I’ve been interested in Pilates since watching the Getting to Greenwich show on Horse and Country where Laura B, one of our top Dressage riders talked about doing Pilates and how it helps horse riders become more flexible and increase their core stability.
Like most people, I’d heard of it but never truly knew what it was. But now I was being told how most top riders practice Pilates to increase their riding agility. I wanted in.
I bought some books, knowing from my past experiences that going to a class as a blind person would be virtually impossible.
But like most home projects, the Pilates one didn’t last. Going to classes often makes you go because you’re paying for it and for that set period of time are made to concentrate on the thing you’re learning.
I kept looking for Pilates classes in my local area and even tried to sign up to my local gym because they offered it as a class but predictably I couldn’t sign up to the gym without someone holding my hand every time I went.
Last week mum read in our local paper about a Pilates class being given at our local community centre. In the UK, if a local authority is offering a service, it has to be accessible to all. I wasn’t convinced so I emailed the contact person and inquired about joining the class, explaining i’d read up on Pilates but had never practiced and was totally blind.
She promptly emailed me back, very welcoming and said she’d call me and enrol me on the course the next day.
When she called, she mentioned about a support worker to assist me the first day. She arranged all of that, told me my tutor would be another lady who was excited to have me in her class.
I went to the community centre today and enrolled on my Pilates course. Everyone was very friendly and when I met my instructor, I was immediately put at ease.
The guy manning the office filled in my enrolment form without hesitation or awkwardness, the ladies in my class were all welcoming and friendly, [I’m the youngest amongst the students], and my support worker showed up. We filled in the health forms and I joined the others.
My instructor had asked if there was anything she could do to make my experience easier, so I just said about being very detailed which she responded she was anyway. How detailed that would be I’d have to discover but she was extremely accommodating and I loved the class.
Pilates is a core building group of exercises that works the entire body and builds core strength, flexibility, and tones the muscles while correcting posture. It’s all about breathing and controlling but not as controlled as Yoga. Pilates you are always moving not holding poses. I love it.
My instructor was always descriptive and when something wasn’t quite right she’d correct it but she said I’d picked it all up well and needed little correction. I think i’m really going to enjoy the class and I feel great for it now.
More updates soon. Now I just need to get swimming sorted and my physical exercise is sorted.