So, is Marbella really a good place for teenagers? We interview Estelle McCluskie, a British entrepreneur and mother of three who moved to Marbella from the UK. As well as raising three children Estelle runs her own female coaching and mentoring programme and, separately, a yoga programme for kids and teenagers, Yoga Bears. So, she understands only too well what teenagers want.
Read on for the candid truth, how does this most sunny resort measure up for the youth of today?
Estelle McCluskie and daughter Jasmine enjoying the open air that Marbella offers teens and tweens.
Why Marbella is Great for Teenagers
“I think Marbella can offer a lot for teens as a small city. I have felt safe for my son to start venturing out a little with friends, I feel I can always keep in contact with home and know he is not far away!” Estelle tells us.
Estelle also explains that the fantastic climate in Marbella means there is plenty of opportunity for kids to get into sports in the fresh air: “The beautiful weather in Marbella is amazing for teenagers to do outside activities whenever they want, that’s why I decided to run classes during summer outside under a tree so we could connect with nature and feel free, the tree created a beautiful shade even in the hottest weather”
Another reason Estelle loves living here is the fabulous international community which means children grow up used to diversity. Talking of community, Estelle highlights how important the group sporting and exercise activities have been for her kids. Estelle’s daughter, Jasmine, attends a dance academy in Marbella, Isla Rose. She loves it as there is a whole sense of community as well as just classes. One of her sons does football and boxing. He attends Rivals boxing gym in Marbella and plays for San Pedro football club and apparently, he loves both! Estelle insists that the boxing provides a positive mental attitude as well as the social side of being part of the gym.
Marbella for Teenagers who Don’t like Sports
Marbella certainly has plenty of sporting activities for young people. But what about teenagers who are not into sports?
Estelle tells us “I ran Gloga events for children in my yoga and fitness studio in Liverpool, UK and teens loved. I think we need something like this here!” And, that “While the summer is amazing because the beach and the pool are engaging pastimes, during the winter an inside community space in the centre of Marbella would be a good idea. (Like a youth club in the UK.)”
Even without these two great ideas that she could import from the UK, Estelle still thinks Marbella is a fantastic place for children and teenagers.
Yoga For Teenagers in Marbella
At Yoga Bears the sessions involve yoga classes for children and teens, and take place at the Isla Rose dance academy in San Pedro, or in the open air in summer.
Due to the pandemic and family bereavement, Estelle’s Yoga Bears mission in Spain seemed to slow a little but she’s pleased to have seen a boom again since this summer.
“Every Tuesday and Thursday throughout the summer in Marbella we have been meeting together under the very same tree where we have made our wishes and visualised our dreams. After each and every session I could feel my beautiful yoga tribe would reset and unwind! They never wanted to come out of relaxation there was lots of snoozing going on, it was absolute peace and calm! So essential to their busy lives. We had so much fun with our yoga moves helping their beautiful growing bodies feel balanced and aligned.”
Estelle stresses what we already suspected, that yoga offers incredible benefits to teenagers as they grow, including improved posture and spine health, flexibility, balance, strength and coordination. She has seen the benefits of yoga on mental health first-hand and reminds us that globally, one in seven 10-19-year-olds experiences a mental disorder. Yoga Bears aims to prevent this by helping teens to feel better and more powerful, creating emotional maturity and connectivity.
What do Teenagers Really Think about Marbella?
As well as interviewing the parents, we had to do a full 360 so we interviewed teenagers who lived here too. Do they like Marbella? Overwhelmingly, the response was positive.
Matt, 15, who lives in Marbella and attends in international school in Nueva Andalucia, loves it in Marbella (much more than the UK) as it’s so good to hang out with friends in the sun, plus he’s got into hiking on weekends with a group of friends too. He also is very pleased that he now has learnt Spanish, in spite of the fact he thought it might be difficult at first, and has friends from Spain, France, Germany and Norway.
Clarissa, 14, moved here from London in 2018 and now she thinks it is great, although she did say at first it was hard at first to adjust to life by the sea, moving from a city. She tells us, “Joining a sports team really helped me make friends in Marbella, I recommend this to anyone who is new here and my age.”
We also have a chat with Jasmine, Estelle’s daughter who is a tween. She tells us what we already thought, that Marbella is a great place for her age group as there is so much to do outdoors. She even gives her tips for what to do for tweens/ teens in Marbella in winter- she says dancing indoors is great, yoga and the cinema is a pastime of hers she enjoys in the cooler months.
Estelle and Jasmine her tween daughter, discussing what Marbella offers for her age group.
If you would like to join Estelle’s growing community or are interested in yoga classes for teens, you can find her on Instagram: @estellelyslife
The Swish team xx
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