This weekend I had the chance to workout with one of the trainees in our teacher training program. I often make the offer to trainees and other instructors that if they want someone to workout beside and practice their traditional order and reps to just let me know. What I love about this type of workout is that having someone beside you going through the sequence and exercises motivates you to stay focused, yet it’s really your workout. We don’t talk and I definitely don’t teach exercises, we just workout side by side. It’s not a class where you are waiting for instructions from your teacher, it is truly your movement practice and you are simply practicing the exercises in your body at your level. After our workout I was reflecting a little on how important it is to create this type of practice time for myself and also for my clients.
As a Pilates teacher I spend a lot of my time and focus helping people learn how to move properly and helping them fine tune good movement patterns. But I
have to remind myself that to be an effective teacher means after making sure someone is being safe and understands the movement, one of your most important jobs is getting them to practice and keep practicing. The only way to get better at a movement is to practice. The only way to keep getting stronger and continue to create more balance in your body is to practice. If someone continues to practice…they will improve their movement, they will maintain and gain strength, balance and flexibility and they will keep progressing.
This conversation reminds me that as a student of the work, more important than mastery or perfection…is the practice. As a teacher it reminds me that motivating and inspiring clients to stick with their movement practice, to practice on their own, to incorporate it into their life….is just as important as knowing how to how to teach proper mechanics and technique of the exercises. It all comes down to practice, practice practice!