"For a long while, I have wanted to write a note to share on Studio Pilates web site. I have been slow in doing so. It is difficult for me to put into words all Studio Pilates staff has done for me.
I started Pilates four years ago. I was recovering from a back injury that had caused me pain, limited my mobility and enjoyment of life. Prior to starting Pilates, I had treatment by various physiotherapists. This improved my health and, thus, helped the depression that developed after the injury but I seemed to have reached a standstill and other problems from my neck to my feet seemed to be developing. I was constantly tense, moved guardedly and was fearful that any ‘twinge’ would cause my back pain to become worse and totally uncontrollable again. A physiotherapist friend told me to try Pilates, specifically Stott Pilates. I contacted Colleen at Studio Pilates to start classes. I told her my ‘story’ and asked to start classes. She told me that I would need to do one private session, for personal instruction in Pilate’s techniques, before joining the group class. I have always felt that private exercise classes were for the ‘elite’ and/or those wanting pampering. I went to my private class with a touch of skepticism. I have never been one to exercise in the formal sense and have never been comfortable in a gym where everyone seemed to be able to keep up with the instructor and understand what she wanted them to do. I would quickly feel out of my depth and find all kinds of excuses not to go to further classes. Looking at all of the bouncing babes in the Only Women’s Fitness gym when I entered the building, I was relieved when I walked into the small, quite Pilates studio. It made me feel more secure and much less intimidated. As I discussed my mobility problems with Colleen I found myself relaxing as she started to move me into some gentle exercises, testing the limits of my flexibility. She was patient and encouraging. When I would say ‘I cannot move any further’, she would gently say ‘that’s ok’. The words that rang in my ears (still do) for the weeks and months following that class where “we carry our tension in our shoulders”.
At the end of that first class I asked if I could continue doing private class for awhile. I smiled as I became a member of that pampered, elite crowd. I could tell by Colleen’s quiet ‘yes’ that she felt I had made the right decision and that with all of my movement problems that I would have had problems understanding and keeping up in a group class. That was April 2004. Together, Colleen and I spent an hour a week working on mobility, discussing my problems as she walked me though exercises that would make my body sing (sometimes it screeched before it sang). I would always feel so ‘light’ at the end of my class. At home I would do daily exercises introduced in class. By that fall I asked Colleen if she felt I could do a group class as well as the private. She was very pleased and told me that she felt I would benefit from an essential mat class. I worked hard to keep up in the class; an hour was a very long time. With the encouragement of the instructors and their non judgmental manner of my inabilities I found I enjoyed the class." J.K.R. March 2008
“Since taking Pilates from Colleen and her instructors, my core has been strengthened, my flexibility and balance improved, and I am back to living an active life – skating, golfing, whatever I want. Pilates has stopped my back from seizing up, no more need for pain-killers, and no more trips to the Emergency Department. Pilates is fun; I always look forward to class. It is as challenging as you want to make it, and it will be part of my fitness and wellness plan for the rest of my life.” Jack MacDonald October 2013
"I would like to extend a sincere thank you to you and to your awesome Pilates instructors. Those times I spent in class were amazing. You have some great women working for you and they are to be commended for their knowledge and their ability to determine what worked best for each group. On Thursday, I will be seven weeks post surgery for my second hip replacement. My recovery has been nothing short of amazing. I believe that is largely due to strengthening of muscles which are targeted in Pilates classes. I have had no problem completing every exercise required by the Physiotherapists, and have even added some Pilates to my routine. I am also walking 2 to 4 km daily without the use of any supports. What an incredible difference from my first hip replacement five years ago, where I was on crutches for six weeks and just thinking about starting physio. My firm belief is that the Pilates classes which I took were instrumental in building muscle tone and maintaining joint and muscle function.
I will be seeing my Surgeon on August 16th, at which time I will be lauding the benefits of appropriate exercise prior to this type of surgery. You can bet that Pilates will be in the forefront of our discussion. One of my main questions will be, "When can I resume Pilates classes?" And my question to you is, when are classes starting again in September? I believe I am ready to go back to class, but my zealousness may be tempered by my Surgeon's caution.
A comment regarding 'Pilates in the Pool'. What a wonderful idea. I would have been there had I had the Doctor's OK. Once again, thank you so much to you and your instructors for all you did for me." Roseanne Martyniuk Red Deer, AB August 2010
"My life was restricted due to constant injuries to my lower back which I had attempted to address through multiple medical interventions and yoga. It has taken two years to strengthen my core and increase my flexibility through my involvement with Pilates. I can no longer run but was able to walk a half marathon this past summer after struggling to walk around the block. The instructors are experienced and can adapt the program to find the right balance to pushing you but within limits. I strongly recommend it and would say Pilates is not for sissies." Brian Quigg October 2013