worse, uncomfortable. Bumble Bizz is truly helping women be confident and make life-changing connections at their own pace, on their own terms. I think it will encourage people to be out there and more vocal about what they want to do.
AAE: What do you think is the step forward to bring more Indian women into the professional fold?
NP: Creating a safe and comfortable working environment, I think, is extremely important and will encourage more women to get working. But I also feel it’s kind of a domino effect. The more women that get in business and get working, the more women will get encouraged and the more women we’ll see. I also feel it’s important to highlight the struggles and success stories of women across all fields in order to show people that it can be done.
AAE: Everyone faces some sort of obstacles in their line of work, at least in the beginning. What sort of challenges have you faced in your career?
NP: I started training when I was 15. I think the biggest challenge was realising that not everything and everyone can be trusted. One needs to trust their instincts and also make sure that a business is run as a business with everything in writing and no ambiguity. I had my learning curve.
AAE: What inspired you to pursue a career in fitness?
NP: It started with a fall, an injury that I had. The way Pilates helped me recover from it made me want to start the studio and share this beautiful form of exercise with as many people as possible. I simply loved the way it made me feel, how it made me feel positive about my body and life. I felt that if it could make me feel this good, I’m sure it could make a lot more people feel great too.
AAE: What are the most common misconceptions about Pilates that you’ve heard?
NP: That Pilates is for women! It’s for everyone! And it isn’t just about stretching, it’s a full body workout and is honestly quite challenging.
AAE: There aren’t too many women in the fitness industry in India. What advice would you give to young women who may be thinking of pursuing a career in this field?
NP: Let me first say this is an amazing field to be in! Not only does it encourage you to be fit, but, somewhere, you’re a part of a lot of people’s fitness journey. That does feel good. I’d say just go for it! Don’t think twice and follow your heart. Even in the fitness industry, stay true to yourself and others.