By Andrea - bePilates Apprentice
Over 3 years ago when I started on my journey to become a Comprehensive Pilates teacher a principle was introduced to the class which has stuck with me ever since…
‘Teach the Body thats standing in front of you rather than just the exercises…’
As a Pilates enthusiast I've taken lots of Reformer, Mat and Studio classes across the UK and if I’m honest this principle of ‘teaching the body’ has sometimes felt incongruent with my own personal experiences, and this was even before I started to train as a teacher.
Being in a group class with between 6 to 10 other people, all of varying levels of experience and ability, I would often find myself going through the motions of the exercise, totally missing the mind / body connection of the practice of Pilates. It sometimes felt like a case of mindless repetition for repetition sake. I was also far too aware of the person either side of me, looking at what they were doing, comparing it to what I was doing. Totally forgetting that ‘comparison is the end of Joy’ and losing the mind body connection. Again!
For me The new Group Studio Classes at bePilates are a very welcome and much need antidote…allowing me to find quality of movement over an ever increasing quantity of mindless repetition.
One of the most appealing things for me about the new format of classes is that I can take responsibility for my own workout. If my back feels stiff and I'm getting some really great spinal articulation from a certain exercise, I can stay there a little longer. I can, to a great extent work at my own pace and I know that I’m in good hands and if I need an additional exercise or a little tweak, the teacher (who always seem to have their eyes on everyone!) is there to offer support and assistance.
The second thing I’m loving is having the time to really ‘get’ the movement in my own body. We all know that pilates is a discipline that takes focused concentration - after all there is a LOT to think about! Just the other day I’d set myself up for an exercise but wasn’t really feeling it in my own body. Just a minor tweak from the teacher and I was there. It was a bit of a eureka moment and possibly the first time I had really felt the movement. Getting it wrong in the beginning helped me understand how to get it right. After all its been scientifically proven that making mistakes actually help us grow and evolve!
Finally I love the fact that we do the same workout each time, I feel that I'm making progress, getting a little better and stronger each week. And then when I’m ready, moving onto something new but always with the foundational pilates movements and principles as a solid base to my own personal Pilates practice.