- Why did you start taking Pilates?
About three years ago, my wife and I decided to look into an exercise program in which we both could participate together, primarily to find something we could do together as a couple. During a vacation, we decided to try yoga and Pilates. I liked both and Mary liked Pilates. So, we decided to try Pilates once a week when we returned to Madison. It caught on and we have been doing it regularly, once a week, for three years now.
- What do you like about Pilates?
I particularly like the variety of the exercises. I believe much of this has to do with finding a good instructor (which we have). In the three years, we have been attending, I see at least one new exercise every class.
I also like what it is doing for my body and particularly my core (stomach area). I have always been into fitness. However, I now realize that I have not exercised as well as I should. Jules stresses proper form (she is a taskmaster on this) and emphasis on core exercises. As I get older, I find this is exactly what I need.
A secondary advantage to Pilates is that Mary and I treat it like a midweek date night. Our class is from 6 – 7pm on Wednesday. After that, we treat ourselves to dinner at a local restaurant.
Finally, I particularly like the one-on-one attention we receive. Rather than join a group, we decided to take private “duet” lessons. I particularly like the corrective attention I receive.
- Do you do other sports?
Yes. I have my own fitness routine 3 – 4 mornings a week involving total body aerobics and weight training, courtesy of some good DVDs. I also bike to work in the summers.
- Does practicing Pilates have any affect on your other activities?
Yes. Through Jules’ constant monitoring of the way we work our core and our stomach, I now do deadlifts, bicycling, stomach exercises, curls and other exercises always with the notion of “knitting” my stomach, i.e., keeping my stomach muscles flexed, and keeping my back very straight. It has also positively affected my posture during the day.
- What is your favorite piece of Pilates equipment and why?
I do not have a favorite piece of equipment. I like the way we go from station to station during our exercise session. A good instructor develops a pattern that makes sense. At the end of session, I am not sweating, but I realize that I had a good exercise.