"Be in control of your body not at it's mercy"
- Joseph Pilates
Iyiola has been teaching Pilates mat since 2015, full apparatus since 2017, and she was certified in 2020. Her background is in dance, fitness and sports.
As a Pilates instructor she works with all populations including adults over 60, soccer moms, teachers, basketball players, dancers, triathletes, musicians, phone starers, weightlifters, swimmers, and especially anyone looking for a low-impact way to gain strength, increase flexibility, improve posture and find balance - basically, every body!
What is Pilates?
Pilates is an exercise technique developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 1920's. Stricken with various ailments as a child Pilates began to workout, practice sports and eventually developed his own exercise technique. He coined his practice Contrology - total integration of the body, mind and spirit. Today Pilates is practiced all over the world by all kinds of people for a multitude of reasons, not the least of which is a strong sense of control over ones body.
The 6 Principles
In Pilates we bring our focus to the execution of the current movement - where it originates, how we execute it, and why. This is CONCENTRATION. This is the essence of “power of the mind”. This practice of concentration makes us more aware of our movements in everyday activities.
Pilates named his technique Contrology - control of the body by integration of the mind. This CONTROL manifests as intention in movement. Exercises are executed with care as to protect the body from injury and to work smaller, primary muscles. Exercises are not done merely to get through them, but to practice controlling the body during them.
The core, also referred to as the “powerhouse”, comprises the abdomen, lower back, hips and buttocks and is inherently connected to the shoulder girdle or secondary powerhouse. The two together are the torso. The Pilates repertoire of exercises - including all of it’s modifications, variations, addition of props or equipment - teaches us how to stabilize our core in order to move more efficiently. This is CENTERING.
In Pilates transition from one exercise to another is an exercise in itself. This is direct commentary on the way that we should move from or into lying, sitting, standing, walking, or running. The concentration, control, and centering we gain from our PIlates practice leads to the FLOWING of one activity to another in our everyday lives. I believe this principle was influenced by Pilates’ study of the movement of animals.
PRECISION is why we perform fewer, quality repetitions in Pilates. It is also why Pilates Instructors talk the entire class! Precise movement trains our bodies and minds to move in an organized, efficient manner. The classical mat order is such that earlier exercises prepare the body for those that come later. This attention to execution supports finding balance.
Arguably the most important principle, BREATH is life and the Pilates technique guides us in maximizing it. Pilates intended this way of breathing to cleanse the blood through oxygenation, and most exercises incorporate a breathing pattern. It is said that he cured himself of asthma by not only focusing on full inhalation but full exhalation, as well. Full breath energizes the body and mind, and brings awareness to the "now" of the exercise.