What prompted you to begin Pilates?
Pilates training was first suggested to me by my health care provider at the Denver VA. I had only heard about Pilates before then, but knew very little about it. I had been suffering from severe low back pain for about twenty‐five years after injuring my L5/S1 vertebrae while in the U.S. Navy. I’ve always enjoyed endurance sports, such as running and cycling. My low back pain progressed to the sciatic nerve in my left leg and numbness in my foot. I passed the studio every day when it was located on Orchard Rd, next door to my office building. I stopped running after completing the Denver 1⁄2 Marathon in 2006, but it still took me a few years before I took a leap of faith and walked into the studio in April 2010. How many years have you been practicing Pilates?
I’ve been training for almost five years. What are some of the most influential or important reasons you continue with your Pilates practice?
I was desperate to find a solution to my low back pain, especially, when a surgeon told me that he did not recommend that I have surgery. My only option was to develop a pain management strategy. I love the people at Pilates Denver. The staff is great and really dedicated to their work and clients. I train at the studio twice a week. This has helped by continue my active lifestyle and avoid further injury to my back. How has Pilates effected your life?
The discipline of Pilates training teaches one the benefit of approaching goals in a positive and effective manner. This spills over into other areas in one’s life, such as career, endurance sports, and just living a healthy life. These benefits include:
‐ Understanding oneself and body. In whatever you do, you must start from where you realistically are, rather than where you imagine yourself to be.
‐ Learning how to focus your efforts in a deliberate way and not just going through the motions.
‐ Learning and performing the right techniques and performing them to the best of your ability every time.
I have observed much in our American culture – especially as a man ‐ that reinforces and rewards the attitude that winning, achieving the goal at all costs in most important. Through Pilates I have learned that the journey, the process is just as, if not more important than the destination or goal.
What is your favorite Pilates exercise? and why?
I really like the spinal articulation exercises, such as short spine and long spine on the reformer. I also like the full tower exercise because they really help relieve back pain. I also love working on the Wunda Chair and the Cadillac. These exercises have challenged me boosted my confidence in my ability to do the more advanced training.