Entries in knees (2)
By Kim Gibilisco
Often, people believe that the more directions you are drawn in, the weaker your focus and level of mastery. Like many Pilates instructors, my work takes me beyond the walls of the Pilates studio. I am also a choreographer. Over the years, I have found that the more I pursue developing my choreography for my own dance company, Kim Gibilisco Dances, the stronger my understanding, teaching and self-practice of the Pilates method becomes. Likewise, the more I study and train in Pilates, the more my choreography evolves. One discipline greatly informs the other, as they have several commonalities.
For both disciplines you need to be a creative thinker; a problem you’ve seen many times might require a fresh approach now and then. Puzzles you solve in choreography are not unlike the body riddles you find when training a Pilates client. So if you are a Pilates trainer who pursues more than one passion in life, ask yourself how this passion can inform and transform your Pilates practice and teaching. Here are six techniques I use in my dance-making that have improved my teaching of Pilates:
By Dianne Wise
The Foot Corrector is that small, saddle-like piece of equipment you’ve probably seen on the floor in Pilates studios. It was designed by Joseph Pilates himself, just like the rest of the Pilates apparatus, yet it seems not to be used as frequently. After all, how many of our clients ask us to work out…their feet?
Developing a “foot program” for your clients, however, can yield many benefits. A lot of people don’t realize that our bodies’ joint-alignment begins with the feet, which act much like the foundation of a house. If the foundation is not properly laid down, the rest of the structure does not have a stable base of support. To compensate, some parts of the structure might take on more weight than they’re designed to hold and can become damaged, or simply buckle. As the foundation for our bodies, our feet do a lot of work supporting our body weight. They also endure the abuse of walking on hard surfaces all day long. It’s very important to keep them healthy and happy— too often they are ignored.
There are many excellent options for working the feet in Pilates: apparatus exercises such as Footwork on the Reformer or Parakeet on the Cadillac mobilize and strengthen, while props like small hard balls (for tissue release) and Therabands (for spot-strengthening) are excellent for detailed work. The Foot Corrector, however, is the only piece of Pilates apparatus that works the feet in a weight-bearing, and therefore functional, position.