Thursday, January 15, 2015

Balance In Pilates--Balance Within

As my body begins to further accept Pilates as a daily occurrence, I am encouraged by the consistent physical progress I've made. With each improvement, in hindsight it seems impossible that I haven't been able to do such things my whole life.

Surpassing each wall has largely presented itself to me as a series of challenges derived from self-imposed mental barriers, the complexities of physical precision and the necessity of observation (we'll talk about this another day).

The results of my practice range daily and offer a cocktail of encouragement or confusion. I stress the idea to my clients of leaving worries outside the studio, yet I feel such stressors penetrating my focus as I begin workouts. When thrown off focus, there is little chance I will juice the most from my practice, rather, I often hold myself back and exist in an uncomfortable state of pseudo-concentration that leaves me with a sour taste post-workout. Because of this frustration and because of the incessant and inevitable cares I experience everyday, I have begun to prepare myself before I even enter the studio to clear my head and exist in a space where my mind is calm and ready to respond in conjunction with my physical movements.

From here, my ability to execute the minutiae of the classical Pilates method becomes greater and my body feels more attuned to the exercises that come next, while still staying present and balanced in my current position. Certainly, when I'm stressed (as horribly cliche as it sounds) not only is my emotional balance thrown off, I actually have trouble with physical balance demanded by Pilates such as the Standing Series in the Advanced Mat. If I'm in a composed state of mind, I am so connected with my body that such exercises are not nearly as difficult! Further, as a climber, I visit a gym where there is a slack line (like a tightrope) and the equation correlates here too. If I'm not shaking from anxiety and unnecessary worry, I can walk the line over and over again!

Bringing this all together, I do my best to spend free moments existing in a loving, pleasant, kind space that dials in my focus. I'm not usually a fan of collecting objects or gifts and don't like having a lot of "stuff," but my dear friend gave me these hand carved Chakra stones (look up if you're not sure! :) ) that correspond to seven areas of the body. They are small stones and are very difficult to stack in a straight line, but I spent some time focusing on this project and was able to achieve a nice little tower. The small achievement made me feel a sense of personal accomplishment. It seems trivial, and in a way, it is, but I think allowing time to feel a sense of balance and body-mind connection allows for so many more opportunities to show kindness to others and act out of compassion and empathy.

(The camera quality isn't great--let's not forget I don't own any state of the art tech ;) )

I encourage you to do whatever you can to stay balanced and love the space surrounding you and your practice.

Tease On and Om,


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