How to Do Pilates

FROM: Loes Buenen, owner of Studio Element in Tilburg, the Netherlands.

HOW SHE GOT TO TILBURG: I was born in a small village south of Holland (Schijndel), but because I had been studying at the dance academy since the age of 11, I ended up in Tilburg. Then I moved to Utrecht for a few years, but returned to Tilburg because of love.

PILATES TRAINING BACKGROUND: Pilates crossed my path at the dance academy. Two years after I graduated, my former jazz dance teacher, Yvonne Schüller, opened a Pilates studio—Studio Zuid in Eindhoven—and also offered classical Pilates training called Pilates Link. I was dancing in her company back then, and she offered me a job as a trainer if I was willing to take the course. So I decided to study with her. From 2009 through 2016 I worked at Art of Movement and learned a lot from Stephanny Turton-Kat, who works closely with Marie-José Blom.

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TEACHING STYLE: I really love to work with injured clients, to give them back their confidence and help them learn to trust their bodies again. I also love to introduce the average “man on the street” to Pilates and open up the world of sensing their own bodies. I guess for me, Pilates is not so much about the exercises, but about getting to know your body, becoming aware of it and learning to optimize its use.

MY TYPICAL CLIENT: In private classes, I mostly work with injured people. In group classes, it’s diverse. It’s mostly the average person who wants to move more, maybe because of light back pain.

In Holland a lot of people still have no clue what Pilates is. Mostly they think it’s some sort of yoga, or that it’s abdominal exercises. The apparatus work is quite unknown since there are not many studios. And in Tilburg, people are not really used to spending money on personal training, so I really had to build up my clientele (which has worked its way to a waiting list for privates). FOR MORE INFO: studioelement.nl or facebook.com/studioelementtilburg

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