Building Body Awareness at Any Age
I’ve been in the physical fitness world pretty much all my life and I haven’t come across anything else that teaches people about their bodies as concisely as Pilates does. What I hope for when I teach clients is for them to be able to take what they do on the floor or equipment and apply it to functional movement, balancing, bending, twisting, and lifting in addition to the active living and sports they do. Working from the inside out, we could all have benefited from this information at an earlier age. But it’s never too late. A lot of us come to Pilates when we have more time and/or resources for ourselves; or when we are experiencing our first injury, pain or limiting condition. We don’t tend to think about our bodies until they start to talk back (hurt) in some noticeable way.
As clients who now have some awareness of the benefits of knowing what good posture looks and feels like, I would encourage you to speak to your younger acquaintances about the focused kind of physical education and body awareness you are receiving. I am emphasising this because of the recent growth of our scoliosis program which is quickly expanding, through word of mouth, to the much needed teenage population. Scoliosis is a very common condition and the earlier one can get into a proper exercise regime with it the better. Posture is very closely linked to self-esteem and confidence and it’s hard to have either if you can’t hold yourself up properly or move with any control or coordination.
Our bodies learn how to compensate in non-optimal ways very quickly and adapt to the work, study and recreational conditions we impose on it. Help the next generation by letting them know about what you’ve learned about your body. Physical education doesn’t stop after high school, it’s a life-long pursuit for all of us. As long as you have a body you can keep on learning how to use it better.