Building Body Positive Girls Workshop

Building Body Positive Girls Workshop

Building Body Positive Girls Workshop


Sutherland shire location TBA depending on numbers.


9am-3:30pm. Monday, 8th July 2018.

Bookings CLOSE 1 week prior.


$99, incl take home pack & parent resources

Improving body image, resilience & developing a flexible attitude toward healthy eating, for 12-17 year old girls.

Does your teen:

  • Feel uneasy or anxious about her changing body?
  • Compare her body to others?
  • Avoid certain activities, like going to the beach, because she feels uncomfortable with how she looks?
  • Want to eat differently to the rest of the family, or ask you to modify your cooking/ shopping habits? Maybe after reading a diet book?
  • Have friends who talk about dieting or engage in restrictive practices, and you're concerned about their influence on her?
  • Are you worried that she's taking healthy eating and exercise a bit too seriously?
  • Has she asked you for help with weight loss, like asking to join a program, or buy meal replacement shakes?

The Mission Australia Youth Survey- the largest youth survey in Australia- consistently finds that body image is in the top three highest areas of personal concern for young people. This is a real problem, with so many knock-on effects impacting self-esteem, self worth, and even an individual's capacity to fulfill their academic and career potential.

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, your daughter may indeed be developing poor body image, and a potentially damaging relationship with food and exercise, and the time to act is now.

Why do teenage girls need to work on body image?

In our culture that values thinness, and teaches us to pursue it at all costs, it's easy to see why so many young women (especially, but all genders are affected), come to develop a difficult relationship with their bodies. When such a tiny proportion of women's bodies actually fit within the cultural 'thin ideal' or 'athletic ideal', how are the rest of us supposed to learn to accept and value our amazing bodies, when we're constantly surrounded by products, services (and even public health campaigns!) telling us that body fat is bad, and we should be striving for weight loss at all costs? This fear of fat affects everyone, regardless of their natural build, because we are taught to fear gaining weight, and control ourselves around food, to prevent this from happening. (Ironically, increased control and restraint around food is actually more likely to lead to troubles with emotional and binge eating!) However, fear of weight gain is especially prominent in teens, who are experiencing the natural changes in shape of puberty, and may have difficulty accepting their changing bodies in a culture that condemns all weight gain.

The unfortunate result of this focus on controlling our bodies and cultural fear of body fat is generations of people living a life of war with their bodies, plummeting self esteem, and feeling that since they can't stick with the weight loss plan, it must be their fault, for lacking discipline. In addition to the emotional and psychological issues brought up by dieting, there are real negative physical consequences of weight yo-yo'ing, including higher risk of diabetes and heart disease, greater weight gain over time, and a 6x higher risk (than someone who has never dieted) of developing a debilitating eating disorder, which have the highest mortality rate of all psychiatric conditions. And when 1 in 20 Australians experience an eating disorder at some point in their lives, it's clear that this is a real unintended risk of dieting!

So, you can see that building up a young person's defences against toxic diet culture is an extremely important part of living a healthy and happy life! Prevention is far better than cure, and that's why I've developed this fun, interactive, inspiring, and practical school holiday workshop for teenage girls.


What does the workshop cover?

The 1 day Building Body Positive Girls Workshop teaches teenage girls, aged 12-17, how to build a better relationship with food, exercise, and their bodies, by teaching Non-Diet Nutrition principles, self compassion principles, and media literacy.

Some of the specific topics we cover include:

  • The role of weight and shape changes through puberty, and the importance of having enough body fat to maintain normal hormonal function
  • How the 'thin ideal' is used as a marketing tool, how marketing is designed to make us feel insecure, and how to protect ourselves from negative reactions to the advertising we see on a daily basis
  • Debunking the myth that thinness is required for good health, and how to set health goals that don't involve weight or measurements.
  • How weight is really regulated, what we can control, and what we can't. The role of genetics in determining body size and shape.
  • How to eat 'intuitively' (or mindfully) using hunger and fullness cues, to make sure you eat the right amounts for your body. (Fun and delicious mindful eating exercise included!)
  • How to make movement a fun and rewarding part of life, rather than an obligation or a weight-control tool.

Along with the resources and modules I've developed, informed by almost a decade of working with eating concerns, this program also incorporates some of the Butterfly Foundation's excellent 'Free to Be' programming, which was specifically developed for this age bracket.

To keep active teenagers engaged, there are a wide variety of learning tools used (audio, video, worksheets, group and pair discussions), as well as regular short breaks and opportunities to eat and move.


When's the Next Workshop?

Monday, 8th July, 2018. 9am to 3:30pm.

Sutherland shire venue TBC, depending on numbers.

Bookings CLOSE on Friday 29th June.

Away that day but want your daughter to do this workshop? Make sure you join our email list below, AND, email Emma to put your name on the wait list for the Easter school holidays. (Email via the contact form below)


What's Included

  • Full day workshop, 9am to 3:30pm
  • A take-home summary of the workshop content, including body image building exercises to do at home.
  • A workshop summary for parents, so you can continue to support your teen after the day.
  • Please note that catering is NOT included, and there will NOT be an opportunity to buy lunch. You will need to send your child with a packed lunch and snacks.


Program Cost

The full day workshop and resources costs $99.

A discount is available for siblings- please see prices in the drop-down menu below.


Make a Booking Now

How many seats?
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Child/ren's name:

After booking, look out for an email with your booking form to be completed and returned asap.


I'm concerned that my daughter might have an eating disorder, can I enroll her?

Unfortunately, a level of disorder around eating and activity behaviours is quite common among adolescents, and this workshop is specifically intended to help adolescents with poor body image to learn skills to improve this, as well as their relationship with food and exercise. There will not be any content in this workshop that would be unhelpful for anyone with disordered eating, however it is not a treatment, or adjunct to eating disorder treatment. It is suitable for someone who has experienced an eating disorder in the past, and is maintaining recovery. (If you have any questions about your child with a past eating disorder diagnosis, please request a call back via the enquiry form below).

Importantly, this workshop does not involve any kind of eating disorder screening process, and is not designed to identify individuals at risk. If you are concerned about your child, you can take a free, anonymous questionnaire at

If you are concerned, it is also strongly recommended that you

  1. Book an appointment with your GP to discuss your concerns about your child's body image or relationship with food/ exercise. Ask them to screen your child for an eating disorder.
  2. Ask for a referral to your local hospital eating disorder service (some local health areas have outpatient consultation or group services- some don't), or you might want to see a dietitian/psychologist privately. If you're in the Sutherland Shire, Liberation Nutrition specialises in helping individuals and families with disordered eating, and we'd love to help you! If you're not local/ would like to look at all provider options, we urge you to find someone with adequate training and expertise in eating disorder management, as not all providers are adequately skilled to assist in this niche area. The best place to search is the ANZAED provider database.
  3. Trust your instincts. No-one knows your child like you. If you've raised the issue with your health providers but you don't feel things are improving, it's okay to seek a second opinion.

I'm interested in the program content myself, or just curious about what they're learning. Can I stay to watch?

Unfortunately no, parents and carers are not allowed to stay and watch, or pay for their own seat. This content is specifically designed for teens, and we encourage participation and sharing of personal experiences and opinions in this safe environment (if desired). Many adolescents are less comfortable speaking frankly about these issues with parents and other adults present, so we respectfully ask for your understanding on this issue. Please remember that we do provide a workshop summary for parents, to help you engage with your daughter about the workshop content, and continue to support her after the day.

If you're interested in receiving support for yourself, you might want to consider individual consultations, or looking at whether  our Overcoming Binge and Emotional Eating group program might be right for you. If you'd be interested in an 'adults version' of our building body positivity program- please email via the contact form below and let me know! The more interest there is, the higher up the priority list it goes 🙂

Do you want to ask a question about the program before booking? Please fill in the contact form (including best times to catch you), and we'll try to get back to you within 2 working days.

Ask a question about the Building Body Positive Girls workshop

OR, ask us to write an 'adults version' of the program!

Where To Next?

Meet the founder, Emma

Learn more about clinic founder, Accredited Practising Dietitian/ Nutritionist, Emma Robertson, and why she believes in the 'Health At Every Size' approach.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Fees, Medicare plans, health fund rebates.

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