Tag Archives: determined

Spring into a new body……with Pilates

Well the spring is officially upon us, though I am quite sure the bad weather  is not done with us yet!  Looking out at all the blossom and having seen such a fantastic display of daffodils this year maybe I am wrong.  However with the spring comes the urge to purge…….bad habits, weight, clutter and lazy muscles!!  Well,  good news, Pilates can help with some of those.

Spring is an ideal opportunity to find a new fitness regime and what better way than to ease into it with a one-to-one session Pilates session in the comfort of your own home.  I can come a long at a convenient time and discuss what you think your problems are regarding exercise and your body.  I can run through  all your questions and fears and we can check out your strengths and weakness’s so we can get you moving in the right direction and strart re-aligning and re-shaping your muscles.

Spring time gives me a determination to get as fit as possible for those lighter evenings and the promise of some sunshine. The unburdening of all those winter jumpers  is like shedding your winter coat and becoming “leaner”.  Pilates helps with toning the muscles to become leaner and stronger, ready for the summer months when I can spend more time out doors………yes, even when the good old British weather doesn’t play fair.

Spring also is an invitation to start eating more healthily again.  I always struggle in the winter months because I feel I need to eat more to keep warm……a myth I’m sure, but my excuse and I’m sticking to it!!  I have my juicer out again and have really cut out a lot of sugar from my diet.  A difficult one for me as a real sugar-holic!!  I am also trying to increase my water intake and decrease the coffee, tea and …….gingerbeer!  I knew it was sugary but whoa, not that much!  Tying to add fresh ginger to my juicing and lemon to my water, great for internal cleansing and digestion.  And soon it will be salad season, and I can resist the pasta/potatoe urge for some greenery.  Love it!

So, hoping Spring is an incentive to you all too.  To get fit, ditch the sugar, and join a Pilates class!Downward facing Dog with Jackie Brealey

 

Welcome to Mr Pilates

The Pilates method practised by so many of us now in so many towns, counties and throughout the world all origionated because of one determined and special man, Joseph Pilates.  Mr Pilates himself was in fact German and born in 1880,  into a woking class famly in Dusseldorf.  There is little known about his family and childhood except for the fact he was a sickly child and reprted to have suffered from rickets, ashma and reumatic fever but by the age of 14 he managed to re-build his body enough to pose for anatomical drawings.

Joseph used the influence of a new awareness of health and exercise of the time to explore the physical effects of strength and gymnastic training on the body and mind.  He devised through his own transformation his method of mind/body training.  He came to England in his 30’s and worked as a circus performer and a boxer amongst other things, one of those being a fitness teacher to detectives in the Police force.

When war broke out he was interned but continued to expand his knowledge and fitness methods, practising on other internees.  And during this time he designed the “reformer’.  A machine to be used as a help to strenghten muscles with the use of pulleys and springs, helping work with assistance or resistance and  this machine is very much a part of the pilates studio world now and a brilliant aid to body fitness and alignment.

Mr Pilates was convinced there was a connection between poor posture, sedantry lifestyles and ill health, and studied many forms of exercise and fitness such as yoga, bodybuilding and even acrobatics to use as a whole body exercise experience.  The need to engage mind and body and use flowing movements and slower fewer repetitions can help you contol your body.    Used correctly and regularly it helps to re-align, reshape and repair bad posture, weak muscles restore a balanced and stronger body.

The most common phrase I hear when new clients either come to watch classes or when they watch me teaching them basic exercises in assessments is “oh you made that look so easy………..and it’s not is it!!”  No it’s not, I have been doing Pilates for 20 years and teaching for 10 and I still find certain things challenging.  Yes, injuries can make things difficult but with the right kind or re-conditioning at class or in a one to one session you can start to help make the changes you need in your body to get back to your best “you” physically.  No, it will not happen over night and you will have to work hard for it but with the right kind of direction from your Pilates instructor and a willingness to see it through then anything is possible.  Mr Pilates proved that in his own body and in all his students.  Photographs of his students before and after his teaching really do show incredible results in body alignmnent and muscle definition and strength.

Mr Pilates was certainly an inspitation to me and all my fellow instructors, and now to my clients too.  An inspiration to want to do better, to re-align, reshape and repair my body, and to keep going because even when I have made one target I know there will always be more challenges so i can set new targets.

Sadly Joseph Pilates passed away in 1967 from smoke inhalation whilst trying to save some of his studion equipment in a fire.  He was 87 and in great physical shape and I see no reason to believe he would not have gone on many many years more.  I have clients in the 70’s and 80’s who are amazing and have really increased their movement and strength as a result of their Pilates.  It is an exercise regime for all ages, shapes, sizes and fitness levels.  Joseph Pilates was a true inspiration.  Come and join me at a class or have a one to one and be inspired too.

high spine curl with arms extended and single leg extension

New Year, new start, new you!

Happy New Year to everyone out there.  I hope all those of you who were poorly over the festive season are all better  now.  All the decorations are down (even if not packed away)  and we are all ready for a positive January.   All those choccies and mince pies are eaten and  looking forward to new start with an exercise regime ready for a post Christmas body and a new you!

On a personal note,  my own 2016  had a negative start this week!!!.  Another vendor pulling out in exchange week……how unlucky can we be on the moving house front.  What did we do to deserve all this hassle with trying to buy a new home!  We are doing our best to keep busy and stay focused in the hope that this will all turn out for the best……eventually, but quite hard at the moment to see a light at the end of the tunnel.  So, only one thing for it, forget it, line myself up with more work, throw ourselves back out there and start having some fun.  We have been so long in limbo, we have foregone our social life somewhat.  We are now on house 3, so fingers crossed 3rd time lucky!

Pink mat with Jackie Brealey

And, throwing myself into work I am looking at running some more Pilates sessions in January, in Bagshot, Ascot, and Bisley.  Had some great holiday cover sessions at Pennyhill and the Berystede and and going to use my spare time to do a massive leaflet drop in Bisley, West End, Chobham and Lightwater, and the surrounding area to encourage those people who have thought about Pilates but not quite got around to actually doing it, to pick up the phone and join a class.  Good exercise for me amd hopefully bring some more bodies to the Pilates “table”.  Everyone needs a fresh, new start at this time of the year and what better way to kick off your 2016 fitness regime with a Pilates session or classes.  I know I am not alone in this as I have already had a lot of enquiries about assessements and class timeables.  We all need a little help to get motivated and what better way to do that than with a PIlates class.

Eagle radio had a successful Advent competition, with some great advertising for local business, me being one of them, offering classes or one-to-one Pilates as one of the prizes.  I am looking forward to meeting the lady who won all 24 advent day prizes.  Congratualations Claire.

Lets do it people, new year, new start, new you!!

Just want to wish my gorgeous hubby a very happy 7th Wedding anniversary.  Love you more than ever x

Being strong …..in the face of adversity!

And so, a great week of ab work.  Really worked hard on trying to make strong transverse muscles in class and  I think we may do the same next week too!  Loved hearing “good luck with the ab work” as the early class left, to the late class arriving on Tuesday evening,  and Thursday’s early class all yawning on their way out…..noted by the late class!

Purple top with Jackie Brealey

Also on a weird note, pleased to clear up the ‘manic’ ticking clock problem at the early class, which caused some mirth.  Which in fact turned out to be the computer palying a childs game through the head set with the screen off!!

Very proud of all my classes and private people this week, well done everyone!  I am very lucky to have such a great bunch of ladies and gents to work with.  The dedication and determination of certain people astound me,  and invariably in those who achieve so much in the face of adversity!

I have a lady with MS who I really admire.  There is no such thing as ‘taking things easy’ in her book.  Despite the physical problems she lives with, she faces each session with a passion I have seldom seen.  She listens to everything I say and adjusts her body position regardless of how difficult this may be.  I love teaching her, and find she teaches me right back.  I learn about the condition beyond anything I was taught on any course and she inspires me to try and help ease the problems she faces in everyday life.  Classic Pilates is not easy or even possible in many MS cases, but the exercises can be adapted to try and help strengthen some of the muscles that don’t work the way they should, or just to ease the problems they face.  But often it is not just the exercise that makes us strong, sometimes it is an attitude and a strong attitude can help make a strong body!

I am humbled by her and she has now become a very good friend.  I love her company and her drive to make things work better.  She has a wonderful sense of humour and she puts life into perspective, if shecan be so strong in the face of her condition then who am I to complain about the niggles in my body.  Everybody needs an awe-inspiring client who makes their Pilates teaching an even better experience and although I know she would be embarrassed to hear me say it but she really is mine.