The Pilates Company, Hampton, VIC
Instructor Name: Christopher Digby
Studio(s) you work at: The Pilates Company
Location: Hampton, Victoria
Instructor training: Polestar Diploma/Real Pilates Comprehensive Classical Certification in New York
PAA Level: Professional Principal Trainer Membership
What originally motivated you to try Pilates and then go on to train as an instructor?
My first experience with Pilates was back in 1987. I was a national level springboard diver trying to overcome an injury. I was recommended to go to Dance Medicine Australia in Prahran, which at the time was the only place in Melbourne to offer Pilates to clients. I loved the experience however I moved away from it and followed my other fitness loves such as running, weights and general gym work. I came back to Pilates in 2010 when I trained with Polestar Pilates to become an instructor.
What did you eat for breakfast?
Scrambled eggs on toast and a Coffee
In one word, describe your first Pilates experience?
What impact has the recent COVID-19 virus had on your world?
Closing the Studio for the best part of a year was incredibly disappointing, particularly when the rules were so inconsistent. At the beginning there were low times, but we had to adapt and move forward. I kept myself busy by developing our teacher training business and working on ways to take our Studio to the next level when we were allowed to re-open. I tried to find time every day to spend quality times with Marena my wife and business partner, walk the dogs and appreciate the beautiful view from our house. Keeping things in perspective is important; previous generations have gone through tougher times than us.
How have you handled your Pilates teaching with COVID-19, any advice to other teachers?
We moved our classes and teacher training live online via Zoom. Your first Zoom class may not be great, but each class gets better and it’s a great skill to have as we move forward. My advice to other teachers would be don’t be too hard on yourself and keep up your Pilates practice.
What’s the best thing about your job?
Being there for the clients. Sometimes Pilates isn’t about Pilates. We have had clients from overseas who have been homesick, clients going through cancer treatment and clients who have had personal issues. Giving these clients a sense of normality and something to look forward to each week (whilst keeping their body strong) is more important than performing the perfect Teaser.
Your ‘go to’ website for all things Pilates (other than PAA)?
The best advice you’ve ever had?
Be kind. Always.
An indulgence you can’t live without?
My dogs. Cassie & Drake, two beautiful Cavalier spaniels.
How long have you been a member of PAA and how did you hear about PAA?
I have been a member of the PAA since 2010 when I enrolled as a student member whilst completing my Polestar training.
Do you have a motto?
Everything worthwhile takes time
What’s the most challenging aspect of your job?
Although I deal with clients with major injuries on a regular basis, it is still the one area of my job that I find the most challenging.
How do you use PAA?
I have been a member of the PAA for over 10 years and find it a great source of information and education for the Pilates industry. I have loved participating in the PAA conferences and meeting likeminded people.
Who is your Pilates idol or would love to meet, and why?
Apart from my wife, Marena, I have been incredibly fortunate to meet most of my Pilates idols; Alisa Wyatt, Alycea Ungaro, Jay Grimes, Brooke Siler and so many more. Seek out the Pilates teachers you admire and do classes with them even if you have to travel overseas, you will learn so much from them.
What do you appreciate most about your body?
After all of these years, through many highs and lows, my body still functions well, moves with ease and does everything I need it to do.
The book you’re currently reading?
A Fortunate Life – an autobiography by Albert Face.
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