The joy of being part of a community cannot be underestimated, attending a regular Pilates class whether near where you live or work can often bring a connection to others outside your usual social network. Recognising a fellow class mate outside of class, just for a brief nod or smile of acknowledgement, connects you to your neighbourhood. Too often in London can feel lonely and lacking a community among what can seem a disparate, transient population.
I have been working with the same Pilates teacher for 15 years, Chris Hocking at Pilates Body Awareness. One of the main reasons for such a long term commitment is the sense of community created by my class mates. Someone is always willing to come for a post-class coffee & chat. We share a window into our lives &develop kinship, create long lasting friendships as we bond over our shared Pilates experience. This generates a sense of mental wellbeing which is reflected in our exercise & posture. In a relaxed, friendly environment we learn better, can push ourselves a little further, experiment with our physical boundaries without every feeling foolish in front of our peers.
In classical Pilates exercise repertoire this peer support is key, it takes a few attempts to master some of the complex moves which often end up in laughter as you lose balance or discover curious facts about your own body; having long arms can have its advantages!