New to Pilates and not sure what to expect?
Here are a few things to keep in mind before your first Pilates session.
*Your abdominals will ALWAYS be involved.
No matter what body part you are focusing on, the abs should always be working. I am not talking about the rectus abdominus, often referred to as a six pack (these will come as an added bonus). I am talking about the deep abdominals know as the transverse abdominus (TA). These are the muscles that aid in stabilization and assist in keeping you upright. Your goal is to engage these deep abdominals at all times during your Pilates session. Think navel to spine! Go ahead, try it right now :)
*If you are reading this and thinking “I don't have abs,” I can assure you, they are there. We will help you find them and with a continued Pilates practice, you may be showing off those six pack abs sooner than you think!
Do not think you have to figure it all out in your first session.
You won’t! Because Pilates is a mind-body workout, there is a certain amount of body awareness and mental focus required. This connection may not be present in the beginning, and it might take several sessions before it all clicks. The time will come, so just relax, listen to your instructor’s cues, connect with your body and breathe. Always breathe.
Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.
Please don’t worry about what the person next to you is doing, how they are breathing or how great / terrible their form is. We all enter our practice at different stages and with varying levels of experience. You should never feel like you need to compete with anyone. This is your practice. Enjoy it!
Change will never happen overnight.
This should go without saying. You also cannot work out once a week and expect to see a major difference in your body. Pilates is done in such a way that you are aligned and moving in the exact way you are meant to. This means repetition is crucial in order to retrain your body and create an awareness of proper movement and alignment. I suggest to my clients a minimum of 2-3 sessions per week to see and feel results. Real work equals real results. There are no shortcuts. Ever!
Don’t be afraid to try different Instructors.
Flex Pilates encourages clients to try out different instructors. It’s great to change things up and “surprise” your body. As individual instructors, our personalities and teaching styles will differ. What may work for one client, may not work for another. I personally have a handful of go-to Instructors. I know what to expect from them and I schedule my classes according to my specific needs and wants for the day. For example, I will never book myself with a “loud, super high energy, bootcamp style instructor”. It’s just not me. That’s ok! I’ve learned what my body and brain respond to. Our instructors will never be offended if you switch things up.
Be realistic in your expectations.
It is probably safe to say that you won’t be performing a perfect teaser on day one. Reality has also proven that a person will never look like a runway model unless they are genetically blessed. It’s a fact and we never encourage anyone to set unrealistic goals, but we will encourage movement and a healthy lifestyle. We know that Pilates WILL make you stronger, it will challenge you and yes, you can lose inches. We also know it will take time and dedication on your part. So, be patient! Have fun & don’t take things too seriously. Pilates should be enjoyable.
Listen to your body.
PLEASE! Your body is smart and knows it limits. Please keep the ego out of your Pilates practice. Our bodies are constantly going through changes. Some days you are flexible and move fluidly, other days your shoulders are in your ears and you can’t move your neck. Listen to these little internal cues. Slow it down when you need to and never push yourself to do something before you are ready.
Ask about your Instructors qualifications.
This is important! Flex Pilates only employs Pilates instructors that have completed comprehensive training through a recognized training program. Our instructors have gone through extensive training on all Pilates equipment. They have completed hundreds of hours of theory, observation, self-practice and student teaching.
Review your studio’s FAQ’s & Policies.
If a studio has taken the time to answer your questions before you ask them, please do yourself a favor and read them. Many common questions can be answered here, such as “what should I wear” how early should I arrive” “can I book online” “what if I need to cancel” “how can I make a payment” and so on. Same goes for the studio policies. We encourage clients to familiarize themselves with these and if they still have questions, to contact us.
Best of luck to you on your new Pilates Journey!
The Flex Pilates Team!
We welcome your feedback and are happy to answer any questions you may have about our method, our studio, our instructors, or Pilates in general.