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Monkstown’s Orla Pettman Opens Ora Fitness

Local lady Orla Pettman, who recently returned home from New Zealand with her family, has opened a new fitness business – Ora Fitness.

Orla Pettman was raised in Monkstown where her father’s family (Ryan) trace back generations and also has close ties to Ringaskiddy where her maternal ancestors (Radley) settled more than 100 years ago before then moving to Passage West where they opened The Old Favourite bar. The bar trade didn’t run in her blood but she believes her determination and drive has been passed down through a long line of hard working women. Orla attend St. Peter’s Community School in Passage West and studied Sport and Recreation Management at Colaiste Stiofain Naofa Cork. She worked in both Rochestown Park and Carrigaline Court Leisure Centres in her early career as a personal trainer and swimming instructor.

In 2004 she made a move to New Zealand with her Kiwi partner Mike and her 3 year old daughter Halley. What was meant to be a 1 year stint turned into 15 years, marriage and two more daughters Aoibheann and Maebh. She worked as Wellbeing Coordinator and Group Fitness Manager at Massey University Sport and Recreation Centre in Palmerston North. New Zealand became home but the draw back to Ireland was always present and when Mike was offered a coaching contract with Munster Rugby early in 2019 the family decided to return.

“I always wanted to set up my own business and returning to Ireland seemed like the perfect timing, new life, new beginnings! It also seemed like a good way to have the flexibility to spend more time with my family and especially my young girls. I had worked with Les Mills Group Fitness in New Zealand and experienced how effective and enjoyable the classes are, I wanted to bring that experience back home.”

“Ora Fitness Cork” was established in September 2019. Based at the National Maritime College of Ireland in Ringaskiddy, offering two Les Mills fitness programmes, CXWORX and BODYBALANCE.

CXWORX is a 30 minute class which exercises all the muscles around the core, “it builds a stronger body making you better at all things you do from everyday life to your favourite sports. A strong core not only results in you looking and feeling better but also significantly reduces your chance of injury”.

BODYBALANCE is a less intense 60 minute Yoga and Pilates based workout to music which strengthens and tones your entire body and leaves you feeling calm and centred. “It’s not easy finding a class that suits everyone, from those that want to work hard through to those that may need a bit less because of injury, pregnancy or other reasons, but this programme really does have it all”.

Science plays a huge part in Les Mills programmes which are constantly developing to suit todays population. “With so many exercise fads claiming to be science based these days it’s difficult to determine what is actually good for you and what may be damaging. Separate the fact from fiction by choosing exercise that is beneficial to your overall health (strength, cardio and flexibility) as well as something you can do for a long period of time without burning out or injuring yourself. Listen to your body and adjust accordingly. Your body will love you for it and you will be far more likely to stay on the right track. Working out with friends and in groups has also proved to be an extremely effective way to stay motivated.”

Ora Fitness Cork provides fitness classes for everybody regardless of where they are on their fitness journey. The class environment is welcoming and not judgemental. We aim to create fitter, stronger, leaner bodies and a happier, healthier mindset.

Check the classes out at or on the MindBody App

as well as on Facebook at Ora Fitness Cork or Instagram at orla_pettman. Alternatively give Orla a call on 085-8636483 for more information or to discuss your specific needs.

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