This past weekend, I was diving into a fantastic Pilates Workshop at the Physical Mind Institute. Aside from personal mat work with various trainers and videos, my knowledge of Pilates was in my opinion limited, which is why I decided to deepen my understanding with some training. Years ago, I supplemented my yoga practice, and love for fitness with some Pilates Mat work and I experienced why people enjoy this form of exercise. Much like yoga, it is mind centered, involves focus on the breath, and tones the body nicely. It is also great for rehabilitation which is why many athletes, dancers and celebrities are referred by their physiotherapists to begin Pilates work. From my experience with Pilates, I would asses that many of the poses/exercises are yoga inspired. The wonderful aspect of this training was the Tye 4, which is considered to be the evolution in Pilates. While many would debate the need for the Tye 4, I would say that it is a great assist. The Tye 4 was developed by Joan Breibart (a wealth of knowledge in the Pilates world) and it basically is bungee cords that attach to your hands and feet which provide support for those who may need assistance and increased resistance for those people who require a challenge. The reason why I loved this portable apparatus, is that it helped my balance issues. Due to an injury on my foot, balance has been an issue, and the Tye 4 actually helped me to find better balance and most importantly decrease the pain. The reason for this is simple, my injured ankle causes pain when I stand on it, the Tye 4 gives additional support, lifts the arch of my foot, which eases the pressure off the injury! I am excited to try it out with other yoga poses. Using the Tye 4 for a Hatha yoga practice would be ideal, it reminds me of the attachments that one would find in an Iyengar studio (only portable). I think this equipment will be ideal with mine and any Instructors clients who are elderly, need extra resistance, and those recovering from injuries. Everyone at the Physical Mind was a delight to work with. Along with Joan Breibart, we had June who is featured in this month's Pilates Style Magazine highlighting BEAMING, and Lauren Piskin & Ryan the creators of the Physical Mind Studio on the Upper East Side. Thank you to the Instructors and participants for making it a lovely experience! The weekend was a great opportunity to learn and grow. For those of you interested in supplementing your Yoga practice with experts in the Pilates field, head over to the Physical Mind Institute. The instructors have a lovely positive energy and tremendous knowledge of the body.
Pictured: Lauren Birnbaum, Ina Charles, Ambria, Magan Sipe