The opening of “The Art of Pilates” in Italy. Sensational, beautiful, the Art of Contrology…Enjoy!!
I came across a great article the other day, for those who have experienced Pilates as well as those who are considering Pilates, ENJOY and ponder!
“Have you ever attended a Pilates class and said afterwards, “I didn’t feel a thing” or “What’s the point?” Most people want the BURN or the HEART-POUNDING I’M GONNA DIE workout. If people don’t get the BURN right away, they quickly move on and never return to take another Pilates class. (And what a shame that is.)
What they don’t realize is that, without a doubt, Pilates can make your heart leap out of your chest! (Ask our clients…they always leave our studio dripping with sweat!) The KEY: You have to learn to use the smaller muscles, not just the larger ones!
If you’re constantly moving from your larger muscle groups, you will feel nothing. Everything will seem easy, disconnected, and boring. Your musculature will never change, and you will most likely overdevelop those larger muscle groups, possibly leading to an injury or chronic pain.
What I know for sure and have experienced in my own body is, YOU HAVE TO CHANGE YOUR MOVEMENT PATTERNS – PERIOD! That’s what Pilates gives you in the beginning. You have to be patient with this form of exercise until you learn to move efficiently, which means using all the muscle groups, and not only the larger ones. Once you learn the fundamentals and your body restructures or rewires its movement patterns, you’ll get that HEART POUNDING LIKE NO OTHER feeling. (Just you wait and see!) In Pilates we call it an internal shower, and it’s addictive!”
-the lift girl
So be patient and kind with yourself in the beginning. It is truly amazing!
Over the years, I’ve won the numbers game with germs by using borax and tea tree oil for their natural antibacterial properties. But I have a new favorite—an extract made from grapefruit seeds and pulp. The more I read about it, the more impressed I am. Grapefruit seed extract is a natural-source potent germ killer that’s versatile, nontoxic, broad spectrum, biodegradable, and effective at very low levels of concentration. It’s not new, but it hasn’t yet reached mainstream proportions. The seeds remarkable properties were recognized in 1964, when Florida physician Jacob Harich, MD—an Einstein Laureate physicist and immunologist specializing in the investigation of natural remedies—became interested in the fact that the grapefruit seeds in his compost weren’t rotting. (It’s well known to organic gardeners that citrus fruits are not suitable for composting because of their inherent ability to withstand the decaying process.) Dr. Harich took a closer look and discovered that the grapefruit seed contains quaternary compounds that are very potent anti-microbials yet are non-toxic to animal life when used appropriately. Since then, a wide range of laboratory tests have been conducted with impressive results—grapefruit seed extract (GSE) appears to be effective against approximately 800 bacteria and virus strains, 100 strains of fungi, and a great number of single-cell parasites. Europe’s leading AIDS research center, the Pasteur Institute in France, is in the process of researching the potential of GSE; European farmers use a powdered form of GSE in fish and poultry feed to fight the lethal bacteria salmonella and E. Coli; GSE is used in Canada, Australia, Mexico, and South America for sterilizing operating rooms and medical equipment, and in lieu of chlorine in some public swimming pools.
I’ve used GSE n a pump hand soap for years, and now use it for all my cleaning. I buy GSE concentrate and add one drop per ounce to dish soap and to a squirt-bottle mixture of all-purpose soap and water. (Three good natural soap brands are BI-o-Kleen, Lifetree, and Ecover. I still use Citrasolv when I need a degreaser (I love the orange-y scent, but it’s not a disinfectant.) The GSE concentrate lasts for months; 2 oz is about $10, 4 oz. is $18, quarts and gallons are available by order from Nutribiotic. Some health practitioners are recommending GSE for a number of internal applications, including bacterial and viral intestinal problems, gingivitis, dandruff, nail and foot fungi, and sinus and ear infections. There are quite a few companies making GSE products: here are the ones I know best:
Nutribiotics makes GSE concentrate and a line of products for beauty and health-care made from organically-grown grapefruit. Available at health food stores (ask them to order larger sizes for cleaning) or from the Vitamin Shoppe at 800-223-1216. Proseed offers a GSE concentrate and a line of personal care products. Ask your health food store or call 800-677-8577 for their catalog, orwww.imhotepinc.com .
Bi-o-Kleen cleaning products are still my favorites. They’re safe, effective, biodegradable, and already include grapefruit seed extract in their laundry powder and liquid, dish soap, degreaser soap (I tend to use this as my base soap for all cleaning, including hands), and spray cleaners. Ask your health food store, or call 503-557-0216, orwww.biokleenhome.com
It’s not the big bad germs that are going to get us in the end, it’s the big bad cleaning products. Yesterday, I saw a television commercial showing a mother spraying a household chemical cleaner on her baby’s high chair with him in it. The poor kid is sitting there waiting for lunch, inhaling toxic chemicals. The mom has a satisfied look on her face, sure she’s doing her job to protect him from germs. Are we nuts? Advertisements from companies who make cleaning products have succeeded in making us so paranoid about germs that we’re ignoring our common sense.
Look, germs are everywhere. We live them, breathe them, touch them, eat them. But they’re not all bad. There are good germs, too-they’re the ones that keep the bad ones in control. It’s a numbers game.
Using chemical disinfectants may kill some of the germs, but in the process they seriously compromise our immune systems and our environment. Many are literally weapons—take a look at some of the ingredients on the containers: quaternary ammonium compounds (such as benzalkonium chloride and naphtha sodium hypochlorite), ortho-phenyphenol, cresol, butyl cellosolve, sodium nitrate and sodium sulfate. These are big-time toxins. Some attack the nervous system and are easily absorbed into the blood stream through the skin, some are corrosive, some are sever respiratory irritants, some are carcinogenic. Several are considered hazardous waste. Aside from the damage they’re doing to our health, consider what they’re doing to our septic systems, landfills, and aquatic life. Imagine, not only are companies using these chemicals in new “anti-bacterial” sponges, but there’s talk of putting them in plastic baby toys and diapers. Several years ago only a few dozen products containg antibacterial agents were marketed for the home, now more than 700 products are available even though an added health benefit has not been demonstrated . It’s insane.
"They (antibacterial agents) are now being added to products used in healthy households, even though an added health benefit has not been demonstrated. Scientists are concerned that the antibacterial agents will select bacteria resistant to them and cross-resistant to antibiotics. Moreover, if they alter a person’s microflora, they may negatively affect the normal maturation of the T helper cell response of the immune system to commensal flora antigens; this change could lead to a greater chance of allergies in children." -Stuart B. Levy, Tufts, CDC
Even hopsitals don’t allow the use of some of these toxic chemicals disinfectants around the elderly and pediatric patients. I haven’t used a chemical disinfectant in over tens years and we rarely get sick. There is absolutely no need to use poisons to kill germs in your home.
GENERAL DISINFECTING: Germs love dirt. You won’t kill all the germs no matter what you do. So if you don’t get all the dirt up, the survivors will just get breeding again. Good cleaning is the key to keeping the bad guys at bay. I’m not suggesting you spend your days scrubbing. Just take time every now and then to get the dirt out of nooks and crannies, then just rinse well and wipe dry. Finish off by applying a safe, natural disinfectant and leave a residue so it can do its job. By the way, don’t even bother trying to disinfect the air. It’s not really possible anyway, and aerosol disinfectant sprays are especially dangerous since they are easily inhaled (that’s why the can usually states they’re meant for use on surfaces only). Just open a window for a blast of good fresh air or spray a mist of natural disinfectant and water.
What are great natural disinfectants? more tomorrow!
"Four of the most widely consumed crops in the United States are commonly grown from genetically modified seeds:
21% of rapeseed 49% of cotton 77% of soybeans 85% of U.S.-grown corn
Critics of GMO farming claim that these “transgenic crops” may cause a host of environmental and health problems, including the use of more pesticides than non-GMO crops.
If you prefer to limit your intake of these foods, consider these tips:
LOOK FOR THE PLU CODES ON PRODUCE STICKERS:
Now that you have your natural bristle brush, let’s recap the benefits of dry brushing:
How to Dry Brush:
Did you know that Joseph H. Pilates recommended this technique in 1934? This process only takes 2-3 minutes a day and the benefits are huge! I love this and do this every day, here is why:
Dry brushing cleans the lymphatic system. Lymph is considered part of our immune system bringing our cells nutrients and removing their waste.. Our bodies contain more lymph than blood, so you can see how important this might be.
Dry brushing removes dead skin layers. Dry skin is a sign of detoxification. Dry brushing opens pores to allow them to “breath” and absorb nutrients. If this does not occur, a person may end up with eczema, psoriasis, and dandruff.
Dry brushing strengthens the immune system. Dry skin brushing may reduce duration of infection and accelerate the clearing of toxins. It helps support the immune system during cancer and other chronic illness treatment. By stimulating the lymph vessels to drain toxic mucoid matter into organs of detoxification we can purify the entire system.
Dry Brushing tightens the skin by increasing the flow of blood and reduces the appearance of cellulite by breaking down the toxins that cause cellulite.
Dry Brushing tones the muscles. Dry skin brushing helps muscle tone by stimulating the nerve endings which causes the individual muscle fibers to activate and move. It also helps mobilize fat and even the distribution of fat deposits.
Dry brushing stimulates circulation. Our skin is the largest detox organ and it breathes! In most people this vital detoxification is operating below capacity. By activating the circulation you can also prevent varicose veins.
Here’s what you will need: A natural bristle brush or loofa - my favourite is a short handled one. (it forces you twist and turn!) Synthetic brushes or exfoliation cloths are harsh and create minute scratches on the surface which may result in drier, irritated skin.
Want to start off your day on a positive note? A few really deep breaths at an open window, a dry brushing session followed by alternating warm and cool showers and your defense system will be boosted within a week.
And there are other side effects to this quick morning routine – a clearer mind and boosted spirit. What a wonderful way to start the day!
Tomorrow: "How to “Dry Brush"”
Filmed in Italy at the ART of PILATES studio featuring Master Teacher Romana Kryzanowski, Joe Pilates original student and protege. Art meets Health and Science which in turn meets Art…beautiful. Authentic NY Pilates.
An exploration into health and well being that extends beyond the studio. Join us in this journey as we explore a lifestyle that places emphasis on the connections between body, mind and spirit. The ancient Athenians wisely adapted their own motto:
“Mens sana in corpore sano” A sane mind in a sound body.
THE PILATES LIFESTYLE