It All Begins With The Feet

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Workshop Saturday 6th October 11am - 1pm

St Margarets House, £20

Our feet work so hard for us on a daily basis, but they can be one of the most neglected areas of our bodies, barely even given a second thought; that is until pain occurs. What is your relationship with your feet? Do you even like them, look at them, let alone give them the attention and credit that they deserve? Or do you just quickly stuff them into socks and shoes and go on your way?

Your feet are an incredible feat (no pun intended!) of engineering; complex, delicate and strong. Not only do they have the ability for great flexibility, but they can give your body so much sensory feedback about your environment and relationship to the earth, which impacts on how you move. But if you spend most of your time in rigid shoes walking on flat, hard man made surfaces you can never allow your feet to achieve their full potential.

But it obviously isn’t only about your feet – that is just where it all begins. Your whole body can’t move freely and efficiently if your feet aren’t moving properly. Pain and dysfunction in the knees, hips, pelvis, spine, shoulders or neck may well originate in dysfunction or lack of mobility at foot level.

In this workshop there will be lots of gentle releasing, stretching, mobilising and strengthening of the feet. Then we will explore how our foot position when standing affects the alignment of the whole body, and how this impacts on our movement potential, ability to perform different Pilates exercises effectively, and most importantly on walking. Which leads us to the role of the hips and glutes, so they will getting attention too. You can expect to leave having had a full body workout and given your feet some much needed TLC, and with a programme to follow to slowly and safely build up to more barefoot time. The rest of your body will be grateful too! Suitable for all levels of ability.

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Did the Flintstones Need Pilates?

Did the Flintstones Need Pilates?

Workshop Saturday 25th November 11am - 1pm

St. Margarets House, £20

Fresh. Whole. Varied.  All words you might associate with a healthy food diet, but they also apply to healthy movement.  So if your daily movement diet involved walking, running, squatting, climbing, swimming, carrying loads, swinging, fighting, always facing the unpredictable and centred around finding your next meal, Pilates was probably not so essential! Although I’m sure Fred would have loved a Spine Curl…

To achieve and maintain your full movement potential, what you do outside your weekly Pilates class  - your daily habits - are fundamental.  For example, sitting on the ground in different positions, a natural human thing to do, may have become uncomfortable and difficult if it is no longer one of your habits.  This is where Pilates can help.

This 2 hour workshop will explore exercises that enable you to gain the stability, control, strength, awareness and flexibility to move more fully, in lots of different, and new ways.  We will release and stretch areas of tension that might be inhibiting full range of movement.  Alongside some Pilates favourites, expect the unexpected as we put our Pilates to functional practice with movements that are fun, sometimes challenging and very different to your usual class. (Making flints not compulsory!)  This workshop is suitable for all levels.

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New Teacher joining Jyotipilates!

New Teacher joining Jyotipilates!

The Autumn Term is on the horizon already, and although I will miss the (occasional) warmer days, I always love the turn of the season, and actually like that "back to school" feeling!  It feels like a time of year to focus on projects and explore new ideas.

So there are some exciting developments here, the biggest of which is that Susie Alexander is coming on board, and will be teaching 2 Beginners classes on Tuesday nights at 37 St Stephen Street, with new venues and classes on the cards for the future.  She is a fantastic teacher with a lovely friendly and sympathetic manner.  Read more about her below.

I will also be adding to my teaching schedule, with a 1pm Beginners class on Mondays at 37 St. Stephen Street, and will be available there on Monday afternoons for 1:1 sessions.  These are ideal if you want an hour tailored just to you, either to progress your Pilates to the next level or focus on any particular issues you have, and can be taken as a regular appointment or as a one-off to complement your matclass.

 

Susie AlexanderSusie

Susie Alexander is a Body Control Pilates matwork teacher with a passion for wellbeing, sport and healthy living. Firsthand experience of the positive effects that a pilates practice has on physical wellbeing, levels of energy and state of mind continues to inspire Susie to teach her clients how to move well. Susie believes that everyone can benefit from pilates; from long distance runners, to golfers and office workers. Susie has completed her Intermediate Matwork qualification and is certified in Pilates for Golfers and Pilates for Performance. She is delighted to be teaching at the St Stephen Street studio.

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ABC of Pilates Beginners Workshop Saturday January 7th 2017, 11am - 1pm £20

ABC of Pilates Beginners Workshop                                                 Saturday January 7th 2017, 11am - 1pm  £20

Ever wondered what exactly Pilates is and whether or not it is for you? This workshop is a great introduction, ideal if you want the opportunity to try it out before booking onto a block; if you are still quite new to Pilates and want the time to go over the basics thoroughly or have been attending classses for awhile and want a refresher session. We will look at the fundamental principles underlying the method - Alignment, Breathing, Concentration, Centring, Co-ordination, Stamina, Flowing Movements and Relaxation and explain why these are all important and are the building blocks underlying every exercise.  You'll discover what and where your 'Core' is and why it needs to provide you with stability and strength, as well as learn about the many benefits Pilates can bring. The 2 hours will gently ease you back into movement after the Christmas break and maybe even kickstart some New Years resolutions!

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Introduction to Classical Matwork Workshop Sat 22nd Oct 11am-1pm £20

Introduction to Classical Matwork Workshop                                         Sat 22nd Oct  11am-1pm £20

Autumn has arrived and its time for another Classical Mat Workshop!  If you have been wondering what comes before or after the Series of 5 in the Classical Matwork sequence, or would like to spend a bit more time perfecting your co-ordination and technique, this workshop will delve deeper into some exercises you may be familiar with, and introduce some new ones. The 2 hour workshop will start with a warm-up to; then look at a selection of the exercises in depth (with modifications and preps for those not yet ready for the full versions) and then we will run the sequence in its entirety.

The Classical Matwork consists of a dynamic and flowing sequence of over 40 exercises, linked by transitional movements, with the rhythm of the breath integral to the movement and pace.  Performed from start to finish, it develops physical strength, stamina, muscular endurance, co-ordination, and physical and mental control. 

Participants should already be comfortable working at an intermediate/advanced level (happy rolling up!) and be able to take responsibility for their own body by modifying any movements that might not be suitable for them.

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Release and Align Workshop Sat 23rd April 11am - 1pm

Release and Align Workshop Sat 23rd April 11am - 1pm

This 2 hour workshop will explain what good alignment is, look at how you can assess and check it in your own body, and learn how to recognise when you are in (and out!) of it.  We will look at some of the exercises we frequently do in Pilates, and see how these movements are also excellent tools to help you find good alignment and set yourself up in the correct starting position for other exercises (particularly useful if you practise at home). Then we will work on releases and gentle stretches for areas of commonly held tension in the body, that may be keeping you out of good alignment, such as in the neck, shoulders, back, hip flexors, hamstrings, calves and feet.  The workshop is suitable for everyone, whether you have done one Pilates class or 1000!

Cost: £20

Book through booking link on website.

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WHY IS ALIGNMENT IMPORTANT?

WHY IS ALIGNMENT IMPORTANT?

Alignment is one of the key principles of Pilates, and correct alignment is not only fundamental to gaining results from your Pilates class or other exercise routine, but is essential to the optimal functioning of all of the systems of the body.

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Reclaim Your Lunchbreak! Fri 27th Nov 1 - 2pm

Reclaim Your Lunchbreak! Fri 27th Nov 1 - 2pm

FREE introductory class held in conjunction with Stylist magazine and Body Control Pilates, at St Margarets House.

Come and make the most of your lunchbreak and find out about Pilates. The basics will be explored and explained, we’ll have a look at your posture  and introduce you to the foundations underlying Pilates -  Alignment, Breathing and Core Stability.  You’ll learn to connect with your body, and improve your balance and posture. Joints are gently mobilised, knots released, and you’ll gain the awareness to work your muscles in a deep and precise way.

Places must be reserved in advance through booking on my website.

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Restore and Release Workshop Sat 5th Dec 11am - 1pm

Restore and Release Workshop Sat 5th Dec 11am - 1pm

I am running a 2 hour “Release and Restore” workshop to help you unwind your body and your mind and give you tips and tools to add a bit more active relaxation into your everyday life.

As my regular class goers will confirm, I love spiky balls, Hedgehogs and Foam Rollers, and could happily spend the whole class using them, as they are so beneficial in helping to release tight areas, so we will do lots of work with them, as well as gentle mobilisation moves, a detailed focus on posture and alignment and breathing and relaxation techniques.

Suitable for all levels.

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Why the Relaxation Position could be your most Beneficial Exercise

Why the Relaxation Position could be your most Beneficial Exercise

Joseph Pilates based his method on key principles, from which Body Control Pilates include Alignment, Breathing, Relaxation, Centring, Concentration, Co-ordination, Flowing Movement and Stamina, and I will be exploring some of these in more detail over the next few blogs.

This month, I’m starting with one of my favourites, Relaxation.  Pretty obvious why I might favour this, as who doesn’t like to relax, but when you look at it more closely it may not be relaxation as you know it, and you will see how it can help you to build strength and allow your muscles to function optimally.

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The History of Pilates

Welcome to my first blog – I am hoping (and have good intentions!) to write monthly, on various aspects of Pilates as well as other health and wellbeing topics, so do let me know if there is something you are interested in and would like me to look into.

So you know what Pilates is, and all of the great benefits that it offers, but where did it start and how?

It has actually been around for over 80 years, and is named after its founder, Joseph Pilates.  He was born in 1883, in Monchengladbach near Dusseldorf in Germany.  Unfortunately he wasn't a healthy child and suffered from asthma, rickets and rheumatic fever.  But rather than allowing this to limit him, he set out to learn about health and exercise, and to improve his strength and fitness.

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