We couldn’t help but fall in love with our October Pilates inspiration, Sylvia from Vie Pilates, and it’s easy to see why.
A classically trained ballet dancer, Sylvia has worked closely with the Royal New Zealand Ballet and Singapore Dance Theatre.
Opening Vie Pilates on the Gold Coast, Sylvia trains everyone from professional athletes, dancers and models to Pilates newbies and people recovering from injury.
We went behind the scenes of our campaign shoot to sit down with Sylvia and learn about what inspires her, what’s next for Vie Pilates and her top summer stretches.
Please meet Sylvia, from Vie Pilates…
Tell us a little bit about yourself…
I’m a Pilates instructor on the Gold Coast and have a three year old son. I’ve been doing Pilates since 1994 and have a background as a professional ballet dancer. I have a passion for fitness, fashion and all things Pilates. smile
Describe yourself in 5 words
Mother, Wife, Daughter, Student, Teacher
How did you get into pilates?
I was introduced to Pilates during my time as a professional dancer. I found Pilates to be ideal for maintaining my body while I was going through periods of intense training. Although, it wasn’t until I was given a book on the Classical Pilates Method that I really grew to understand the tradition and rich history involved in the method.
What prompted you to open Vie Pilates?
When I first started teaching Pilates there wasn’t really any other place to do equipment based Pilates on the Gold Coast. I wanted to share my passion for Pilates and I knew people would grow to love the movement as much as me!
What motivates you to move?
There’s a saying I picked up somewhere which is “To be strong is to be useful.”
Hopefully, through our regular movement practice and conditioning we can be confident that whatever life throws at us, we’ll be able to handle it. When I move it’s not so much aesthetics driven, but instead I train so my body can cope with the load of day to day activities and be free of pain!
“The Pilates method teaches you to be in control of your body and not at it’s mercy.” – Joseph Pilates
How did you discover you could do this style of pilates?
When you’re dedicated to Pilates, over time different movement patterns and different doors will unlock and open up. Sometimes it will be just a peek into something you thought you’d never be able to do.
With time and patience, that vision you had a glimpse of will start to take shape and become clearer. The most important thing to mention is that no progress will be made if we don’t do the basics well and do them consistently!
What inspires you?
I’m inspired by creativity in all forms. Be it in art, dance, graffiti, music or poetry. However, if I had to choose one source of inspiration it would be found in nature. There’s something unmistakably purifying about spending time outdoors.
What does Active Living mean to you?
Active living to me is all about transformative movement. It’s a conscious decision to get up and dance when you hear the music. To take the stairs instead of the elevator. To not sit on the side and watch your kids play in the dirt – but to get dirty too!
“Consciousness is only possible through change; change is only possible through movement.” ― Aldous Huxley
What’s your favourite thing about what you do?
Making people happy is the best thing. Sometimes it’s “Sylvia I won my golf tournament on the weekend and I think Pilates has really helped!” Or the less ambitious “I can get out of the bath tub much easier now”.
Things like that keep me going and always make me smile.
What’s next for Vie Pilates?
At the moment, if you want to attend classes with us the only way to do so is at our Gold Coast studio. Classes are popular so bookings have to be made in advance. However, over the next few months we will be releasing a series of online home workouts which will be available to download, so you will be able to do sessions with us anywhere in the world! We aim to make these classes accessible and affordable enough so anyone can do them.
You can follow us on Instagram @viepilatesgoldcoast smile
If you had to pick 6 simple stretches to start your Summer what would they be?
Lying gluteal stretch:
Begin by lying on your back, with one leg crossed over another and clasp your hands behind the far leg. Slowly pull your hands closer towards your chest to create more stretch in the hips and glutes.
Hip flexor stretch:
Begin in a lunge position with your front knee in line with your ankle and your back knee resting on the floor. Raise the arm on the same side as the back leg. Sink gently into the stretch and hold for 5 to 10 breaths.
Begin by sitting with your legs straight in a wide V-sit or straddle position and gently lean forward. Attempt to place your hands or elbows in front of you on the floor.
Standing tall, reach both arms behind you and interlace your fingers. Straighten your elbows if you can, open your chest out and pull your shoulders back. If you can straighten your elbows, try to lift your arms up as far as you’re comfortable behind you.
Lying hamstring stretch:
Begin by lying on your back with your hands clasped behind your calf or ankle. Aim to straighten your leg as you gently pull your hands towards your chest. Always try to avoid tension in the neck.
Standing quadricep stretch:
Standing tall with shoulders over hips, draw your navel in towards your spine. Transfer your weight onto one leg and hold your left ankle in your left hand – pull your heel in towards your bottom for a stretch through your quads. Keep your abdominals engaged to protect your low back. Repeat on both sides.
What’s your favourite thing about Pilates?