There’s no denying the powerhouse force of Kayla Itsines and her #BBG girls.
After attracting over 5 million followers on Instagram and thousands of screaming fans at her 2016 Sweat Tour, it seems like there is only one thing that is holding her back from complete domination: the body-shaming “bikini body” branding of her workout guides.
In a new Bloomberg article on Itsines’ growing empire, which aims to be an inspirational platform where women build confidence and self-love—and not just a tool for slimming down and building muscle—the online fitness mogul admits, “Do I regret calling my guides Bikini Body? My answer is yes.”
Further, in a recent post on Instagram, Itsines explains the name choice: “I originally called it ‘Bikini Body Guides’ because when I asked my clients what their goals were, 99 percent said at some stage that they just wanted ‘to feel comfortable in a bikini,’ so I didn’t think twice when I called it that.”
She goes onto explain that as her business and reach extended around the world—and not just in her beach town in Adelaide, Australia—she began to realize that people don’t just want to feel “comfortable” in a bikini. They want to feel strong, confident, and healthy.
This realization led to her release the app Sweat with Kayla, which is now the the top revenue-generating fitness app ever (even beating out heavy hitters like Nike+ and Under Armour’s MyFitnessPal): “I changed the name to something that I felt represented hard work, dedication, empowerment, strength, teamwork, and more…and that was SWEAT,” she explains in her caption.
If Itsines is going to continue on her way to world domination—and it looks like there’s no slowing down anytime soon—at least she is sending out a better message.
“Bikini bodies” aside, here’s a question: Why aren’t more gyms and trainers embracing body positivity? It seems like Instagram is ahead of IRL on this topic.