Hi! As owner of Bee Authentic Pilates, I’d like to introduce myself to you today and share my Pilates story. Pilates is something near and dear to my heart and as an introverted person I probably haven’t shared enough about it or myself over the years.
So in today’s post I’m going to gush about Pilates and my love for it.
Pilates is something I’ve had a passion for for many years, and I will admit, for me it just keeps getting better! The depth and understanding of the exercises and how they connect to each other just keeps developing. I truly feel that there is no other exercise modality like Pilates.
This is the story of how I got my start and a run down on where I am today.
For starters, I have a Construction Management degree. Yes. Read that again. :)
When I got laid off in 2009 I was burned out and needed to do something for myself. I had time on my hands, and not a lot of money. As luck would have it, I stumbled upon a pilates studio in Seattle (where I was living at the time) called Pilates on 10th who had a work study position and needed someone just like me. I worked at the studio two days a week at the front desk, and in exchange received free private lessons and reformer classes. This was a dream opportunity! I stuck with this work study position for over 2 years, basically as long as I could until I found a suitable “real job” and went back to the world of managing construction.
During that time, my body had changed. My life had changed. I felt the best I’d ever felt; I was in incredible shape, and I knew that my time at the studio had been something special. It truly was a life changing experience.
Going from a job where I was usually the only girl on site to a studio of mostly ladies gave me a better attitude and was so grounding. Even though I was back in my profession, I couldn’t give Pilates up.
I took my first major step into Pilates and signed up for the Comprehensive Instructor Training that my first teacher, Amie Baca, was teaching.
Then I got pregnant ½ way through the year long course. I stuck with the program, and still managed to graduate from it. It was tough but so worthwhile. I still worked full time, and was a new mom and I still went to classes for myself. Looking back, that might have been how I stayed sane!
I learned so much from that first pregnancy about working with your body during pregnancy, and more importantly, recovering afterward. The hormones of motherhood wreak such havoc on our joints but the resistance and precision of Pilates is the perfect thing to help the body come back.
In 2014 my family and I moved to Stanwood. I was shocked and saddened by the lack of Pilates in the area. I missed it so! Out of necessity, I started purchasing my own professional equipment. Over time I have built an almost complete studio. My personal studio features a reformer, high chair, wunda chair, tower, spine corrector, baby barrel and too many smaller pieces to list! I started giving private lesions in the area and in Mount Vernon and was quite happy until another life changing experience struck in 2016:
Like my first pregnancy, I was able to safely modify my Pilates routine to accommodate my “altered” body, stay strong, pain free and feel good. I may have felt like a whale, but finding comfort in exercise really boosted my confidence and sense of peace! Pregnancy is such a beautiful time, but let's be honest, your body feels so different. Anything you can do to help your mindset and stay active is so important.
It has taken a long time to come back to teaching after baby #2. My husband and I had just started a construction subcontracting business and with 2 kids (one a baby), my plate was full. Despite a break from teaching, Pilates is still a regular part of my life. I exercise whenever I can squeeze it in, even if its 10 to 15 minutes.
As a teacher, I am serious about keeping the Pilates method in my body, knowing how it feels and working my body -Pilates style. We are all students. There is always more depth to glean, and more improvement possible.
Going through 2 pregnancies has been a sometimes humbling learning experience. Every time I come back to Pilates after birth, I am back to the basics and taking the baby steps to find and relearn abdominal engagement and knit my abdominals back together. Every time I get to build back my strength and because my knowledge of Pilates has expanded and my body is different, its seems its always a new process.
I believe we never stop learning. The body of work that makes up Pilates is so vast. The application of the method is an art in and of itself, and getting to teach it feels like a privilege to me.
These days, I have been working with an incredible teacher, Kathi Ross-Nash for the past 1 ½ years. She lives on the east coast, and thanks to the amazing world we live in of virtual zooms I have been fortunate enough to workout and to learn from her! She has written multiple books on Pilates as well as studied the method for over 35 years with several of the “Pilates Elders”, those who studied directly from Joe Pilates. Her knowledge and grace inspires me.
My vision for the soon to be studio is also very specific, it is fueled by my experiences doing Pilates all over the country, with a large variety of teachers and through a lot of thought around how I can stay true to the method as originally taught and also keep it fun and practical.
I am passionate about classes and giving healthy bodies the opportunity to find the movement in an independent setting! A post about my philosophy and studio vision however, will be for another day and another blog post.
Today when teaching, my intention is for you to leave your session feeling good. I want you to feel strong and energized. Often, practitioners of Pilates enjoy the COMBINED engagement of mind and body and exercising in a way that stimulates the two. Pilates is a great workout for sure, AND it is also an incredible way to bring a sense of mindful presence into your body.
There is always more to learn, and our body is always evolving through time and life. Amazingly, Pilates is able to meet you in whatever phase of life you are currently in living, and versatile enough to be there for you wherever you end up.
WELL my friends, that about sums it up. Thank you for letting me share my story with you. I don’t know if I’ve truly expressed my love for the method, but it's my hope you have felt the love.
I’d love to hear from you and YOUR story and what interests you about Pilates!
I can’t wait to share the Pilates method with YOU and look forward to meeting you in the studio as soon as we are open.