UNCOVERING NORTHERN WELLBEING: Bay Helsinki founder Julia Oravisto

BAY Helsinki is a reformer pilates, yoga and barre studio located right in the centre of Helsinki with magnificent sea views and trendy nearby cafes. As their contemporary and music-driven classes attract fashionable locals, who come to get their weekly fix, classes are often fully booked but never crowded.

We got to talk to the founder Julia, and asked her few questions including what does the "scandinavian wellbeing" mean to her.


1. Could you tell us a little bit about you and your background

I am the founder of BAY Helsinki Pilates, yoga & barre.  Pilates has been my career for over 10 years now, though my plan was never to become a teacher, everything happened coincidentally, which is a long story. Here we are a decade later! My 1-year-old daughter keeps me grounded and active as a lot of my work these days involves more sitting in front of my laptop than moving.

2. How did Bay Helsinki got started

After living in Australia for almost seven years, I felt it was time to come back home to Helsinki. I noticed there was a lack of a certain kind of studio type that I’d gotten used to abroad so it became soon quite clear it had to be created by me. BAY Helsinki opened its doors in Kanavaranta in September 2017 and since then we have grown into a studio of almost 20 instructors and 400 weekly clients.

3. What is the main core of Bay Helsinki

It’s about more than ‘just’ a workout. It’s a movement and a community where people are drawn to because of the warm and welcoming atmosphere, the international vibe and sensational instructors. The location and views are not bad either! The music-driven and dynamic reformer classes are said to cause addiction. ;)

4. What does Scandinavian wellbeing mean to you

In one word, simplicity - in all areas of life. The food we eat, the water we drink, what we put on our skin. The way we in Scandinavia embrace nature and even how we communicate. In retrospect, I was constantly striving for minimalism when living abroad starting from my home to the art I created when studying. I strongly feel it’s embedded in our DNA.

Images: Bay Helsinki