Dear Inmates, the good news is, we completed two weeks of national lockdown, and there’s another three weeks ahead of us. Let’s buckle up, pull in the tummy navel to spine, lift the chest bone, depress the shoulders away from the ears, lift the chin and tilt your pelvis slightly forward. Now squeeze the glute muscle and inhale!
In 1883, in Mönchengladbach, Germany, a boy was born to a Greek father and a German mother. They named him Joseph. He was a sickly child, suffering from asthma, rickets, and rheumatic fever. Instead of feeling sorry for himself, he dedicated his entire life to improving his physical strength. He soon realized that insufficient breathing and bad posture were the root causes of poor health.
In 1912, Joseph found himself in England. By now, a professional boxer, circus performer, and self-defence trainer for Scotland Yards police academy. When WW1 broke out, British authorities interned him, where he taught wrestling and self-defence to other internees. During this period, he began to develop his concept of an integrated system of physical exercises. He refined his minimal equipment system of mat exercises and called it Contrology. He also used his exercise methods to rehabilitate seriously injured veterans. After his detention towards the end of the war, he served as an orderly in a hospital on the Isle of Man, where he worked with patients unable to walk. He attached bed springs to the hospital beds to help support the patients’ limbs, leading to the development of his famous piece of equipment known as the ‘Cadillac.’ Much of his equipment, including the much-loved Reformer, is still in use today.
Joseph Pilates later ended up in New York. From here, his success story blossomed into a worldwide fitness regime that spread across the globe to every major city and small village on planet earth. Millions of people fell in love with the ”Pilates way of Life”, including us!
Today I want to give a GRAND SHOUT-OUT to Carmen! When the sudden arrest of lockdown took hold of the country, she single-handedly ’lunched’ into action to turn Pilates4.me into an online studio. She liaised with other Pilates instructors from New York, London, to Brazil on what and what not to do. They freely exchanged valuable information between them in support of each other.
Technically the internet upload speed had to increase to 20/20 to allow for a steady connection. The Zoom App facilitating the online classes had to be put in place, and clients needed help with that too. From the youngest to her 80-year-old client came on board, and mat work is now the order of the day. Home alone, she connects to the outside world with her smiley face and sets our muscles into motion to keep them flexible and healthy. Tinned tomatoes replace dumbbells, and a sturdy kitchen chair turns into a Pilates apparatus.
History and current events show that people’s resilience and fighting spirit thrive amid adversity and even war. Out of the darkness, light can shine, suffering and hurt can lead to healing and restoration.
Herewith are a few comments from her clients on her Shout-Out board!:
Thank you sooooooo much for keeping up with the classes on a public holiday. I would have gone mad without it. This extended lockdown is soooo sad. I knew it was coming but still got so knocked last night.
Carmen weet jy ek was die afgelope week so depressief. Hierdie lockdown het my regtig gevang maar na vandag se oefening voel ek ‘n duisend keer beter. Pilates is regtig my siel kos. Dankie baie.
That was excellent, thank you! My husband really enjoyed it too. You’re very generous, thank you so much.
Great class, thank you, Carmen!
It worked really well – I could get used to this – no traffic.
Ek is so baie baie bly dat ons online gegaan het met ons klas toe ons gegaan het… dit hou ons darm op ons tone.
Hi Carmen, ek wou vir jou skryf vandag om te sê ek het dit baie geniet! Jy het ons hard laat werk!
Alles goed hier met my en geniet Carmen se online klasse baie. Ons hoop en vertrou die verlengde “lock down” het meer positiewe uitkomste as negatief op al die mense.
Let’s raise a glass to the best Pilates instructor you could ever have prayed for and to the best clients she could have asked for!
As always, with much love and appreciation to you all. Stay fit, stay home, stay calm, and Pilates on!