Pilates is for Physio’s too ;)

Recently I’ve had 2 physiotherapists join one of my Pilates classes. Oddly they both work together, in fact sit opposite each other and have both found and joined the same class without chatting to each other about it.

I myst admit I did feel rather apprehensive when I found out I had a physiotherapist in my class, surely they already know what to do, how to do it and are more qualified than me? If I get anything wrong they are going know and pick up on it? Cue a moment of low confidence in me and my Pilates ability.

What I have found instead, is that these 2 ladies are lovely. Yes they do know more than me, but that doesn’t mean they don’t also need to practise what they preach and doing that with someone else to prompt you and challenge you can be the best way. Both ladies needed to strengthen their core and chose Pilates as they know the benefits of it from their profession. They have actually been an encouragement to me commenting on how good my teaching skills are, a real compliment. Plus I get to pick their brains and ask them Pilates and alignment questions 😉

So if Physiotherapists feel they need to attend Pilates surely that shows just how much we all need to be doing it? Come along and try out a class, taster sessions are £5.50.

Point, Plie and Pirouette

Last night saw the launch of a new class for Pilates with Priya, something a little different but so, so great… Adult ballet 🙂 A great compliment to Pilates.

Now before you squirm there were no tutus, no sequins and ballet shoes optional. I’m not qualified to teach ballet, but luckily Chrissy is and she certainly put us through our paces! Focused around a barre this is a class that is focused on strength, toning and core stability. Inner thighs, outer thighs, quads and gluts are worked hard, the element of balance means your core gets activated and the positions used increase flexibility. Sounds hard, well yes it was, but in such a good way, plus it was a lot of fun. Cue much laughter and a room full of smiling ladies. No photos to show you I’m afraid, think I’ll have to wait a few weeks before a photo is allowed. None of us are going to cut it as prima ballerina’s but we are going to have fun working out and toning up. Plus in my opinion it’s a great chance to break out the legwarmers 🙂

Here’s a few comments from last night’s class:

“LOVED ballet, my thighs! I could barely drive home. They felt wibbly. “

“I hope my muscles forgive me. Ballet hilarious. Hard work but fun.


Stretching is great :)

This week has been my first full week back doing full-on cardio classes at the gym. As many of you will know I don’t just teach Pilates… currently I teach 8 Pilates classes and then I have a back to back Step Aerobics followed by Spin session on a Tuesday and a Step followed by a Body Conditioning class on a Thursday. I love teaching these classes but they can be quite tiring so I’m trying to look after myself in between classes with good nutrition, plenty of hydration and hopefully some sleep! Having a baby means I have to dash back from classes as quickly as possible, jump in the shower and quickly feed her so she can get to sleep. What I noticed today was due to the rush home I hadn’t stretched fully and suddenly had tight, tight hamstrings…. ouch.

Tight hamstrings can affect your posture, your movement, stop you using your abdominals correctly and lead to tight back muscles. If you usually have tight hamstrings it lead to a tucked under pelvis as part of the hamstrings function is to keep the pelvis aligned. When muscles are tight, they are weak. This means they can’t hold the pelvis in position properly 🙁 So you end up with a tilted pelvis, you can’t use your core muscles properly and your body compensates, meaning it all comes out of line and you get backache.

Hoe do you know if your hamstrings are tight? Good question. According to these guys http://www.sportsinjuryclinic.net/cybertherapist/back/hamstrings/tighthams/hastringstretches.php you should be able to lie down, with one leg extended on the mat and the other leg in the air, foot towards ceiling, this leg should go to 80-90 degrees comfortably. Give it a go. Is your leg staying down on the mat? Check your spine, are you still in neutral? If the answer is No, you need to take the raised leg further away from the body and do some hamstring stretches.

So tonight at the end of Pilates we stretched out using resistance bands. It felt good. After everyone had gone I went back in the studio and had a good long stretch using a band….oh my, that was needed 🙂

If like me you rush around and sometimes, (well actually in my case often) forget to devote proper time to stretching try and build some in this weekend. Be it in front of the TV, whilst out in the garden or whilst waiting for your roast dinner to cook…your body will thank you for it!

Let me know how it goes…comment below or send me a tweet (@dietitianuk).