A MACKAY woman’s modern-day adaptation of the ancient tai chi exercise has made her a finalist in the 2020 Fitness Australia Awards.

Leanne Simpson is in the running for the Community Activation Award for her Time Out Tai Chi program and her mixed-delivery approach towards engaging the community.

She runs face-to-face classes, at-home online programs and has trained 13 Time Out Tai Chi leaders from across Australia including seven in Mackay.

TAI CHI: Leanne Simpson has developed her own Time Out Tai Chi program that is now taught by leaders in South Australia, Canberra, Broome, Brisbane, Moranbah, Emerald and Mackay. Picture: Tony Martin.

TAI CHI: Leanne Simpson has developed her own Time Out Tai Chi program that is now taught by leaders in South Australia, Canberra, Broome, Brisbane, Moranbah, Emerald and Mackay. Picture: Tony Martin.

Ms Simpson said tai chi was a mindful exercise easily adapted for anyone and could be done sitting or standing.

“In it we celebrate our connection with the Australian environment and the animals and we learn breathing and relaxation techniques by exercising gently and mildly,” she said.

Ms Simpson said she became involved with tai chi to manage her chronic pain after she became unwell and stopped exercising.

That was when she decided to gain her personal training qualifications as well as psychology and wellness coaching.

AWARD FINALIST: Leanne Simpson is passionate about helping people regain confidence in their body with her program, Time Out Tai Chi. Picture: Tony Martin

AWARD FINALIST: Leanne Simpson is passionate about helping people regain confidence in their body with her program, Time Out Tai Chi. Picture: Tony Martin

Now, she is passionate about helping others regain confidence with their body.

“Whenever there’s been an opportunity for me to get people excited about health in the community, I kind of grab hold of it and share it hoping I can make a change in someone’s life,” Ms Simpson said.

The Fitness Australia Award winners will be announced on May 1.

For more details on the Time Out Tai Chi program, head to www.balanceminder.com.au.

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