Pilates Changed My Life In So Many Wonderful Ways….
04 Oct, 2017
It can change YOURS TOO!
You are never too old, too sick, too unfit, or too handicapped in any way to start a Beginner Pilates Class!
Pilates: My Personal Voyage of Discovery. The Lineage, Training and Experience.
Whilst enjoying a much-needed break at the wonderful Grayshott Spa after a nasty ski accident in Switzerland and a damaged set of rotator cuff muscles, I stumbled upon Pilates almost by accident. I was attending a class with a talented teacher trained by Alan Herdman and instantly fell in love with this fascinating exercise system. I had over twenty years experience in exercise physiology, exercise instruction and latin and flamenco dance and I really felt as though I had finally encountered the most effective exercise system on the planet! It was a major turning point in my life.
With a stroke of tremendous good fortune, I was able to attend a lecture the following day. It was delivered by Alan Herdman in person at the Spa and I was inspired to begin a series of classes with Alan and some of his advanced teachers. The work catapulted me into the teacher training process and provided me with the essential grounding in the Alan Herdman technique.
Although I lived in Brussels, I was always happy to travel as often as possible to courses, lectures, classes and teaching practice at Alan’s studio in London. It was a fascinating experience to observe Alan and his staff at work with their clients and I was privileged to be taught by such a talented team of dedicated professionals.
Witnessing at first hand the extraordinary changes that could be made to an individual’s posture and well being, I was determined to set up a Pilates centre in Brussels. I was inspired to teach as much as possible in order to develop my Pilates skills and advance through all the levels of study and training to achieve the highly prized level of Pilates Master. At that stage Pilates was virtually unknown in Brussels and I was very fortunate to be invited by the celebrated Champneys Health Club to launch the first Pilates class in a fitness club in Belgium.
However, coming from the corporate world, I quickly recognised that companies really needed the Pilates methods to help their staff deal with their stress and postural issues. So many people suffer from back problems that it was obvious that Pilates could make a real difference to the quality of their lives. But if I was going to provide Pilates to groups of employees in Belgium, I would need a wider range of skills to deal with all the challenges that characterise the normal working environment.
After gaining around 3,000 hours of teaching experience in Brussels, I decided to broaden my research and study the techniques that other great masters had developed. My research covered the work of Mari Windsor and Jennifer Kries and I also certified with Michael King at the Pilates Institute in London. I was also very fortunate to study with Conchita de Campo of Body Control Pilates
By this stage I was ready to create the first ever corporate Pilates teacher training manual but first I wanted to learn more about the original Pilates techniques, to immerse myself in the first source of Pilates. That quest took me to New York to study with Lolita San Miguel, only one of two teachers personally certified by Joseph Pilates. But that was still not enough because so many Pilates techniques and exercises can be traced to their origins in classical Yoga. So my husband and I set off to the foothills of the Himalayas to study the original yoga teaching methods that developed from the very first school in India, the famous Bihar school. And that was where we finally understood how much Yoga has contributed to the Pilates method.
Steeped in this ancient knowledge and 10,000 hours of Pilates Experience and with the blessing of my teachers, I gathered all I had learned and experienced and set about writing the first of eleven teacher training manuals. The purpose was to enable teachers to deliver a totally safe, structured and effective Pilates program on a long term basis. The response was phenomenal! I was also invited by the European Commission to become the Pilates Manager of their classes in various buildings (14) and give lectures in pilates, exercise physiology and nutrition at the European Commission!
Its truly a whole new way to realise your true potential!