Welcome to the Blog.

Apparently, you don’t need to be a writer to write a blog, which is just as well because I’m not a writer; I’m a Pilates Teacher (and a Pilates Studio owner).

This is where I'll try to add another layer of understanding of what we do, how we do it and at times some shorter items of random thoughts and/or reflections.

Efrat (Aoife) Kahanov

❥ Move Through ❥

Published on 19th Jan 2021 at 16:00 by Efrat (Aoife) Kahanov

This past week I was reminded of the old saying you might have heard:
"The Only Way Out Is Through".

For me, this saying means to face a challenge head on. 
Look at it. Face it. Sit with it. Get to know it. 
It's the opposite of going around (under/over) or ignoring an obstacle or difficulty. 
It's the opposite of running away from it.

Let me say this right off the bat -
As a blanket "advice" for life, I'm not on board with that. The need to "go around" or "avoid" difficulties is just as valid an option as facing them head on. Different situations, different circumstances and for sure different people in those situations and under those circumstances mean there's no way "one size fits all" and you will not find me advocating that it can be.

With that said, there are times when looking at the option of "The way out is through" can be more beneficial and productive. There are instances where ignoring, rejecting, avoiding, running (or sleeping) away from challenges and difficulties will not serve you too well or, will work in the short-term only to come back to haunt you.

Pain and physical discomfort (like stiffness and inflexibility that stand in the way of being able to move comfortably and with ease) are examples of those times that THROUGH is the way OUT.

Pain & Discomfort.

Pain and discomfort are signals between the
body and the brain. The signals can originate
from the body (e.g. injury) or the brain (e.g.
emotional trauma)

In both cases the neurophysiological signals
carry the same message:
"Pay Attention - In need of protection and healing".
If you like, you can look at pain as an ask for a change. A change that is needed for survival and well-being.

As much as we all dislike being in pain (feel free to use a stronger word), it's important to understand that pain is a powerful protective force and our survival depends on our ability to feel it - indeed inability to feel pain is associated with a shortened life expectancy.

Pain, physical or emotional, is a beautiful example of the Body-Brain connection I so often speak about. It's a two way, dual carriageway connection that can go "up-stream" from Body to Brain and/or "down-stream" from Brain to Body.

  • Going 'up-stream', a stimuli in the body sends a signal that travels to the spinal-cord and from there up via the brain-stem to the rest of the brain.
  • Going 'down-stream' is a stressor that is registered at the brain and the signal travels down the spinal-cord to the body. Perception of down-steam can be felt as 'butterflies in the tummy' or a panic-attack.

Perception of pain is when the pain becomes a conscious experience and its severity depends on the strengths and numbers of the signals sent up and down through the nervous system.

The system usually reverts to normal once the stimuli / stressor is removed, but when the down-stream - up-stream persists in a loop of this sensitisation, pain becomes chronic - and a rewire ad reset of the pattern through the neurophysiological interconnection will help to heal and recover.

As a Pilates teacher I often see and work with people in pain: back pain, hip pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, knee pain etc. In fact, a lot of people find and come to Pilates because they are in pain and want out (many times it's after they've tried and failed to resolve the pain and Pilates is their "last resort").

More and more I get referrals from GPs, surgeons, consultants, physiotherapists etc. recommending their patients to do Pilates.

The funny thing is that more often than not the medical professionals are making the recommendation and advise "do Pilates" without fully understanding Pilates. The evidence they see (and read) shows that Pilates works, but it's not explaining WHY PILATES WORKS.

❋ Pilates doesn't work because it gives you rock-solid 'core'.
❋ Pilates doesn't work because it strengthens your back.
❋ Pilates doesn't work because it improves your posture.
❋ Pilates doesn't work because it increases flexibility.
❋ Pilates doesn't work because it releases tension.
❋ Pilates Doesn't work because it calms the mind

These [above] are some of the benefits of Pilates (and the list of benefits is actually much longer), but this is not WHY or HOW Pilates works.

Pilates Works Because The Way Out Is Through The Body-Brain Connection

The deep understanding of Body-Brain (a.k.a
Mind-Body) is inherent to the Pilates method.

Going through the process that helps re-connect, integrate and regulate the neurological & physiological mechanism of our nervous system is what makes Pilates so effective in dealing with pain. Now you know! 😊

With all that talk about Connection, I also want to remind you of the FB group I've opened where I'm putting more posts and info. My invitation to join still stands and I'll be really happy if you'll jump in and connect (😋) with me there. The group is called (surprise surprise) Pilates Connect© which, incidentally, will also be the name of my new online program I'm hoping to launch in February.

On-Line Class via Zoom

A FREE 50min online Pilates based movement
{not a workshop, not a master-class} 
Focuses on movement to create space to

This session is an invite to Move Through where you are physically, mentally & emotionally

❋  Move through physical stiffness or pain
❋  Move through feelings of frustration, grief or anxiety.

The class is about YOU.

  • It's not about keeping up with a group.
  • It's not about coping and trying to mimic someone else - not even your teacher!
  • It's not about performing a bunch of exercises.

Whether you've been doing Pilates for years or have never ever done a "fitness class" in your life, you'll be guided to find the connections that will help you through the  challenges you're facing right now.

I'm really looking forward to seeing you Thursday - wouldn't be just wonderful to move?!??

Lastly,  I'm still available for online Private 1-ON-1 & Duet 2-ON-1 sessions as well as some FREE 30min consultations.

Keep safe everyone! I know it's hard. Let me know how I can help...

Much love, Aoifeღ 

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 " The acquirement and enjoyment of physical well-being, mental calm and spiritual peace are priceless to their possessors, if there be any such so fortunate living among us today. However, it is the ideal to strive for."

Joseph H. Pilates

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