Balance is a word that is used a lot in the Pilates world. “Balanced body”, “balanced lifestyle”, “mind body balance”, “in balance” are keywords that are often seen in the names of Pilates businesses. And there is a very good reason to talk about balance when we mention Pilates.
In fact, Pilates is probably the best way to achieve a balanced body (oh, that’s a topic for a completely different article that I hope to publish in the nearest future.) However, a lot of people don’t get to experience the mind-blowing benefits of Pilates because of the cost or time restraints.
Pilates business owners have another “juggling component” on their plates, they have to maintain their business balance while running a studio. Needless to say, there is never an end to all the things that we have to balance in our lives.
A couple of months ago I got an email from Courtney Klocke, a studio owner from Minneapolis, MN. She was interested in redesigning her website and adding a Pilates video streaming service to it. Our conversations were first centered on the technical questions of the web design but I truly loved the videos that she created for her streaming service. Her whole concept of Pilates was centered on the idea of BALANCE. It was something that both of us had in common.
Courtney knows about balance firsthand.
- She runs a Pilates HOME studio which has its pros and cons (and she shares them below.)
- In her attempt to help her clients bring more balance into their busy lifestyles she has created a video streaming service that gives her extra revenue stream as well as maximizes her website potential.
- But, even more importantly, Courtney knows about physical balance that Pilates gives her and her clients.
Go ahead, dive into our conversation about Pilates and Balance. Is there something that you would like to add to it?
And if you are struggling with finding time or money for consistent Pilates practice then I encourage you to check out Courtney’s Pilates Streaming services. She offers a free 3-day trial (click here) so it’s a risk-free opportunity to have an awesome Pilates session right now!
1. Courtney, what made you fall in love with Pilates?
I fell in love with Pilates for the very same reason any of us fall in love… I like the way Pilates makes me feel. We all gravitate towards things and people who make us feel our very best, and that’s just what Pilates did for me and continues to do. The method never lets me down.
2. What is a single most powerful benefit of doing Pilates and why?
Confidence. Pilates puts us back in the control seat of our bodies, preparing us for the expected and as well as the unexpected obstacles throughout our lives. Pilates teaches us to listen to our bodies; to feel our bodies; and to be in control of our bodies.
3. How would you describe your teaching style? What makes you a unique teacher?
I am fully certified in Stott Pilates, having studied both classical and contemporary methods. I strive to create a quilt of knowledge from many different educators of Pilates as well as other fitness modalities to tailor the right movements for my client’s needs. I am always looking for ways to stay current and fresh, all while staying close to my roots to ensure my clients are truly benefiting from each movement, not just getting caught up in each new fad.
I am here to educate people about their bodies. I love and welcome questions! Especially in the middle of class. It reminds me that people are interested in bettering their quality of life and what I do does matter. It’s not just about burning calories and being a weekend warrior. It’s about preparing your body for the, what could be, 100 year journey. You just never know.
4. What is the most difficult part of running a home studio? What is the most gratifying one?
The most difficult part of running an in-home studio is my self-confidence as a business owner. At times I do not feel like I am a true studio owner or entrepreneur. It is hard not to feel “less than” other studio owners who own or lease a standalone location.
I do not market as much as I would like to, as I have to be selective on who I invite into my home. As much as I love my quaint studio space, I am limited to solo or duo Reformer/Cadillac sessions. I would love to hold group classes within my studio but I am limited with space.
There are pros and cons to every situation, even if I did own and work out of a standalone Pilates studio. So I have to remind myself that the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.
- I do not have a monthly lease to afford, which reduces the stress of booking back to back clients and avoiding burn out.
- My clients definitely benefit from this, as I am fresh and excited for each session.
- If I have gaps in my day without a client or a class, I can get caught up at home, creating a manageable work/life balance. Again, this passes on to my clients.
- If my energy and attitude is set right, I can then share my energy and my positive mental attitude with my client.
5. What inspired you to create a Pilates streaming service? Who can benefit from it the most?
My motto is to move every day. It doesn’t have to be a “one-hour” structured workout. It could be one or multiple short 10-15 minute workouts throughout the day at a time that’s convenient. My clients have all agreed with my motto, with only one small problem… When they have 15 minutes, they don’t know what to do. So I am here to help solve that problem. I have a variety of short Pilates based workouts online at www.mypointofbalance.com that can be streamed on any device, at anytime, anywhere!
At www.mypointofbalance.com you will find a variety of short targeted workouts, so you can choose what your body needs at that moment. They are all Pilates based, so you can expect to get excellent cueing and guidance through each move. As well as the proper progression to advance if you are new to my workouts.
Stream workouts using your: Computer, Smart Phone, Tablet, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, Samsung TV & Blue Ray, Xbox Live, Google TV, LGTV, etc… There’s really no excuse not to move! I’ve got you covered!
6. The name of your studio is Point of Balance Pilates. What is your definition of balance/(or a balanced body)?
“Point of Balance” has a very specific meaning behind it. I don’t believe in “one-size-fits-all” motto. And I certainly do not believe one modality of exercise is necessarily better than another. All forms of exercise are great if you are moving with correct alignment and at a healthy pace for your body. That’s where Pilates comes in. I believe the principles of Pilates can be used to enhance every movement throughout the day, especially athletic performances. Everyone comes to my studio with very different goals in mind, from rehabbing an old shoulder rotator cuff injury to improving their cross country skiing form and endurance. In either situation, we are working towards balancing their bodies to move with ease, coordination, and efficiency.
7. How can Pilates help anyone reach their “point of balance”?
By understanding the 6 Pilates Principles and applying them daily.
- Centering – Pilates can help ANYONE find their core (the center of their body). All movements throughout the day should stem from the core (the area between the base of your ribs and the base of your pelvis, 360 degrees around your spine). The periphery (arms and legs) should be secondary. Most of us over-use our arms and legs and never think of our core. Loss of core strength makes it very difficult for us to hold our posture and to find proper alignment so our joints can move freely and efficiently.
- Precision – “Honor every movement” ~ Joseph Pilates. Less is more. Pilates concentrates on precise healthy movements. Just because leg circles are great for the hip joints, doesn’t mean you have to repeat it 100 times. 8 precise circles in your best form will do just fine. There is no point in over-doing any particular movement. In fact, a variety of well balanced movements is what your body needs.
- Control – Every movement of your body requires control by your brain. We tend to take this for granted, until heaven forbid, it is taken from us. Just ask some of my clients who are recovering from a stroke or learning to work with a nerve disease such as ALS. Pilates teaches our body the art of control (mind/body connection). Not only for the what if’s in life, but plain and simple, movement without awareness and control can lead to unnecessary injury.
- Breath – Breathing is as essential to Pilates as it is to life itself. It’s hard to find balance and calm within ourselves if we routinely take shallow upper chest breaths, contributing to upper body shoulder and neck tension. Pilates teaches us to breath properly throughout each day, even during the most stressful of times. If you can train your body to breathe fully during a strenuous exercise, odds are you will subconsciously breathe fully during a fight of flight response in life. Ahhhhhh, let your shoulders relax and release that unnecessary neck tension.
- Flow – Pilates exercises have a graceful flow between them. Like a continuous ocean wave washing ashore. The flow speaks to your body’s rhythm and leaves you feeling free and light as if you were a float on top of that wave.
- Concentration – Pilates teaches you to be fully present during your session. It teaches you to pay attention to the detail of each movement. You will learn how subtle movements with your alignment can completely change the focus of the exercise, possibly making the exercise more efficient and safe for your body. The goal is to transfer this concentration into your daily living. What movements are you repeating everyday in poor posture or faulty alignment that could some day lead to tension or injury?
8. What is your favorite Pilates exercise (and why)?
I do not have a favorite. I believe in moving the body in all directions. Flexion, extension, rotation, lateral flexion, etc… A healthy body should be able to move in all planes of direction. I love movement as a whole and am humbled everyday by the mere fact that I have the ability to move with grace, coordination and balance (free of any pain), all thanks to finding and falling in love with Pilates.
9. What is your favorite Pilates cue?
It’s not really a true Joseph “Pilates” cue, but… “LISTEN TO YOUR OWN BODY”
10. Please finish these sentences:
Pilates makes me feel … confident
Teaching Pilates makes me … feel like I have purpose.
My students leave my studio feeling… free. Free to move and free of mind numbing stress.
Check out Courtney’s Pilates Video Streaming services (click here.) She offers a FREE 3-Day trial so you can explore her website and enjoy several Pilates workouts.
If you are interested in website redesign then here is a quick before and after transformation as well as a list of features that have been added:
- Responsive website design (mobile friendly)
- Modern One-Page layout representing the feel of the studio
- On-site PayPal integration to purchase packages
- Membership integration
- Pilates Video Streaming Gallery
- Easy ways to customize website content (no need to use a developer for content or media updates)
- Website is built on WordPress, the easiest and most popular content management system (CMS)
Click here to read more about Pilates Bridge website services
If you have any questions please feel free to ask them in the comments below!