Connecting with our clients during this time of “physical distance”

As Pilates teachers we know this work is special, listen to any teachers' story and you will hear similar testimonies. There is just something about this method that resonates with so many of us.

There is healing in movement and the Pilates method is the perfect medium for educated movement.

The hours of study, observation, and practice required during our training only begins to prepare us. It is what happens after our training, the magic begins. The time spent working with our clients developing that innate sense of what movement a body might need. And how to use the “recipe” given to us to support the Health and Wellbeing of those we work with.

Earlier this year when word of a virus from China was just hitting the news, I had to travel to California for a Master Training Summit, we had no idea really what was heading our way. The only sign at that point was an occasional person wearing a mask at the airport. Little did we know that six weeks later our Studios would be closed. No word on when we would be allowed to reopen and return to work. It was crushing but everyone complied in order to do their part.

At the time of this post (now four months later) some studios still are closed. Some may never reopen due to the financial and social pressure of this Pandemic.

But some are slowly reopening. Class size is limited, we are performing temperature checks, there are multiple layers of sanitization procedures in place, alternate use of the apparatus allows it rest, and all members and teachers wearing masks - always.

Now more than ever I find the need to be in the moment when I teach. My background as a Bodyworker prepared me well here. It was always suggested to center and focus oneself before a session, I have carried that into my work as a Pilates teacher. Why, because now It is far more difficult to read facial expressions with masks in place. Our clients are coming back to classes more stressed and distracted than ever. And instead of welcoming them back with a hug or a high five, it is five minutes of instruction for check-in and all the added cleaning procedures.

The good news is, this IS becoming the norm for many things now and all places we are going where others might congregate. What door do you enter, how many allowed in, and at what pace, and yes where are those arrows and floor markings?

Honestly, every day it gets a little easier. But the one thing I truly miss is the

gift of touch. As a Licensed Massage Therapist and Bodyworker, I am allowed to resume some contact. But for now, in the studio, it is not wise or deemed safe to stand to closely to spot or observe, use informed safe touch to guide and facilitate our student's movements. This is sad and a big part of the benefit of our work that I hope with the progress of understanding this Virus maybe someday we can return to.

So, for now, I choose to focus on calmness during this storm, radiate health and wellness to those I come within six feet of and send a smile with my eyes and voice.

Until next time Stay Healthy Stay Sane. ~Sharon