I started dancing at the age of 5. In my little town of 500 people, I was the best dancer. My little dance school, that was about the size of a small farmhouse, was nothing compared to the big city studios where the girls I met at college studied.
When I got to college, I realized very quickly that I was far from the best, more like very close to the worst. I had to make it into the schools’ dance company for two years to get my degree. It wasn’t until my junior year that I squeaked in. I was the girl that was always in the back row on the stage of every performance.
That was before I found Pilates. In the first semester of my senior year, our modern dance teacher taught us Pilates floor work (known as mat work). We did the mat work twice a week in class and I did it once a week on my own in my dorm room. I gained a solidity I didn’t know I was missing. I could turn better now that I knew how to use my core. I could now pitch in a way I never thought possible. My confidence was strong as was my body. I had control and faith in my body. And I got lead roles the following semester! The only thing that had changed was that I started doing Pilates.
I was beyond excited and totally in awe of Pilates. I spoke to my teacher about how to learn more and she guided me to a few different Pilates certification programs. I was excited about how it helped me and wondered what more there was to the Pilates Method.
It was during my teacher training that I was exposed to the Pilates equipment and the many people who were doing Pilates as part of their rehabilitation after injuries and surgeries or to maintain their health as they age. I also got to witness how Pilates helped athletes too but it was the rehabilitative power that really inspired me.
During my year of learning the entire repertoire of movements, observing master teachers teach and 750 hours of practice teaching, I witnessed amazing transformations. I observed a woman in her 80’s who began coming to the studio with the help of a walker now only using a cane, doing intermediate level reformer exercises. I watched a woman who had two rods down the sides of her spine (skull to pelvis) do rolling like a ball. I watched over many years a woman who was a very active outdoors enthusiast come back from a car accident learning to first crawl, then walk and talk again. I’ll never forget the day she came in and shouted that she hiked a mile. I’ve worked with a man who had club feet, he gained movement in his ankles to where he could walk better than he had in 25 years.
It was through my training that I learned how truly amazing the Pilates method really is. I get to wake up every day to something I love. I get to see the transformations every single day, some small and some huge, in my studio. I have worked with those as young as 6 and as old as 91. I’ve had people come to me because they just want to be able to turn their heads to back out of their driveway. Others because they want to get rid of back pain, recover after a hip replacement, improve their golf swing, or stand long enough to do a hobby they love.
I have also received certifications in yoga and massage so my knowledge of anatomy and kinesiology only adds to my Pilates toolbox. My clients come to me not just because I know Pilates but because I know how to work with so many specific issues. My days are filled with finding ways to use the Pilates method to give people the opportunity to move in ways they lost years ago or never thought possible. Pilates is such a layered system that it doesn’t matter where one is starting. Come and let me walk with you down your Pilates journey.