Pilates: After

Unfortunately, this activity has come to a bittersweet ending. I have not been able to achieve my goal or, in other words, to go to at least four pilates classes per month. While I was able to accomplish this in a more or less satisfactory way during my first year of IB and during the start of my second year, I completely lost track of the activity nearing Christmas 2016, and had to stop going due to personal reasons from January onwards. This failure has truly hit me, especially because I was eager and motivated to begin this activity once more after vacations. Cutting class never made me feel good and, during December, I was actually desperate to go outside and exercise. This is the main reason why I decided to start a new Activity activity (Winter Walking) so late into my CAS program: I wanted a replacement for my Pilates classes.

Despite this, I still feel that I have accomplished both learning outcomes I had attached to this activity. I certainly “undertook new challenges”: I had never tried pilates before and the introducing a weekly exercising activity to my routine was also new to me. I learned many relaxation poses that are still useful to me even now, as they are good to keep in mind to help manage stress. Pilates also proved to me that excercising can be very emotionally beneficial, and helped me see sports as something that I can truly enjoy.

My second learning outcome is more problematic in terms of me accomplishing it, as it involves “showing perseverance and commitment” in regards to this activity. While it is true that I couldn’t keep pilates up to the end of my CAS program, I did maintain this activity as a strong part of my routine for more than a year. In that way, I still showed commitment to it, even during times of academic stress, like during last year’s IB mock exams. Hence, I still believe I achieved this learning outcome, although not as well as I would have liked.

All in all, while this activity ended in a disappointing fashion, I am still very happy that I decided to try out pilates as part of my CAS program. It has certainly been an experience that I will remember for a long time and, if I had to do this program again, I would absolutely make pilates one of my main longitudinal activities if I could.

Note:

Unfortunatley, I could not get photographic proof for this activity. Instead, I have audio proof [link – click here to listen!]. It is in Spanish, but you can find a translation below:

“Hello everybody. I am Ainhoa’s mother, and I confirm that she has been going to Pilates from November 2015 to December 2017. I know this because we went to the activity together, and in this way we could both discover the world of Pilates. I am very grateful for the CAS program for allowing me to do this. Thank you.”

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Pilates: During #3

While this activity is very rewarding and relaxing, it has been hard for me to keep up with it during these last few months, especially December. This is because IAs, exams, university applications, and unexpected illnesses have been preventing me from taking part in this activity as much as I would have liked to. I have to say I feel a little disappointed in myself for not being able to organise my time better, but to fix that I have decided to work hard in this activity next term, after the winter holidays are over. I know I can do this because I did so very well last year, especially during the months of April and May, which were some of the busiest for me in terms of schoolwork. And it was very fun too! Therefore, I have faith in myself and my abilities, and I will make sure to get back on track with this activity as soon as I am able to.

Pilates: During #2

Unfortunately, I was not able to keep up this activity very well during the months of December and January. This was partially due to the holiday season that came between them, but mostly because I was taking care of a lot of other activities outside of school. Most notably, I was taking many French classes and working to prepare for the French B2 exam, which was extremely hard and time-consuming for me. However, I am pleased to announce that, ever since I completed my exams on the week of February 8th, I have not missed a day of the activity, and I am starting to enjoy it more and more!

At first, it was hard to get back into the rhythm of going to these classes, and the exercises proved to be a little harder than usual because of my lack of practice. However, this past week everything has started to become much easier for me, and I think I’m already in better shape than what I was in before.

Lately, we have been focusing on balance and waist exercises in class. To train our balancing skills, we have been trying out different poses taken from yoga, such as the tree pose. We have also been standing up on small surfaces, such as balls and cylinders, and trying to maintain our balance there. Meanwhile, the waist exercises consisted on leg rotations and stretching. Furthermore, I have also noticed that I’ve been getting significantly better and some of the exercises that seemed more difficult to me before, such as the dog pose.

All in all, I am very happy to be back on track with this activity, and I am eager to improve my abilities more and more in the weeks to come.

Pilates: During #1

It has been about a month since I started going to pilates classes, and I am just beginning to appreciate its benefits! I am getting better at the breathing exercises every day, and it is becoming easier for me to stand up straight. My legs and arms also feel more muscular, and I even noticed that I seem to have lost a little weight as compared to when I started (although that is not my main goal, and I don’t really care whether I lose weight or not)!

In general, everything went as I expected. The classes are quite relaxing and the people who attend are always very nice towards me, as I am usually the youngest one there! If anything, some classes have proven to be a bit more challenging than what I expected. This is because, sometimes, we are made to practise exercises that involve poses taken from yoga. These require a lot of balance and a heightened awareness of your body weight, which I still lack. Therefore, the poses I manage to strike are… far from perfect!

Aside from this, I have not encountered more problems in terms of the classes and the exercises we must perform. I am  very happy with this activity, and hope everything will go fine next month as well!

Pilates: Before

Learning Outcomes:

  • Undertaken new challenges.
  • Shown perseverance and commitment in their activities.

Goal: To go to at least four pilates classes per month.

I am incredibly excited about starting this activity. I have been in dire need of an Activity for CAS, and I think I have finally found one that I can enjoy. Pilates is an activity that’s not too physically exhausting, focusing instead on building muscles and one’s inner balance by using breathing and stretching exercises. It is known for being a very relaxing activity that is very beneficial for the back, but that also tones the whole body, especially the pelvic region and the abdomen.

I think this activity is going to be very relaxing for me. Also, because of its focus on breathing exercises, it will also be incredibly useful for my singing lessons, as breathing is exceptionally important when signing. I expect to build up my muscles and work on my balance in each class. Pilates is also a discipline which is supposed to make one very aware of their own body. Therefore, I will probably gain a heightened perception of how I move, which will be beneficial for me. I have been told by many that I should pay more attention to the movements I make, as I can be quite clumsy, so maybe this activity will help me with that!

I imagine it will not be hard for me to start off the activity, as it will be a novelty. However, the challenge will come when I get tired of it, yet I have to keep on going to classes every week. As I am not a huge fan of sports or physical activity, it may be hard for me to be disciplined and attend classes every week. Another problem that I expect to confront is that everyone that goes to pilates will probably be older than me. Therefore, making friends could be rather difficult, and that may make me feel lonely at times. Still, I think the latter problem will be much less serious than the first.
Let’s hope my first class goes well!