In June, I had the wonderful opportunity to present a Pilates workshop at Body in Balance in Bozeman, Montana. Liz Ann Kudrna has created a beautiful studio that sits on Main Street in the middle of cowboy country! I did not need to rent a car. The studio was a slow, easy, meander from my hotel as I passed coffee shops and mercantiles. I did wonder where my horse was hitched as I noticed the cowboy hats, boots, and silver buckles in the windows. Bozeman reminded me of the Boulder that existed twenty years ago and I hope that they have the foresight to keep the neighborhood the same. Liz Ann knew everyone. People would stop and say hello. There was time to ask about your health and that of your animals. The Bozeman people that I met have a great love of the outdoors. People hike, run, ride, climb, and even ride horses. Pilates is a perfect fit for these active citizens.
My collection of Pilates workshop students was fantastic! There were teachers of many different lineages and with various skill and length of study and practice. These students were eager and inquisitive. I was inspired that despite our differences in practices, equipment, and histories, we were all able to learn and grow together. The group shared experiences that they had with different approaches to exercises and were able to come to consensus regarding the need for different approaches for different solutions. We were practicing critical thinking with comfort and ease.
Teaching is an incredible gift for me in the moment. I never tire of seeing how each person learns a piece of movement. And I get very excited when someone has an epiphany concerning a difficult exercise. One cowgirl, Cincinnati Colby, and I had some great fun with The Control Balance in the Mat list! Another delightful student kept reminding me that she knew her shoulders were elevated. They were still elevated at the end of two days, but they were heading downward. She worked hard and her teacher had prepared her well. At the end, we did an improvisation inspired by Joseph Pilates at Jacob’s Pillow. It was a WOW!
Liz Ann was a spectacular host. She has worked diligently on her study of Pilates. She has built an environment that fosters education and community. I was so pleased that she reached out to invite many other teachers in the area and many who were from other cities to my Pilates workshop. I would like to extend a warm thanks to all of those teachers who supported this Pilates workshop.
One disappointment was that I expected Jesse James to show. In the James branch of my family he is a bit of quaint folklore. He has been reported to have practiced too much horseback and not enough Spine Twist. So, if he shows up at a local restaurant looking a little off center, please advise him of my next visit. I liked being in the “Bozone.”