What prompted you to begin Pilates?
I went to a running camp and they had a demo of Pilates mat work for core strengthening. I was always interested in core work, being a runner, but didn’t think much about it until I had foot surgery and was non-weight bearing for 12 weeks. My massage therapist knew Amy was opening her practice in a chiropractor’s office about a mile from my home. I showed up to my first session in a hot pink cast. Mainly I needed a form of exercise that I could get to on crutches.
How many years have you been practicing Pilates?
Since May, 2001
What are some of the most influential or important reasons you continue with your Pilates practice?
The main reasons are for strength and for cross training for my running and cycling. I am not a fan of traditional gyms because I need someone making sure that my form is correct, to avoid further injury. I’ve met a lot of my best friends through my Pilates practice and I can usually find a studio anywhere I travel. Another reason I love Pilates is that it gives me an hour to let go of everything and focus on small accomplishments. It helps my brain as much as my body.
How has Pilates effected your life?
I’m addicted. Seriously, it has become a part of my lifestyle, just like my family, friends, running and work. I am fortunate in that my instructors have all been exceptional professionals who love teaching and making sure the movements are right for my body. Pilates is always evolving. My practice started on a classical foundation with Amy when she was teaching the method and approach developed by Joseph Pilates and continued through Romana Kryzanowska and then her training evolved to BASI Pilates. I’ve also trained under instructors with a Kathy Grant heritage. I really enjoy the BASI Pilates approach because it fits my body best. This method in particular has helped me balance the strength between my left/right and front/back. As I’ve aged, and moved into longer running distances, my lower spine becomes more of a concern. Pilates has allowed me to continue my passion with running. It addresses every single part of my body from the feet to the head. Also, my mom started doing Pilates in her 70’s and continued well into her late 80’s. She never moved like an old person. That is my goal. I want to be doing this the rest of my life. Plus, it calms me down, and I know that my husband appreciates when my emotional intensity is balanced too
What is your favorite Pilates exercise? and why?
I have a love/hate relationship with the “Teaser”. It took me years to master it on the mat and on the reformer. It’s a balance of timing, strength and control. Some days I’m tired and it’s not going to happen without a modification. When I do perform it without correction, it’s a great sense of accomplishment! It’s something that requires other exercises as a warm up, reminding me that I need to slow down and be patient. It’s a gauge of where my body is on any given day.