Pilatesglossy is very proud that Kathryn Ross-Nash from American Body Tech & Kathryn Ross-Nash NY Pilates wanted to participate in this new digital magazine! On April 18 2014 Kathi will be 50! She will be practicing and teaching Pilates forever! And look at her! The work keeps her gorgeous! Enjoy the interview!
When and why did you start with Pilates? How did you get in touch with Pilates? Did your background have anything to do with it?
I was a dancer for Ballet Hispanico of NYC and my director sent me to Pilates for injury prevention and weight management. I had been introduced to it (unwittingly ) when I was 14 years old by Raul Gelabert, the forefather of kinesiology in dance. He had us do exercises prior to ballet class, which – later I learned – was Pilates!
Where did you receive your Pilateseducation(s) and who was/were your teacher(s)?
I received my certification under the Pilates Studio, Authentic Pilates and Romana’s Pilates. My teachers have been my blessing- Romana Kryzanowska, Kathy Grant, Jay Grimes, Sari Mejia- Santos and Edwina Fontaine.
Do you participate regularly in workshops?What workshop did inspire you the most?
I love to attend ANYTHING Jay Grimes is teaching, as well as my co-workers Brooke Siler, Peter Fiasca, Mari Winsor, Dana Santi , Chris Robinson and Brett Howard, to name a few… We can all learn SO much from each other and sharing is the only way to keep the work alive. That is why we created the APU (Authentic Pilates Union)! To keep us all connected and learning from each other.
What was it that made you decide to make Pilates your profession?
Pilates chose me. I had a dance student, who later became a teacher, who injured her back. I had some equipment at home and began to teach her. The doctors said she would never dance again, well she did 4 months later. My path was clear!
Can you describe your studio(‘s)?
I have a full equipped Gratz Studio with 5 Reformers, 2 Cadillacs, 3 Wall Units, 4 Combo Chairs, 1 Wunda Chair, 1 High Chair, Tower, 3 Ladder Barrels (and 5 of each of the other barrels), 2 Baby Chairs, 4 Pedi-Poles, 2 Swedish Bars, 4 Neck-stretchers, 8 Foot Correctors and 26 Toe Correctors and 30 Magic Circles.
What Pilatesapparatus or exercise is your favorite and why?
All of them!!!! Every exercise is linked, so they all are actually one exercise!!! And I LOVE them all! Ok… most
What is your favorite brand of apparatus (Gratz, Peak Pilates, Balanced Body, or other)?
Gratz – it was made for the method I teach. The apparatus was developed for the work and made for Joe himself, not the work for apparatus created.
Did you start your own educational program?
At the moment I am helping to develop one- more to come on that! My dream is create a program that can be used by studios to provide a high standard of training. Each responsible to themselves. Then to link all these studios without a large governing body. It will be about the work- not big business. Although, big business has a very important role, it is not my focus.
What is your purpose in giving workshops?
To spread the knowledge that I was given, as my teachers shared with me. To share the work as I have been so fortunate to learn.
Did you solve body issues with Pilates or do you keep under control with Pilates?
Through out my years in Pilates I have had many injuries from dance, Martial Arts and automobile- had it not been for this work, I would not be standing. This I know for sure I teach all different lessons, but no Mat classes. I also have open workouts, old school Pilates if you will.
Who would you absolutely love to teach Pilates?
Anyone with a passion to improve their quality of life. I DO adore teachers and strong athletes, but I also love taking a person from pain to pleasure.
In Europe there are more female Pilates trainers than male. How is that in the USA?
It is the same in the USA. I just think the way Pilates has been marketed as well as the economic constraints draw more women then men to become teachers.
What is your opinion about the future of Pilates?
I believe it is strong. But we must remember that we need to band together and not fight each other. We have the best work in the world, the perfect training tools for ANY person.
What is your own vision of Pilates?
My dream is to have Pilates used as a training tool for professional and college athletes. To use the work to train them, not to put them back together…
Which Pilatesword you rather not use?
I will use any and all tools to communicate- but if I hear a word used too much- I advise to stay away from it. We should FEEL the words we use, not parrot them.
Are there things that irritate you about Pilates?
Too many to list- one- this is NOT gentle stretching!!!
Did you change things or would you like to?
I would like for us to remember that Pilates is exercise for the normal healthy body- with that said- normal and healthy does not mean perfect! It is normal to have misalignments, healthy does not mean that you have never had an illness or an injury. I want teachers to learn the work for their bodies first- inside and out, before they become teachers. I want them to understand the work for a healthy person before an injured one. I want the work to be a work out- as it was meant to be.
What is the biggest insight Pilates gave you?
To look at things from as many vantage points as possible and you will find a path
What is your opinion about the classical, authentic Pilates and the contemporary approach?
I think a person needs to find what speaks to them. To me the Authentic work is the perfect Chocolate Cake (ok I like food) or classic Martini ( and vodka) the contemporary is German Chocolate cake or chocolate Mocha… or a Pomagranite Martini, some prefer one to the other BUT they both have Chocolate Cake and Vodka as a base. So the Authentic work benefits all and is a great foundation for all movement and fitness.
Who is your biggest example and who would you love to meet (once again) in the Pilates field?
Romana- she was my light and inspiration. She believed in me and therefore I believed in myself. She had a rich full life of family friends and dogs. Pilates enhanced her life- not ruled it. Her joy was in teaching and she made the work fun. We laughed a lot and worked a lot. I was blessed to have her in my life and the relationship that we had. That is enough for me. Yes, I see a desire to learn and grow. My goals are to inspire students to continue their education. I trained many years prior to my certification and continue to seek knowledge 30 plus years later.
What is the funniest thing you have ever experienced with Pilates?
Romana was at a BBQ at my house and my brother and I ended up doing push up (he is a Martial Artist). She laughed and made him feel so good about himself and in her usual style whispered in my ear ( “Yours were better…”)
Have you written or are you writing a Pilatesbook(s) you have written?
I have written the Fix Your Feet Book- using the Pilates method and I am in process of creating a teacher guide manual
Do you expect to keep on practicing and teaching Pilates?
I will forever do Pilates!
Nadine Mose says
wonderful Kathi…succinct yet stating everything with such clarity! I am a dancer with a chronic medical condition that has managed to have a full career because of both Pilates and Yoga! I do a combination of the two to maintain the acute balance that is necessary to maintain with the type of work that is required! I also came to know the Pilates method like Kathi while dancing with Ballet Hispanico as a methos of injury prevention and to keep my body strengthened when I had bouts of thyroid storms where I was unable to dance full out but still had to be able to be strong enough to perform! pilates really put me in touch with my inner self…not unlike Yoga!