Meet Sandy Richards of Sandy Richards Wellness
Westchester mom Sandy Richards is a huge proponent of wellness. However, her model goes beyond wellness for women in her Sandy Richards Wellness classes. Started in 2022, these fitness classes are for moms and their school-aged daughters to inspire a healthy and fit lifestyle.. These classes incorporate dance cardio, cardio kickboxing, partner exercises, mindfulness, breathwork, stretching, and affirmation setting with a dedicated to building strong bodies, minds, and hearts. Read on to learn more about Sandy Richards, how Sandy Richards Wellness began, and how you and your daughter can take a class.
Westchester Family: How did you come up with the idea for Sandy Richards Wellness?
Sandy Richards: It started with my two incredible daughters. Fitness has always been a part of my life. However, it truly became something special when my oldest, Maya, now six, expressed her eagerness to join me in workouts at just two years old. That’s when it transformed into our unique mother-daughter bonding time. A similar connection blossomed in the kitchen, whether I was cooking, baking, or simply preparing lunch for the next day. This bond grew even stronger with my youngest daughter, Eden.
Seeing how my active and healthy-ish lifestyle positively influenced both of them got me thinking. I realized that as mothers, we should be our daughter’s number one ally. It’s not solely about exercise or working out. I believe it’s about embracing movement and helping our daughters discover the joy of it. Additionally, it’s about being a role model for body appreciation, showing them that we celebrate what our bodies can do rather than how they look. I’ve discovered that the elementary age is the perfect time of this. Our daughters genuinely want to be a part of what we’re doing, and spending time with Mom is still considered ‘cool.’
As mothers, we hold a profound role in their lives, often serving as their very first role models. It’s about more than just wellness; it’s about strengthening our relationship, creating lasting memories, and instilling values that extend far beyond our daily routines. So, I had this idea: why not help other mothers and daughters bond over wellness and healthy habits? That’s what inspired me to start my business.
Westchester Family: Have you always been involved in wellness?
Sandy Richards: Wellness has been a lifelong passion for me. From tagging along on runs with my dad and stepmom as a kid to participating in dance, gymnastics, and eventually joining the varsity gymnastics team in middle school I’ve always enjoyed staying active. After college, I found a new love in cooking, often spending Friday date nights in the kitchen with my now-husband.
Growing up in a close and open family has also played a significant role in my wellness journey; we were encouraged to share our thoughts and feelings openly, fostering a strong emotional connection. So, wellness, whether through physical activity, culinary exploration, or nurturing family bonds, has always been an integral part of my life.
Westchester Family: Why is mother/daughter wellness important to you?
Sandy Richards: It’s super close to my heart because I’ve lived it. As a mom, I’ve seen how it strengthens our bond with our girls. It’s not just about being healthy; it’s about making those awesome connections and teaching them stuff that sticks with them.
I truly believe that moms and daughters getting into wellness together is a game-changer. It’s never too early to start, and elementary age is when they’re all about doing what we do. We’re their first role models, after all. That is why I am so dedicated to promoting mother/daughter wellness because it’s not just good for us, it’s setting the stage and foundation for future generations.
Westchester Family: Tell us about some of your course offerings as well as where to find you in Westchester.
Sandy Richards: In 2022, I recognized a need for fitness opportunities tailored to elementary-age girls. This led to the creation of my ‘Stronger TogetHER’ Mom + Daughter Fitness class. In this class, we explore fun ways to stay active. This includes dance cardio, cardio kickboxing, partner exercises, mindfulness, breathwork, stretching, and affirmation setting. However, it is more than just fitness. The class also incorporates fun mom-and-daughter relationship-building activities and games. It’s a holistic approach to wellness. This not promotes physical health but also fosters one-on-one bonding time, nurturing and enhancing the mother-daughter relationship.
Building on the success of this program, in 2023, I expanded my offerings to include in-person mom + daughter wellness events. These events have proven incredibly popular. They include activities like vision boarding and collaborations with local small businesses. The overarching goal is to strengthen the mother-daughter bond through wellness experiences. I host these events as pop-up classes and gatherings throughout the Hudson Valley, with a particular emphasis on Westchester County.
Westchester Family: Tell us more about your upcoming retreat.
Sandy Richards: I am currently in the planning stages for an exciting retreat scheduled for the back half of 2024. Running from Friday to Sunday, moms and their elementary-aged daughters can take a break from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and celebrate their unique relationship.
The retreat will be packed with a variety of wellness & fitness activities. It’s all about creating a space where moms and daughters can connect on a deeper level, strengthen their bond, and make lasting memories together.
Westchester Family: What’s the best way to get a child into fitness/wellness if they are resistant?
Sandy Richards: Getting a child into fitness and wellness, especially if they’re initially resistant, requires making it enjoyable and allowing them to lead. One approach is signing up with a friend for added fun and motivation. Letting your child choose activities aligned with her interests can boost enthusiasm. For a more personalized experience, I have private options like a private Stronger TogetHER fitness class or private personal training sessions. The key is fostering a positive and enjoyable experience to cultivate a genuine interest in a healthy lifestyle, all while leading by example as a mom.
Westchester Family: What do you like to do in Westchester when you’re not working?
Sandy Richards: I love enjoying all of the outdoor activities Westchester has to offer, whether it be family bike rides or walks, pickleball or just walks around my neighborhood. Chances are you’ll find me outside doing something active with my family! In my “downtime” I also coach my local Girls on the Run team twice a week. I also love cooking, baking and exploring local coffee shops.
Westchester Family: Do you have anything else to add?
Sandy Richards:Save the dates for a few upcoming events and classes I have planned: November 5th at Athleta in Mount Kisco Kisco and January 21st at Hotel MTK. Additionally, if you have a Girl Scout Troop and are interested in learning more about my fitness class and how to earn a badge, please send me an email at [email protected].
I’ve witnessed the remarkable impact these events have on families, including my own. I’m eager to share this journey with more families in the future. Let’s create lasting memories and lead the way to healthier, more connected lives!