Malin Malle Jansson is a street workout athlete and a certified health coach. Having practiced the sport for just over two years, today the 25-year-old from Uppsala, Sweden, has a following of over 150,000 people on Instagram that watch her workout videos and challenges daily. Street workout is a very social sport with a strong community, especially online.
”I feel like a different person today compared to two years ago before I started doing street workout, both physically and mentally. This is my thing. A lot of it is scary, but I have the mindset to take on challenges and try new things.”
Street workout originated in Ancient Greece, but has grown into a popular movement in Russia, Eastern Europe and the United States. Today, people practice the sport all over the world.
Street workout consists of bodyweight workouts done inside or in outdoor parks. When new challenges are posted online by athletes the rest of the community try them out. Malin tells us she spends some time every day looking at YouTube clips to get inspired and learn new exercises.
”I do physical workouts maybe three hours per day, and then there’s two hours planning what exercises to do and film. Street workout is somewhat of an online sport. There are so many clips you can find online and learn from.”
The first World Championship was arranged in Riga, Latvia in 2011. Today, there are several global street workout competitions. In Sweden so far, the competing team only consists of about 20 people, 15 men and 5 women. Malin has been to Finland to compete twice.
”I first came in contact with street workout when I applied for Ninja Warrior Challenge with a friend and got accepted. There I met Dana, who later became my mentor and coach. After seeing me on the show, he asked me to join the street workout team he was on, the Beast Barzz.”
Malin has a background practicing cheerleading for eight years, and was always the person flying around in their air because she was so small. She was still conscious about her strength and ability at the time she applied for Ninja Warrior Challenge, and was at first afraid to give street workout a shot.
”But everyone was cheering me on, urging me to try, and when I found the courage to start I fell in love with the sport instantly.”
Malin started doing street workout together with her boyfriend Daniel. He was also the one who began filming her routine and posting it on social media.
”I had maybe 500 followers on Instagram in total at the time, and then suddenly, something just happened. I posted a clip, and within hours I had over 10,000 followers and over 40 million views on the video.”
Street workout routines usually contain exercises such as pull-ups, chin-ups and muscle-ups. There are also several static holds, like front lever, back lever, human flag and planche.
Malin recommends going online and searching for videos to learn more about the sport and the different exercises. Malin’s most popular clips on Instagram are typically the ones where she posts a challenge, because people can relate more to the content and push themselves to try out the different exercises.
”Reach out to the people that are sharing their street workout routines online. It’s always easier to get started once you train together with someone.”
When Malin first started practicing street workout she was afraid of failing, and had a hard time believing in her abilities. She felt there were too few female role models to look at.
”But then finding and seeing other women fail and showing that it was ok made me want to try more. Anyone can start doing street workout. I want to send out the message that all dreams can be achieved. Don’t be afraid to try something. My goal today is to be the best in the world at street workout.”
Malin tells us that something happened when she started doing street workout. She saw progress very quickly, and thanks to the strong community her confidence grew.
”I feel much stronger today, like a new person. I feel so happy when people comment on my clips and tell me that I inspire them. One person told me that she watches my clips every time before doing a workout, another that I’m the reason that she started exercising at all. I want to continue to inspire more women to find the courage to try.”
This article is part of the Rehband Spotlight series – where we aim to discover and learn more about different sports from around the world. What should we look at next? Send your ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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