Pilates celebs: Charlize Theron

In a recent article The Diet And Beauty Secrets That Charlize Theron Lives By, Charlize admits to being a Pilates junkie, saying: “It’s totally changed my body.”

When it comes to physical activity and cheat days, she says: “I’m always calculating my activity. If I haven’t been moving a lot, I can’t eat a lot. Or maybe it’s a cheat day. But I’m honest with myself.”

Read the article in Marie Claire.

Support your Local Instructor

Instead of your Joe Wicks, Les Mills On Demand, latest Celeb bandwagon, Peloton, go find the instructors who support you week in, week out.

  • The instructors who ask how your day’s been…
  • The instructors who ask how the kids/family are…
  • The instructors who give you help and advice at the drop of a hat…
  • The instructors who slip your song choices into class for you…
  • The instructors who remember your name and connect with you in class…

These are the people who matter.

These Celeb fitness trainers; I guarantee they’re not struggling to keep their business afloat. They’ll be paid by clicks, likes and subscriptions to pre-recorded in bulk classes.

Support your local instructors like they’ve supported all of you at one point in your fitness life.

Reposted from #supportsmallbusinesschallenge

Thank you to all those who have supported me by continuing to attend class throughout lockdown.


Survey Responses 2021

Thank you for completing the brief survey included with your annual renewal forms. I’ve collated your responses in this post. I’ve paraphrased your answers to keep them anonymous.

The average difficulty ratings that you gave for your classes were:

Monday 9.15am5.7
Monday 6pm7.0
Monday 7pm6.0
Monday 8pm6.6

You said that the benefits you get from attending Pilates classes include:

  • A lifeline throughout Covid lockdown
  • Improved core strength
  • Improved posture
  • Retaining flexibilty and strength
  • Helped with balance
  • Me time!
  • Able to lay Prone
  • Back more comfortable, less or no pain
  • More toned muscles
  • Relaxation
  • Recovery from major surgery
  • More supple, less painful, and more mobile hip joint. 
  • Feel-good factor
  • Regain strength and mobility after injury
  • Flatter tummy
  • Friendship!

You said that your reasons for doing Pilates and what you want to achieve over the next 12 months are to:

  • Keep my back healthy
  • Prevent back pain from repetitive work
  • Become more toned
  • Build strength
  • Continue to improve core strength
  • Do the full mat routine without a break
  • General health and fitness
  • Get better at the exercises
  • Greater flexibility
  • Help with hypomobility
  • Help with weight loss
  • I enjoy it
  • Improve balance
  • Improve my running
  • Improve posture
  • Increase stamina
  • Maintain bone health and reduce the risk  fractures
  • Maintain strength, flexibility and balance (no degeneration)
  • Work on pelvic floor exercises
  • Re-building strength (post injury)
  • Stay active
  • Stay pain free
  • Support my joints

Pilates celebs: Twiggy

In July, 1960s fashion icon Twiggy, told Lorraine Kelly on Good Morning Britain, that facials every six months, Pilates and looking after her children and grandchildren helped “keep her together.”

I’m doing Pilates, which I love but I’m not that high maintenance

Viewers shared Lorraine’s amazement, saying Twiggy looked incredible her age.

Read more from the Daily Mail article about Twiggy.

Quote: I was getting stronger…

My ability to do the exercise routine slowly but continuously improved from session to session. I was getting stronger. I was moving better, and my posture was improving. I was enjoying the feeling of wellbeing.

John Howard Steel, from his book Caged Lion

Books: Caged Lion

Caged Lion is a book by John Howard Steel, who knew Joseph Pilates personally.

It tells the story of how John started doing Pilates, then called Contrology, and how he got to know the man himself. When Joseph Pilates died, John was part of a small group who kept the exercise method alive. At the time, it was performed buy just a few devotees, but now the Pilates method is practised by millions all over the world.

The book is a fascinating read, part autobiography and part-biography. It tells us about John’s involvement in Pilates over six decades and gives us the history of Joseph Pilates, the man, and how he came to develop his exercise method and invent the studio equipment, largely unchanged today.

The book also describes the unique attraction of the Pilates Method, the power that it has to change lives and keep its devotees practising into their eighties and nighties.

I found it a fascinating and entertaining read and highly recommend it. You can buy the book from amazon or elsewhere.

Plantar Fasciitis

Plantar fasciitis is a term that has come to be used for general heel pain. There are over 40 conditions which might cause heel pain, but only some of these are due to damage, such as tearing, fraying or crushing, to the plantar fascia. This is the thick tissue that runs underneath your foot connecting your heel bone to your toes. Typically, the pain is worse in the morning, gets better as you move around and then comes back later in the day after a period of inactivity.

You may be more likely to get plantar fasciitis if you:

  • recently started exercising on hard surfaces
  • exercise with a tight calf or heel
  • overstretch the sole of your foot during exercise
  • recently started doing a lot more walking, running or standing up
  • wear shoes with poor cushioning or support
  • are very overweight

Successful treatment depends on getting the correct diagnosis of the underlying cause. Things that might help are:

  • ice, arch roll, calf stretch, arch rise
  • steroid injection, ultrasound, low level laser, ECSWT (shockwave), surgical release
  • acupuncture, footwear changes, orthotic insoles, diet, supplements
  • mobilisation, strength and conditioning exercises

Pilates can help with the later as it aims to ensure good alignment and balance mobility and strength, not just of the foot and ankle joints, but of the whole of your body. Specific exercises for plantar fasciitis might be:

  • foot and ankle stability
  • foot shortening
  • plantar intrinsic strengthening
  • calf flexibility
  • general flexibility
  • proximal strength

This information was taken from a recent workshop that I attended by Ian Sadler and the NHS website. For more information and to visit Ian’s specialist biomechanics clinic based in Norwich, go to https://www.bxclinic.co.uk/.

Click to find an NHS podiatrist.

Resuming Pilates Classes Indoors

In 2020, the coronavirus COVID-19 guidelines allowed group exercise classes to be held indoors from 25th July, not in the second lockdown during November ), but again in Tier 2 areas from 2nd December.

In 2021, the government’s coronavirus roadmap out of lockdown, allows studio sessions to resume from 12th April and mat classes from 17th May.

Click to read the coronavirus guidelines that will be in place for us to stay safe when meeting for Pilates mat classes at Mundford Village Hall and private sessions at the studio.

Pilates Equipment for Mat Classes

Since the coronavirus crisis means that it is inadvisable to share equipment between participants, please see below for what you will need when attending my group mat classes. You can source your own or buy from me (except mats) at the prices shown.

small equipment
  • full length mat
  • cushion for good neck alignment – 1″ head pad £8 or 3″ head pad £12
  • resistance band – 175cm purple band £7
  • soft ball – 23cm overball £8
  • set of 1″ head pad, band and ball £20
  • set of 3″ head pad, band and ball £24

I have a limited stock of used 1″ head pads and bands at £4 per piece. Delivery in Mundford free, elsewhere postage is £1.50 for a band or £3 for anything else.

Click to see the full list of small equipment that we use when doing circuit classes.