What is Athletic Tune? I coined this term because I view the body as an instrument. In order to do what we love forever with our instrument, we must discover, listen to, and play our own athletic tunes.
“The Pilates Method of Body Conditioning is gaining the mastery of your mind over the complete control over your body.” Joseph H Pilates
I have always loved how this quote summarizes the life long quest that we embark on as athletes. Even more so, I love how the answer in my own endeavors and for those of the athletes I work with has been Pilates. Pilates is the thread tying all movement art forms and sports together. Finding common themes in motion patterning, and our unique goals as forever athletes. We can all find our inner athlete to varying degrees.
In 2020 when I thought I might loose my business, and the world was shut down, I couldn’t rely on my outlet of going to the dance studio to process what was happening. I was still visiting the Pilates studio daily to ponder life and film videos for my students, but it wasn’t the same. I couldn’t train as a dancer as I have done religiously since a young age.
I started doing online ballet classes which helped me hold technique and feel connected to myself and the dance community, but I couldn’t get the same flow state I can get to when in real life. I created a 30 min technique warmups to help supplement the virtual work I was doing and then made it into an hour long class for friends and students to join in on zoom every week.
What has becoming my signature class: curating the Pilates method with structural aspects of dance training, specifically themes found in Ballet and the Horton Technique, and combines them with functional movement. This paced workout moves through 3 stages: standing progressions, a yoga inspired plank flow, and BASI Pilates mat-work.
Teaching this class weekly, I have honestly never felt better! I always break a sweat teaching it and always feel strong and tuned up after class. One of the perks of teaching virtually is that I get to lead the class by actually doing it:)
I continue to have all levels in class and with all sorts of specialties, goals, injuries, and restrictions. There is always a way to break down a movement, modify, or progress it to make it work for everyone.
Discover Your Athletic Tune
Identify Your Strength
Strength is the ability to contract and relax muscles, the ability to concentrically and eccentrically work through range of motion. Strength is balance, and the ability to let breath move you. Strength is knowing where you are in space, your posture from head to toe. Strength is knowing your limits and how much to push them.
This is goal assessment time. What are your short and long term goals? I see people who simply want to live an active city life, walking everywhere, climbing subway stairs, and riding their bike. Others are extreme athletes that need repair. You might be a professional athlete like a basketball player that needs agility, balance, coordination in jumps and overhead work. I personally want to dance forever and work on keeping a uniformity in strength and rom.
There is a commonality and a degree of functionality that we all need in our moving life. It is partly being able to reach up, squat down, walk freely, jump, twist and bend, but learning the BASI Pilates principles is invaluable to directing your efforts. Awareness, Balance, Breath, Coordination, Control, Center, Harmony, Flow, & Precision all have their place and can individually be dialed up or down. Truly identifying your goals is important so that you can learn the appropriate range to work in. For example if doing a balance series are you holding on to something, tapping your foot down for a modification, working a larger range of motion, adding a jump, an unstable surface, or leg weights for an added challenge.
The movement can be the same in general and a group of all different levels can essentially work together or move to the same on demand video if they have the proper information and know the tune they are trying to play within their own body.
Listen To Your Athletic Tune
Power of Repetition (With No Breaks)
In a dedicated session, keep moving! If you have to stop for some reason, make sure to stay present by focusing on your posture and breath. Lay or sit in a constructive position.
The idea with listening to your athletic tune is that you can compare from session to session, measure how challenging something feels and how much you are measurably improving. There is so much power in repetition of technical training. This is also unique to the BASI Pilates Teacher Training Program and how we categorize exercises is the Block system. We ensure a well rounded lesson that checks all the boxes of working all the muscle groups, ranges of movement in relation to gravity, and moving the spine in flexion, extension, lateral flexion, and rotation. Work deeper and broader to create building blocks in movement with a deeper understanding of where repertoire comes from. We can also focus on different principles in the same movements. For example, more focus on breath vs precision vs efficiency will give a different outcome and alleviate “boredom.” High quality and lower repetitions before changing the movement helps to keep the technique and retain the maximum benefit of the exercise. In this class I like to repeat phrases rather than simply burning out a group of muscles, which also has its place. Don’t get me wrong, you will “feel the burn” but it might be a set of 5-10 done more than once with other stuff mixed in.
Pilates….. block system
Play Your Athletic Tune
Challenge Meets Skill
The art of technical study along with diligent execution, will lead to a strong, grounded, and ultimately free body and mind. One class will teach correct alignment and muscle focus for a body that can truly capture the desired benefits of movement.
“Play” and defining what that means to you is the whole point of the methodology we teach at BASI Pilates Academy – NYC & Physio Logic far beyond the exercises. Putting effort into the technical study and applying the work to your life outside the studio or class is where all the reward is.
Find your athletic tune and do what you love forever! Practice what you are trying to improve on. While it is a great option, an in person coach will be able to guide you energetically in a way that is hard to do over a screen. If you do mostly virtual training sessions, then consider scheduling even 1-2 in person lessons per month, come with questions and learn how to self correct.
I encourage you to try one of the live virtual classes
Take note of what you have trouble with, or what you may find too easy to then ask questions or perhaps book a private lesson
Try a group class
Or request a lesson with a BASI Pilates student in training
These video clips are some examples of exercises I include in the Athletic Tune- Technical Flow and how they can progress in modified stages. Enjoy!
Posterior Chain /Extensors
For full length videos that benefit our scholarship program visit Virtualogic.earth