Pilates is the brainchild of Joseph Pilates and has been around since the middle of last century. While he was alive, he trained a number of instructors in his method. They are called the Elders. After his death, these instructors took his teaching all over the world and over time his Pilates changed as they put their own slant on it. The instructor who stayed closest to his original work was called Romana and it is her classical Pilates method that we follow at Northland Pilates. It is as close to the original as it can be while incorporating our more modern knowledge of health and exercise. Unfortunately, Romana died on August 30th at the ripe old age of ninety. Until four years ago, she was still able to do most of the advanced exercise repertoire good news for us devotees!
Romana emphasised flow in the workout and, overall, that is just what Pilates should be, a flowing workout. You should get very warm while doing your Pilates and definitely feel that your muscles have been exercised.
For those of you who have worked with each of us instructors, you have probably noticed that we more or less teach the same class but with very different styles. This is probably due to our different backgrounds. Carla is a dancer, used to working with healthy, fit bodies and she really goes for flow. My back ground is in physiotherapy and rehabilitation so I focus more on precision and control and work a little slower. Val sits somewhere in the middle. All of us will give you a great workout but you can pick who you want to work with. None of us will be offended if you like another instructor's style more, just let us know and we'll try to move you. Please bear in mind that the evening classes are crammed full at the moment so it may take a little time to move things around.
In the last newsletter I talked about the benefits of Pilates associated with ageing but it is also an excellent exercise for the young, fit and healthy. It is a great exercise in itself, giving you strength and flexibility, toning and stamina. Pilates gives you a fantastically strong core as a great support if you perform activities with a strong impact or aerobic component. It is, without doubt, the best abdominal workout you can get. The American College of Sports Medicine conducted some very thorough research on the abdominal work in Pilates, comparing it to regular gym based abdominal work and Pilates came out as significantly more effective. This was not just the abdominal series but the plank, push up and Teaser positions too. Good news for us all.
In the last newsletter, I mentioned that it may be possible to run a lunch time class if there is enough interest. It would be intermediate level, early in the week, around 12.30 pm. Please let me know if you are interested.