"One of the major results of Pilates (Contrology) is gaining
mastery of your mind over the complete control of your body." - Joseph Pilates
You were educated in Stott Pilates. Why aren’t you certified with them?
This is a question that is important to make clear. Barbara
continues to have a relationship with Stott Pilates, although there are no ties to the Stott family of Pilates.
Recently, Moira Merrithew, co-founder of Stott Pilates phoned Barbara at her studio. With Stott
having more than 16,000 instructors worldwide, Barbara was honored that Moira took the time out of her day to call her.
Moira again told Barbara that her staff continues to be there for her. Barbara continues to educate
with Stott as well as other educational workshops offered by other organizations, while remaining on her own on Long
Hi Barbara: I've been taking Pilates two times a week for
the past month. I'm having problems with the single leg circles due to my inflexibility. My hamstrings are really tight. Therefore,
I can't lift my leg to the ceiling. One instructor continues to ask me to do this exercise, and the other has me doing the
exercise with my legs at tabletop. What is your suggestion and/or advice? My Pilates book does not address problems of inflexibility.
- Rebecca Allen
Hi Rebecca: I'd be happy to answer your question, glad you've found me and hope my
answer helps you. You just dropped into my mailbox, so its a quick response to you. Do the leg circles at tabletop and
hold down the opposing hip with your hand. Only allow the range of your open hip before your other hip lifts.
Try to extend your table top higher and higher with less of a 90 degree angle, reaching toes to the ceiling where there
is no discomfort. Hold your imprint, keep your ribs tucked and engage those abs! It takes quite some time to stretch
tight hamstrings, be careful not to overstretch. Although it won't pull when your doing the exercise, you can pull afterwards
at home. POP! Try some Pilates privates on the reformer. It will gently increase your range less aggressively
than in a class, with personal instruction. Happy Pilates and have fun!
What is Pilates?
is a Holistic form of exercise that works your body from the inside out. Working the deep abdominals that center the
movement out to all of the extremities, Pilates improves Posture, sculpts, tones and stretches the body. Requiring that
you focus on your movement, alignment and breath, pilates connects the body with the mind. And it's fun!
do I look for in a Pilates Instructor?
First, you want to know if they are a Certified Instructor. More importantly,
you want to know their level of education. Pilates is an in-depth education and more than just a three hour workshop.
Anyone can Certify today in on-line programs and obtain a "Certificate". A good Pilates instructor is not
only Certified, but has had at least 200 hours of Pilates education with a proven Pilates Licensed Facility and a minimum
of 6 months of observation, practic teaching and apprenticeship. Is the Certificate of the Instructor you've been
assigned displayed at the studio? Is the Certificate current? ASK to see documentation!!
Barbara, are you Certified?
Yes, Barbara is an IFTA Certified Fitness Personal Trainer/Instructor. Barbara is fully educated
in the "Stott Pilates Method", but does not hold her certification with them. She has spent more than 700
hours of Pilates education, observation and apprenticeship. She is a member of the ACSM Alliance of Fitness and Healthcare
Professionals - American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), is a Cancer Exercise Specialist, educated in Injury and Special
Populations, Certified in CPR as well as educated in Injury and Special Populations. Barbara would be more
than happy to supply you with all of the documentation! And Forever Fit Pilates studio displays a current Certification!
Barbara is a highly sought-after Pilates Instructor. She's been offered employment with several large Pilates
Studios on Long Island and New York City, as well as a position as Pilates Director. She's been offered employment
with several large Franchised Gyms and small fitness Centers alike. She's also been offered employment at Fitness
Convention Trade Shows. The fitness field continues to seek her through referral and recommendations!
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as to the terms Anaerobic and Aerobic. What is the difference between these two terms of exercise?
Great Question! The following is the definition from Wikipedia. Anaerobic means "without
oxygen", and refers to the energy exchange in living tissue that is independent of oxygen. Anaerobic exercise is brief,
high intensity activity where anaerobic metabolism is taking place in muscles. During extended periods of exercise aerobic
metabolism supplies the bulk of the energy and the exercise is termed aerobic exercise. Examples of anaerobic exercise
include weight lifting, sprinting, and jumping; any exercise that consists of short exertion, high-intensity movement,
is an anaerobic exercise. Anaerobic exercise is typically used by athletes in non-endurance sports to build power and by body
builders to build muscle mass. Muscles that are trained under anaerobic conditions develop biologically differently giving
them greater performance in short duration-high intensity activities.
Aerobic exercise, on the other hand, includes lower intensity activities
performed for longer periods of time. Activities like walking, running, swimming, and cycling require a great deal
of oxygen to generate the energy needed for prolonged exercise.Depending on the
type of benefit you are looking for; anaerobic (build muscle mass and less endurance vs. aerobic, creating lean muscle
mass and endurance, you have those two choices of work. I'm sure this answers your question. If you'd like a more
in-depth answer, we always make ourselves available by phone. 516.798.2700
Cardio jumping on the reformer?
great question! Jumping on the reformer is done in a supine (lying down) position on the reformer, with feet on an attached
footplate. Springs are set to either the lightest setting (more core) or a heavier setting (more extremity). As
you start to "jump off" the footplate, you glide back and forth, creating a jumping movement. Your heart rate
comes up anaerobically. Depending on your strength and stamina, you are dropped to the lightest setting of springs.
If your fitness level allows, the work becomes aerobic the more the work can be sustained. A good 15 to 20 minutes with
continual switching of leg and foot position will keep you in the training zone, burning those fat calories. Wearing
a heartrate monitor will varify your heartrate. Then we bring you down slowly. Absolutely invigorating, mind-body,
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What is the difference between Yoga and Pilates?
Yoga requires that you hold
still postures while Pilates is movement based which is intended for core strength, flexibility, balance and body awareness.
Additionally, Pilates requires deep abdominal engagement to support the spine and create core centered movement which
differs from Yoga.
I've been practicing Pilates at a Pilates-only studio doing Matwork for quite some time
now. I'm having difficulty getting a few of them. You know, "internalizing" them. My teacher refuses
to do the exercises that I'm having trouble with and tells me, "A good Pilates Instructor should be able to cue you without
having to show you, you need to internalize more.. Well, duh, she's not very good if that's true. I'm getting
ready to look for another studio and found you. Do you do any of the exercises on request in a class? - Andrea
Hi Andrea, I absolutely, positively perform any exercise that a client has trouble with. Some clients learn
from visual, some from verbal and some from tactile cueing. A good Pilates Instructor is experienced in all. 516.798.2700
How about a Blog or ENewsletter Barbara?!
Unfortunately, we do not
have the time to administer a Blog, but we are preparing for a monthly Enewsletter to subscribe to. Stay tuned!
What a fantastic website! I am considering educating in Pilates Instruction. Which Method
would you recommend my educating in?
It's not about my opinion, it's your decision. But, I do suggest you doing
your homework. The different various Methods all have something special to offer. Contact the main headquarters
of all of the Methods, ask questions and then you can make an educated decision. Prepare to travel to the recommended
Facility of choice. Oh, and thank you so much for your compliment on the Website!!
I am new to Pilates. Can I get hurt in your classes?
NO, the classes are kept small
with no more than 5 clients per class. Barbara does not do the work with you but rather, instructs through constant
cueing and correction. You'll first be taught all of the basic principles to apply to your work to keep you free from injury.
Then a short warm-up to lengthen your muscles prior to the start of work.
What do I need to bring to the classes?
What do I wear to a session?
We work in any comfortable clothing that is not too baggy as to hinder movement.
Sweat or Yoga type pants with a tee or sport top is what most wear. You'll work in barefeet or socks, shoes and
sneakers are removed. With no support on the foot, Pilates will also challenge your balance with Pilates standing work!
How often should I do Pilates?
Try to work out 2-4 times a week, taking a resting day inbetween. Do some Cardiovascular activity on your resting
days like walking, bicycling, swimming, etc. This kind of consistent practice will help you make the mind-body
connection and integrate the various basic principles. You should start seeing
and feeling results in about 10 to 15 sessions.
I have an injury that I am mending. Can I do Pilates?
Yes, with a medical clearance in writing from your physician noting any contra-indications, Barbara
would be happy to train you in Private Sessions only, to focus on your specific needs. Pilates is a form of rehabilitation
and Barbara has been educated in Injury, Special Populations and Cancer Exercise.
What's better, mat or equipment
Great Question! It's not a matter of one being better than another.
The fundamental Pilates exercises can be performed on a Pilates mat alone, and great results can be achieved through
the exercises at all levels. Alternately, the various equipment pieces such as the Reformer, Cadillac and Chair offer spring
resistance and assistance that works the muscles in opposing (stretching and toning) movements to safely sculpt,
tone and stretch the muscles. The Arc barrel and Ladder barrel provide support that allows you to safely manipulate your body to stretch and
engage muscles that are often difficult to isolate.
Pilates Props used in the Mat Classes such
dyna-bands, Pilates circles and foam rollers also provide an element of variety and focus to a Pilates regimen simulating many of the equipment
Why are personal training sessions with a Pilates instructor so expensive?
Pilates instructors are highly trained professionals who have invested hundreds of
hours studying the technique. They learn over 500 exercises for both the mat and Pilates equipment. They learn the philosophy
and theory behind each movement, spend considerable time observing and mastering proper form and sequences, and apprentice
to fine tune their teaching skills. They learn more than just a series of moves, they learn how to assess their students'
posture, how to adapt exercises for various body conditions, and how to customize the best Pilates program for each individual.
This kind of specialized training, combined with the expenses of furnishing a studio, commands a $65 to $100 per hour
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I often hear that Pilates is considered a mind/body workout.
What does that mean?
Pilates requires focus, concentration
and control with every movement to get the most from your work. Different from some workouts, Pilates requires you to
think about what you are doing connecting body with mind!
I often have lower back pain. Can Pilates help?
Yes, in fact, studies have shown that Pilates can help ease and alleviate most back pain
I look at someone doing Pilates, it doesn’t seem vigorous enough for me. Can Pilates give me a good workout?
When most people start Pilates, there’s a lot of new information to learn, so
you probably won’t get an aerobic workout at the beginning. Pilates can be aerobic at the intermediate and advanced
levels when you become more familiar with the movement and breath and the pace inbetween exercises is picked up. The work
gets more intense! Adding resistance to your work with either Pilates Props or on the apparatus also intensifies
the work. This may appear easier than other forms of exercise, but you actually work harder and more deeply into the
muscles, increasing your heartrate. Be patient while your body adapts to something foreign.
My doctor told me I am at the start of Osteoporosis.
Can I do Pilates?
Yes, Pilates work deters bone loss. It also deters muscle loss. As we get older, we tend
to lose both muscle and bone mass. It's important to reverse the process with exercise. With an educated Pilates
instructor, you are on your way!
I burn calories doing Pilates?
Yes, in fact, as you learn, your work will get more intense. The pace of the work
will increase with no break between exercises. Also, into the Intermediate and Advanced exercise level, your
heartrate will increase thus, working into a fat burn. Think of that fat burn zone similar to brisk walking or weight
training. Additionally, our Cardio-Pilates classes are aimed at keeping the heartrate up (remaining in the fat burn
zone) while doing the Pilates exercises. Heartrate monitor required.
How many calories will I burn?
Depending on your height and body weight and how
intensely you are engaging, you will average anywhere from 350 calories to 450 calories per one hour session.
I've heard doing Pilates can make you grow taller.
Is that true?
Well, yes and no. With frequent Pilates practice your posture will improve and you will stand more
erect, thus looking as though you've grown taller!!
My neck and shoulders always feel tight and tense. Can
Definitely! Most of us carry the stress of the day in our neck and shoulders causing muscle
tension and tightness. Working all day at a desk, some of us tend to hunch over. Carrying a purse or
briefcase and other day-to- day activities are some of the usual culprits. We shrug our shoulders up
into the neck and ouch!! Pilates teaches you to keep your shoulders down, back and out of your neck which eases
the pressure. It also brings the body into balance with the stretching and toning of that area. Frequent Pilates
practice will alleviate it completely, you'll look better and feel better!
Will I really lose inches in my waistline
Frequent Pilates practice will tone and lengthen your muscles thereby reducing muscle bulk.
You can even come down a pant size! Absolutely!! And, Pilates is not about becoming a "Skinny-Mini".
It's about your overall health, your sense of well-being and renewed vitality!!
Hi. I'm working with a Pilates Instructor and I've just had my seventh
session with my teacher. I can see, and do feel how I will benefit from Pilates, but I really don't particularly care
for her instruction and style. There are very few instructors near where I live. Any advice on what to do?
This is a very delicate situation and
Forever Fit Pilates studio will answer your question as frankly as possible. An Instructor/Trainer and a client (you)
should have a very special bond; that same bond you may have with your hair stylist or manicurist. The client should
always feel confident in the work they are doing and being taught by the instructor, the communication lines should
be wide open, and you should feel that your time is as important as your trainers'. If you do not have
this bond with your trainer you are presently working with, seek out a new one; even if it means adding to your travel time.
I am a 66 year old
woman and have never worked out other than walking 3 to 4 times per week. My doctor has been getting after me to start
doing some strengthening exercise. He also suggested a personal trainer. I've heard the wonders of what Pilates
can do for you. I have no injuries or illnesses other than High Blood Pressure. Can I do Pilates at your studio?
Absolutely! It's never too late to start Pilates work. Specific exercises will be omitted where the HBP
is contra-indicated. The Studio suggests private sessions to start, to learn the basic Pilates principles
and working you in all planes of movement to see where your strengths and weaknesses are. Onced established and Barbara
feels you are ready, you would be allowed to enter into a Mat Class. Hope to see you soon! Cheers!!
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Hi Barbara, I've
been training in Pilates for more than 1 1/2 years at a large studio in NYC. I found your website and was really impressed
with it. My question to you is, although I continue to remain flexible and my range of motion has increased tremendously;
I'm not seeing a change in my appearance anymore. You say on your site that your clients can continually reach a "Higher
Level". How can you do that, if it's not happening with me?
And hello to you Kathy. It sounds like you have reached a "plateau".
In Joe's teachings, there is a specific order to the exercises. Many instructors follow that order. In Barbara's
fitness experience both with clients and with her own body, we need to change what we are doing every three to five months.
The body plateaus with the same work over a period of time. Barbara's thought process on Pilates is a more contemporary
approach. By continually changing the exercises (there are more than 500 of them), working on all planes of movement,
the body will never plateau, you will continue to see Pilates benefits and you can continue to reach that "higher level"!
Speak with your Pilates instructor and see if she is willing to change up her repetoire.
Thanks for answering my question!! I'd like to come to
you for a session. Can you fit me in for an evening session? - Kathy
Call the studio at 516-798-2700. We'll discuss your options! Looking
forward to speaking with you!
I've hurt my shoulder and the pain radiates down from the top of the shoulder to
right around the middle of my arm. I do quite a bit of weight training. Can Pilates help with this injury?
Barbara knows the pain you are experiencing.
Barbara injured herself causing the same pain doing "upright rows". In Barbara's case, she injured muscles
in her Rotator Cuff, causing "microscopic tears", or overworked her shoulder. She rested it for over 9 months,
with no relief of pain with her weight training and sleeping on her side at night, often waking from the pain. Within
2-3 weeks of Pilates work on the apparatus, specifically the reformer, the pain subsided. The stretching while toning
of Pilates (working in opposition) rehabbed her shoulder. Find a studio recommended near you! Good luck!
Good morning Barbara. i've put a question in to you several times and have not heard a response back from you.
Why aren't you answering my questions?
Hi Tricia, I've tried to respond directly back to you, but your email address may have a block on spam
mail. Filters sometimes think certain emails are "mass mailings". So that aside, I've not answered your
question because it is a similiar question that has already been answered. I respond to any questions that are fresh
ones. Thanks for taking the time to ask!
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