I write this column on a personal account. Pilatesglossy offers a platform for Pilates trainers with different backgrounds. In this column I will write about the Peak Pilates education I’ve done before and I’m re-doing right now. This does not mean that I, as editor-in-chief of Pilatesglossy, think that this is the best training you can get. I would however recommend this training to anyone.
Years before I started the Peak training I had private and duo classes in Marjorie Oron’s studio in The Hague. I had severe issues with my back, and I was at a loss at how to move in a safe way; aerobics, steps, fitness and other ways of moving only seemed to make my problems worse. A newspaper article about Marjorie’s studio gave me the idea to try Pilates. And ever since I did I’ve been hooked! This is such a great method, and after trying different trainers and different Pilatesstudio’s, my preference goes to the classical method. I feel relieved from my pain because I have a strong powerhouse. Pilates grabbed me so much that I decided to join a Pilates course, and I chose the Peak Pilates Education method. I bought a Total Workout System with my savings and I trained every day while still working fulltime as a teacher. Ernie Prevoo in Maastricht was the only one in the Netherlands that gave the Peak Pilates program. There I was, between ballet dancers and fitness-instructors. It was a hard time for me. I had a long way to go, but I received my Peak Pilates level 1 training certificate for the PPS1 (Peak Pilates System) when I was 50 years old. I was so proud that I got through this hard part of the Comprehensive workout. In 2010 I did the PPS2 and the Chair workshops.
In July 2009 I signed up with the Chamber of Commerce and started my own home studio; Pilates studio van Sonsbeek was born. The www.pilateszoetermeer.nl website and word of mouth made that people found their way to my studio. Within a year I cut back the hours I made at the school I was working at, because having a demanding job and teaching clients in my studio at night was physically draining. In 2011 I quit my job completely and started working in my studio fulltime, teaching about 20-25 clients a week. In 2012 I added 3 groupclasses to the program. I kept studying and trained 5 times a week. I still train weekly with Javier Velazquez of www.pilatesrotterdam.nl and Christine Ophof from www.pilateshoeve.nl and join their workshops regularly.
During my Peak training I had PT’s with Helga Stekelenburg in her studio in Oud- Beijerland (Helga opened just recently her 2nd studio). We had a connection and I liked working with her: we both want quality and authenticity. We share the same drive and passion for Pilates. Because we both have busy schedules it’s hard to keep in touch, but we still send each other messages and keep in touch through social media. When Helga became Master Instructor for Peak Pilates and she started a new studio in Rotterdam – The Pilates Place – and began to teach trainers, I knew I wanted to do the last part of my PPS training with her.
At the end of 2013 my Pilatesglossy magazine went live. My clientele is growing and nearly no one is leaving. My 6 workdays are getting longer and more intensive. It takes a lot of energy to give good quality classes and there are times when I wish I wasn’t doing this on my own. My body has gotten super strong with the help of Pilates, but my back is still a weak spot; I have to remember not to force myself to much. My husband and daughter are a huge support. Both of them work for Pilatesglossy and without my husband I would not be able to teach the group classes; he makes sure the big room I teach in is “Pilates-ready” every Saturday. In one of my newsletters I asked if clients maybe wanted to be my future colleague. I would train them and they could support me with teaching my classes. A few of my clients responded to this and started the Mat Basic Training with Helga.
I wanted this too!
When these ladies subscribed to this training I researched again what Peak had to offer. I found that Peak Pilates had changed it’s entire formula; they had rewritten the training. (Apparatus are involved in all levels, so the system, the way Joseph Pilates intended it, is easy to understand from the start. Now it’s really a comprehensive training, and way more interesting than the PPS-training). When I heard the quality and demands got higher and Helga would be supported by other Master Instructors at the beginning of the training it was an easy choice to make. I wanted to start the Peak Pilates education again and decided I would start fresh with PPC1 (Peak Pilates Comprehensive Level 1)
I got a lot of comments after I made this choice; “Haven’t you done all this before? Why do it again?” “You already have your certificates, why not get soms CEC’s?” “Why start all over again? It’s such a waste of money and time!” “Isn’t this a step backwards instead of forwards?”. I knew I would be surrounded by students who hadn’t heard of Pilates before. I knew I put myself in a vulnerable position by having myself judged again. I still booked all the modules at once! Even though I know a lot and I study a lot, I felt that I needed to reinforce my knowledge. I also wanted to seize this opportunity to be taught by very talented Peak trainers.
I enjoy it
And I enjoy it so much! Finally there’s room to be able to really listen to what’s being said, because I already know so many of the details. Now I can focus on ‘the details behind the details’ and I love that I know what they’re talking about. If you haven’t taught and trained Pilates for years, scanned and corrected bodies, felt Pilates in your own body and worked with the equipment, then there’s so many new things coming your way that you won’t know what’s what. And that’s where the real journey begins; you won’t start to understand Pilates until you practice it. By teaching and training a lot yourself you will start to understand the system; you’ll learn everyday! It doesn’t matter if you’ve been a Pilates instructor for 5, 10, 20 or 30 years; you’ll stay a student forever. I would recommend it to everyone, to start your education again after many years and to look at it with fresh eyes and with the peace of mind to capture the true meaning.
I consider myself lucky!
I have really enjoyed the last 3 modules of the level 1 PPC education – I still have 1 to go for Level 1- that I now teach with more energy and fun than I did before. I take my hat off to the new Peak Pilates formula. It is well put together and the manual looks even better and complete than it did before. A bit of critics though: I hope they will update the attached dvd very soon, because that is still the old one from 2005!
PPC is a beautiful training for everyone that is looking for quality. My belief in the effectiveness of this training is stronger than ever. I love feeling the “frame” of your background. I feel so privileged to be taught by stunners like Susan Colijn from Pilates Erlangen in Germany, Karen Ingram from Barefootstudio in Wales and of course Helga Stekelenburg and I’m surrounded by very motivated fellow students. I consider myself lucky!
© Marjolein van Sonsbeek
Owner and Pilates instructor at:
Owner and editor-in-chief of Pilatesglossy
Zoetermeer, The Netherlands