The Old is New and The New is Old, 12 PMA CEC’s, was the title of the Pilates workshop that was presented at Amy Haven’s beautiful studio on Victoria and State Streets.
I had a fantastic time, as usual, when I visit Santa Barbara. Amy had specifically asked me to approach the material with a perspective that would allow her teachers to begin to think critically and to choose material that was appropriate and beneficial for the individual student.
When students first begin to study, it is very important to follow a recipe and trust that our mentors have had more experience. We need to practice and trust the method of training that has been given to us. I was fortunate to have had a conversation with Eve Gentry in 1986. Her comment reflects this message. Practice the work as presented to you by a good teacher. Then, with care and consideration after many years of teaching, begin to add personal perspective into the work, if it made sense and had purpose.
The students were surprised that they could make decisions and they could develop rationale for teaching the choreography that is Pilates. It does not demand a change in the choreography but it does require thought, insightful presentation, and active listening and reflection in process with the student.
This group was great. Everyone participated and each shared idea reflected thought and curiosity for more insight.
A quote from a friend who coached Olympic swimmers: An instructor presents material as personal practice in teaching. A teacher presents material that reflects the needs of the student. I owe much gratitude to Amy Havens for inviting me to Centerpointe Pilates workshop and many thanks to the students who came with enthusiasm and talent.