March 6, 2015

the pilates teacher

Something absolutely magical happened this past weekend. I'm talking unicorns flying WITH pigs magical. Pot o' gold at the end of the rainbow magical. 

I started my Pilates certification. 
My 13-month, crazy intense, homework all the time, becoming a Pilates beast certification. 

Now to you that probably isn't unicorn and pig magical, but listen here...I've waited about three to four years to get certified and the fact that it is finally happening is kind of surreal. I was in the studio every day from 9 to 6 and then I was at home studying or self-practicing or practicing on my mom and sister from 6:30-midnight every night. 

Pure. Magic.

I've been teaching ballet for 3.5 years now and a weekend in the Pilates world was quite the change. Allow me to explain.

Cue the lights and music, please, mon cheri.

Teaching dance is all about movement. You move as a teacher, you demonstrate as a teacher. Less words, more movement.

Teaching Pilates is all about cueing. Your words demonstrate, your words create imagery, your words create the movement in your students. I have never spent more time obsessing over whether to say, soften your sternum or curl chin to chest or curl coccyx to pubis or create a C curve in your spine. So many words. Words are hard. Me no like words.

When teaching dance to the creative ages (2.5-5) I often find myself saying these totally not crazy things like, Ballerinas are too busy dancing to pick our noses! or Where are your listening ears? or I can't give my glitter pouf to ballerinas who aren't listening.

And now you are all wondering if I had to say that to my fellow classmates while practicing teaching this weekend? Drumroll, please.

Nope, I didn't have to say any of those things once. No unlocking listening ears. No glitter. No one even picked their noses! (that I saw...)

Ballet classes have an order (plies, tendus, dégagés, the fun never ends!).

Pilates classes also have an order, but the class itself needs to flow. The class is a choreographed dance, always moving and never stopping. When I'm teaching ballet and notice everyone is having trouble with beats, I completely change the class. We go to the barre and work our inner thighs. We might stop and talk a lot and then go back to center and practice preparations for beats. And on and on and on. If I notice something is amiss in Pilates, I have to try to seamlessly rearrange the plan while still keeping the flow and ease of the class.

Phew, that was even hard writing that. I'm already scared for one of my future first Pilates clients to come in with something amiss. I'll just pretend we're in ballet and I'll take them to the barre (shoot, maybe I'll just straight up take them to a bar...).

However, while there are many differences between the two, the similarities are striking.
Teaching both for me is getting to share my love. Both dance and Pilates have been completely transformative to the way I treat myself, my body, and most importantly, my mind. When I teach, I feel like I am getting to give a small part of my experience to others in hopes that they too will see a positive change--no matter how big or small.

Okay, now BRB, gotta go get the cueing down for Kegel exercises.

1 comment:

Kayla MKOY said...

This is SO exciting! So WHILE you get your certification you get to teach? Is that how your judged? I'm so confused but excited for you!!!!!! :) hehe


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