Journal

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Reflections by Jen Micoleau

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Reflections from Springboard Pilates Staff Meeting, Summer 2016

Co workers: Friends. Women. Man. Mothers. Father. Wives. Husband. Daughters. Son. Sisters. Brother. Teachers. Students. Seekers. Caregivers. Artists. Organizers. Movement Lovers.

Each a layer of our lives. Moving from the surface to just underneath to buried deep within. Never lost. Always present. Exchanges between each other coax one to move through toughened, sinewy barriers – to resurface. In that moment we become Exacting Individuals.

Bodywork Yourself Workshop

with Phaelon O’Donnell

Thursday, May 26th, 5:30-6:30pm
OR
Thursday, June 23rd, 5:30-6:30pm
$25 per person

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In this workshop, students will learn how to intersperse bodywork and massage throughout a series of Classical Pilates Mat exercises. You’ll learn some Trigger Point Therapy, Traction technique, and Thai massage, practices and techniques that Phaelon has learned through specific classes throughout her massage training. These modalities can be done solo or with a partner and they will help to release tension, elongate connective tissue, promote circulation, and bring balance to the body. Phaelon is happy to pass along what she knows so you will be empowered with new information for your Pilates toolbox, experiencing the benefits firsthand during the workshop, ultimately bringing a new angle at self-care to your Pilates!

Sign up from the Class Schedule page on our website (make sure you are looking at the date you want when selecting “Take Class”).

Please familiarize yourself with our straight-forward workshop cancellation policy here.

PART 2: Pilates & Fascial Fitness Workshop

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with Lesley T. Hoey, D.P.T.

Saturday, April 2nd 8:30 – 9:45am

$35 per person ($30 if you sign up by March 26th!)

Fascia is creating quite a buzz in the fitness industry these days as new research shows how to train fascia to improve strength and flexibility among other things. By popular request, this follow up to the Intro to Pilates and Fascial Fitness workshop will integrate the four Fascial Fitness principles with a Pilates based exercise sequence.

Join us for this fun, movement-filled experience! Sign up on the Class Schedule page by clicking “Take Class.”Dr. Lesley Hoey integrates Fascial Fitness principles with her physical therapy patients, private fitness clients, and students in her yoga workshops and classes to empower them all in improving and maintaining the quality of their health and their lives.

Please note this workshop is intended as a follow-up for those who attended the original Intro workshop in January 2016 as well as movement teachers and anatomy buffs who already have a good understanding of fascia. It is open to any level student who is able to embody and self-cue the Pilates Principles with minor to no orthopedic issues, or is adept at modifying and taking care of themselves. The rhythm of movement and speed is part of conditioning the fascia, so it’s important participants are able to keep themselves safe within a flowing class.

Please familiarize yourself with our straight-forward workshop cancellation policy here: http://springboardp.wpengine.com/studio/policies/. 

My New Year’s Resolution 2016

MeredithThe thing about New Year’s Resolutions is that so often they are “pie crust” promises, as Mary Poppins would say, “easily made, easily broken.” I’ll admit it, I have made a few pie crust promises this year, as I always do, but I have also asked myself: “What would make me feel like I am working on becoming a better version of myself?” On the surface, my answer is so simple: fully embrace joy. However, underneath the surface of this resolution, it gets pretty complicated for me.

Like many of you, I often feel so blessed and lucky for my life. It’s not perfect, but when I think about my career, family, home-life, health, and circle of loved ones, sometimes I can’t help but feel overwhelmed with a lot of worry. I worry that I may not “deserve” all this good stuff and all of the these great people. I fear that at a blink of an eye it may all disappear. I often feel guilty just knowing that others are going through hard challenges like loneliness, loss, serious health struggles, unemployment, prejudice, and the list goes on and on and on.

This empathetic feeling I have for others, and my constant feeling of what if,  often interrupts and impairs my own joy. Not wanting to be ungrateful for my blessings, I often temper my sheer joy, excitement, and glee with a drop or two of a negative thought in attempt to stay ready for any unannounced disappointment. In my younger years, I would have described this practice as a preventative measure, a simple formula to not “jinx” myself. But it gets me wondering: over the years, how many experiences have I had without fully embracing joy?

Looking back on this now, it seems like a lot of wasted negative thinking. All of it slowly accumulating to a subtle, but personally noticeable weight on my energy. What some might even call a heavy heart.

Considering that I feel happy most of the time, and generally optimistic every day, it makes me wonder how much lighter I could feel if I could just let go of this self-inflicted burden. I think I am finally ready to take the weight off my shoulders. Why not practice joy this year? Without fear of “repercussions”? No longer buying into the idea that embracing sheer joy means I am somehow ungrateful for what I have or that I am naive about all of the troubles that could be. Instead I am going to do my best to embrace the now. Just joy. And gratefulness. And light.

Cheers to 2016!

Pilates and Intro to Fascial Fitness

pilates instructor demonstrating fascial fitness

with Lesley T. Hoey, D.P.T. and Meredith Coffin, Springboard’s Owner

The role of connective tissue, known as “fascia”, in fitness and wellness training is gaining widespread popularity. Healthy, fit fascia can improve physical performance, prevent injury and decrease chronic pain. There is more to training fascia than using balls and rollers. Based on research there are four key principles that improve the health of fascia. These principles are easily adapted to a variety of training methods.

Fascial Fitness Workshop

This workshop will introduce the four Fascial Fitness (FF) training principles then incorporate them into a variety of Pilates mat exercises. Incorporating the FF principles with Pilates mat exercises will add another layer of challenge in coordination of both body and mind to maintain core stability and add a level of exhilaration. This workshop is intended for those who can readily integrate the Pilates Principles into their movement patterns with minimal cueing from an instructor. For this reason, within Springboard’s system, this workshop is considered Level III.

Join us for this fun, movement-filled, educational experience!

January 23rd 2 – 4pm

$75 per person

Dr. Lesley Hoey integrates Fascial Fitness principles with her physical therapy patients, private fitness clients, and students in her yoga workshops and classes to empower them all in improving and maintaining the quality of their health and their lives.

Bust a Move Workshop

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with Springboard teacher Alicia Allen
NEW DATE: Saturday, January 23rd!

“Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.” -Frank Zappa

Concentration, control, centering, precision, breath, flow. The six guiding Principles of Pilates. We know them, we strive to achieve them each time we hit the mat. What if we let them go, broke the rules, and did Pilates to…music!?

True, classical Pilates as a method requires complete concentration, but how often do you limit yourself because you heard a specific cue one time or decided your body had to do things this way or that? This workshop asks you to loosen your grip, trust your muscle memory to carry you through, and just move. With the help of music, maybe we’ll break through some of the habits, mental clutter, and stories we tell ourselves about how our bodies feel while doing Pilates. My hope is that by then end you’ll have cracked open your ideas about how you move to discover something new about Pilates. Maybe you’ll even find a way to love a particular exercise you have struggled with because you’ve had some fun.

This workshop is for healthy bodies who know Intermediate Level III mat work, or healthy bodies who are okay with following along with minimal cueing.

Note: songs on the playlist contain colorful language, and definitely some Mariah Carey!

NEW DATE! Saturday, January 23rd 11am – 12:30pm
$30 per person
Sign up on our Class Schedule page

Please familiarize yourself with our straight-forward workshop cancellation policy here: http://springboardp.wpengine.com/studio/policies/

Holiday Deal!

Take 10% off all Gift Cards purchased online NOW through December 25th! Just type in promo code HOLLY10 (all caps) at check out.

Buy a Springboard Gift Card for all of your friends and family (or simply treat yourself)!

Sale is happening online only and ends 12/25/15. Gift Card value does not expire.

Holiday Decompresser Workshop

Who doesn’t need decompression around the holidays?

Join Jen this Wednesday the 16th from 5:30 – 7pm for an amazing self-care experience! The workshop starts with a brisk Pilates Reformer workout, decompressing the spine and joints with flowing movement, helping you gain immediate access to your internal power.

Next, Yoga poses will ground and center you so you can better manage the unavoidable and unexpected slick spots along your path (whether an icy sidewalk or old family struggle). Reclining stretches will target your most tense areas: shoulders, back, and hips.

Then Guided Meditation aims to bring calm and peace of mind through single pointed focus and breath work.

And to complete the practice: full relaxation and centering.

Leave fully decompressed from body to mind to spirit.

Sign up on our Class Schedule Page.
$40 per person

Happy Holidays!

Clothing & Pilates

 

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Hello, Springboard friends! It’s Cathryn! I’m here to talk about two of my favorite things — CLOTHING and PILATES – and to offer a suggestion for how you could feel even more amazing as you take your rosy-cheeked self out the door at the end of class. (Hint: it has a lot to do with wearing fabulous, well-fitting new workout gear when you walk IN that door.)

Apparently,  I’ve always been obsessed with clothes; my dad used to love to tell the story of watching me, at age 6, stand and whip through an entire rack of hanging tops like a little professional shopper in the kids’ section at Sears. With an expression that was equal parts fascination and horror, he turned to my mom and said, “Did you teach her how to do that?”

Now that I’ve transitioned to only being at Springboard (my “other life” as an office manager came to a satisfying and happy end in August), I’m having a lot of fun playing with color, fit, and function as I dress for my days at the studio on Pine Street. Whether I’m teaching class or taking class, I want to feel comfortable, uninhibited in my movements, stylish, and attractive. Fab leggings or a slammin’ top give a fantastic boost to my day.

Many of you have asked me where I got an especially eye-catching or unusual piece, so here’s a list for you! I’m always poking around online and in the real world, and I really like these companies. If you want to compare measurements with me to figure out how these different clothing lines would fit you, please feel free to email or text and I’ll be happy to frankly discuss details. We will not be allowed to criticize our bodies when we do this. Sorry.

Here’s to a wonderfully happy, harmonious, and sparkling holiday season for all of us! A few final thoughts:

You’re worth it. Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Winter Solstice – they’re all coming right up, so now is the time to hand over a website link to those loved ones who are just PESTERING you for gift ideas. Help ‘em out!

When you wear workout gear that fits you in all the right places and is designed for Pilates and yoga movement, you won’t be doing as much tugging or pulling to stay covered during class. This will lead to better focus during your most challenging moments. If you aren’t feeling distracted by your belly, seat, or cleavage being exposed during the Stomach Massage Series or Scissors, Bicycle, and Shoulder Bridge, I guarantee you’ll wring more out of these exercises.
This is not to say that you should ever worry about flashin’ your lovely bod at us. We’ve kind of seen it all. . . at this point we’ve evolved to where we’re just deeply curious about your unique body and how to help you based on what we can observe.

And, seriously – if you want to come to class in baggy sweats and your old holey t-shirt that you can’t quite bring yourself to part with – by all means, do it. We will always care more about welcoming you to the camaraderie of a great group class or helping you have a light bulb moment in an inspiring private than the brand or cost of your workout clothes.

Purusha People
This is where my green Mermaid and fuchsia Mind’s Eye leggings and my gold heart ‘THANK YOU’ top come from. The owner of this company is the cheeriest little cutie and she will send you an email personally thanking you, sincerely and with love, for patronizing her business.

Oiselle 
Pretty and fashionable women’s running clothes that, in my mind, cross over well to the studio. Huge selection of thoughtfully-designed tights, knickers, tops, and accessories. Even though I only wear them about twice a year, I love my cozy Oiselle arm warmers. (If you browse their bottoms and are leaning toward a purchase, this is a good time to remind y’all that zippers can scratch or gouge our equipment at the studio.)

Hard Tail Forever 
I am still searching for the Holy Grail of Tops – one that fits my small ribcage but also offers plenty of support and coverage for my full bust. Hard Tail’s flattering Cross Back Tank, with its soft material, nice wide crossover straps, and empire waist, is the closest I’ve come to finding it.

Teeki 
This is where I found my Magic Elephant Lotus Flower tights (OK; they’re actually called Love The Elephant Hot Pants). Teeki’s Hot Pants are made from recycled plastic bottles, come in funky, nature-inspired and mind-expanding prints, and they’re soft, close-fitting, and non-baggy. I feel like a million bucks when I wear these.

Shakti Activewear
This Brazilian company makes beautiful products designed specifically for yoga and Pilates movement. I own their Toller tank top (this style is on clearance now for about $25) and Lakshmi capris. Their Coolform fabric is a nylon/Lycra combination that feels heavenly on the skin.

Lole 
Like Lululemon, this activewear company hails from Canada and offers outerwear and ski apparel in addition to yoga and Pilates clothes. Their Yogita Crop (now on clearance for $45), a style with high-rise shorts under mesh leggings, is the most risqué piece in my studio wardrobe. Woo woo!

Random ideas for places to find more stuff:

Freeport – J. Crew Factory
Yep, this is where I’ve scooped up a few really cute miniskirts to wear as a modesty coverup over my tights when I pop out of the studio between classes.

Portland – Nomads
Great store on Commercial Street that is packed to the gills with quality outdoor clothing and gear – carries Prana and Ibex. Get serious and get your socks, hats, gloves, studio duds and outerwear here, for men and women.

Portland – Fleet Feet Sports
Located right off Marginal Way, next to Play It Again Sports – carries Oiselle and Lole. Runners, head here.

Yoga Website- http://drishtiyoga.com

Yoga website with a super brand list of high-quality yoga and Pilates gear!

 

Two Weeks Along the Californian Coast

Meredith & Jaff

California Dreaming

My hubby Jaff and I had never been any further west in the US than Wyoming and Colorado, respectively, but we both craved an adventure out there before life gets too complicated to just pick up and go! We toyed around with the idea of visiting California, but our excitement really grew when Jaff’s cousin and wife told us tales of their recent honeymoon up Route 1 (the Pacific Coast Highway or PCH for short).

Wise Words of Advice
One main “lesson learned” that they passed on to us was to drive north to south in order to be on the “right” side of the road for all the views and scenic pull-offs. So, that is where the seed of traveling two weeks south down the PCH together was first planted.

The Stresses of Planning
Planning was overwhelming at first. Where should we go? What must we see? And for how long? The possibilities were endless! I polled all of the people in my life who had a California connection and searched Pinterest boards about Cali travel and the PCH specifically. Together we brainstormed our priorities. I have a friend in San Francisco and a cousin in LA, so that helped mark out the two end points. All the rest came together (somehow) and looking back now, the nuts and bolts of the days turned out something like this:

Trolly Meredith
Our Itinerary
Tues, Sept 15:
  • Flew into San Francisco
  • Walked Lombard “The Crookedest Street,”
  • Visited Coit Tower
Full house house
Wed, Sept 16: (San Fran) 
  • Enjoyed a long walk to the “Full House” house
  • Took a ferry to the Alcatraz audio tour (moving!)
Thur, Sept 17: (San Fran) 
  • Went on a trolley car ride (SO FUN!)
  • Went to the Presidio
  • Crissy Field picnic near the Golden Gate Bridge (delish sandwiches from Rhea’s in the Mission district)
Fri, Sept 18: (San Fran to Monterey) 
  • Drove over Golden Gate through the Headlands
  • Stopped in Santa Cruz for lunch on the pier
  • Ended at Lover’s Point in Monterey (sunset and beer on the rocks)
Sat, Sept 19: (Monterey) 
  • Drove the beautiful “17-Mile Drive” (saw the Lonely Cypress)
  • Point Lobos nature preserve (saw a whale flip it’s tale – Jaff has it on video)
  • Fisherman’s Warf happy hour

Sun, Sept 20: (Monterey to San Luis Obispo)

  • Drove Big Sur (too many beautiful things to describe)
  • Toured Hearst Castle (over the top)
  • Stayed at the Madonna Inn (over the top)
Mon, Sept 21: (Traveling) 
  • Drove from San Luis Obispo to Montecito Sequoia Lodge in Sequoia National Park (7 hours due to fire that caused road closures on our route)
Tues, Sept 22: (Sequoia NP) 
  • Saw the General Grant Tree (BIG!)
  • Saw the General Sherman Tree (BIGGER! the largest tree in the world)
  • Toured Crystal Cave
Wed, Sept 23: (Traveling) 
  • Drove from Sequoia NP through Los Padres National Park (nature looked thirsty) to Santa Barbara (classic palm-tree-lines streets)
Thur, Sept 24: (Santa Barbara) 
  • Toured historic Courthouse (amazing 360 view)
  • Enjoyed a swim and the sun at Leadbetter Beach
Santa Monica Pier
Fri, Sept 25: (Santa Barbara to LA) 
  • Drove through Malibu, visited Santa Monica pier (we rode the Ferris Wheel!)
  • Entered LA (1.5 hours to drive 13 miles)
Sat, Sept 26: (LA) 
  • Went to neighborhood farmer’s market
  • Went to Hollywood Blvd with Walk of Fame
  • Saw famous hand and foot prints at the Chinese Theatre
Seth Bogart
Sun, Sept 27: (LA) 
  • Attended Seth Bogart pop art show downtown
  • Drove through Beverly Hills/Melrose/Rodeo
  • Hung out at Venice Beach (eww)
  • Rooftop sunset at Erwin
  • Attended the Neil Hamberger comedy show (surprise appearance by Reggie Watts)
  • Saw the super blood moon eclipse
Mon, Sept 28: (LA) 
  • Experienced Le Brea tar pits (stinky) & outdoor at LACMA (cool lamppost installation)
  • Strolled through the Hollywood Forever Cemetery
  • Ate at O Banh Mi (I still dream about my sandwich)
  • Griffith Park & Griffith Observatory (the view: so beautiful, also smoggy)
Tues, Sept 29: (LA) 
  • Went to El Pueblo (oldest homestead in LA)
  • Grand Central Market (tasty pupussas!)
  • Scott Rankie show at Melody Lounge in Chinatown
Wed, Sept 30:
  • Flew out of LAX mid-day and headed back east

Meredith Cali

My Reflections 

Although here it looks like SO MUCH, we really did have plenty of time to sleep in, take a siesta, and do nothing if we wanted. Maybe the most remarkable thing about the whole trip was the amount of TIME we actually had on our hands. People are always saying, “there’s no time!” but we found it in Cali!
Before we left, I wondered if we were being selfish or gluttonous in taking almost 3 full weeks away from work. The Pacific Coast Highway could be done in a day or two, for sure, but we really wanted to experience these places. We wanted to see, touch and smell some of these places that are so prevalent on TV, in movies, and in our collective unconscious that you almost feel like you’ve already been there. But we’d never been to any of these place before. We’d never seen any of these sights. We’d never breathed the air so far west or dipped our toes into that Pacific Ocean. This trip was a real first.
When anyone asks, “What was your favorite part?” I realize there was no one thing or place. It was all new, impressive, and beautiful. What comes to mind was the amount of time we had to really soak it up. To stop as many times as we wanted along beautiful Route 1. To linger, watching the sun change from setting, to twilight, to dusk, to night from an Adirondack chair at 8,000 feet or from our towel in the sand at sea level (both happened). To sit in silence without worry or wonder if there’s something that needs saying, because there was plenty of time.
Spending a couple of nights everywhere was a great decision, too. It meant really settling into our rooms and making ourselves at home while we drove here or there during the day. Especially in LA (5 days) we had a great 2-bedroom cottage with an awesome 3-season porch overlooking the city with a view of the Griffith Observatory and the Hollywood sign. There, we bought groceries and made meals, hosted friends, drank late into the night, washed laundry, and escaped the heat (it was 90’s every day).
California Meredith
Carpe Diem! 

Yes, time was truly the gift. I can’t remember the last time (maybe middle school before summer jobs and reading lists) when 2 weeks stretched out before me with nothing I HAD to do. Almost no responsibilities. It was summer vacation with each morning asking us, “What will you do today?” What a blessing. Looking back now, even though I was very disciplined about stopping to appreciate where I was in the moment…to breathe in and say a little prayer of gratefulness before breathing out…even though I was aware every day of the preciousness of each moment, it still feels like a dream now. Like, maybe that didn’t actually all happen to me. Was that me, in these memories? Were those all real people we encountered? Does life still tick by out there without us to witness it?

Luckily, Jaff and I really went for it with pictures, so we can prove we had all of these amazing experiences. My body told the tale of the food and drink I’d experienced when I returned home 5 pounds heavier than when I’d left! Oh, the “Summer of Yes” sure did go out with a bang! 

And now I can honestly say I’m ready for the shift in seasons. Bring it on, Fall!