“NO PAIN, NO GAIN?”
The human body is designed to last a lifetime. Fitness by definition should be used to keep the human body healthy, injury and pain-free throughout our lifetime. So why are so many people who have devoted themselves to years of regular fitness routines injured and incapable of continuing to exercise?
Offensive and contradictory to much that we have been told by doctors and fitness specialists—not all exercise is good exercise. Discovering that something that we actually enjoy doing and been devoted to is bad for us is very difficult to let go of. But the definition of insanity is repeatedly doing the same thing and expecting to get different results.
Many of us continue to over-exercise and push our body to its limit, believing that we are doing something good for our health despite the fact that we are in constant pain and often injured. We have been told to believe in the mantra ‘no pain no gain’ and so trust that the experts know what they are talking about. Somehow, we hope that the pain will go away when we get strong enough, and we will have a magnificent shape.
Sadly, the reality of a permanent injury has put an end to many people’s fitness dreams, forcing them to stop all forms of exercise.
The human body is a self-healing machine and does not have to remain injured or in pain forever. With correct exercises that gently rebalance the muscles and joints—the body will heal.
Remember that we never have to over train or force ourselves to do extreme exercises to stay in shape and be vibrant as we age. Quite the contrary! Thirty minutes a day of full body mobility, strengthening and flexibility exercise will keep us looking and feeling fit and energetic no matter what our age.
Aging Backwards by Miranda Esmonde-White has been extremely successful—finding a spot on Amazon’s bestsellers list and her Pledge Special performing 8 times better than the other shows on PBS. As you can imagine, an influx of calls ensued at the Essentrics head office, with participants eager to try a new workout suitable for all. We’ve had a growing number of inquiries for live classes all across North America!
If you have a group of participants interested in trying a slower paced class that is safe for anyone, it may be time to consider adding an Essentrics: Aging Backwards class at your gym or studio.
Please keep in mind that you will be introducing this program to people who have been may have been sedentary their entire lives or have severe health conditions, so it is very important to move slow, focusing on progression not perfection. As you may or may not know, Level 3: Rehabilitation and Flexibility includes all the modifications, evaluation methods and equipment required for each exercise. We will soon be releasing a slower rehabilitating Pre-Choreographed routine in the upcoming months. Until then, you may use the sequence of exercises in your PC1 routine with the modifications that are shown in Miranda’s Mini Workouts: “8 Ways to Reverse Age through Movement” and “Am I doing this Right” Videos
Follow the pace that Miranda uses in these workouts and focus on the techniques and alignment that she refers to throughout each video.
How to use Pre-cho 1 for an “Essentrics: Aging Backwards” class:
– You can do gentle windmills focusing on the arm work with minimal lunging
– Exclude the Airplane sequence
– Encourage your clients to gradually open their feet, and depending how wide they are will determine how far they can bend their knees
So you’ve been promoting your classes, spreading the word and now you finally have people showing up for their first free trial class! The hard work is over, now you have 1 hour to make a lasting impression so that you have a new regular client.
Before the Class: Start by introducing yourself with a nice smile; this is a great opportunity to learn their name, find out about any injuries they may have, what their fitness goals are and answer any questions they might have about the technique. Try to make time to greet everyone in class in order for people to feel comfortable and engaged.
During the Class: Look around the class, and give lots of feedback which is very motivating and rewarding for your clients. Start the movements slow, and as everyone becomes comfortable with the positioning, pick up the tempo and teach them modifications to make things easier or more challenging. Remind the newer students to shake out and grab water whenever they need to! Smile, make eye contact and remind people to breathe
After the Class: Stay a few minutes after class and ask how your students feel—this is an excellent opportunity to get feedback for you as an instructor. If they didn’t like something, find out why, and perhaps you can explain the value of that particular exercise. If they didn’t like your music, ask them what type of music they like and be open to suggestions.
Caribbean Spine — Spinal Sequences
This exercise is one of the most beneficial exercises to increase the flexibility of the entire spine, which will improve the posture and relieve back pain. When it is taught slowly and carefully, your clients will grow to love the feeling of this exercise and notice the results almost immediately. Having the proper music to accompany this exercise will make teaching this movement much easier and more fun for the entire class.
We are happy to introduce certified instructor Emma van der Slujis who is one of the first teachers to become certified out of the Netherlands. Emma fell in love with the classes she took with master trainer Danielle de Wildt out of Amsterdam five years ago. Not living in the area, she soon decided to become an instructor in order to bring Essentrics classes to her own hometown. She loves the way teaching the classes allows her body to feel balanced and liberated.
Emma’s classes are now filled with up to 40 students of different ages and genders. Despite having so many people in each class, she makes it a point to acknowledge everyone in the class, giving them each personal attention. She enjoys teaching her students to become familiar with their body and motivates them to stay healthy. This motivation and personal feedback encourages the students to try harder and want to return to her classes—usually bringing a friend along with them!