Building A (Pilates) Home Practice

Let’s be real here: we all have a hard time finding the motivation to get up and move and workout- whatever kind of exercise that entails. It’s so much easier to be lazy and hope that there’s a spark inside you to complete that workout for the day. I’ve found the first thing to building a good workout regime is to find an activity that is exciting to you specifically. If you dislike the activity you’ll have the thought “I hate this” over and over again with each step you take and then will come up with any excuse to rationalize not doing it.

The next step is finding a place to do this workout (say Pilates!) in a setting that is welcoming and inviting to you. Some like Pilates studios (slightly intimate), some like a Pilates area within a gym (less intimate), some prefer an at home Pilates instructor (very intimate). You will either prefer a group setting or a private setting depending on your goals or needs.

Once you’ve determined the workout that fits you, we’re talking about Pilates now, because after all this is a website about Pilates; and found the place, the next step is time. If you’re going to a studio they may offer classes all day or at specific time slots. If you’re planning to take a class hopefully one of the classes will fit your schedule. Once you find the class that fits in your schedule block it out for the rest of the month. We want to build consistency and if you only put it in for one week you’ll forget or go back to finding excuses. If you’re interested in a private session you might have more options, depending on the instructor’s schedule, but also consider what time would be consistent and that you can make week after week.

Now let’s talk about frequency. I always tell my clients, you’re not going to run once a week if you’re planning to run a marathon. If we want to see results we should do it more than once a week. When you consider your frequency, cost will have an effect and that might mean a combination of private lessons with classes, only classes, or private lessons with homework from your instructor.

Lastly, I encourage everyone to build a Pilates practice at home. While taking your private lesson or class, pay attention to the exercises and the names so you can remember them. Remembering them will keep you engaged and allow you to call upon the exercise quickly the next time you’re in class or at a lesson. Ask your instructor questions either during class or after if it might require some assistance. When you do remember the exercises and practice a few at home- say 5- you start to see improvements much faster. And all of the points above apply to your home practice too: 1) a workout you enjoy doing, 2) a welcoming and inviting place to practice, 3) frequency of your practice – day and time.

If you follow these tips I am confident you’re on your way to a better person, inside and outside, thanks to the power of Pilates. It’s not easy, but it’s achievable.

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