Life as a Pilates Instructor: Linda Brown of Completely Fit 4 Life in Auburn, CAApr 07, 2021
Here's another in a series of conversations I had with Pilates instructors and studio owners about life as a Pilates instructor.
These honest conversations are a way to gain insight into what life is like as a Pilates teacher. If you're considering becoming a Pilates teacher, these conversations don't hold back. They prepare you for what you have to know.
These are some of the highlights from our conversation:
- There is a need for trained Pilates teachers today. People really need an understanding of health, they need an understanding of how to take care of their body.
- More proof that well-trained Pilates instructors are needed is that many studio owners say that they have a hard time finding good instructors.
- That downsizing and getting small again can be a very good thing. Bigger is not always better.
- Pilates works from the outside in. When we first get to know the method, we look at the form and shape of the exercise. We ooh and aah about all the exciting moves you can do. Over time we deepen our understanding and we realize the external form is not really what it's about. Pilates has inner values. 😉
- Pilates Instructors are hope carriers, we carry hope.
- How important it is to honor one's own limitations (i.e. regarding how many hours to teach in a day or week). We want to help everyone, but there's only so much time.
Watch or listen here:
To get in touch with Linda, visit their studio website at https://www.completelyfit4life.com/
Now I want to hear from you: What's your favorite and least favorite part of being a Pilates instructor? Tell me in the comments (below the transcript).
Listen to more "Life As A Pilates Instructor" conversations:
Gail Giovanniello from Mind Your Body in New York City
Stephanie Glickman from Armature Pilates in Brunswick East, Australia
Debi and Denni of Pilates and Beyond in Encinitas, California
Here is the unedited transcription of our interview:
Mara Sievers 0:02
Hello, everyone, this is Mara Sievers, creator of Pilates Encyclopedia. And I'm here with Linda Brown of Completely Fit for Life from Auburn, California. Hi, how are you?
I'm great. Thank you so much for having me today.
Sure. So we're here today to have an honest, open, authentic conversation about life as a Pilates instructor. You have just become a partner studio of the Pilates Encyclopedia teacher training program, which is a hybrid program, meaning people can study online and they practice potentially at your studio.
I'm very excited about this.
Mara Sievers 0:41
very exciting. Yes. So why don't you start by just introducing yourself real quick. How long have you been teaching? What do you offer at your studio? If there's any niche or anything like that anything I need to know.
Well, I'm Linda Brown. And I have been teaching fitness and wellness for 42 years. That's a long time to be teaching. And I've been teaching reformer Pilates and mat Pilates for about 28 years. So I feel that the the Pilates program, kind of as soon as it started up, I became a part of it, I think it just got to our industry. And within four or five months, I was all on board with that. So it was a fun new adventure, actually. And I'm in Auburn.
I have had a studio in Folsom. I've had two studios running at the same time, I've had a studio with seven instructors. And four to six reformers, depending on which studio we were in. The business ran very strong for about 20 years. And about three years ago, I sold everything and decided to be an independent contractor and kind of branch out on my own with some other things. I'm a nutritionist as well. So I really wanted to get into the health aspect. But I ended up opening up my own little private studio here in Auburn again. And I probably just couldn't stay away from it, you know, I needed to have my own business, that I could actually work with people one on one, and I'm finding, especially since 2020, I have found that people really need an understanding of health, they need an understanding of how to take care of their body. And Pilates on the reformer especially, is amazing. It's an amazing tool for me to work with people. So what I mean by that is my niche, I guess you would say is that as I watched someone move on the reformer, and I'm sure you do this too. But you're able to see their discrepancies, you're able to see where their imbalances are.
Where is their body, not in harmony. And I actually can pick up on maybe even an area where there might be some stored trauma in the body. And so the reformer is an excellent tool for that. So that's what I'm doing. Wow, that's
Mara Sievers 3:29
amazing. I can't believe you've been in this since the beginning. I have to ask you what, like, what are we all? How has it developed? Like, just maybe one I know you can't tell the whole story, you know, the whole length of it. But just Is there any way how you see the industry or how people perceive Pilates and what people know about Pilates. How that has changed from then to now? Well,
I know that in the beginning, obviously I was younger, I had a lot more vigor. And I was super excited. And I kind of looked at the reformer as, Oh, this apparatus that you can just climb all over and do all these things. And so, you know, there was not really an understanding of how to activate the core and start from maybe a base. And it was more about getting on the reformer and treating it like it's this new piece of equipment. And of course we did all kinds of things. And so that was great. That was fine. But I as you know you move forward and the reformer really evolved for me as an instructor and, and I've taught other instructors to become instructors as well. I have a program there too. But, and I don't do that anymore. But I used to do that because you just couldn't find Pilates instructors anywhere. So with that in mind, we started with a base. And then all of a sudden you have this base, which teaches you how to engage your core, how to know how to engage the core, how to have that stability, what a pelvic floor even is, because I don't think we really understood that. And then moving from there, and progressing, you know, to maybe that next level. So I guess that would be in a nutshell, that's how I have definitely seen this amazing piece of equipment transform.
Mara Sievers 5:45
Yeah, I think that's a fairly common, I guess, transition or transformation that people, teachers, not just teachers, practitioners to, but that we all make in Pilates that first we look at the form and the external. And if you're fit and healthy, then yes, you want to try the hardest exercises, right? And you want to just play around. And then over time you go deeper and deeper and deeper, you get to know the exercises on a much, much deeper level, which is actually then the foundation, right? It's so so often we make our way backwards from the from those sort of hard exercises, and then we, as we learn them better, we end up as the at the easy exercises, which are not easy. But the foundational exercises, right, and then we build back up from there. So it's this, it's this cycles, sort of
absolutely that that actually, that's a great explanation, because we, you know, we do think of the very beginning Foundation, as easy, but I've had people walk away so sore, they could hardly move the next day with just the foundational exercises, and just getting them used to breath and getting them used to their own body and helping them connect in with their body. You know, honestly, I think that's key right there is connecting in with your body. A lot of people, I'll ask them a question, you know, how does that feel? Or where do you think you have, you know, your biggest area of complaint or pain or whatever it might be? A lot of people don't know, they are really not in touch. So getting them acclimated to their own body. The reformer is the perfect tool for that.
Mara Sievers 7:37
Yeah, body awareness, right?
Unknown Speaker 7:39
Mara Sievers 7:40
Is that what you meant? When you said that, especially in 2020, you realize that people have no concept of health? Is that maybe the body aware? Is what you meant? Or, or are there other layers to that too?
I think, well, there's definitely other layers. But yes, the people I think people, maybe all the sudden thought, Oh my gosh, am I healthy enough? What is my immune system? Maybe they had an idea of what that is? Am I in touch with my body? Am I strong? If I were to get a virus, would can my body withstand that? I think there was a lot of fear. The good thing about that is that I think people all of a sudden started to wake up, you know, to their health, and how can I take better care of my body and and get stronger, and I don't care. And you know this, how old a person is, honestly, I have worked on the reformer with people who have lost limbs. I have worked on the reformer with people who have multiple sclerosis or muscular dystrophy. I had a woman that came in to see me that could hardly walk. And all of a sudden after six months of reformer Pilates with muscular dystrophy, she was back riding a bike. I'm amazed at this machine, and there's just so many options. And so I think that's what I'm talking about.
Mara Sievers 9:10
Yes, yes. I hadn't, hadn't thought of that. But yeah, I can imagine. You know, when you're in so deep, right, if you're like you do like if you spend your whole life moving and, you know, using your body like that, then it's so normal for you that sometimes it's hard to imagine what how people feel in their body or how disconnected people are who never move right and who are just living in their head.
Exactly, exactly. And I think I have tapped into that a couple times. I mean, I don't know about you if you've had any injuries. But then all of a sudden if I've ever had to take any time off which has happened just a couple times, and I have to give credit where credit is due because doing Pilates has kept my body from actually having injuries. And because it's a total body without a total body awareness, starting from the very core, and then working your way out of bed, I guess there have been times where I have been injured just a few. And I've been off for maybe four weeks or six weeks to recover from my injury. And usually it might be on time as from a bike access cycling accident, you know, then I come back, and it is so difficult. I'm like, Oh, my goodness. And I think to myself, This is what my clients go through. This is what how they must feel. And so actually, it was a good thing, you know?
Mara Sievers 10:45
Yeah, being having either physical limitations or going through an injury I think, makes I actually think it makes you a better teacher. First of all, it gives you empathy and sympathy, like you've been there, you've been in their shoes, and you can remember that, that, you know, because it's an emotional aspect, just as much as as a physical. But also, you have to, you have to then be creative. You have to figure out okay, what am I going to do now? So I actually just had a knee injury skiing. I potentially I might have torn my ACL. And so just and I was like, as soon as I know, as soon as I could, I was back on the reformer. And, you know, I, obviously I had to think about Okay, what, uh, how am I doing this now, you know, if I couldn't bend the knee in the first in the beginning, and but I did a workout, I did a full workout and it felt so great, especially when, you know, I was limping. I was like, favoring, you know, I was like, I couldn't put any weight on this one leg. So all of my weight was on my working knee. But that got so tired, you know, those constant compensations. So being able to lie down and put my legs in the straps, my thighs in the straps, and just move bilaterally and bring that balance back and then stand up and like feel allow I'm good, tired, I'm tired. Because my muscles have been working. It feels so good. You know, and that helps you recover aside from the injured tissue in the knee. But my everything my spirit, my emotions, my and my body, everything helps me recover. And I'm sure you've had this happen to you a million times in terms of how you just it reignited my love for Pilates. Not that I lost it. But it just you feel it on such a, you know, firsthand experience again, Wow, I can't believe how mad how mazing it is because you're getting used to it right? After a while you're like, Yes, I know that this, this works. But when you experience it again, on a first hand like that, it's just like, Wow, I can't believe it.
Absolutely. And I also think that just when you said, I mean you can do anything you can recover from injury, I think Joseph Pilates. Honestly, I think that was part of maybe even the beginning of you know, I really see him as the first physical therapist, and when he's looking at people who are ill when he was ill, and, and then coming up with these ideas of using straps. And I do believe that he started off with bedsheets you know, hooking them up and moving legs up and down. That motion and movement are key to our life, we have to keep our energy flowing, we have to keep the blood flowing and the fluid in our body flowing. And people do they go into hospitals, and whether they have an injury, if they sit around that is horrible for their recovery. And a lot of times people can, you know, not even recover because of that. So to have the opportunity to do motion and movement on a piece of equipment, with an instructor who really understands how to use that piece of equipment. Not only that, I'm finding working one on one, especially that I'm really tapping into who the person is. And so you see the exercises, you know, I do probably because they've been teaching for so long, but I actually see the exercises that are going to be best for them. And it could be in emotional trauma, and just because of the emotional trauma. Then you have a whole set of exercises for them that do exactly what you just explained. So yeah, the reformer is mind body, you know in my business, it's called completely Fit for Life. The number four for your emotional, your mental, your physical and your spiritual and I think That that reformer activates all of those.
Mara Sievers 15:04
I love your name, the studio name, I love that Completely Fit for Life right are completely Fit for Life. It's exactly what it is it prepared. Make sure you know with Pilates, you can just live your life fully. It's not about tearing you down or wearing you out or anything like that. It's about building you up and making you helping you thrive. I love that. So what's your favorite aspect about being a Pilates teacher?
Um, I, I love my job, I really do. Um, my favorite aspect of being a Pilates instructor is probably what I just explained that I have finally found a piece of equipment that allows me to work with a person on a whole level. I know that might sound a little strange, but I get real excited when someone comes in to the studio, and I get them on the reformer after I do, of course, a consultation with them. But I get them on the reformer, and all of a sudden I'm watching their body move. And it's amazing to me, the connection, what we manifest in our body, what what happens in our body. Maybe our shoulders aren't super tight, maybe our legs are not that strong. Maybe our neck is askew, you know, off, spine might be a little off, you can start to correct those things on the reformer. You can't do that in the weight room. I mean, I know I've been at for a long time. And I've you know, as a personal trainer in the weight room, group exercise instructor, I mean, you name it, I've done it. And I've stuck with this for almost 30 years, because I'm I'm in awe, you know, so?
Mara Sievers 17:03
Yeah, yeah, I can just I can just agree to everything. You're saying. The audio and the ability to actually make changes and not just put up with it. I'm, I'm always surprised. But again, you know, I've been doing this also for such a long time, or just using my body moving my body for such a long time. But I'm always surprised when people think oh, like I hear people say I can't run because I'm bow legged, or I can you know, ski because I'm not need or, you know, all those things. It's like, well work on it corrected. You know, there's something you can do, and then their eyes open like I can correct. And before anybody's gonna complain, I know that there's a difference between functional knock knees, instructional Knock, knock knees, and so on and so forth. So, but you know, a lot of people, it's just movement habits, it's just that they've developed a strange way of walking, or I've had a bicyclist who always like his knee always went out to the side when he cycled and he didn't walk that he was not his bones. But in his mind, it was like, Okay, I'm bow legged. And then you know, we worked it a little bit like, Look, your legs are straight. This is just a muscular imbalance that pulls your knee out to the side. So but yes, that's a whole awareness level that most people don't have. And the fact that you can actually make change, correct, that is mind blowing. Right?
Yeah. Or even to help open up their mind, you brought up something very, very key. We are physiological, when our brain grabs ahold of thoughts that come into the mindset. And we grab ahold of those thoughts, those when our brain grabs ahold of it, and we begin to process it and think about it and move with it, then all of a sudden, there's a chemical drip in the body. I mean, this is just science. And that chemical drip goes down into our body, our body reacts to that if it doesn't match, you know, I'm going to get a little technical here, if it doesn't match our DNA, if it's not matching who we really are, and what is actually embedded in us on a cellular level, then our body creates another chemical to try and balance that out. And so all of the sudden, you could be grabbing a hold of a mindset that actually starts to cripple the body a little bit. And that mindset could come from what someone else might have said, you know, you will never because your shoulders are too weak or you will never because you're not need or you will never just like my most Muscular Dystrophy client, you will never well she went way beyond that, you know, so even if it shifts The mindset, and you actually are able to do more things. That's exciting because we are prognosis can always be changed. And that is my motto when people come in and they say, Oh, you think you could really help me with this? I'm like, Oh, sure, we can work on this. So I'm so confident in what the reformer has to offer. And what I've seen people do that. And I don't see any, I'm sure there's other pieces of equipment out there that you could utilize in that way. But this one is, it's really opened up my mind on how to work with people.
Mara Sievers 20:42
Yeah, for sure. For sure. I, I totally agree what you said, I just had a thought. I think it might have slipped my mind about the mindset and the Yes. So yes, I found it. So basically, when you know, you we can't promise, you know, somebody who's paralyzed to walk again. But we can always improve where they're at. Right? We can always work on it and see, we, it's hard to say, you know, it's going to take you six months to be able to do this. And this and this, again, we don't know the how fast somebody progresses. It's not always in our in, you know, you never know. But you can definitely work on it and improve it. And often, even though structurally, something might not change, but, but you can adapt and and like I said you when you believe that you can do something you will be able to do more than you can do now. And that already is a whim, right? Even if the diagnosis doesn't change, but the fact that you trust yourself doing more, right, and don't limit yourself, before it's even happening, sort of right. And you gain trust and control over your body again, that is can open up, you know, so many more possibilities for somebody?
Yes. Because if you change your mindset, it definitely changes your emotions. And therefore you do have a healthier outlook. And I just look at us as instructors, we are hope carriers, we carry hope. And, and, and so you know, people have called me a Pollyanna. Awesome, I love that. I have no problems with that. Because I the success rate that I've had with clients with that more positive mindset is up in the 90s. And that amazes me that I don't think that one client, and you probably have watched this as well, they always walk out of the studio excited and happy and hopeful, you know. So that's, that's my job. So
Mara Sievers 22:57
I totally agree, I would say my only job right now or your you know, the client's only job in this hour is that you feel better at the end of the class or the session than when you came in. Because sometimes people say, Oh, I used to be able to do this right? either. If it's an older client, they get frustrated at what they used to be able to do when they were younger, and now they can't do it anymore. Or somebody, you know, wants to get better, but then maybe they plateau or they feel like they're not really increasing the number of repetitions or whatever right? And and you say, just don't worry your day, maybe you were really stressed out, Maybe something happened, the body feels different every day. Don't worry about it. As long as you feel better at the end of the session, you have one, right? Because if you feel worse, at the end of a session, you've regressed even more, that's that doesn't make any sense. So if your body now needs more nurturing and less challenge, then we'll give it that and it'll it'll feel better. And it's ready for the next challenge after that.
Absolutely. I was so athletic. In my 30s 40s and even 50s, I was really into marathon running and I was really into, you know, century bike rides, and I just loved it. I had groups of people and it was so fun. I just loved it. But what I did is I took my body to the ledge, and I would ride that ledge all the time because there was this addiction to I don't know could be endorphins or whatever it might be, but to that to that feel of things and I ended up with severe Adrenal Exhaustion. And it took me six years to recover in that six year period of time. I really backed off on all my running and, and cycling. And I all I did was Pilates and I did mat Pilates and I didn't even teach as much I backed off from teaching because that can take a lot of energy from you as well. I had to revamp and Thanks. So I walked through that myself. And at the end of that six year period, not only was I more recovered, and I have to be careful, because you know, we all have habits that can kind of step back into that. But I thought, Wow, you don't have to beat yourself up in order to have, you know, low body fat and a sculpted body and, and, and really what is the most important thing it is health, and health and wellness is about balance and harmony in the body. And so I don't know, I just learned a lot. And I think that through that, working with clients, who are athletes, helping them to learn how to take their body down a notch. It's not just you know, for people who are average, you have no core or trying to lose weight, which the reformers are great weight loss piece of equipment as well. But it's more about it, that new mindset of Okay, I'm in and then as they do get stronger, maybe they do want to take on something that's, you know, really huge. So I, I've learned a lot working on this equipment.
Mara Sievers 26:18
Thank you so much for sharing that. I, it's so, so important to share these things, too. You know, like, people might think, you know, sometimes, actually, PE teachers sometimes think, Oh, I can't share the stuff that I'm not good at, or if I have injuries or anything like that. But that's the reality. We're not robots. We're human beings who use our bodies. And we have challenges to we're not perfect, no. Yeah, normalizing and humanizing, I think is a good, important thing to
absolutely, transparency is healthy. vulnerability is healthy, and it opens us up to freedom for sure. And I think being free to not have to be careful, you know, with those things that you share my chair, I think you have no idea how it might speak to another person. So might as well be real.
Mara Sievers 27:19
Love it. Love it. Love it. Love it. So what is your least favorite part of being a Pilates teacher?
I think the least favorite part for me is, I do have I love helping people. And I see that it definitely is something that I'm able to do. And so I have a waiting list, you know, to get in to see me. I'm not saying that from an egotistical standpoint, I'm saying that from that I can't reach, I cannot avail I you know, I can't teach all those hours. So I have to be very careful and monitoring my own schedule. And I'm trying to be very honoring of who I am in my body. So it's probably the least thing that I like about it. But I will say that what I have been learning is that to empower somebody else, I don't want people connected into me. So if I feel that I'm ready to release somebody and maybe they're going to continue to practice reformer Pilates and a lot of my clients have purchased reformers, I'm not afraid of that in my business. And I want them to be able to stand up and on their own two feet and understand and take in and not think they have to plug into me, you know, moving forward in with their health and wellness journey, and maybe checking in because it does take accountability, and it's nice to have a professional that you can come to. So, um, yeah, I think that you know, that there's so many lease things that I that I feel about being an instructor's
Mara Sievers 29:12
I yes, I think teaching students to be independent is super important. Not just because it frees up your schedule and by the way, I had a six month waitlist at one point so I know how it is helping actually helping people when you're actually making a difference difference and be mad when that happens and you're only one person you can only teach so many people in so many classes and I've also had burnout so you know I'm it's that's what happens when you want to help everybody right? So that's what he learned when you when you've had burnout at one point then you learn No, my energy is right now the most important thing because if I don't have any gi I can't do anything and I'm not happy but I can I can't help anybody. Right. So first things first oxygen mask my own first right? Yes, that's right. Right. But, um, um, Oh, where did my Where did my thought go? Right there? Um, I lost it. Oh, my release? Oh, yes. Just the, um, the independent. So it's super important to teach people independence, first of all to free up your own schedule, but also because we're not walking around with them, helping them correct their posture or, or helping them, you know, with their movement, they're on their own in their own body. So we have to teach them to be self reliant and independent and take care of themselves. So yes, I fully support that, too. I think it's important that we're not doing enough of that. Yes, yeah. Yes,
yes. And I do love. I've been, you know, I have so many certifications with Pilates, and have taken so many workshops, because there's so much out there, you can learn from all these great master teachers, it's really fun. So I there is that method or methodology of, you know, what kind of Pilates you're doing, you can do a physical therapy, rehab, Pilates workout, you can do traditional Pilates, on the reformer, which is very beautiful. And I every time I'd say that I think of stopped, you know, I just think of even their reformer, and they the education that comes with that. And then I'll think of balanced body, also, and I look at how well in the very beginning, it was only balanced body. And in the very beginning, it was more physical therapy, kind of an idea. And However, if, if you can take this and you can be with dancers, and you can take this and be with professional athletes, you can take this and be with someone who is ill, or injured. You can take this and move with, like I said, people who are Without Limbs. And so it there's no, it's just a broad spectrum that you can really use with this method of working out.
Mara Sievers 32:26
So yes, I agree. Wonderful. What? So I know you have a small home studio right now. But if you were to hire a teacher or mentor a teacher, what, which Pilates skills, or also not Pilates skills, more softer skills would you be looking for?
Um, well, I definitely I probably would take him through. Every time I bring someone on in the past, I trained all of the instructors that worked for me, however, they also had a base, they would have a base with spot or balanced body or peak or, or whatever it might be. And so that was great. That's great to have a foundation. But I would always take them through a whole weekend series we would do all day, Friday, all day, Saturday, all day Sunday. And if I had to go into another weekend, I would but I really wanted all of us to be in the same mindset, but not but to have a varied teaching style and teaching skill set. So if you know one instructor might be really good at one thing and then another instructor so you would send clients off to whomever they would fit. But the number one thing to me is an understanding of APR personal relationship with people. And that's number one, I just really feel that you have to be attentive, paying attention and how you you know, have a consultation with them, how you're, how you're moving with them. Are you really understanding what their need is. That's number one. And number two, of course, is understanding the base of the pelvic floor and the core. And what that is what what are we doing why why are we doing Pilates? Why is it so important to work the core? Why is this different than my personal trainer at the gym? Who mentioned score, they might mention AB work, but they're really not talking about the understanding of the physiological makeup of our body. That's number two. And I think number three would be a person would begin to really feel comfortable in fluid and their teaching style. And however that is but just be able to have that confidence and That they could actually work with someone else. I think that's very important.
Mara Sievers 35:06
Yeah, and maybe one of the hardest things in the beginning because, right, yeah, first idea, like, Oh my god, I feel like there's always so much more to know. And, and lack of confidence is, you know, could be a common thing. But just, you know, you don't have to know everything, it's okay to say, if you don't know something, it's fine. And that alone can help you be more confident, because you're just being open just what we said earlier about injuries and sharing. Anything that's going on, honestly, not hiding anything that's going on first, not necessarily oversharing. But, but just not writing it makes frees you up, right, it takes a weight off your shoulders, and you feel you can be yourself. And the same thing. When you're a new teacher, you can admit that people, you know, clients can ultimately choose and if if, if there is a picky client, and they want to only work with somebody with with a lot of experience, then that's fine, too. That's we can respect that. But there are plenty of clients out there who don't need you to have like 20 years of experience, they're fine and smooth, you know, they you might resonate with them on an on a on a personality level, much more. So that's that's maybe why they choose to work with you not because of your expertise. It depends on where somebody is coming from. Right. So like a little help new teachers be a little bit more gone. Yes,
I think the great thing with new instructors, I think they have to be attracted to the reformer, they have to have definitely taken classes or that you know, that's one thing, but it is relational. It really is relational. And so if you have that, you can learn all the rest of it does is you and I don't know everything with regard to Pilates either. Because it continues on and on. Our industry that we're in grows over 500% a year. I when I saw that statistic, I was amazed. And so how exciting for somebody to step in and just start off learning and not to be overwhelmed with Oh, I'm not they're about to be excited that maybe they start off with two to five clients. And and maybe some of them are friends. And they're really helping them to stay committed to health and that healthy journey. So that's, that's all it really is.
Mara Sievers 37:30
Yes. And then goes you learn from one client, one client at a time. That's how you learn. Yes,
Unknown Speaker 37:37
Mara Sievers 37:39
Last question. What is what is one thing that you wish you had known before you became a Pilates teacher? Um,
Unknown Speaker 37:48
Unknown Speaker 37:50
I would say
Unknown Speaker 37:53
that's a hard question. I've been doing this for so long.
Unknown Speaker 38:00
I really I probably really don't know how to answer that. That question.
Unknown Speaker 38:10
What What would
I think that I would need? I mean, no, I like what I've learned.
Mara Sievers 38:15
The question, honestly, maybe implies a little bit of, is there anything negative that you would have liked to be prepared for? Maybe that's a better question. Is there anything that you were felt unprepared for when you started to teach?
Well, I know, I will come back to let's go back to this. The great thing is that, yes. Remember what I said about the core and learning the fundamentals first. I that's probably it right there. Just knowing that hopping on that reformer and you know, here's here's a new instructor with reformer Pilates and just wanting to do all these great things on the reformer, which was fun, my clients loved it. Um, however, we really did need to learn the fundamentals of the core. I wish that I had been taught that
Unknown Speaker 39:05
in the beginning,
that there is, you know, some levels. And I was not and I probably taught that way for maybe the first five years. And then after that, I think I began to figure out why we really need to kick into understanding the core a lot more so. Probably, that I think maybe we didn't know that in the beginning. So
Mara Sievers 39:27
a lot of Yes, and I think a lot of a lot of science has been how do I say it like, we've learned a lot about the human body in the last four years, right. So there's a lot that you might not have been taught at the beginning because we just didn't know. But also, a lot of teacher training programs often focus on the the form of the exercise, right, all they teach is move your right leg out, bring it in, stretch your left leg out, bring it in That's, that's sort of it. And I don't want to I mean, I know that hopefully you learn more in a teacher training program. But the really the thing that we really teach is movement without teaching exercises with teaching movement. And we're often the anatomy is often so short and so superficial. It's like, okay, here's your humerus, and here's your femur and, you know, but not how they're connected and not how they're moving the body. So that, right, that's the difference between form and function form is just where the limbs move through space and function is how does that happen? And that part is, is what I find is often missing in teacher training programs, which I hope I'm helping along a little bit, but you have to start with the function or at least learned at the same time, the function and the form because otherwise, it's sort of it's a little superficial. And ultimately, if you're curious, like you said, your ear, you're hungry, you're, you will get there. Yes, it'll just take a little longer. That's right.
That's exactly right.
Mara Sievers 41:08
That's wonderful. Thank you so much. Is there anything else you want the world to know? Anything you know, I
just want to say thank you. This is really awesome that somebody takes the time to really help people to understand more about reformer Pilates, especially from an instructor's point of view, I hope that more and more instructors come in and and learn or people want to become instructors that that would be the key, we need more, we need more greed and struggle or that
Mara Sievers 41:38
we need more teachers. And just like we both shared, you have a waitlist, I used to have a waitlist, I sold my studio, but I had a waitlist. When you're doing really good work, when you're really well trained. I'm gonna put that caveat there, if you're really well trained, then you will have worked until the end of life, right? Until you're 100 years old. Your clients there's you can really this is really, and it's so fulfilling. It's so rewarding. You can you know, so it's it's a wonderful, wonderful profession, but you have to be trained well. And I think there's some aspects about it, which we're talking about, that people might not be prepared for, or be surprised by once they get into it. So I'm really, really hoping that this conversation and many others to follow will help shed some light on just what it's like the good and the bad.
Mara Sievers 42:38
Thank you so much for taking the time. And I'm so how can people find you if they want to get in touch?
Well completely fit for life.com completely fit the number four life.com. Certainly, they can email me through my website. Absolutely. And I would love I do a lot of online training too. So they certainly can check in and see what I offer. I do offer a lot more than reformer Pilates with regard to health. So yeah, thank you.
Mara Sievers 43:13
Awesome. Sure. And if anybody's interested in the Pilates Encyclopedia teacher training program, where you can hybrid programs so you can study at home, and then practice potentially at Linda studio. Then check out http://www.Pilatesencyclopedia.com/teacher-training