How to Build a Sustainable Pilates Practice 

“Thank you, Lesley. This is just so sustainable.”

These words popped out of one of my favorite client’s mouths a few months ago, just before Christmas. It has stayed with me as that was the goal all along in opening up our studio 14 years ago.

Here’s a little background. This client takes open level mat only, meaning that she does not attend private sessions as many of our clients do. She has had a handful of duets when she wanted to expand her experience and broaden her tools. From time to time, she will participate in various workshops or opportunities we offer but her base is the open level mat class. This client has put years into cultivating a fabulous mat practice. She is 75 years old now, but I met her when she was in her early 60’s. She tells me that her practice keeps her vital. I remember when her husband passed away. She missed a few sessions, but not that many. She still came. She shows up when she does not want to, when she wants to and in all kinds of weather. After classes, she hugs me meaningfully and says “be good now, see you next time.”

I love this woman! She knows that her practice keeps her going, but she does not know that she keeps me going as a teacher. Her interest, her discipline, and acceptance of the work, her questions, her ability to not complain is inspiring. She validates my time in the studio because she receives what we are offering our attendees- tools for life. When my kids were small, I would sometimes find myself caught in an emotional whirlwind when leaving them with other caregivers. When I came to teach this class – her class –

I needed to be with people who want to work, learn and play.

This client has found a solution for an ongoing exercise program that gives her more than exercise. It provides a community of like-minded people who learn about training their mind, body, and spirit to flow in harmony.

You get back what you put in. These practices are like a shiny present to be enjoyed.

It does take a bit of time to learn the ropes- get the basics smoothly occurring with consistency.

Many times, the cost of Pilates puts clients off from staying with it or even starting it up.

What they might not realize is there are different ways to accomplish the same things.

An intro lesson or pack of sessions is a launching pad. From there learning what we need to do in order to transition into different session types is necessary in order to shift the practice to sustainability.

Not all clients like to work in groups for sure. Everyone is different and the potency of a private session does elevate your skills and comprehension to new levels. However, in looking at your life, what is sustainable for you?

Pilates was taught as a self-practice: your exercises, your needs, and your routine to work on them. A client would learn their workout and how to do it. Bits and pieces were added overtime in the studio when you showed progress and ability. That might sound like an overly strict type of learning environment but it does enable you to shift into making it sustainable. We offer this type of learning for our clients- we just don’t demand- we coach.

Please speak up if your practice is not in this status. If it is awesome! If it is not yet, it can become such. Sustainability is important- your practice must be sustainable and can be—if you want it. You need to understand it, cultivate it, grow it and then have fun with it in order to reap the benefits over time.

Would you rate your practice as sustainable? If not, let’s chat about it!

From the Ground Up

From the Ground Up

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