Pilates has been in my life since my childhood. I just wasn’t aware of it at the time. In contrast to several of my colleagues, I didn’t discover Pilates due an injury that needed some rehabilitation. Pilates came to me through my Jazz dancing.
Growing up in the suburbs of Québec City, Canada, I was an active child from skipping ropes, to cycling, to playing baseball, etc. My two favourite activities were alpine skiing and dancing. I learned to teach movement as a ski instructor, intensely observing bodies moving downhill and identifying what would improve their abilities and their technique. Oh! if only I knew then what I know now about movement!
From a young age I attended dance classes at a professional dance school in Québec City. The school was affiliated with a modern dance company. I was not dancing professionally, but I was in a privileged position of attending classes at a school where we mixed with the professional dancers daily. Movement and grace surrounded me, I have wonderful memories of it all.
I mainly danced two styles Simonson (jazz) and Graham (modern - named after Martha Graham). My Jazz teacher trained in New York City, where she was part of several Broadway productions including Cats. It is only several years later that I realised she had included Pilates in our warm-ups. I have been doing the Hundred for a very long time.
It is also much later that I realised Martha Graham had been a student of Joseph Pilates. It explains why some of the Pilates mat repertoire reminds me of Graham’s work. I loved dancing but always knew it was not my ‘calling’.
When it was time to make a career choice, I selected Tourism because of my passion for travels. I also qualified as a Clef d’Or (hotel Concierge). I worked in luxury hotels in Toronto for several years and just after 911 accepted a position on a cruise ship with Royal Caribbean. I worked 5 years for RCCL and in order to stay fit whilst onboard I regularly practiced Pilates via Mary Winsor published DVD’s. I would set myself up in the conference room and Mary would appear on the big projector screen. I think this is when I realised that I used to do some of the exercises as a young dancer. It definitely brought back my love for flowing movement and the practice of a physical discipline.
I moved to Melbourne in 2007 and started attending reformer sessions at the gym. My instructors suggested that I should consider also becoming an instructor. Timing is everything in life, and the suggestion came at a time when I felt that I needed a career change. I completed a comprehensive training with Peak Pilates. A few years later, I was selected with other applicants from around the world to Peak Pilates’ training camp in Venice Beach, CA, to become one of their international Master Instructors. It was an amazing experience.
Pilates is a lifetime of learning opportunities and I yearned to go deeper in the method, gaining a better understanding of the system. An opportunity presented itself with the opening of Authentic Pilates Melbourne. Through that studio I was able to bridge with Authentic Pilates Education International training. Once I fully qualified with APEI, I was appointed as the principal mentors for the APEI’s Melbourne apprentices and level 1 teacher trainer.
Movement has always been part of my life and something that brings me happiness. I finally found my calling with Pilates. It is my happy place alongside skiing. I thrive with learning more and deepening my knowledge, aiming at assisting clients to move better, getting stronger, and improve their general wellbeing. Pilates is a journey that never stops, it is incredible, it enhances life.
I think Joseph Pilates was a movement genius, the “Albert Einstein” of movement. I always wonder if he ever read this quote by Einstein and if it inspired him....
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you MUST keep moving” Albert Einstein.
Authentic Pilates Education International Certified
Principal APEI Mentor &
Level 2 Teacher Trainer for Victoria
Comprehensive Peak Pilates Certified
Master Instructor level 1
(Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilization) Certificate level 1 & 2
Rehabilitation Prague School
Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction (910521N)
Committee member of the
Pilates Alliance Australasia (PAA)