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Taking My Practice Outside the Studio

Taking my practice out of the studio…

It happened, I had to put my money where my mouth was. I always believe that pilates will contribute to your everyday life, no matter what you set out to do.

With pilates and barre being my only physical activity, I went on my first ever hike in the Drakensberg. Despite the fact that it was not a hectic long hike (about 8km, 16km in total), we had three children with us (four adults) which tends to not only slow the process down but also make the ‘hard’ parts a little more challenging. Balance and co-ordination is vital when helping a tiny body over a stream, up a hill, and over the boulders in the dark. I was amazed at my body’s ability to hold that space, the countless hours of balancing exercises, that isometric ‘HOLD’ finally came into practice when I had to keep one leg on a rock, other one on a  far away rock, hold my core (to help me keep that 12kg backpack and myself upright) and move my arms freely to help the little 5 year old over aprox 150m (doesn’t sound like far, but try it in the dark) up and over boulders and over streams to get to the cave that we slept in.

We got to the cave and I told my brother, “I can go on, my body is not tired yet!” I did a couple of stretches hopped back into the woods to collect some firewood, and then kicked back chilling fore the rest of the evening with some marshmallows over the flames.

Next morning my ankles where a bit stiff (I give credit to wearing hiking boots, cause I was wearing my takkies) but again, if it wasn’t for all those hours training on the balance cushion, yoga block and relevés in barre I would have had a terrible time. And just holding my spine straight with a backpack would have been a struggle and would have thrown me off balance in those areas where I had to climb up and help a child up with me, all the while keeping their spirits up.

Moving out of your comfort zone builds trust in yourself, and trust in the ones moving into that space with you, and if your body is capable and able to give you that ability it builds a strong character and is a gift to others, in situations that you could not imagine.

I give thanks and gratitude for my body in showing me how strong I really am, and not just in the studio but out in nature as well. One day I’ll hop over those streams like a gazelle… ;)…Liezl…

My practice has taught me strength and endurance and that your body will give it to you if you take care of it and if you have a healthy relationship with your body, you will be able to do so much more.

This is why we train, why we do functional exercises, is to be able to live life to the fullest outside of the studio.

Do the work inside, there is a world out there waiting for you to explore. 🙂

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