“When the student is ready the teacher appears,
when the teacher is ready the student appears.”
Since the day TriPilates opened in 2007, our goal has been to provide our community with customized, cutting edge, Classical Pilates! But what is Classical? It all originates from Joe Pilates, who taught many different people and types of bodies (there are several “first generation” teachers). TriPilates has always maintained respect for the original work and order of the exercises (this, in my opinion, is what keeps it “classical”). Our expertise is in HOW we teach, not just what we teach.This is the key! Our students range from 12 years old to 82, from elite sports enthusiasts to chronically disabled, and many of us somewhere in between who just want to stay healthy and happy.
We are in the final weeks of our final Mentorship Program, making our TriPilates staff the largest in our community. A customized private, semi-private or even small group class at TriPilates is a completely different experience than listening to or watching a podcast, DVD, or online fusion Pilates class. Movement is good, of course, but HOW are we moving? Our teachers are keenly trained to observe and cue appropriately. There is no one size fits all.
Why? Because it all begins with the FEET.
My feet pictured here on the rocky coast of Maine, absorbing Mother Nature. It feels so good to reconnect where I spent many childhood Summers walking barefoot on these rocks!
Classical Pilates starts standing (even in mat class) before laying down for footwork. This is important to note! Before we know it we will be putting on Fall shoes, warm Winter boots, and (gasp) sneakers (most of you know this is not my favorite shoe). If you ever have had a foot injury, you do know firsthand how this affects gait, posture, and our movement patterns. There are all kinds of supportive shoes, but do we know how to find that internal support through our bare feet?
Proprioception (our individual sense of the relative position of our body in space) plays a huge role in core balance and engagement. Thousands of nerves endings at the feet (and hands) sense and reflect up through the core from the grounding (or internal lift) or down the back through the arms. A simplistic way to think about it is the nerves send signals to the muscles to move the bones, through the information highway of the brain and feet.
“Core” can even be thought of like the center of a tree trunk (our mighty illiopsoas), and most of you know I love that image. If there are detours starting at the the roots (our feet) – our entire body compensates. Whether we are doing The Roll-Up or the Roll Over, Front Splits or Long Stretches, Swan or Inversions, our FEET better be involved. Our psoas connects our spine to our legs (and feet) through the hips (center of gravity), so when everything is aligned from the feet, our movement becomes more powerful.
We are pleased to announce that our very own Fran Bianchini has successfully passed her National Pilates certification! Lately I have nicknamed Fran “the foot doctor” because she is teaching from a place of compassionate understanding and experience:
“I have a nursing background and was on my feet 10-12 hours a day, many a day and night coming home feeling fatigued from my feet up to my head. I discovered Pilates and began taking private lessons and group classes .
With each lesson and overtime I saw a change in my body appearance. I gained strength and stamina and mostly my feet started to feel better. My posture improved and my tight hips were feeling more flexible. There was a definite connection from my feet to to my head . The feeling was like a elevator starting in the basement and teaching the penthouse!
When I teach now, I want to help and guide the next person to become body aware and be as refreshed and revitalized as I was and still am each time I come to take a lesson! Both practicing and teaching Pilates gives me energy to brave the world.”
– Fran Bianchini, PMA-CPT, TriPilates Teacher
Is it necessary to teach Pilates to be PMA Certified? Nope. You will find most health clubs, gyms, even private teachers aren’t nationally certified. Are there other avenues to learn to teach Pilates? Sure! Just like Yoga, there are many flavors of Pilates, or variations depending in lineage. Some call themselves Pilates teachers but learn only a portion of the Pilates Method (meaning “just mat” or “just reformer”).
At TriPilates we are present for you in the moment of your movement, of your each and every breath and how you move. Starting with your FEET!