NEW Classes this Spring

You asked, and we listened! This Spring, we are adding two new Reformer group classes to our schedule on Thursdays!

Reformer Class

Thursday 60 minute Reformer at 9:30am

&

Thursday 45 minute Reformer at Noon

If you are interested in securing your spot in either of these classes please email us at theboss@kwartoffitness.net – hurry there are only six spots available in each class!

Reformer – is a type of Pilates performed on the most popular Pilates invention, the Reformer. Its sliding carriage is powered by human effort (the arms, legs and core) and the adjustable springs regulate tension and resistance. Cables, bars, straps and pulleys allow exercises to be done from a variety of positions.

Mind Your Words: Fitness Entitlement Epidemic

“What you end up being good at is usually what you didn’t mind being bad at…” Salman Khattak (Oct. 13, 2018 – Calligraphy Workshop)

fitness

Physical DEVELOPMENT, EDUCATION, CONDITIONING … all great words and then you get involved in fitness. Here you are instantly thrown into the sales pitch of what can you do better; and what do you want to look like or be …

How glorious it would be if we were encouraged to embrace exercise as a practiced skill first instead of a means of getting what you want. Let what you want be the byproduct of developing your movement skill.

  • What if being skinny or the runners high was simply the byproduct of heart health/conditioning? 
  • What if we didn’t drive our conditioning before understanding our current condition? 
  • What if we choose food for nourishment instead of image, reward or punishment? 
  • What if a great booty was simply a byproduct of learning to squat properly?

The what if list of questions is endless really.

So often as instructors we witness clients becoming completely frustrated with themselves because they ‘can’t do an exercise.’ OR they immediately move as big and as bold as they can with maximum effort. Thus neglecting the body and brain the time or tempo we all need to digest what is required to complete the movement with ease and efficiency. When this happens at the studio, we have started to gently question clients.

  • When have you ever produced this movement previous to now? 
  • What opportunities have you found to repeat this movement with conscious effort?
  • What do you believe the point is in this exercise? 

The answer is often never, or I don’t know.  This doesn’t make someone good or bad, fit or unfit, it simply is a byproduct of the life we lead; we could call it a societal trap. 

Movement and exercise (fitness) is at the bottom of societies hierarchy of what we should learn or educate ourselves around.

Instead fitness is something we do to get something we want; and because we want it and we showed up to ‘get it done’ we expect our bodies to perform without question and give us the results we said we wanted. 

This culture of entitlement has merged or perhaps has always been a part of the ever expanding  bubble of fitness trends. 

weight

Want to move past entitlement? To embrace exercise with intention try this:

Step one:
Learn what your body can do in it’s current state (be in the moment); spend time being curious about what connections in your body you can make easily, what comes naturally to you and what are the concepts that need some developmental time and care. 

Step two: 
Spend some time there, where you are.

’See What Is’ ― Pema Chödrön, Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion

Spend time in exercise learning and experiencing.
Ditch the labels and the constant push towards striving for better.
Remember better is based on a knowing or understanding what is.

  • What are your base lines? 
  • Who are you right now? 
  • What do you value? 
  • How will taking care of your physical being find priority in your life?

Step three:
Only then set your goals.
With self compassion and realism.

Step four:
Return to step one …. Be aware of the “wash, rinse, repeat” cycle of fitness; (this saying is a sarcastic metaphor for following instructions or procedures slavishly without critical thought)

“Expansion never happens through greediness or pushing or striving. It happens through some combination of learning to relax where you already are and, at the same time, keeping the possibility open that your capacity, my capacity, the capacity of all beings, is limitless. As we continue to relax where we are, our opening expands.”― Pema Chödrön, Comfortable with Uncertainty: 108 Teachings on Cultivating Fearlessness and Compassion 

We’re Hiring – Pilates Instructor

KW Art of Fitness is a boutique Pilates Studio that believes in going beyond the ‘get fit’ trends. We help clients accept self-responsibility for maintaining their health through education, self-practice, self-awareness and empowerment. We offer private, semi-private and intimate group classes including Matwork, Reformer, Yoga and Spin.

Art of Fitness

The Team

We are highly professional, loyal and deliver stunning work every time. We are constantly learning and staying current to make sure we are bringing the best to our clients. Our team is supportive, inspired by one another, and collaborative in how we support our clients. It is ALWAYS about the clients.

Our Success has blossomed from

Transparency: We give our clients all the information so they can continuously learn about their bodies and see the changes they have created.
Trust: We love to learn and give our clients accurate information that serves them better.
Respect: We join clients in discovering their definition of wellness, health and fitness.
Supportive, inclusive planning: Through active collaboration with other health care professionals we have found the key to continually weaving a delicate web of support for clients.

The Role

A Certified Pilates Instructor, taking clients through movement with exceptional instruction and dedication.

Who you are
Growing your career and future at KW Art of Fitness is within your hands and here is how you’ll succeed:

  • You are genuinely passionate and curious about movement. You continuously educate yourself and work on professional development.
  • You believe you can learn something from everyone and will work with other team members and health care professionals to insure you are giving your clients the best possible information and care.
  • You demonstrate social perceptiveness, by listening and understanding how clients react to the information.
  • You deliver customized client care to each individual
  • You positively influence those around you by displaying confidence and credibility.

The Essentials

  • You have a Comprehensive Certification in Body Harmonics Pilates Level 1: Mat.
  • You are registered for or interested in completing Pilates Level 2: Reformer and Level 3: CCSB.
  • You have MindBody Online experience (preferred).
  • You have previous experience working with rehab and special populations (preferred).

Why KW Art of Fitness?

  • Start Pilates career with us and make a massive impact on the people you teach daily through movement and well-being
  • We make space for both professionalism and fun; we love when our clients don’t take themselves too seriously.
  • We are fully equipped with Reformers, Towers, Exo Chairs, Jumpboards, Spin Bikes and small props.
  • We host continued education workshops that are considered CEC’s through Body Harmonics.
  • We only work Monday-Friday. We have weekly breaks between each season to re-set and re-inspire.
  • We are active in our local community through regular support of charities and teaching movement to youth in local schools.
  • Wages are based on a sliding percentage scale through monthly hours billed (ex. more people in, more money out). ‘
  • We are a team who loves to educate and have fun. If you are an eager Pilates Instructor looking for a full-time career, apply now by emailing theboss@kwartoffitness.net.

Client Spotlight: Jayne Amy

Our snowmobiling, kayak adventuring, and beer drinking reformer class dreamer Pilates client is always up for a laugh in class; and yes she still works her ‘buns’ off while being funny. 

Jayne

My name is Jayne Amy, I am 64 years old this year,  happily retired, and a grandma.

I first went to a Pilates Matwork class about  10 years ago with my sister-in-law just to try something new. I had always done aerobic classes and wasn’t sure I would like a slower pace exercise. Turned out I really enjoyed it. I have had back issues over the years and found Pilates greatly improved my back. 

I started at KW Art of Fitness about 8 years ago just before they moved into their current location. As a promotion when they moved they offered a free half hour session. I choose to try the reformer which had caught my curiosity. After that there was no going back. I love the reformer class and credit it for helping me maintain an active life style. 

I attend a reformer class once a week as well as do an aquafit class twice a week. I enjoy snowmobiling in the winter months and in the warmer months swimming and do some kayaking on calm waters. HaHa.

No-Bake Chocolate Fudge Cookies

You asked an we are going to deliver! A Valentines Day recipe that your loved one will definitely thank you for! Without all those unhealthy ingredients, these are good for the heart and soul! 

Chocolate Fudge Cookies

These no-bake fudge cookies are my quick and easy solution when a chocolate craving strikes! I start with a homemade coconut oil chocolate base (made even creamier with sunflower seed butter!) and add chia seeds for healthy Omega-3 fats, shredded coconut for a hint of macaroon flavor and texture, and of course rolled oats for the classic no-bake cookie ingredient. The cookies will soften a great deal at room temperature, so I recommend enjoying them straight from the fridge.

the wet ingredients:
  • 3 tablespoons (45 mL) virgin coconut oil
  • 2 tablespoons (30 mL) sunflower seed butter*
  • 1/4 cup (20 g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup (60 mL) pure maple syrup, or to taste
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the dry ingredients:
7 tablespoons (50 g) gluten-free rolled oats
  • 6 tablespoons (35 g) unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 2 tablespoons (25 g) chia seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste

Directions:

Line a large plate with parchment paper and set aside.

In a medium pot, melt the coconut oil over low heat. Whisk in the sunflower seed butter, cocoa powder, and maple syrup until smooth. Remove the pot from the heat and whisk in the vanilla.

Add the oats, coconut, chia seeds, and salt into the pot and stir well until combined. The mixture will be thick, dense, oily, and gel-like (from the chia seeds), but this is normal. Swear.

Using a retractable ice cream scoop (approximately 2 tablespoons/30 mL) or simply a spoon, scoop the dough and place the mound onto the plate, leaving a bit of space between each cookie.

Place the cookies in the freezer to set for about 10 to 15 minutes, until firm, or simply chill in the fridge if you have the patience.

Store leftover cookies in an airtight container in the fridge for 1 week, or freeze them for up to 4 to 6 weeks. These cookies have the best texture/flavour straight from the fridge (rather than the freezer) so I prefer to store them in the fridge.

Tips:

  • * Instead of sunflower seed butter, feel free to use natural peanut butter or almond butter. I also recommend stirring the nut or seed butter very well before measuring (if it has oil on the top) to avoid oily cook

credit: ohsheglows

 

CLEAN EATING TURKEY TACO SALAD

February is HEART HEALTH month, so why not take a look at your dinner and clean it up a bit? Here is a recipe that Absolute Nutrition shared with us for Turkey Taco Salad! Let us know if you try it – we know we will! 
 

Clean Eating Turkey Taco Salad

    • 1 Tablespoon olive oil, divided
    • 1 cup red bell pepper, chopped
    • 1 cup orange bell pepper, chopped
    • ½ red onion, chopped
    • 1 lb ground turkey
    • 2 Tablespoons taco seasoning
    • romaine lettuce, chopped
    • ½ cup grape tomatoes, chopped
    • 1 jalapeno pepper, chopped
    • ½-1 avocado, chopped into chunks
    • ½-1 cup fresh fruit-based salsa (I used peach)
    • 1 lime
    • chopped cilantro, to taste
  • hot sauce, to taste
 
INSTRUCTIONS
 
Toss chopped onions and peppers with 2 teaspoons of olive oil and grill or sauté in a skillet until they reach your desired texture. Once cooked, set aside.

Brown turkey in a large skillet with a little olive oil. Break meat into smaller pieces as it cooks. Cook for about 6-8 minutes or until the turkey is no longer pink. Add taco seasoning to the pan and stir to combine. If the meat seems too dry, add a little water with the seasoning.

While the turkey it cooking, prep your salads. Start with a base of romaine lettuce and begin layering the toppings — tomatoes, jalapeño slices, avocado and salad. Squeeze a little lime juice onto each salad and sprinkle on chopped cilantro. Add a few drops of hot sauce if using.

credit: eatingbirdfood.com

Sleep – #2019antiresolution

This month’s soap box we will be speaking to is a trend that has been taking shape over the years. We would like to suggest that before we get to deep into setting goals, let’s enjoy some time this year to understand our current baseline. What do you do already?

In January, we thought it may be fun to create a group sleep tracking event. It is meant to bring attention to a crucial yet often sacrificed part of what it takes to be our healthiest selves. Have you been adding your sleep hours to our wall?! If you haven’t start now!

Bringing your attention to your current sleep habits will give us an opportunity to contemplate how we may be helping or hindering all the other things we do to create a healthy quality of life.

sleep

Let’s pay attention to what we already do in order to give us an opportunity to contemplate how we may be helping or hindering all the other things we do to create a healthy quality of life.

Have you noticed over the last few weeks if your sleep was hindered by any of the following:

  • How much energy you had on average for the day
  • What time you consumed any alcohol, caffeine and tobacco (and the amounts) * any naps (and how long they were)
  • Any medications you took
  • Any stressful (out of the ordinary) events that happened that day
  • Time that you decided to go to bed for the night.

Other Options to Consider are:

  • Think about how you slept the night before
  • Estimate how long it took you to fall asleep
  • How many times you woke up in the middle of the night
  • How long you were up for each time
  • What time you woke up as well as what time you got out of bed * how you felt when you woke up

While you are on this journey with us, notice these things about your sleep patterns and maybe even make notes, it may help you sleep in the long run!

Client Who Inspire us: Laura Green

Laura comes into the Studio twice a week for Matwork and Reformer classes. She ALWAYS has a smile on her face and brightens the classes with her positive energy! Anyone who takes classes with Laura knows she makes class fun; with her witty comments and her life stories. Read more about Laura below.

Laura

I am married with 5 children and 7 and counting grandchildren. I am retired after a wonderful career in teaching mostly spent in JK/SK. There was never a dull moment and they always made me laugh.

I started coming to the studio when Liz Fryer suggested it to our book club. I think that was about 7 years ago!? I have always enjoyed physical activity and attend Zumba classes several times a week. I love the dancing even though I am often doing the wrong choreography. Do what brings you joy, right?

I started Pilates for a couple of reasons. Many members of my family have osteoporosis and I wanted to do as much as I could to keep my bones healthy and strong. I also like the toning, strengthening, flexibility and stability that Pilates can develop. I enjoy the classes and the people I have met along the way. 

I am looking forward to being back in classes as 2019 unfolds.

News Years Sleep Resolution – GET MORE SLEEP

Did you know that a good nights sleep is just as important as your healthy eating habits and exercise? That doesn’t mean waking up after 6 hours, but instead, getting at least 7-9 hours a night. 

Want to know what happens to your body when you don’t have good sleep habits? Watch this youtube video with Matthew Walker. 

Scary, right? Don’t worry! We are here to help and inspire you on a new journey to healthy sleep patterns. 

sleep

This January join us for a sleep-a-thon! We are challenging you to SLEEP MORE.

  • Every week, write down your weekly total of hours slept. We will have a place to record your hours in the Studio (the more the better!) 
  • Receive tips, tricks and stories on all things sleep through social media, our blog and in Studio. 
  • Stay motivated with our thermometer that we hope to collectively rise on a weekly basis. 
  • Share with us any changes you feel throughout the process to be a featured story. 

Excited yet? We are!

Let’s work together in 2019 to make more time for self care and an early bed time. Healthy change happens when we allow ourselves space to be curious, to educate, to bring our attention to ourselves and move through a process.

Stretch for Strength – Release for Range

Last week, we hosted a workshop on stretching for strength. For those of you who missed it, here are a few takeaways:

Pain: Observing someone else – which is the constant job of a manual or movement therapist – how am I to know when things are unpleasant and emotional or too much? How do you know when sensations are going to far?

“A sensation accompanied by the motor intention to withdraw” Tom Myers

Pain consists of three types: “pain that enters the body”, “pain stored in the body”, and “pain leaving the body”.

Muscle Spindle

What’s in a feeling?

Muscle Spindle: is a proprioceptor, a sense organ that receives information from muscle, it senses STRETCH and the SPEED of the stretch.

When you stretch and feel the message that you are at the ENDPOINT of your stretch the spindle is sending a reflex arc signal to your spinal column telling you not to stretch any further. This sense organ protects you from over stretching or stretching too fast and hurting yourself.

Golgi Tendon Organ

Golgi Tendon Organ: is a proprioceptor, sense organ that receives information from the tendon, that senses TENSION.

When you lift weights, the Golgi tendon organ is the sense organ that tells you how much tension the muscle is exerting. If there is too much muscle tension the Golgi tendon organ will inhibit the muscle from creating any force (via a reflex arc), thus protecting you from injuring yourself.

Cerebellum: (latin for ‘little brain’) receives information from the sensory systems, the spinal cord, and other parts of the brain and then regulates motor movements. The cerebellum coordinates voluntary movements such as posture, balance, coordination, and speech, resulting in smooth and balanced muscular activity.

So What? Your neurological system can get it’s wires crossed and you can ‘feel tight’ and not be tight, you can feel restricted not because the joint’s in danger but because the Golgi tendon THINKS/FEELS it’s in danger because the muscle spindle and or Golgi tendon never returned to it’s “happy” shape.

Release for Range

• Gives the body a space and time to recalibrate it’s systems and or to regain their structure
• The cerebellum needs you to pay attention, investigate, it needs to be fed information
• Allows the body to take in and establish the changes movement & manual therapists give
• Release is developed in the space between how far and how much — in other words before the muscle spindle or Golgi tendon needs to shut you down

Creating release in your body takes an investigators mind.

Dynamic Neutral: Learning how to experience where a joint can create motion without influencing how your body weight sits in space before you started the motion We can’t teach you what to feel we can only teach you how to feel. Instructors try to find words that give you opportunity to explore how to weight sense, find fluidity and or focus on the space between where the motion begins and how the motion travels through you

Body Weight: ‘The force exerted on a body by a gravitational field’; ’our ability to stand upright depends on the tension between the force of the body and the pull of gravity’ (Laban)

Space: When we move we ‘push some space out of the way’ and the area we just vacated is filled with more space. (Laban)

Gather and Scatter: (Newlove, Dalby, 2004:112)
• Gather: taking up the least amount of space possible; this consists of ‘bending all of our joints and curling up into a ball’.
• Scatter: when we can stretch all of our limbs into a star like position, stretching even our fingers, to extend our Kinesphere
• It is important to remember that we don’t only gather or scatter our whole body but individual body parts as well
• Generally in movement we are doing both, using opposition to create stability in order to increase mobility and balance

Kinesphere: “The sphere around the body whose periphery can be reached by easily extended limbs without stepping away from that place which is the point of support when standing on one foot” (1966, Laban p.10) (visual image: DaVinci ‘)

Kinetic Force: how much energy is required to move in space

Vitruvian Man

Conclusion:

• Find time to investigate what midrange is in your body.
• Before you move, create a sense of ready throughout the entire body, gradually build up the sense of ready until you have gathered your weight and then move.
• Remember coordinating your body actually takes a great deal of intelligence, skill, patience and investigation, avoid taking it for granted or relaying on others