Written by Jennifer DeLuca Pardon me for taking so long to write this response to the recent New York Magazine article entitled, “The Pilatespocalypse: How the Method That Started the Boutique-Fitness Trend Is Going Bust”, by Ms. Annie Lowry, but you see I have just been so tied up running my busy Pilates studio since
My first introduction to the Pilates Mat was as a moody but disciplined teenager at the High School for Performing Arts. It was a required course in our dance curriculum alongside classical ballet and Martha Graham technique. I don’t think I loved it, but I’m not sure I hated it either. Something about it must have felt right though because, fast forward, 10 years later while crammed behind a desk in the offices of PEOPLE Magazine, I went searching for that feeling of stretch, strength and vitality.
For the past few months I have gotten up once a week at 4:40 AM to teach a Pilates class at 6:00 AM. 4:40 AM is usually an hour reserved for people waiting at the airport, or suffering from jet lag, or camping. In these instances there is a kind of magic to waking up – you’re looking forward to an exciting journey, vacationing somewhere far away and exotic, or watching the sunrise after a long night of stargazing by the camp fire. But that first Tuesday morning of July what I felt wasn’t magic – it was astonishment. How did I ever agree to this?
I’m just doing what I love.
Just doing what I love.
Actually, it is no small thing to see what can happen when you do what you love. Along that pursuit there are all kinds of pitfalls—disappointment, rejection, exhaustion, chaos. But somehow, if you keep going through all of that, you get to experience magic. For me that love is sharing the legacy of Joseph Pilates’ intelligent and completely life-altering, body of work.
Wu wei is my mantra for 2015. I am going to do more of what I love and follow a path of spontaneous movement. I will breathe and rest and laugh more and do what comes most naturally to me. Wui wei is the Chinese concept of non-action or non-doing; a way of returning to a purely natural way of being and like the planets revolving around the sun, having power and energy at the same time. In my case
15 years. It started with me and two other women. The two others fell off to the side and I was the one left standing….the world’s most reluctant boss. Many teachers, receptionists and students have moved BodyTonic forward; some have held it back. Over the decade and a half, BodyTonic has unrolled, opened, unfolded and this year, I have to say, its blossom is the richest I have ever seen.